This one might catch your fancy!
If you're a nerd who loves mythology, marine archeology and a lot of nautical terms, there are terms galore in Heartifact
by Aisling Mancy. It's a research dense novella that stars a marine archaeologist and a trapped mythological deity that only get physical in the mind. A mythology-dense contemporary suspense with romantic tones Are you nerdgasming yet? I have a microfiber cloth for your fogged up bifocals. Oh baby!
Dr. Harper Kidd is having a rough time in reality. He doesn't have a romantic partner, he's not working on a job that best uses his capabilities. His best friend offers him an out by joining her on a mission in the Mediterranean where the pay is great and there is possible treasure (of the historical variety) to be discovered. But from the beginning of the story as Dr. Kidd's life appears to be what he'd like it to be, it seems his subconscious has created a dream man that takes care of his sexual needs.
A creation that he can't see, but knows ALL of his thoughts and desires.
But the dreams feel real. And what starts as sporadic, moves to a constant night time occurrence. Harper's dream man is taking over, meshing into his reality as he and his friend, Stick and the archaeology team discovers ruins that hasn't been touched for centuries.
Something Harper is drawn to...especially when a discovery at the site seems to be a centuries old statue of his dream lover.
Pelora or Dr. Manhattan?
His dream lover, or Pelora is described as this otherworldly being that is ripped and blue. And once the descriptions were given, I couldn't get Dr. Manhattan out of the brain.
I'm unsure how to categorize Heartifact
.Is this romance?
In a way, it is. And in a way, it isn't. The great thing about romance is that it's subjective. Heartifact
doesn't fall under the traditional romance category. So if you're a reader who needs tradition, I wouldn't recommend. However, if you like puzzling history/mythology laden suspense trips, well then...welcome aboard.
The subject matter is interesting, the plot is fast paced. The mystery is not easily solved. But while the story is interesting and readable, the plot isn't as developed in crucial spots: Dr. Kidd falling in love (rather than having the reader told). The thoughts of Harper weren't as easily shared though it's told from his POV, so getting a grasp of what stage he was at different points during the book was not impactful as it could have been. The meld between the technical terms and romance could have been a little smoother. Since the most interaction we get of Harper and his dream man are in his dreams, I kinda wish just as much detail went into those dreams as the archeology parts.
For me, it was an unequal balance.
Interesting, but it could have been a touch longer to smooth out those parts. As is, we get brief dreams and nighttime moments to base the L word on.
The suspense part was cool. The ending is surprising (you couldn't get it on your best day). The epilogue...eh...I'm iffy on. The rest of the book sold me. I definitely dug the ideas this author has, and would read more from them.
If there was ever any follow up, I'd read it.
Do you need some alone time to nerd it out? Dr. Manhattan did it for you, huh?
I thought so. Our little secret. ;DOn a serious tip: net proceeds from this book goes to the following organizations: The Trevor Project in the US, le Refuge in France, and Arcigay in Italy!
Read for worthy causes! *Nerd high five* A copy provided for an honest review.