Shifter Planet

Shifter Planet

by D.B. Reynolds

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781943892969
Publisher: Entangled Publishing, LLC
Publication date: 10/19/2015
Pages: 440
Product dimensions: 4.90(w) x 7.90(h) x 1.10(d)

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Shifter Planet


By D.B. Reynolds, Allison Collins, Candace Havens

Entangled Publishing, LLC

Copyright © 2015 D. B. Reynolds
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-1-63375-441-6


CHAPTER 1

The Year 4668, Earth Reckoning, United Earth Flagship James T.


Amanda Sumner shifted her weight slightly, trying to ease the pain in her right thigh without letting her opponent see she was injured. He caught the movement anyway and grinned. Amanda bared her teeth in response. She wasn't a small woman, but Chief Petty Officer Angel Falzone was a very large man. He had a hundred pounds and at least three inches of height on her. She was faster. Or she had been before he'd delivered a side kick that would have broken her leg if they'd been fighting for real.

She saw his next attack coming and stepped into it, shifting her weight onto her sore leg, swallowing a groan as the muscles screamed in protest. She turned her body, letting gravity do her work for her. She felt the momentum shift and grinned, knowing she had him.

"Lieutenant Sumner!"

Amanda found herself flat on the mat, crushed beneath more than 250 pounds of sweaty male, and desperately trying to breathe. Her chest spasmed, trapping her scream of pain in lungs that no longer wanted to work. She pushed frantically at Falzone, whose eyes widened in dismay as he realized what was happening. He levered himself up onto both arms, and her chest expanded slightly, permitting the first hiss of precious air. Falzone rolled completely away, and Amanda squeezed a second breath through unwilling bronchial tubes, concentrating on the next one and the one after that.

A hand appeared in her field of vision, and she grasped it automatically, coming briefly to her feet before leaning forward to rest her hands on her knees. Her chest wheezed with every sucking inhalation, and the ship's recycled air had never tasted so sweet.

"Bad form, Sumner." Master Chief Jansson's barking voice broke through her pain. "If you can't concentrate when someone calls your name in a gym, how the hell are you gonna be able to focus in a combat situation? You think everyone's going to stop what they're doing so you can have a quiet conversation? Do I need to bust you back, Lieutenant? Teach you the basics of hand-to-hand all over again?"

"Sorry, Master Chief," Amanda wheezed. "No, Master Chief." She gave all the right responses, and hoped he'd keep talking long enough for her to catch her breath before she actually had to assume an upright position and pretend that nothing hurt. She swiped a quick hand across her eyes, wiping away tears that had nothing to do with pain and everything to do with her body's automatic response to a lack of oxygen. Or so she told herself.

"— briefing with Admiral Leveque."

Amanda caught the master chief's final words and straightened too quickly, nearly stumbling as she widened her stance to keep from falling over and embarrassing herself any further.

He gave her a disgusted look. "Do I need to repeat myself, Sumner?"

"No, Master Chief," she said quickly.

He shook his head and walked away, already intent on drilling a new asshole for some other unfortunate soul who'd had the temerity to schedule gym time during his rotation. Technically, Amanda outranked Master Chief Jansson. No way would she remind him of that. Not on his gym floor, and not in this lifetime.

"Sorry, Amanda."

She looked up at Falzone and gave him a weak smile, shaking her head. "It was a fair throw, Angelito." The nickname was a joke between them — little Angel, hah! "Thanks for the match," she said and started for the exit before turning back to ask, "Uh, you didn't happen to catch the time of that Leveque briefing?"

He laughed. "You got less than ten minutes."

"Fuck!" Amanda swore and ran for the exit. She ripped off her T-shirt as soon as she hit the locker room door, then grabbed a bottle of water and poured it over her face and shoulders as she headed to her locker. Drying herself quickly, she jammed the wet shirt into the laundry chute, zipped her lightweight uniform jacket directly over her sports bra, and dashed for the lift, punching up Deck 5. Her fingers shook slightly as she ran them through her long hair, re-braiding it as neatly as possible in the space of the one-minute lift ride. When the doors opened, her heart still raced with an adrenaline rush that was only partly due to her headlong dash from the gym.

