It is a known fact that I love Kit Rocha books. The two talented ladies behind the books have written some of the most aggressively feminist books I’ve ever read, really well balanced with strong female characters and strong male characters. The Beyond books, which I often describe as fucking to save the world, is dystopic and post-apocalyptic. The Mercenary Librarian series, which is so far only 2 books, The Devil You Know is the second, takes place in the same world as those books, but in Atlanta, instead of out West, like the Beyond books. You don’t have to have read the Beyond books to know what is going on in this series, but you do need to read the Mercenary Librarians in order.
Our prime couple in this book are Maya and Gray. They have both been modified by Techcorps. Gray has had implants put in his brain and was turned into a super soldier and sniper. That’s why he’s one of the members of the Silver Devils. Maya’s brain has been messed with, and she has perfect recall. PERFECT. RECALL. As in, if she had a lover who was tortured in front of her, she would never be able to forget it. She was used as a data courier by one of the VPs of Techcorps. The VP, Birgitte, put all of her secrets into Maya’s head. Everything is in Maya’s head, including the revolution that Birgitte was fomenting. When Birgitte was “promoted”, Maya escaped Techcorps, faked her death, and met Nina and Dani.
Now, years after that, her little group of friends has swelled from just Nina and Dani to also include the Silver Devils, including Gray. She’s always totally aware of Gray. She likes him, but she’s worried. That’s because for most of her life, Maya has been told that data couriers’ brains will basically break down because of all the stimulation that gets absorbed into their brains. She works really hard at keeping the stimulation low so that she doesn’t waste any of the time that she has left. But Gray. He tempts her so much. She wants him. She likes him.
Gray has his own secrets. One of them is that his implants are failing. His life is counted in months, if not weeks. But he has such strong feelings for Maya. He really wants to get closer to her, but he doesn’t really want to leave her and he really doesn’t want her to fall in love with him and then have to suffer after his death. But there’s just something about her. He has to be around her, protect her, and help her. In fact, he trains her in a new technique that Maya ends up being really good at, and loving a lot.
I really like both of these characters. They are both really strong. They each have their own weaknesses, I mean, they are human. No human is perfect, not even super soldiers. The thing is, neither Gray nor Maya take advantage of the other’s weaknesses. Instead, they prop each other up in those weak places. They each help the other be a better them. They don’t make each other complete, because both Maya and Gray are complete on their own, but what they do is make the other more. It’s like 1+1=2.5, not just 2. They are better together than they are apart. And I think that is beautiful. That is one of the things that I really like about Kit’s books. Yes, the characters have growth to do, and they might not be the healthiest, mentally, but each character is complete in themselves, or is becoming that way. They don’t need to have a partner to complete themselves, and the relationships make each person better, not whole. Does that make sense? It really does in my head.
The romance in this one is a slow burn, but it fits for Maya and Gray. The story, though, that isn’t a slow burn. We do get glimpses into other people’s heads, with their own chapters. I really like that, because it does let us see more of what is going on. I can’t wait for the next book. It’s going to be so good.
OK, that’s it for today. Go check it out! Happy reading!