Book Review – Captured Earth Series by TJ Nichols

I’ve reviewed these books in one post as I read them back to back and they follow directly on from each other.

Captured Earth #1
Publisher: Indie
Pages: 109
Characters: Josh/Xavier
POV: 3rd
Genre: Science Fiction, Series

Blurb:
Capture is a soldier’s worst fear, but all his training couldn’t prepare Sergeant Josh Rayne for what it meant to be caught by the alien invaders, who have claimed the desert in Western Australia.

Josh believes he is the only man left alive from the teams sent out to spy on the aliens, but in the alien prison, he is reunited with his lover and fellow soldier Xavier Fisher. There is no time to celebrate though as Xavier is gravely injured and in need of medical care.

With the exfil date fast approaching, they have to escape before the ship leaves without them.

Book one in the Captured Earth trilogy. For readers who like action, explosions, and don’t mind a little gore with their gay romance.

Buy Link

Review

I enjoy a good science fiction action drama, and added bonus for this series being set in Australia. Although there is a romance at the centre of the story, the focus is on the horrible situation they’re in with tension, and the death toll, rising as they try to find a way to defeat the alien attackers. You’ll want to read the three books back to back, and in order, as each book ends on a cliffhanger, and reads more like a long book divided into three shorter ones.

Resist does a great job in introducing the main characters, and setting up the scenario. The plot hits the ground running and pulls no punches in showing how dire their situation is. The world building is wonderful, and the aliens and their ghastly bugs and larvae are nasty.

I liked Josh and that he’s fallible, yet despite his and Xavier’s relationship, both men act like soldiers, and do what is needed in order to protect civilians and escape. I liked the mix of action and emotion, and that their escape is realistically not easy and fraught with danger. The cliffhanger at the end is a nice touch.

5 out of 5 stars.


Captured Earth #2
Publisher: Indie
Pages: 116
Characters: Josh/Xavier
POV: 3rd
Genre: Science Fiction , Series

Blurb:
Reunited with his lover and fellow soldier, Xavier Fisher, Josh Rayne and the other survivors from the alien base watch from the shore as their rescue is blown up. Now on the run and on their own, they need to find a safe place to regroup and figure out how they are going to escape alien country and get back home.

With no military support, they are in desperate need of supplies when they make it to a seemingly abandoned tourist town. But not all is at it seems, and Josh will have to decide who runs and who has to stay and fight to give them a chance. He wants to go home, and he wants more than the vague promises he and Xavier made to each other.

Book Two in the Captured Earth trilogy. For readers who like action, explosions, and don’t mind a little gore with their gay romance.

Buy Link

Review

This book picks up immediately where the previous one left off, and again the descriptions don’t pull punches. I liked the mix of civilians and military, and their differing reactions to the situation.

Josh and Xavier discover more about the aliens and their physiology, and that humans are good and bad, no matter the situation. I also enjoyed Josh’s inner struggle to admit their relationship and his concern that the people he’s trying to lead might view him differently. I liked his and Xavier’s relationship and how they work well together as a team, yet don’t agree all the time.

The tension ramps up, and the action scenes are edge-of-seat. I liked that, as well as the death toll, mounting, characters don’t escape unscathed, and need to address their mortality as their injuries have a good chance of finishing them off if the aliens don’t.

5 out of 5 stars.


Captured Earth #3
Publisher: Indie
Pages: 109
Characters: Josh/Xavier
POV: 3rd
Genre: Science Fiction, Series

Australia is split in half, humans on the east and aliens on the west, and Josh and Xavier are on the wrong side of the line. They need to make it from alien territory back home. But with aliens hunting them and survivors to protect, all their plans start to unravel.

To survive, they’ll have to fight.

They have discovered the aliens are not invincible, and they have weaknesses. Armed with new knowledge, Josh and Xavier are determined to stop the aliens so no one else ends up imprisoned on the base. But going back to the base means risking their lives and the future they have promised each other.

Book three in the Captured Earth trilogy. For readers who like action, explosions, and don’t mind a little gore with their gay romance.

Buy Link

Review

Things are looking grim as this final book in the trilogy begins, although there is some hope. I thought the alien weaknesses were clever, yet realistic, and I liked the ingenuity of the MCs figuring out a way to start fighting back.

I liked that not everyone fighting is enthused about doing it, and that they’re justifiably scared about what lies ahead. The characters in this story all feel very human, and although at the end of the day they’re heroes, it’s not without personal cost, making mistakes, and more loss of life. The aliens come across as a formidable foe and are not going to be easily taken down.

I also liked the arguments between Josh and Xavier, with them each wanting to approach the situation differently. I loved Xavier’s response to Josh’s fear about their relationship being discovered. The brief time they have together is sweet and shows their strength as a couple. I loved how Xavier doesn’t take any of Josh’s shit, and wants to come of this knowing they’d done what they could.

The ending works perfectly for the series, and I liked that their injuries are addressed and it’s not a we’ve won and there are no consequences situation.

5 out of 5 stars.

About Anne Barwell

Anne Barwell lives in Wellington, New Zealand. She shares her home with a cat with “tortitude” who is convinced that the house is run to suit her; this is an ongoing “discussion,” and to date, it appears as though Kaylee may be winning. In 2008, Anne completed her conjoint BA in English Literature and Music/Bachelor of Teaching. She has worked as a music teacher, a primary school teacher, and now works in a library. She is a member of the Upper Hutt Science Fiction Club and plays violin for Hutt Valley Orchestra. She is an avid reader across a wide range of genres and a watcher of far too many TV series and movies, although it can be argued that there is no such thing as “too many.” These, of course, are best enjoyed with a decent cup of tea and further the continuing argument that the concept of “spare time” is really just a myth. She also hosts and reviews for other authors, and writes monthly blog posts for Love Bytes. She is the co-founder of the New Zealand Rainbow Romance writers, and a member of RWNZ. Anne’s books have received honorable mentions five times, reached the finals four times—one of which was for best gay book—and been a runner up in the Rainbow Awards. She has also been nominated twice in the Goodreads M/M Romance Reader’s Choice Awards—once for Best Fantasy and once for Best Historical. Anne can be found at https://annebarwell.wordpress.com
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