The fleet had taken up orbit around an uncharted, uninhabited planet three days ago. Except that the planet turned out to be neither of those things. No sooner had they dropped out of warp speed than they'd picked up the loud squawk of a distress beacon, shouting its message with all its puny power. It was an ancient design, engineered to last hundreds of years, and used primarily by the first wave of old Earth colony ships, usually in a last ditch effort to let someone know where they'd gone down.

Admiral Nakata had ordered the deployment of an unmanned probe, and Amanda had already spent hours devouring the data it had sent back before being mysteriously destroyed. These probes weren't designed to last forever, but this one had burned up rather spectacularly shortly after entering atmosphere. Fortunately, it had managed to record quite a bit of information during its short life. And that information was beyond exciting. There were people living on this planet — human colonists who'd had no contact with Earth in almost five hundred years. That meant a specialized First Contact team would be going down there, followed by a full science contingent. And Amanda wanted to be among them.

Unfortunately, Admiral Leveque was pretty much in charge of deciding who would get to go. And she was about to show up stinky and late for his meeting.

The guard standing outside the admiral's conference room gave her a quick once-over when she approached, followed by a miniscule nod of approval as he murmured into his throat mike and tapped the door controls. Amanda breathed a sigh of relief.

"You're the last one, Lieutenant," the guard said in a low voice. "Better pick it up, though. The admiral's walking through the door."

She smiled her thanks at him, and stepped into the back of the crowded conference room just as Vice-Admiral Randolph Leveque strode in from his adjoining office. Everyone stood to attention while Leveque took up a position at the head of the table. He scanned the twenty or so people assembled, finally focusing on her, and taking in every detail of her appearance with pursed lips.

"Good of you to join us, Lieutenant Sumner. Be seated," he added to the room at large.

"Thank you, sir," Amanda replied, taking the nearest chair.

"Perhaps we'll leave the door open," Leveque said, with a delicate sniff. There was humor in his smooth voice when he said it, and there was nothing specific to indicate he meant her, but her face burned with embarrassment. Leveque hadn't liked her from the moment they were introduced, though she'd never figured out why.

Forcing herself to relax, she clasped her hands on the table and waited, watching the admiral peruse the several reports his aide was calling up on the two separate datapads in front of him. Another aide hovered nearby, making a ritual out of pouring tea into a delicate cup with the Leveque family crest. The aide finally set the cup on the conference table at the admiral's elbow, sighing with relief as if she'd delivered his firstborn son instead of a stupid cup of tea.

Leveque ignored the woman with the ease of someone used to having servants around, then looked up and smiled, his perfect white teeth gleaming against an equally perfect tanned and handsome face. "You've all heard about our lost colony, of course."

Amanda's heart skipped a beat as she joined her voice to the general chorus of "Yes, sir," that responded.

"Lieutenant Sumner, perhaps you can summarize what we know. In fifty words or less," he added.

Everyone laughed dutifully. It was well-known that Leveque's knowledge of anything scientific was exceeded only by his lack of interest in same. He'd been with Nakata's fleet less than a year, and both his exalted rank and his position on this ship had more to do with his family's fortune than any singular achievement on his part. The fleet was in search of profit, and no one understood profit better than the great industrial families of Earth.

"Yes, sir," she responded, trying to figure out how to compress countless terabytes of data into a single paragraph. "The colony ship was launched out of the old European Union, a Spanish and Irish joint venture, with no name designator. Data download indicates they made a critical landing approximately 485 Earth years ago after a general system failure, cause unknown. Comm has made repeated attempts to contact the colony via various bands with no success. There is, however, a definite human, colonial presence, and a fair level of development using what appears to be a solar power source."

Leveque raised his eyebrows, as if surprised she'd managed to be coherent. "Solar," he repeated. "Its use is a function of the electromagnetic anomaly we've detected, I assume. The same anomaly which caused the probe's destruction?"

"That's our working assumption. Yes, sir."

