Title: The Morph
Author: JC Andrijeski
Publishing Date: February 24th, 2013
Genre: Science Fiction
Dakota Reyes, a twenty-something private eye who specializes in what she calls ‘hard-to-prosecute’ cases, finds herself in a dark alley one night, about to end up dead at the hands of a young Ted Bundy in training...that is, until a lost, shape-shifting alien named Nihkil rescues her, and inadvertently takes her home with him. The problem is, his home is in a different dimension, and Dakota has no clue how to get back to Seattle, or Earth, or even her own time period. She finds herself bound to her rescuer, Nihkil, through his ‘lock,’ a quasi-biological structure that controls whether he can shape-shift, among other things, which he needs to be able to do in order to get her back home. Only Dakota has no idea how to open Nik’s lock, and the longer she spends in his world, the more forces begin to align against them, trying to prevent her from getting home.
The synopsis piqued my interest to the point that I was excited to start reading this story. Once I started though, I had a great deal of trouble getting into it. After the first few chapters running through the streets of Seattle in the mind of Dakota Reyes, things finally got moving. At that point, the story became interesting. Unfortunately, it took me a few weeks of reading off and on to get there. Dakota inadvertently follows shape-shifting alien, Nihkil, through a gate to another world, a world of humans, morphs, supernaturals, and everything in between.
I had to keep my mind wide open to take in all that was going on. The society of the world Nihkil lived in didn't make much sense at first. Humans were the dominant and morphs seemed to be the submissives, but morphs had great powers too. Also, the morphs had their own set of laws that the humans couldn't violate. Nihkil, being an extraordinary morph, was in essence a sexual slave for the humans as well as a guide to the gates of the universe. When he passed through the gate with Dakota, the two bonded and she took control of his "lock". This power over Nihkil made Dakota his mate. While being his mate, one would assume that he would not be allowed to continue as a sexual slave, but that didn't seem to be the case. Even though Dakota never wanted the responsibility of being an alien mate, she was jealous and upset upon realizing what Nihkil was still doing.
Since this story is told in the first person point of view of Dakota, a human from Earth, Andrijeski describes the alien world in great detail. At some points, a little too much detail. There was a lot of non-verbal communication between Nihkil and Dakota as well as several other characters, which I did find very interesting.
Thank you to the JC Andrijeski and The Masquerade Crew for providing me with a copy of The Morph in exchange for an honest review.
JC Andrijeski has published novels, novellas, serials, graphic novels and short stories, including new adult fantasy series, Allie's War, the new adult science fiction series, The Slave Girl Chronicles, and the Gateshifter series, about a shape-shifting alien and a tough-girl PI from Seattle. She also writes nonfiction essays and articles, as well as some erotica. Her short works have been featured in anthologies, online literary, art and fiction magazines as well as print venues such as NY Press newspaper and holistic health magazines. JC travels extensively and has lived abroad in Europe, Australia and Asia, but currently lives and works full time as a writer in Portland, OR.
To learn more about JC and her writing, please visit www.jcandrijeski.com.