Matrix of Destiny is funny, corny, ridiculous, and sexy–so are its covers. I had crazy fun reading this SciFi romance series. Its heroines may not be the brightest bulbs in the planet and the heroes not often aboveboard with their intentions but they made me laugh. They also provide me with that element I hardly see in stories these days, the pursuit, the efforts of men to convince their beloved they are worth loving. An old-fashioned concept, I know, which is probably why I rarely encounter it these days in books I read, which are mostly urban fantasy and paranormal romances, yet I believe it does add suspense and tension to a story, so I don’t think this preference is only due to personal values but also to a preference for stories that keep me on suspense.
With the first book published in 1995, this series has staying power if 15 years later a reader like me still find it entertaining. The first book is called Knight of a Trillion Stars and the sequel simple Rejar. The series starts to go downhill unfortunately on book four, and the fifth and sixth books look more like fillers rather than full-blown novels and do little to advance the story. The fifth book has this really ridiculous title, Death by Ploot Ploot, which means something very rude (Google it!).
The story starts with SciFi fan Deana having a bad day. Fired from her job and exhausted from a miserable commute, she decides on some retail therapy, but all she can afford is a random necklace from a pawn shop. On returning home, she finds an alien in her living room! The alien is Lorgan, a handsome knight from another world. He says he was drawn by the necklace, which turns out to be a magical artifact. He also recognizes her as his fated wife and immediately performs a ceremony to bind her to him as his wife. But he doesn’t tell her that, taking her through a space-time portal instead so he can continue his quest. Very bad of him, I know!
But Deana herself is dense! She constantly gives in to his seduction, his way of convincing her they are right for each other. Although she’s convinced she’s not the right person for Lorgan and is determined to go home, she keeps deferring going back and misses clues about her own abilities to make it home.
But he’s sweet to her, even when she’s cranky. And they’re both funny when they try dealing with another world. He attacks a microwave with his sword and she tries to make pottery out of alien animal poo.
Lorgan’s brother, Rejar, gets center stage in the sequel. After a fight with the bad guy in the first book, he is thrown through time and space to 1811 Regency England. I like his character best of all in this series. He’s arrogant, promiscuous, yet compassionate. He’s a Familiar, which means he can turn into a cat and speak mind to mind. As a cat he meets Lilac, who takes him home with her.
Rejar is used to women throwing themselves at him all the time. So it comes as a shock to him for Lilac to resist him and reject him, repeatedly. For once, his vaunted sex-mojo does not work. But instead of gallivanting as he usually does, he goes back to Lily as a cat and watches her sleep night after night. He’s very confused at himself initially until he realizes she’s his mate, which his why he can want only her forever.
Unlike the lighthearted romp across exotic locations of the first book, this book offers contrasts: Playful Rejar to the grim backstreets of London; sensual master Rejar to prim and proper Lilac. In the face of disease, poverty, and cruelty, it dawns on Rejar that he is innocent; to Lily’s untouched state he is terrified and yet aggressive.
Lorgin is interesting but Lilac is rather dull after her initial bout of resistance.
The books move from one world to another. I find the descriptions imaginative if not too wild. There’s a subplot about Rejar being a sort of chosen one, someone whose magical level is off the charts, but he seems too happy go-lucky to fit the role. Lorgan is a better fit.
The third book is about the king of the Familiars and how he rescues and then tricks the daughter heir of an enemy land to his world–which is Lorgan’s strategy all over again. And like Deana, she is easily duped.
This series doesn’t seem to take itself too seriously, and I don’t take it too seriously. I just enjoyed it. It feels incomplete though. I read the author went through a thing with publishers and readers, so I gather the other stories will not be written.