Published: January 27, 2015
Genre: Fantasy, Military
Pages: 402 (Mass Market)
My Rating: 4.0/5.0
Gemini Cell takes place in the SHADOW OPS universe, but is a prequel, taking place many years before the events in CONTROL POINT.
Myke Cole continues to blow the military fantasy genre wide open with an all-new epic adventure in his highly acclaimed Shadow Ops universe—set in the early days of the Great Reawakening, when magic first returns to the world and order begins to unravel…
US Navy SEAL Jim Schweitzer is a consummate professional, a fierce warrior, and a hard man to kill. But when he sees something he was never meant to see on a covert mission gone bad, he finds himself—and his family—in the crosshairs. Nothing means more to Jim than protecting his loved ones, but when the enemy brings the battle to his front door, he is overwhelmed and taken down.
It should be the end of the story. But Jim is raised from the dead by a sorcerer and recruited by a top secret unit dabbling in the occult, known only as the Gemini Cell. With powers he doesn’t understand, Jim is called back to duty—as the ultimate warrior. As he wrestles with a literal inner demon, Jim realizes his new superiors are determined to use him for their own ends and keep him in the dark—especially about the fates of his wife and son…
Gemini Cell was a total cover buy- I’m not ashamed to admit it because the awesomeness of the cover justifies it 100%. I mean, seriously, it reminds me a bit of Master Chief from HALO and that can’t NOT be cool. After I was finished gawking at the cover, I turned it over, read the synopsis and knew that I must read it.
The story begins with the very normal life of a Navy SEAL who’s off on a top secret mission to raid a cargo ship. The raid is unusual, which is what the team deals with on a day to day basis, but there are repercussions that follow Jim Schweitzer to his doorstep and beyond. Schweitzer is murdered in his home by a group of highly skilled killers sent by an organization known as the Body Farm, but instead of remaining dead he’s reanimated by a super secret group within the government. Now Jim is the ultimate weapon, but at the cost of sharing his mind with the soul of a Sumerian warlord called Ninip that has spent the last few thousand years in oblivion.
The storyline was compelling and I couldn’t put this book down. The mix of exciting missions, the side story focusing on Jim’s family, and the inner conflict between Jim Schweitzer and Ninip made for an irresistibly page-turning combination. The whole thing was pretty brutal and stank of manipulation and conspiracy – very exciting, right? This is definitely a military fantasy, but the modernity of it has me wanting to say it’s a bit sci-fi as well despite the fact that there’s almost zero science fiction in it. Maybe it’s the cover, I don’t know. The fantasy elements are woven into the modern setting very nicely and I think that’s part of what makes this so attractive a story. The reader is in a perfectly normal fiction novel, then BAM! You’ve got an undead SEAL taking out other equally paranormal baddies.
I found Jim Schweitzer to be an admirable character with a strong sense of loyalty and dedication to both his country and his family. His wife Sarah was a remarkably realistic character and thoroughly enjoyed the chapters focusing on her and her son as they both dealt with the loss of Jim. Ninip, of course, was despicable the majority of the time but even he had moments where I sympathized with his plight – we do get some backstory on him to make him a little more relatable which I appreciated.
The whole story, characters, plot and all were well done, though at the end of the novel I began to have some mixed feelings. Things got very “knight in shining armor” and I was mentally rolling my eyes thinking “Great, here we go”, but it wasn’t bad. Eventually I would like to continue with the next book in the series, titled Javelin Rain which also has a super awesome cover. Myke buddy, you’ve totally got me buying your books for shallow reasons!! Really though, this was a cool story and I look forward to reading more of Mr. Cole’s books. He’s got a whole other series out that I need to check out.