Continuing with the critiques I started in 2015, here is the next in series – a book review.
Stars: 3 / 5
Spider Game is the 12th book in the Ghostwalker Series by Christine Feehan published in January of 2016. The central plot revolves around Trap "Iceman" Dawkins - scientist and a member of GhostWalker Team Four - and Cayenne - the GhostWalker woman Team Four rescues from the Louisiana facility in Viper Game. The plot begins 3 months after where Viper Game ends.
GhostWalkers are a group of women and men who are sent on special missions. They have enhances psychic and physical abilities along with genetic modifications, using in some cases not just human genes but all kinds of animal and plant genes. However every GhostWalker would need an "anchor" to draw back the psychic backlash, especially that would instigate violence. They are complex characters trying to live with their enhanced abilities and at the same time fight against the corrupt people around them, executing their missions successfully. So far we are introduced to two teams of GhostWalkers Men serving in various areas of law enforcement and armed forces and one group of Orphan Girls on whom Dr. Peter Whitney had experimented. He has paired each of his GhostWalker men with the women in the hopes to breed the next generation of GhostWalkers.
In Shadow Game we had seen that Dr. Lily Whitney-Miller, married to Captain Ryland "King" Miller - head of Team One - find the details of the Orphan Girls that Dr. Peter Whitney had experimented on along with Lily. Now adopted or held in a different lab or on their own or more girls added as years progressed, Lily and Ryland are determined to find those girls now women, rescue them and provide a safe haven. So far they have rescued Dahlia Le Blanc, Iris "Flame" Johnson, Briony "Bri" Jenkins, Marigold "Mari" Smith, Saber Wynter, Tansy Meadows, Rose Patterson, Azamie "Thorn" Yoshiie and La Poirve "Pepper".
In the previous book, Viper Game, we met Cayenne - another GhostWalker Woman who is kept in the facility along with Pepper, for termination by Dr. Whitney. Team Four rescue her in that plot. We also see that there is instant attraction between Cayenne and Trap - who had rescued her from the facility. Naturally a reader would expect Christine to continue the series with Team Four, specially setting her plot around Trap and Cayenne.
After helping Team Four defend Wyatt's home from Whitney's super soldiers, Cayenne disappears. But Trap has her lodged in his mind so deep, he is obsessed with her and goes out in search of Cayenne. But Cayenne is using her abilities to clean up the bad apples from the society.
Trap and Cayenne have the harshest past, making them the outcasts. Christine masterly spins her tale around two people who are socially inept, like to be alone and away from the world around them, classic misfits who gravitate towards each other, adjusting making mistakes and in the end finding life and love for themselves.
Of course it is heavily loaded with sexual stuff, and Trap is a world-class jerk many times over, that burned me a lot. Obviously Christine is having the Team Four members more aggressive, more sexually active and at times behave like jerks. I do hope she tones at least a few members down. Despite heavily loaded with sex and erotic romance, Christine filled it with shades of humor tempering the sexual tone.
Christine mentions in her note about the book when it came out that Trap had Apserger Syndrome. However she doesn’t explicitly mention about that particular situation with Trap, although she does give scenarios that allude to Asperger's. That is why perhaps Christine writes up most of a chapter in how Trap calculates the number of peanut husks on the bar floor. That one scene explains so much more about how Trap's mind works. Mind-boggling I say.
Ghostwalkers Men being all tough and macho, Christine manages to show them soft and sensitive when they are dealing with their women. And the situation of the women, how they come about it, is always heart-wrenching.
We see less of Whitney in this plot, but new enemies crop up for the GhostWalkers to fight against. And that means we will see newer threads to the plot-line for Christine to have future books.
Despite the heavy sexual stuff, Christine does have a lot of meat to continue reading the book. Definitely a delight to read, just bear with the erotic stuff.
1) Plot Reveals:
g. GhostWalker Team One, Army Rangers and Army Green Berets; first introduced in the first book, Shadow Game - under direct command of General Theodore Ranier. They make their base in the mountains of Montana along-side Team Two as of Predatory Game.
h. GhostWalker Team Two, Paramilitary Ghostwalkers Team (Navy SEALs) working with NCIS; first introduced in the second book, Mind Game; under direct command of Rear Admiral Frank Henderson. They make their base in the mountains of Montana where Jack and Ken already reside as of Predatory Game.
i. GhostWalker Team Three: Marine Force Recon Urban Warfare Team; first introduced in Predatory Game; under direct command of Sergeant Major Theodore Griffen. 9 men and two women who grew up together to form a family by heart, joined by a newbie now. They make their base in San Francisco, around the warehouse that Jaimie already bought in Street Game, as of Ruthless Game.
j. GhostWalker Team Four: Air Force Pararescue Special Forces Team; first mentioned in Predatory Game; more revealed in Street Game; plan to make base in Louisiana bayous around Gator and Wyatt's home in New Orleans. More of the team is introduced in Viper Game and this plot.
k. Group One of Dr. Peter Whitney's Orphans: Twelve orphan girls on whom he had conducted his experiments to make them psychically enhanced - Lily Whitney-Miller, the only girl he had adopted for himself; Dahlia Le Blanc; Iris "Flame" Johnson; Briony "Bri" Jenkins; Marigold "Mari" Smith; Tansy Meadows; Rose Patterson; Jonquille; Laurel; Camellia "Cami".
l. Group Two of Dr. Peter Whitney's Orphans: First introduced in Predatory Game. It is clear that although Thorn was later on isolated with Saber in a different facility, she was with the others in the Group One in the beginning, per this plot - Saber Wynter; Azami "Thorn" Yoshiie.
m. Group Three of Dr. Peter Whitney's Orphans: First introduced in this plot; originally developed in France but later kept at the facility in the Louisiana bayous for termination; mostly considered rejects by Dr. Whitney: Le Poivre "Pepper" and her triplets - Ginger, Thym and Cannelle "Elle"; Cayenne
n. Dr. Peter Whitney who thought be dead in the first book Shadow Game, is shown to be alive as well as psychic as of Deadly Game with more devious plots in his mind. As the books progress, we see the various kinds of horrific experiments he had done on the GhostWalkers Men and Women - tracking them with a computer chip in their body; pairing the Orphan girls not only with one of the four Ghostwalker teams, but his personal enhanced team that he created using the rejected psychic candidates as part of his breeding program; injecting them with Zenith, a fast-healing medicine but with serious repercussions; experimenting with animal genes; zombie soldiers with a bonish exoskeleton.
o. Dr. Peter Whitney's allies in his devious plots are: