Early Review & Giveaway: Chilling Effect by Valerie Valdes

Chilling Effect by Valerie Valdes // VBC Review

Chilling Effect (Chilling Effect #1)
Valerie Valdes
Published: Sept. 17, 2019 (Harper Voyager)
Purchase at: Amazon or IndieBound
Review Source: Copy provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review

Reviewed by: Amy

Rating (out of 5): 4 stars

Captain Eva Innocente has been trying to make an honest living with her crew running small cargo around the galaxy for delivery. Even though it barely pays the bills, Eva is determined to remain on the up and up. That is, until she gets a message from The Fridge—a mysterious crime syndicate—saying they have her sister and Eva better pay up or else.

Having little in the way to “pay up” with, Eva is instead forced to basically keep on doing what she’s doing, except on The Fridge’s dime while keeping the nature of the work a secret from her crew. All while also dealing with a cargo of psychic cats, the unwanted amorous affections of a fish-like powerful emperor promising revenge for her rebuttal, and the very-much-wanted but kinda creates a potential conflict of interest affections for her engineer. But as the danger and lies escalate with each new mission, Eva has to ultimately decide whose side she’s fighting on in the conflict with The Fridge.

Based on the blurb I can guarantee you that Chilling Effect is everything you think it’s going to be, plus so much more. I loved the depth with which Valerie Valdes looked into the future and the varied species and creatures that are encountered throughout Eva’s exploits. As Eva is propelled from one conflict to another, there’s no shortage of thrilling and adventurous scenes with nary a moment of downtime in between. Chilling Effect is nothing if not fast-paced.

With Eva at the helm, we’re introduced to a woman that doesn’t ever think the words I can’t. It’s pretty safe to say that Eva gets into a lot of sticky situations (sometimes literally), but she just as equally tends to find a way out, somehow, someway. She may not always make the best choices, but she always has the best intentions at heart. Even when she’s being less than honest with her crew, and is, essentially, the cause for many of the problems they face, you can’t help but like her character. She would die for those she loves, has put her life on the line numerous times…she just may also blow up the entire galaxy on her way down. Inadvertently of course.

Eva’s found-family relationship with her crew are some of the best moments of the book for me. You can certainly feel the bond between them especially with best friend Pink and romantic interest Vakar. The problem is Eva tends to isolate herself quite a bit in this first book—I think out of a sense of guilt for lying. So we don’t get as much depth to the relationships as I want, it’s less so towards the end of the book, but I hold out hope for the sequel.

I’d say the story does suffer from a lack of direction in certain places. After certain events transpire, it becomes difficult to understand Eva’s motivation where The Fridge is concerned. Eva herself even questions what it is she’s fighting for. I think it speaks to a lot of what brings people into causes and speaking up about injustices. Sometimes it’s for a very personal and passionate reason, and sometimes it’s a more roundabout way that builds up to being personal and passionate. But in this case, I had to really believe and focus on the fact that everything Eva and our characters are going through was going to lead somewhere.

Chilling Effect is set up perfectly for a continuation of the story. After everything Eva goes through in this one, I’m certainly interested to see what else Valerie Valdes can conjure up for our intrepid Captain.

Sexual content: references to sex


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9 Responses to “Early Review & Giveaway: Chilling Effect by Valerie Valdes”

  1. Viki S. says:

    I’m reading Stalking Jack the Ripper by Kerri Maniscalco.

  2. Liz S says:

    Just finished Sapphire Flames by Ilona Andrews. Thanks for the giveaway!

  3. Eva Millien says:

    Just got through reading Unearthed by Cecy Robson! Thanks for sharing Chilling Effect, sounds like my kind of book!

  4. Tais S says:

    I’m (re)reading Good Omens, this time in portuguese. I read it earlier this year in English, but I couldn’t resist buying the translation, the little I read in the bookshop was hilarious!

  5. Elizabeth says:

    It’s a sweet life by tymber dalton

  6. Shannon Propst says:

    I’m not usually interested in Sci-fi but this sounds like a good story. Your reviews are partially responsible for my gigantic TBR and wish list lol.

    Right now, I am finishing up The Prisoner’s Key by CJ Archer.

  7. Tamra B says:

    I am reading book 2 of the Honours series, “Honour Bound” by Rachel Caine & Ann Aguirre in a real hard backed, paper format with it’s new book scent (one of my favourite scents!)And I am also reading book 3 of Melissa Caruso’s The Swords & Fire Trilogy, “Unbound Empire” as my ‘on the go’ choice via Kindle…

  8. Linda George says:

    Currently I am reading The Unkindest Tide by Seanan McGuire. I love this October Daye series. Just Finished The Calculating Stars and The Fated Sky by Mary Robinette Kowal. Outstanding Dualogy.

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