Marc and Dana review Infected: Paris (Infected series, book 0.5) by Andrea Speed (Published by DSP Publications, February 24, 2015, 120 pages). This is a prequel to the series and the author will write other books in the same universe.
RGR received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Check out the previous duo reviews of Andrea Speed’s Infected series:
To read the duo review of Infected: Prey (Infected Book 1) click here.
To read the duo review of Infected: Bloodlines (Infected Book 2) click here.
To read the duo review of Infected: Life After Death (Infected Book 3) click here.
To read the duo review of Infected: Freefall (Infected Book 4) click here.
To read the duo review for Infected: Shift (Infected Book 5) click here.
To read the duo review for Infected: Lesser Evils (Infected Book 6) click here.
To read the duo review for Infected: Undertow (Infected Book 7) click here.
To read the duo review for Infected: Epitaph (Infected Book 8) click here.
Prequel to Infected: Prey
In a world where a werecat virus has changed society, Roan McKichan, a born infected and ex-cop, works as a private detective trying to solve crimes involving other infecteds.
Roan is working a frustrating stalker case, with no shortage of suspects and little solid evidence, when he comes across a startling eyewitness living in his car across the street from the scene. A tiger-strain infected, the only one Roan’s ever met, Paris Lehane is a former Canadian golden boy who suffered a breakdown after becoming infected in college.
While Roan’s ex, Diego “Dee” Cole, warns against falling for the infected Paris, a man doomed to die, Roan struggles with his attraction and the knowledge that no happily ever after is possible for them.
But is the knowledge enough to discourage him from following his heart? Roan helps Paris out of homelessness, and maybe a special hospital can help Paris with the infection, but Roan’s got his hands full with this case, and there’s no end in sight.
Marc – This is the story of how Roan and Paris met and fell in love. When we get to know them in ‘Infected: Prey’, they are an established couple and it was great to get some background info on these characters readers have fallen in love with so strongly. I have read this prequel after reading the 8 main books in the series, though it could possibly be read as first book. It is hard for me to say, because I already know the series. For me it was nice to go back to the beginning and if you love the Infected series, you should read this novella for sure.
Paris has always been such a vibrant character in the main books, it was great to see him again and realize that Roan really had a large part in making him shine again. I’m glad they had some time together to grow their love and enjoy each other.
When Roan encounters Paris, the man is undernourished and about to die due to the very taxing shifts. Roan does not just see a witness, who can help him solve the case, he sees someone who needs his help. He gives Paris a reason to live and helps him to actually survive the shifts and readers can feel their special connection from the very beginning.
The mystery is interesting and it is fun to see them both work together to solve it. Though of course Paris and Roan meeting and falling in love is the main course in this novella and I’m very grateful to the author for giving us this gift.
For me it was very enlightening to see them again. It made me realize how different Roan’s relationship to Paris was compared to his relationship to Dylan. Paris loved Roan, but he also loved his lion in equal meassure. He was able to accept, embrace and understand both parts of Roan in a way Dylan never could. Paris knew how special Roan was and celebrated it. I think he would have tried to make Roan accept how special he is and made him take on a leadership role. He never saw Roan as inhuman, but saw him as super human and I honestly think the series would have gone down differently if Roan had Paris at his side until the end.
Even though like Paris I always secretly wanted Roan to take on a leadership role, I think having Dylan at his side was the best thing that could have happened to Roan. Roan always wanted to be normal and lead a normal life. He is such a good guy that it is hard for him to say ‘no’, when he has the unique abilities to help someone, even if it may destroy him. But Dylan loves his ‘normal’ human side first and foremost. He accepts that Roan has a darker, more animalistic side, but it is his human side he loves. And he tries everything to protect it and get Roan to be more careful with it. He makes Roan want to live a normal life with him. Makes him prioritize his own safety.
Paris and Dylan are very different guys and Roan is very different with them. It was great to go back and get to see Paris again and now I’m eager to re-read the series again. I do think Paris knew what Roan needed and he chose Dylan for a reason to take care of Roan. I wish he could have had them both, but that would have been a very different story, too 🙂
In any case, this novella is a must-read for fans of the infected series. ❤
8.5/10 Pots of Gold (85% Recommended) – Compares to 4.25/5 Stars
Dana – Though Infected: Paris is listed as a prequel to the series I read it after the final novel of the series. Personally I feel it gave me insight to Roan’s relationship with both Paris and Dylan because of that. It definitely could be read at any time in the series.
It starts off with Roan searching for leads on a client’s stalker. Cardboard in the window of a car leads Roan to knock on the door in search of a homeless witness. He finds Paris, who even as downtrodden as he is, is stunning to look at. It’s not the same Paris we meet in books one and two of the series. He isn’t confident, he’s ready to give up on living and on the brink of death. This book really highlights how strong Paris is. First, most tiger infected people will die on that first change, he survived. Second, he was nothing but skin and bones, malnourished and dehydrated when Roan found him. He wasn’t meant to last through his next change later that night, he did. Third, we know he spent a good length of time despite the odds with Roan leading to quite an epic love story.
In my other reviews, I have lamented that sometimes it seems that Roan hasn’t let Dylan in as much as he did Paris because Roan with Paris was completely different than he is when he’s with Dylan. It’s not that Roan doesn’t love Dylan as much, it’s that Roan seems to be a reflection of the man he is in love with. Don’t get me wrong, Roan is an incredibly strong character, not a follower, but when it comes to his relationships it seems like he is affected, the whole relationship is affected, by his love interest.
The Buddhist that Dylan is makes him calm and peaceful for the most part. He ultimately had to be strong so that Roan wouldn’t push him away, but he had a solid presence and real concern that Roan come home to him safe. Even though they both had doubts at times whether their love was strong enough to weather health concerns and threats against them, their relationship was mostly calm and peaceful like Dylan. I thought they were lacking in the same grand passion that Roan had with Paris but it wasn’t them as a couple, it was just a reflection of who Paris is.
Before Roan, Paris was a golden child, loved for his good looks and easygoing personality. Though he wilted a bit after learning of his infection, with Roan’s care he became a vibrant force once again. He brought Roan to his level in some respects. Marc had talked to me once about how different things could have been if Paris hadn’t died. We thought that he might not have asked Roan to pull back as much, that he might have encouraged Roan to embrace his inner lion. And that might have been, but not because he didn’t care about Roan’s safety as much as Dylan but because he lived for the moment; before the infection when his beauty got him anything and he had to worry about the day it faded, and after when all he had was each moment.
I was glad to get to know Paris just a little bit more with this book. It was fairly short, but I think we got a good glimpse of how Roan and he filled certain holes in each other that needed filling. The case wasn’t quite as dramatic as some Roan takes in the future, but it was interesting nonetheless. Another great chapter in an amazing series. Thank you Andrea Speed for another glimpse of Paris and I look forward to any other stories you might create in this world.
9/10 Pots of Gold (90% Recommended) – Compares to 4.5/5 Stars.
Andrea Speed was born looking for trouble in some hot month without an R in it. While succeeding in finding Trouble, she has also been found by its twin brother, Clean Up, and is now on the run, wanted for the murder of a mop and a really cute, innocent bucket that was only one day away from retirement. (I was framed, I tell you – framed!)
In her spare time, she arms lemurs in preparation for the upcoming war against the Mole Men.
Viva la revolution!