After a harrowing mission, Navy SEAL Aiden Willingham was approached to participate in a secret research project. Now he realizes the Spartan Project is a covert, multinational government testing program run by a private company called The Silverstone Collaborative. The company’s mission is to create super soldiers, men capable of recovering from horrendous illness and injuries, using a serum derived from indigenous plants in the Amazon rainforest. The program is brutal and when the men object, they go from test subjects to caged prisoners overnight.
The doctor leading the program is world-renowned for his cutting-edge cures, but Aiden sees only the madness in his eyes. The serum is producing results, but men are dying every day of testing. And, as more men die, the experiments turn more deadly. What the research team doesn’t realize is exactly what the serum is doing … creating a psychic connection between four of the men.
Aiden and his team have to break out of the camp before they’re compromised further. But getting out of the camp is the easy part. They know that actually living to bring the Silverstone Collaborative to justice is going to be the most difficult mission any of them have ever undertaken.
If you are a fan of the Lost and Found Series you will remember that we first met Aiden in Embattled Hearts, and he pops up in the other books as well. Now at long last we get his story, this is the beginning and we meet the others that were with him during this truly trying period of his life.
This is not a romance, this is a detailed accounting of the events leading up to Aiden appearing in Denver. We first meet the four men held close together. Aiden, Wolfe, Fontana and TJ Rector. Wolfe is the only non- American in this group, he is from Germany.
These men originally had volunteered for the program, but when men started dying things changed. They became prisoners.
The conditions are harsh, the treatment is brutal and had me sniffling and holding my breath.
We also meet the cold hearted Priscilla Mattingly, COO of the Silverstone Collaborative. She becomes the most dangerous of all their captors as she lets everyone know who is in charge.
This is a favorite scene as the guys escape this hell.
Like a whisper, Fontana came for him two hours later, with Wulfe and TJ Rector by his side. How the fuck did you get out of your cage? Aiden demanded.
Fontana grinned and moved to the door. Watch. Holding the iron lock in his hand, Fontana just looked at the thing for several seconds. Then, with a click, the lock fell open.
Aiden shook his head, amazed, and honestly a little fearful. Fontana was doing things he’d never even considered.
I managed to get the guards to fall asleep, Fontana told him. We’ve got a little bit of time to get out of here. The cafeteria should be empty right now. I suggest we gather what food and water and supplies we can before we head out.
We’re not leaving.
Aiden’s throat closed up as he stepped outside, unshackled and uncuffed for the first time in months. Yes, he was naked as a jaybird, but he was finally free. No one would be putting him back into handcuffs, he vowed. He would die first. Then what Wulfe said sank in, bringing him back to focus.
What are you thinking?
Wulfe looked at the medical building. Our proof is there.
The rest of them turned to look at the med center, knowing he was right. It housed all of the secrets. Shu had been meticulous about his notes, and they each had files several inches thick. The technicians had complained endlessly about the duplication. It could be a suicide mission going back in there, but they had no other option. Wulfe was right about that.
Rector and Fontana, go to the cafeteria and Shu’s hut. See what you can find. We’ll also probably need something to go through the fence, so look for some tools. Wulfe and I will see what we can find inside. Meet back here in thirty minutes.
The two men nodded and slipped away into the darkness. Aiden looked at Wulfe.
I really don’t want to go in there, he admitted.
I don’t also, but we must, American. This is the only time. She will get rid of everything. Every record, every note. And we will be liars.
Aiden knew he was right, but it didn’t make it any easier to do. He scanned the area, checking for soldiers or guards, but the camp was deathly silent.
He looked at the squat cinder block building, fighting nausea. Deliberately, he slowed his breathing, but it was hard. His heart was trying to thud out of his chest and his body demanded oxygen. Aiden couldn’t even remember how many dangerous missions he’d been on as a SEAL, but certainly into the triple digits. Too many to count. He’d been shot and stabbed, snake-bitten and had busted ankles and knees, and he’d take any one of those injuries again rather than voluntarily walk into that building.
Wulfe was thinking like a squad leader, though. They needed hard, physical proof of what had happened here. Otherwise everything they’d been through would be hearsay, unprovable.
Quietly, Aiden began gearing himself up, just like he did for hard assaults. Neither one of them was physically ready for hand to hand combat and they had no weapons other than their minds…but their fledgling abilities hadn’t been tried in stressful situations. There was a very real chance that the first time he tried to finesse anyone they’d laugh in his face, then shoot him in the head. He was convinced that the sniper in the med center had been a fluke. The man had already wanted to kill— Aiden had just removed the tiniest restriction in his mind.
Wulfe slammed his doubled fists into Aiden’s shoulders to psych him up and they turned toward the building.
Madden, J.M., Genesis: The Dogs of War Prequel (Kindle Locations 443-471). Kindle Edition.
I have to say I was much relieved when the guys got out. However there were many trials and tribulations for them as they trek through the jungle hoping to find a place big enough for phone reception.
Action-packed, emotional, scary and I couldn’t put it down!
5 Contented Purrs for J.M.!
I look forward to reading more of Aiden’s story in Chaos which just released. I am also going back to re-read the Lost and Found Series since I haven’t read it since I purchased it in 2015.
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J.M. Madden writes compelling romances between ‘combat modified’ military men and the women who love them. J.M. Madden loves any and all good love stories, most particularly her own. She has two beautiful children and a husband who always keeps her on her toes.
J.M. was a Deputy Sheriff in Ohio for nine years, until hubby moved the clan to Kentucky. When not chasing the family around, she’s at the computer, reading and writing, perfecting her craft. She occasionally takes breaks to feed her animal horde and is trying to control her office-supply addiction, but both tasks are uphill battles. Happily, she is writing full-time and always has several projects in the works.
She also dearly loves to hear from readers! So, drop her a line. She’ll respond.