Leveque scanned a few more pages on his datapad, before looking up. "Unfortunately," he said, "this planet offers nothing in the way of natural resources." He tossed the datapad onto the conference table. "Which I shouldn't need to tell you is the primary mission of this fleet."

There was a general intake of breath when he said this. Ancient law, going back to the wet navies of Earth, required all aid and assistance be rendered to any ship in distress. And that certainly included the so-called "lost" colonies, even if they didn't have anything profitable to offer. Surely the admiral wasn't suggesting they move on without contact?

Leveque was clearly aware of the reaction, and he paused long enough to rake the room with an arrogant glance. "Nonetheless," he continued, "Fleet Admiral Nakata has decided that we will pay them a visit. Daylight over the main settlement is in two hours, at which time First Contact will drop for a meet and greet. Let's hope the locals are early risers. Commander Wolfrum will be heading up that team. Barring complications, we'll drop the science contingent a day later, and that's all of you, ladies and gentlemen. You have forty-eight hours to prepare. Dismissed."

CHAPTER 2

The Planet Harp


Rhodry Devlin de Mendoza stared at the piece of fine writing paper, and read the few lines of elegant script for the third time. Or maybe the fourth. It didn't matter which, because no matter how many times he read the words, their meaning stayed the same.

Cristobal Martyn, the Ardrigh and current ruler of Harp, wanted Rhodry in the capital. It was phrased formally, a summons to serve in the Ardrigh's guard, which was the duty of every man on Harp. The formal language wasn't even half the story.

"It's those damn Earthers," his cousin Aidan said from across the room. He stood glaring out the window, as if expecting an Earth invasion to drop from the sky at any moment.

"Probably," Rhodry agreed. It had been only yesterday that he and Aidan, along with almost everyone else, had witnessed the fiery passage of the Earth fleet's unmanned probe through Harp's sky. Rhodry and his mountain clan had barely accepted the fact of Earth's rediscovery of their small planet, and now this summons from the Ardrigh had arrived, calling him away.

"Cristobal only wants me," Rhodry observed, reading the letter once more. "He's pretty clear about that. No cousins are welcome."

Aidan snorted. "As if he could stop us from coming. He hasn't the power or the right. You're the de Mendoza clan chief. We're not going to let you visit that place with no one to guard your back."

Rhodry didn't say anything. He shared his cousin's concerns. On the other hand, he understood Cristobal's reasoning, too. Being the de Mendoza clan chief meant something on Harp. While the Ardrigh's city might hold the larger population, the fiercest warriors on the planet came from the five mountain clans. And of those clans, de Mendoza was the largest by far. They might squabble among themselves, but when push came to shove, they all looked to de Mendoza for leadership.

Cristobal Martyn wanted to greet these Earth visitors — or invaders, depending on your perspective — with a united front, and the might of the clans at his back. He wanted Rhodry to stand with him as a symbol of that united front. He did not, however, want a critical mass of clansmen to come along with him.

The de Mendozas had ruled all of Harp for generations before the Martyns took over, and there were some who had never abandoned the possibility of a de Mendoza on the throne once again. Rhodry himself had no desire to take up the Ardrigh's crown. It was a largely bureaucratic position, and involved dealing with far too many of Harp's most difficult citizens. Rhodry was willing to let the Martyns have it. Although not everyone agreed with him. And not everyone believed him, either. Which gained him distrust from both sides of the political spectrum.

As it stood, however, he had no qualms about standing with his Ardrigh in confronting these Earthers. Separately, they were Martyns and de Mendozas — together they were all men of Harp. And all of Harp would have to stand together if they were to weather this new and largely unwelcome development. They would need one face, one purpose, to deal with these unexpected visitors and, most importantly, to ensure that Harp's secrets remained just that.

"I'll leave within the hour. The hover that brought the summons is waiting to take me back to the city."

Aidan turned from the window to stare at him unhappily. "He's eager to get you there, isn't he?"

There were only two of the solar-powered hovercraft on all of Harp, and they were reserved for only the most necessary travel. Harp was a small planet, with a small population, and only one major city. Traveling with a few companions and moving fast, it would have taken him just two days to reach the city. Cristobal didn't want to wait that long.

