Listen to Greg Salinas narrate a snippet:
Sometime between the interminable wars in the Middle East and 9/11, the United States bred a race of super soldiers. Clandestine labs formed, armed with eager scientists who’d always yearned to manipulate human DNA. At first the clones looked promising, growing to fighting size in as little as a dozen years, but V1 had design flaws.
Seven years ago, a rogue group turned on their creators, blew up the lab, and hit all the other breeding farms, freeing whomever they could find. In the intervening time, they retreated to hidden compounds and created a society run by men. Women are kept on a tight leash because the men fear if they discover their innate power, they’ll launch their own rebellion.
After years as a black ops CIA agent, nothing surprises Roy Kincaid, yet his current assignment is close to a bust. Burnt out and discouraged, he hunches over a meal in a backwater diner, when a half-frozen woman with the look of an abused runaway staggers through the door. His first instinct is to help her, make certain she stays long enough for the bluish cast to leave her lips. His second is to finish his meal and leave. The world is full of broken women. It’s not his job to fix them.
Honor wants Milton with every bone in her body, but it’s a terrible idea, especially after she delves into his head and sees his ambivalence toward her kind. Need drives them together, but their differences create roadblocks every step of the way. Fueled by anger and fear, she shuts him out. So what if the sex was great, she’s done.
Or is she?
Charity’s luck never ran strong, because her original configuration was unstable. Her handlers designed experiments to fix the problem, but only made it worse. Sick to death of living under their thumb, she jumps at a chance to escape. She’s barely settled in as a CIA special operative – a role where she can put her augmented mind and body to use – when her wobbly genetics decompensate.
Charlie swore off women after his last marriage that went down in drama-tipped flames fifteen years ago. His first mistress is danger. He fell in love with the adrenaline rush when he signed on as a Navy Seal, right out of college, and he never got over the thrill of pitting himself against the impossible.
Reginald Thomas agreed to run the CIA’s infirmary after a bullet nailed him in Afghanistan. He’s one of a handful of scientists who produced the original batches of genetically modified humans, and he’s laid low since their rebellion. The catastrophe rankles, but he hasn’t given up finding a fix for their genome problems.
I'm basically a mountaineer at heart. I remember many hours at my desk where my body may have been stuck inside four walls, but my soul was planning yet one more trip to the backcountry. There's a timeless element to the mountains. They feel like old friends as I visit them, and visit them again. There's nothing like standing on a remote pass where I've been before and seeing that the vista is unchanged. Or on an equally remote peak. Mountains are the bones of the world. They'll prevail long after all of us are dust. It feels honest and humbling to share space with them. I hope I'm blessed with many more years to wander the local landscape. The memories are incomparable. They warm me and help me believe there will be something left for our children and their children after them.