Date read: November 30, 2016
1. Encrypted - Paperback | Kindle
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Professor Tikaya Komitopis isn't a great beauty, a fearless warrior, or even someone who can walk and chew chicle at the same time, but her cryptography skills earn her wartime notoriety. When enemy marines show up at her family's plantation, she expects the worst.Thoughts on Encrypted: This was a book I didn't know I wanted to read until I picked it up. Which sounds kinda weird, but it made sense when I thought it. Like, I didn't know I wanted a heroine with impressive linguistic skills who is far, far stronger than she gives herself credit for until I started reading about Tikaya. Not only is she wicked smart and able to parse out unknown languages practically in her sleep, she's quick and adaptable and willing to push boundaries to find out answers.
But they're not there to kill her. They need her to decode mysterious runes, and they ask for help in the manner typical of a conquering empire: they kidnap her, threaten her family, and throw her in the brig of their fastest steamship.
Her only ally is a fellow prisoner who charms her with a passion for academics as great as her own. Together, they must decipher mind-altering alchemical artifacts, deadly poison rockets, and malevolent technological constructs, all while dodging assassination attempts from a rival power determined the expedition should fail. As if the situation weren't treacherous enough, this new "ally" may turn out to be the last person Tikaya should trust. Those runes cloak more than mysteries, however, and he's the only one who can help her unravel them before their secrets destroy the world.
I totally appreciate a lady who does what needs to be done despite her fear and the potential danger to herself.
Surprise allies, hidden betrayal, and one teenage assassin get tangled together to make Tikaya's...err, what do you call it? Her forced deciphering for the enemy? Whatever. Tikaya ends up with a lot on her plate. And that's before the deadly robots make an appearance.
Might I just say, this book could very well be the impetus I needed to start Sicarius's series. The kid intrigued me. Quite a bit.