"The Earthers must have made contact already." It was the only explanation for Cristobal's urgency in getting him to the capital.

"Aye, well, I don't care what Cristobal Martyn says, you're still not going to the city alone."

"There might not be room on the hover for more than me, what with the escort he sent."

"You mean guards. Let's call 'em what they are. And I don't care if one of them has to stay behind and walk himself back to the capital to make room for me. I'm going with you."

Rhodry grinned at his cousin, feeling more than a little relief. He was fully capable of watching his own back if he had to, but he wouldn't mind having a friendly face there instead. "You're just curious about the Earthers."

Aidan shrugged cheerfully. "You never know, Rhodi lad. There might be a pretty female or two wanting to test the virility of their long-lost cousins. Can't leave them to those city dandies. They'll give Harp a bad name."

"If the Earthers send a landing party —"

"You mean when."

"When they send a landing party," he agreed, "it will be a scientific mission. I suspect brains will count more than beauty among its members."

"Nothing says you can't have both. They might just surprise you."

Rhodry frowned. He wasn't looking for any surprises, whether they came wrapped in pretty packages or not. The Earthers brought danger to Harp ... danger not only to its people, but to its very survival.

CHAPTER 3

The Flagship James T., in geosynchronous orbit over Harp


Amanda barely noticed the brief interlude of weightlessness as the shuttle slid through the big, open doors of the launch bay and into the black of space. Maneuvering thrusters kicked in with a jolt and gravity was restored. She'd been born in space, had grown up on one ship or another, moving every few years until finally her mother had been named chief medical officer for Admiral Nakata's expeditionary fleet. They'd taken up residence on the admiral's flagship, the James T., and there they'd stayed for just over ten years now.


(Continues...)

