SUPER SERIES ALERT: Chilling Effect by Valerie Valdes

WOW! What a fun series. It literally has all the things: it’s funny with snarky dialog; it’s action packed, and fast paced as a team of friends and lovers, in a spaceship, try to save the universe. There is lots of Cuban slang that I think is mostly profane!, some seriously well written inter-species and LGBTQ+ romance(s), family acting crazy like all families do, oh and psychic cats! Seriously, what’s not to love?

The books can standalone but the overall plot extends into all three books. Our story begins with Captain Eva Innocente putting the crew of La Sirena Negra in danger (yet again) to save her kidnapped sister. The plot unfolds into an even more sinister situation that becomes a huge big fat hairy deal that continues to get worse as we move through the series. Old secrets come to light, old friends & family move in and out of the story; some in good ways and some that are downright dangerous. Family acts like family with all the drama, arguments, etc. There are aliens that are good, bad and super terrifying as Eva and crew rocket from plot twist to plot twist on the way to book three and the mysterious/scary aliens that show up to threaten the known universe. Can Eva save us all with an off the charts plan for an epic ‘boss fight’? The ending and wrap up of the series will seriously blow your mind.

I enjoyed these books very much; especially the little details (like so, so much coffee), that brought the characters to life. The romance parts are well done and not graphic, just nice people finding love in space. I especially liked the way the author used her Cuban heritage to enhance this series and give us true to life characters and the way they act and interact. The technology parts seem very plausible and were awesomely done and integrated into the story. Very highly recommend this series and suggest you get all three at once and binge read them so you keep the flow of the story.

Book one (Chilling Effect) is the set up for the series. We meet the characters and, plot twist, there is a kidnapping that leads our heroes to an even more sinister plot. More sinister than kidnapping, you say? Yes, it is even worse. This diabolical plan continues into book two, Prime Deceptions (my favorite). In book two, Eva goes back to her past as she teams up with family members and confronts her own demons to uncover more of the secret plot against the universe. By the time you get to book three (Fault Tolerance), dear reader, you will be gobsmacked at this series. It just goes on and on with robots and the psychic cats in a superweapon/super plot twist that will have you on the edge of your seat.

Valerie Valdes is a great writer; book one of this series, “Chilling Effect”, was shortlisted for an Arthur C. Clarke award; she has another book coming out in 2023 (not part of this series), but I will be grabbing a copy as soon as it releases. 4 big fat stars!

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