I have whined quite a bit about the long, long wait for a new Ghostwalkers book by Christine Feehan, but that wait is over since today is the release day for Viper Game.
GhostWalker Wyatt Fontenot knows the price he paid for the secret military experiments that gave him his special catlike abilities. After all, he left his bayou home a healer and came back a killer. While Wyatt and his GhostWalker brother Gator may have known exactly the sort of game they were getting into, Wyatt never anticipated where it would lead—or to whom.
The swamps hold many mysteries, but few are as sinuously seductive as Le Poivre de Cayenne. The woman the locals call Pepper is every bit as enigmatic as the three little girls she’s desperately trying to protect. From what, Wyatt is soon to discover. Right now Pepper needs a man like Wyatt. Passionately. But her secrets are about to take them both deeper into the bayou than either imagined—where desire is the deadliest poison of all.
POTENTIAL SPOILERS! POTENTIAL SPOILERS! POTENTIAL SPOILERS!
I got my copy yesterday, and finished it last night. It was fun to get back into the Ghostwalker world, but it had a different feel for a couple of different reasons. Most obviously, it was our first real introduction to the mysterious team four, the Pararescue Jumpers. Even though we have briefly seen a couple of members like Joe and Mordecai, it was Wyatt who was the big mystery. Not only what he was, but how and when he became a Ghostwalker. The timeline gets dealt with, but how he actually ended up a Ghostwalker remains a little vague, honestly. It wasn’t a big deal, but hopefully we will get more details on the team origins in later books.
We do have to pretty much forget what little we knew about Wyatt going into this one. When we first met Wyatt back in Night Game, he was the charming, hard-partying little brother who had a secret crush on sweet, innocent Joy. In Viper Game, he has somehow become not only a Doctor, but a surgeon. Yep, in the storyline time between the two books, which reads like maybe a year or two at most, Wyatt spent a whole lot of time in school. That made me snicker a bit, but it wasn’t that big of a deal in the scheme of things. The Joy thing is addressed, too, and changes a bit from the first book. It isn’t a huge part of this story, but there is some creative license taken. Wyatt has also become surprisingly Alpha. As in, the most alpha of all of the Ghostwalkers to date. Seriously, didn’t see that coming.
I like the return to the Bayou, and fans of Nonny will be happy to know that she plays a major role. Other than her, though, it is an all-new cast of characters. I really like the new team, like the dynamic and the interaction between them. I even quite liked Pepper as a character, which is a bonus for me. Usually storylines with children aren’t favorites of mine, but the kids don’t overwhelm things so I didn’t mind. Again, though, you have to suspend your disbelief with the kids.
As I have said a few times, though, you have to sort of just…go with it. It seems every new book has the enhancements getting more and more extreme and, dare I say it, unbelievable. As we get further into the series the characters are changing more and more from enhanced humans to superhumans. The machinations to put the two main characters together are also getting more involved and outlandish, but such is the nature of the series.
I always, always laugh out loud when a new team member is introduced. There is a totally random and absurd info-dump that never fails to crack me up, even though that is not the intention, I am sure. Remember when Jonas Harper was introduced back in Shadow Game? He was the master of disguise/knife thrower/hire wire specialist who grew up in the circus. We have two such introductions in Viper Game. There is Draden, the male model with a masters degree/insomniac, and Trap, the boy-billionaire/inventor/scientist/with a possible personality disorder. They end up being great characters, especially Trap, but their introductions are a hoot.
So, not sure I got my point across, but I was really glad to get back into the Ghostwalker world. I liked the new team, I liked the direction they are going, and I really look forward to Spider Game, which will probably be Trap’s story. He was a total scene stealer, by the way. There were issues that niggled, like the changes in Wyatt’s character’s backstory, but they were not a huge deal. There were a few consistency errors in the book, as well. Wyatt starts off saying he knows himself and how jealous he is, then later says he has never been jealous before. Then he warns Pepper that he has always had a jealous streak, but later reminds his team-mates that he has never been affected by jealousy before. Also, just a warning, this one is a five on the alpha/controlling scale. Heat factor is really, really high, more so than any other Ghostwalker book to this point. Wyatt is a total dominant, and he can sometimes skim the border of being too controlling. At least for me. Let me know what you think of Viper Game. Worth the wait, or too different for you?