Excerpted from Shifter Planet by D.B. Reynolds, Allison Collins, Candace Havens. Copyright © 2015 D. B. Reynolds. Excerpted by permission of Entangled Publishing, LLC.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Shifter Planet 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 27 reviews.
LynnLTX More than 1 year ago
What a great start to this new series; SHIFTER PLANET is one of those books that fires my enthusiasm and reminds me why I love to read. I was immediately drawn right in to the story and did not want to put it down. In the year 4668, Amanda Sumner serves aboard a starship as a scientist exploring the universe. The fleet travels the cosmos looking for new economic opportunities of undiscovered planets when her ship responds to an old distress call. They find a lost colony from Earth which was “an old European Union, a Spanish and Irish joint venture” from almost five hundred years ago on a very intriguing and unique planet called Harp. This small world is dominated by the Green: an area of trees, plants, and animals that controls the planet in an unusual way. The trees have a secret and so do the planet’s inhabitants which they do not want any outside “Earthers” finding out. This beautiful yet hostile planet calls to Amanda in a soul deep way. The Green speaks to Amanda in a manner she does not fully understand, so when she stays behind to help establish a base on Harp, she decides try for membership in the Guild: a group that oversees and protects the Green which is full of danger, but necessary to the planet’s life on a deep intrinsic level. Every member of the guild is a male shifter determined to keep their secrets from everyone else including Amanda out of their select society. Amanda has to work twice as hard to prove herself in the testosterone filled, alpha male shifter Guild. They don’t get it that she does not want to be a man but the best version of herself and most crucially, the Green sings to her, too. Rhodry De Mendoza, one of the clan chiefs of the shifter society is …”a big man; at several inches over six feet…probably close to three hundred pounds of pure, gorgeous muscle,” and chosen to protect the “norms” on Harp. He does not want Amanda, or any of her crew, finding out about the shifters or the special qualities of the massive and diverse trees. After an intense, immediate attraction, Rhodry fights his desire for Amanda which gives their connection a slow burn development. When they are put together in a dire situation including a fight for their lives, passions ignite and the barriers fall though their relationship still has obstacles due in part to his male shifter stubbornness as well as his clan and the Guild traditions on Harp. I truly enjoyed this well-conceived and superbly executed story. The genre is an interesting hybrid, much like Harp’s shifters, of romance and science fiction. With a fun nod to Star Trek in the name of Amanda’s starship, the “James T,” this story of space exploration for profit rather than just adventure reminds us that humans are willing not only, in the words of that great split infinitive, “to boldly go where no man (or woman) has gone before” and explore all of creation, but also to exploit whatever they find. I like Amanda very much; she is a complex and strong yet sensitive character. Readers will find themselves rooting for her success on the epic quest as well as for her relationship with her sexy, surly shifter. Amanda Sumner, along with Cynthia Leighton, tops the list of my favorite D.B. Reynolds characters. I will be highly anticipating and longing for the next in the series.
tracier More than 1 year ago
4.5 Stars Shifter Planet D.b Reynolds has delivered a promising start to new series and one I know readers of shifter, sci-fi and even Urban Fantasy genres will thoroughly enjoy! The year is 4668 a time where an Earth Flagship is searching for potential trade planets comes upon Harp realising this supposedly desolate planet is very much alive and populated. With this new discovery a landing crew is sent to investigate. What happens next will take you on a journey setting the platform for what is to come. While the story does take a while to get started it is necessary to understand the background but you will soon find yourself swept up in the magnificence of this story and be sucked in until the very end. Being a Trekkie fanatic I loved the reference and very much look forward to reading more instalments in this series
Anonymous 23 days ago
This+is+a+remarkable+world+and+the+story+was+fun+and+adventurous.+I+would+like+to+see+more+stories+from+this+world.+
Sunshine1006 28 days ago
Amanda was born in space on a ship. She's called an Earther despite having never being on the planet. She is one of a crew whose ancestors were from there. Planets, not space interest her. When a new planet is discovered, she can't wait to explore it. When she arrives, she can hear the trees whispering to her. It seems no one else on the ship can hear them. Upon arriving, she meets the people on the planet known as Harp.. It is an Earth like planet with secrets of its own. When she meets Rhodry, the leader of a mountain clan and an elite member of the guild, sparks fly. Rhodry is anxious to get the Earthers off Harp, before they destroy it. When Amanda wants to join the Guild, which protects the people from the predators as well as The Green, which protects the planet, she does more than survive the experience. I don't want to give away some of the most important parts of the story, but I loved it. Amanda is a strong woman who loves Harp, but some want to send her away. Rhodry is a born leader with a strong protective streak. Interesting story and I can't wait to read the next one. I received this book from Net Galley and Entangled Publishing a honest review.
Anonymous 3 months ago
really++good++story++
Anonymous 3 months ago
Loved the female empowerment
