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Thursday, July 28, 2011

Book Review: The Fear Principle by B.A. Chepaitis

This is a solidly entertaining, complex, suspenseful sci fi.
  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 510 KB
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Publisher: Wildside Press (March 14, 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004S81HK2
     Genre: Sci Fi
     My Rating: 4.25 of 5.0

Product Description
Dr. Jaguar Addams knows about fear. On a satellite prison called Planetoid Three, she establishes a telepathic link to her subjects. She confronts their demons. And makes them her own . . . They were known as the Killing Times, when serial murder reached epidemic proportions. Victims of hard-edged crime demanded hard-wired punishment, and the new prisons were born. Now one determined woman, a survivor of that dark age, tries to rehabilitate killers by tapping into the source of their obsessions: their worst fears. Her name is Jaguar Addams, and she is about to face the most challenging subject of her career. The ultimate assassin. A dangerously disturbed woman who will teach Jaguar the true meaning of fear.

Review: This is an interesting and engaging sci fi.

Dr. Jaguar Addams is a complex and intense person. She is a skilled empath who works on a prison planetoid. Her job is to confront the hardest of criminals and force them to face their deepest fear. The result is they deal with their issues and can be rehabilitated .... or sometimes they die. Jaguar has the highest success rate of the ‘teachers’ but she has to shield her techniques as some people are afraid of empaths.

Jaguar has an ongoing case with a con artist, Adrian. As she sets up a con to get to his deepest fears, a high level assassin arrives under custody. The assassin, Claire, is as cold as an ice wall. Even Jaguar’s supervisor, Alex, who is also an empath, cannot reach Claire’s thoughts. The governmental directives on handling Claire include finding out who hired her for the latest assassin.  Alex determines that the only one who might have a chance to discover Claire’s secrets is Jaguar.

Jaguar is a survivor from the horrible Killing Times on earth when people went berserk and started killing in masses.  Jaguar has never shared her history as a young child coming through the horrors of those years. But another co-worker, Nick, was a cop who helped get her off the streets.  Nick is slipping in his abilities. He is angry, on the edge and jealous of Jaguar’s successes. He wants to be part of her team to work with Claire but neither Alex or Jaguar trust him.

There is someone else, The Looker, who wants Claire eliminated before she can disclose her secrets.  The Looker is connected to a government agency that has hidden plans to use technology to replace the empaths and take control. There is a traitor on Planetoid Three who is feeding information to The Looker and helping him to undermine Jaguar.  Jaguar discovers clues to a plot and reports to Alex. When Alex goes to earth to investigate Jaguar has to break a few more rules to rescue him.

I liked the characters, even the cold Claire who ultimately shares childhood abuse stories with Jaguar. There is a bit of psychology jargon (or babble as I termed it in my head) entwined in the empath plotline and the criminal mindsets. This caused some confusion but I determined to read through that and enjoy the overall effect of the unique world and the fast paced suspense. When I completed this book I was curious how the relationship between Alex and Jaguar might change in the second story.

Caution - The story has some dark and twisted aspects involving abuse and murder.
This book was provided by the author for an honest review in conjunction with Pump Up Your Book blog tour for book two of the Jaguar Addams series.   Check in tomorrow when I will post the review of The Fear of God: Jaguar Series.

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