Anonymous 4 months ago
I+loved+the+unique+world+building+and+characters+of+this+book.++the+authors+voice+made+for+great+story+telling+and+easy+reading.++however%2C+I+enjoy+a+bit+more+character+development+%28minor+issue+for+me%29.++the+main+problem+I+had+with+this+story+was+at+the+end+when+so+many+of+the+problems+our+villains+caused+went+unaddressed.++the+story+felt+unfinished+even+though+the+heroes+received+their+hea.++
Anonymous 4 months ago
Really liked this story. A Physically an mentally strong determined woman role but still swoon worthy romance with a shifter alien. What more could you want!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed it a lot, had plenty of action, the only thing I didn't care for was it left you hanging, it sort of just petered out. Please say there's going to be another book.
SkyeLyn More than 1 year ago
I read this book in 2 days. Shifter Planet is the perfect balance of romance and paranormal. The planet of Harp is described beautifully by the author as the characters navigate the dangers that live there. This book could easily become a series and I for one hope that D.B. Reynolds gives that some consideration.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Story was well done and I liked the main characters. I would love to read more of this world created by this author.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Loved this book!!
closkot More than 1 year ago
My Thoughts - 5 out of 5 Unicorns - I loved it!! ***Received ebook for an honest review from Netgalley The cover is beautiful and intriguing, and it definitely made me want to read!! This is a new world by D.B. Reynolds, and I am hoping that there will be a lot more of this planet. I am always completely amazed by D.B.’s creativity in creating her worlds not to mention the complexity she puts into them. She puts words together in a way that enthralls you and pulls you right into the story. I couldn’t put it down. Rhodi is the typical Alpha male who wants everything his way and thinks only shifters can handle the Green. Amanda comes and throws him for a loop. She is stubborn and amazing! She is a very strong female lead that makes want to be like her. I loved this story, the world, and the characters. I love everything by D.B. Reynolds! I highly recommend this book to everyone who loves shifters and if you have ever read and loved D.B.’s work (and if you haven’t what are you waiting for!!) I really hope that this becomes a series of some type because I want more!!!
Faerie-bookworm More than 1 year ago
Wow, as usual Reynolds does not disappoint. I could not put this down! Great writing, awesome characters and a story that sucks you in. I received a copy from the publisher for an honest review.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I wasn't sure about this book at first since I had never read anything by this author. It turned out to be very good and I can't wait to read another ond.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The alien world is human enough to be understandable and different enough to be believable
ehaney578 More than 1 year ago
D.B. Reynolds creates an amazing new world full of danger, excitement and mystery! I’ve been a fan of the author for years and absolutely love her books. I can always count on Ms. Reynolds for an engaging and entertaining story and I was certainly not disappointed here. SHIFTER PLANET blew me away. This story is a fantasy/paranormal/sci-fi mash-up of space travel, discovery and race of genetically altered beings who can shift into giant cats! It is a solid story with lots of detail and incredibly well-written. There’s also a little bit of romance as well. The chemistry between Amanda and Rhodry was subtle, yet powerful. I loved how their relationship was built and slowly developed throughout the story. I also love the fact that D.B. Reynolds always writes strong female leads. Whether they are facing down a Vampire Lord or breaking traditional norms, every character has a core of steel and inner strength that encourages and inspires. Amanda was a brilliantly crafted and dynamic character. She owned her strengths and weaknesses, stayed true to herself and challenged Rhodry and every other male who thought her place should be in a royal court and not in the dangerous forest, where her heart continued to lead her. Amanda made the story. If you’re expecting a Vampires in America type book, you will be disappointed. Although the Vampires in America series is extraordinary, SHIFTER PLANET is a uniquely different story with new characters and a fresh, original plot. I’d definitely recommend this and any books by D.B. Reynolds. ***I was gifted an eBook copy from the publisher via Net Galley in exchange for an honest review. All conclusions reached are my own***
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book was much better rhan expecred. A must read
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I purchased this book because I'm a big fan of her vampire books and lobed this one too read it in a day!
prairielilyH More than 1 year ago
As a fan of DB Reynolds, I had high hopes for this new book and WOW did this book exceed my expectations. It BLEW my mind with the creativity of her world and character building, the engaging Sci-Fi/futuristic aspects, the intensity of the characters and their dedication to their way of life. Of course the romance was also sizzling hot and the chemistry between Amanda and Rhodry was evident from the start. I know not everyone is a fan of the in depth world building and planetary history that went into this book but I, for one, enjoy knowing all I can about the characters and how they became who and what they are. And how their physical reality has influenced the choices they have made. Most especially I loved the connection that developed between them and the planet; how in tune they became with each other and how developing that sense helped them to thrive on the amazing planet called Harp. While this is not the first race of shifters I have read about in the SFR genre, I found that this was a truly unique way of looking at shifters and their origins. In fact, I have never read another book that had this type of genesis for any species (as far as I know but some of these species are very private). I was very impressed with the fact that these shifters could not exist anywhere but on this planet because it was the crash landing on this planet and the necessity to survive that created this new species. Very cool! By the same token, Amanda would not have been who she was without the genetics and love for planetary life that she inherited. As well, being born and growing up on a spaceship obviously influenced her abilities, her life and education choices, making her the woman she needed to be when she arrived on Harp. I can’t imagine the feeling of “coming home” that would resonate within you when the trees of a planet you never knew existed until a short while ago began to sing in welcome to you. Wouldn’t you want to stay and learn all you could about this amazing place? I enjoyed getting to know Amanda and some of the other Harp residents, both city dwellers like Prince Fionn and Guild Members such as Tonio. Feeling the chemistry and attraction between Amanda and Rhodry grow was as interesting as learning the history and development of the Guild. And when all things finally came together and these two find themselves in a fight for their lives and their love, the moments between them were hot and explosive and touching. The secrets and truths that are revealed as they come together as a couple and fight for their rights are sad, intense and truly help define who each one is. And this is what takes this book from good to amazing for me, that so many little, inconsequential things we learned come together to finish this book in a unique and interesting way. I so enjoyed these people and their lifestyle and their trees that I truly hope she makes this into a series. I am so ready for a book 2!
NC_ReaderAN More than 1 year ago
What I loved about Shifter Planet was the plot, the setting, and the relatability to the characters. How often as a child do we imagine the trees were talking or that that they could feel? In this novel we find just that when space ship Specialist Amanda Sumner lives and works when they discover what they think is an uncharted, uninhabited planet. Only to learn that they were in fact only rediscovering a planet that Earth had completely forgotten about, including the settlement of Earth’s people that were sent to colonize the planet over 500 years ago. Amanda goes to the planet, Harp, as part of the First Contact team. She gets to live every child’s fantasy, and learns that she is the only one not from Harp who can. On top of that she feels that she has finally found what she has been looking for, a planet to call home after living her whole life in space. As we read into the book, the planet has secrets. One of these secrets involves the Guild members that put her life in danger. All the while Rhodry de Mendoza wants the Earthlings off his planet. Rhodry’s and Amanda’s true feeling about each other surface when they are thrown together in a fight for their lives. This book was an excellent read and is a great page turner that I couldn't put down. ***ARC kindly provided by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review***
jeanniezelos More than 1 year ago
Shifter Planet,  D.B. Reynolds Review from Jeannie Zelos book reviews Genre:  Romance, Well, I’ve read and re read all of Debbie’s Vampires of America series so when I saw she’d a new series out ( at least I hope its a series) it was a cert that I’d want to read it. I don’t usually go for the space type sci-fi, but this isn’t all trailing endlessly through space, but concentrates on one planet Harp, where people from Earth took up habitation some 500 or so years ago. I was fine with the space bit in that context, and it allowed some new and unusual issues to arise. Amanda is a great lead, strong and independent but tired of living on a spaceship – she was born on one and has lived in space ever since. When they land on Harp for what should be a brief visit, she’s amazed that she can hear the trees singing – and it seems no-one else can....and she wants to stay, to find out more, to live with her feet on the earth ( well Harp earth anyway ) for a while. There are Shifters here, all males, all very Alpha, and its one of the things the Harpers keep quiet about to strangers. They’re in the minority of the population with the others being called Norms. Amanda seems to bridge the two – she can hear trees, which Norms can’t, but she’s female and cant shift. She takes up an apartment in town and starts exploring, but there’s a massive secret hidden from her, and when she discovers it she becomes a target and her life is in danger. The delicious Rhodry gets involved too, and the two have a long and perilous journey involving natural dangers and those made by jealous individuals, that brings them close to death several times. Its a fun read, quite simple in plot and most of the book covers this journey, but sets out politics and ways forward for more books – well, that’s what I hope. I didn’t love it as much as V of A, but it’s a first book and they often struggle with introducing a new world, set in the future here in the 4000’s and giving us a plot to start the series off. It felt a bit light for me even though the dangers were real and played out well, no superpowers found off the cuff, but good old fashioned slog and training! One of my pet hates is when characters get out of a scrape by some new unheard of superpower and Debbie doesn’t do that either here or in V of A. Its a great start and I’ll be looking for more books but hoping they get a little more complex now the setting had been introduced to us. Stars: Four, a little denser plots and this series will be a five for me.  ... ARC supplied by Netgalley and publishers If you enjoyed my review I'd love it if you would please click “Like” and if you didn't I'd love to know why, so I can make future reviews more helpful.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This was my 1st time reading a book from this author & I enjoyed it thoroughly. I wasn't quite sure what to expect but the blurb "only Earthling who can hear the trees sing" (on the planet Harp) caught my attention. Amanda Sumner was born in space & lived on one spaceship or another with her mother. Something in Amanda has always yearned for life on a planet & she takes every opportunity whenever she can to go down with landing teams hoping to find the right one & stay there forever. Holding the position of landing team specialist; when the expeditionary fleet that she & her mother are with discover a "lost" colony on an uncharted planet inhabited by the descendants of a first wave of old Earth colony ships Amanda is astounded to hear a warm, joyful song when she lands on the planet. It was as if “the planet was welcoming her home” – she finds she, & only she of the Earthers can hear the trees on the planet - a forest belt called The Green. A trade agreement is made between the expedition & the planet Harp & a small team which includes Amanda is left behind to transfer computerized technology to the Harpers. Rhodry de Mendoza is a clan chief from the mountain clans & the most powerful shifter on the planet. He is called to Harp’s city when the expedition arrives & is assigned to keep an eye on Amanda. There is an instant attraction between them & sparks literally fly when they touch. This was an amazing story. Riveting world building and loads of excitement plus a wonderful romance between the very spunky, intelligent Amanda & the Very Hot Alpha Rhodry. It is Amanda who saves Rhodry (& not just once) from certain death. There’s humour & lots of action. The only negative point I found was the use of the f* word which I though unnecessary at certain parts. Copy gifted in exchange for an honest review.
geeksneakpeek More than 1 year ago
I loved this book! I have to admit in the beginning I was not a Specialist Amanda Sumner fan. I found her arrogant and annoying. For example she practically throws a hissy fit when she finds out there are shifters on the planet and no one told her. Really? This is one of they're biggest secrets, your people have done nothing but harm but they should have told you because your breathing? That irritated me. But I loved Rhodry from go. He was protective and honorable, plus being smoking hot didn't hurt. And truth be told Amanda grew on me, her personally became less entitled and more independent (it they're a difference? Of course there is) which also coincided with the story really picking up. The less I worried about her the more I realized that this was a really good book. The world building was spot on, I was never confused about where they were or what something looked like. The relationship between Rhodry and Amanda was refreshing, instant attraction but not insta-love. And the story itself was great, just enough angst to make you want to read, just a little more. I recommend reading this, the book comes out October 26th. Grab it, you won't be disappointed. I did get a free copy from netgalley, so thank you for that!
Maria-Rose More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed this story! I found the blend of sci-fi and paranormal to be a really interesting mix of genres. The majority of the action takes place planet side, but Amanda's character is greatly influenced by her shipboard upbringing, her drive to understand and explore new planets part of her desire to enjoy solitude and life outside of a ship. She has an absentee father who was said to have a green thumb, and this goes a long way to explain her unexpected ability to 'hear' the trees, and sense the life in the forests on Harp. Amanda comes across as a feisty, strong and independant woman. She's always had to fight for what she wants and on Harp, this is no exception, her desire to join the Guild that protects the forests something that becomes almost an obsession for her. Rhodry is an equally engaging character, a strong, tough, mountain man who is mired in political intrigue as a result of the inheritance of his clan position from his grandfather. He's loyal to his king, but not particularly pleased with being asked to serve him in the city, as it leaves his clan without their leader and vulnerable to internal attacks by those who would love to see him out of the picture. The two of them together made for an interesting pair, but I loved seeing them work through their attraction, and the respect and admiration that Rhodry develops for Amanda is heartfelt and honest. The romance between them is a slow burn, and things don't heat up between them until later in the story, but it is set up with enough sexual tension that it keeps you turning the pages waiting for them to finally succumb to their attraction. And when they do, the scenes are steamy and emotional. Amanda's fight to be accepted into the Guild and the tasks required therein lead to some tense and dramatic scenes, with lots of action and suspense. I found the whole story to be a real page turner. There were several interesting secondary characters introduced in this story, and I'm really hoping that this is the start of a series, as at the end of the book I just wasn't ready to let them go! The world building was wonderful, well detailed and easy to picture. If you're a regular reader of sci-fi or paranormal romances, and like some sexy scenes and intrigue on the side, this is definitely a book for you. 4.5 stars.