The 942 Series by J. I. Rogers

“Protocol 9”
 — Colonel Kael Sunde and his team are an elite search and rescue team, based on the edge of a toxic jungle known as ‘the Seep’.
 — ‘Vorta Botanical’, a research station deep within the Seep’s boundary goes offline.
 — Kael and his team are given the mission to find out what happened; ‘search and destroy’ if required.

“Forget-Me-Not”
 — Isolde comes from a Ranking Korlo family, but dreams of a day where everyone, Diasporan, and Korlo alike, can share in all that the Cluster Cities can offer. She joins the ranks of the ‘Par Society’ and lends her voice to the peace movement.
 — Isolde’s wealthy parents believe that she’s under the influence of a cult and make plans to have her sent away until she comes to her sense.
 — Yul is attending the science symposium with his father, but a chance meeting and an invitation leads to everyone’s lives changing forever.

“Bride Price”
 — The Makon family of Lorsa Cluster has Rank, but little else after the death of their father. Regina and Edric scramble to restore their lost empire.
 — The Harlo family has more funds than any of the other families combined, but no Rank. William Harlo Senior will stop at nothing to get it.
 — William Harlo Junior has his life happily planned out, or so he thinks.

Terence Vickers’ Review: 4.5-Stars

The 942 series is a Collection of three short stories by J.I. Rogers that first appeared in her newsletter/ezine the Tamyrh Quarterly.

All three stories are very well written, with characters that seem to come alive for the reader to such an extent you may mourn the ones that don’t survive. The world building seems a bit lacking as I got no clear picture of the locale in general just a general idea of the locations in which each story takes place. Nor did I get a clear idea of the societal structure.

The stories don’t really connect to each other in any way other than they take place in the same world at different times, with different characters.

Protocol 9

I found it a bit tricky keeping track of who is who as the characters are referred to sometimes by rank, first name or last name, and it seems very seldom by full name rank and position, so I advise reading the character index near the end of the book for clarity.

Team 7 led by Captain Jason Trati is called on to investigate the condition of the research station, Vorta which has failed to report it’s regular check ins for more than 24 hours. In a harsh world where if the environment doesn’t kill you the locals will do their best to do so, the search and rescue team arrive aboard their aging transport, affectionately referred to as “The Beast” to find the research station empty of personnel and the facility breached.

After resealing the structure against the elements, and neutralizing the local flora, a team is sent out in an attempt to find the missing scientists. They don’t all return to the station, the ranging team having accumulated some casualties, and they return to find the station has been attacked in their absence.

The battle scenes are all presented in past tense, through reports and dialogue rather than scenes of the battles themselves. The characters are what make this story a good read, that left me a bit disappointed that it ended so soon.

Forget Me Not

This story apparently takes place in a friendlier environment as the characters seem to move about freely without the encumbrance of protective suits and breathing apparatus.

Once again the story is made by the characters as much or more than by the action. Again the world view is limited and the structure of the society is merely hinted at. You have to read for a while before learning the main character’s name. I’m not sure whether that is a good thing or not as it doesn’t really detract form the story, or prevent from identifying with the young lady in question, who is much like the rebellious young college students we are familiar with.

A speech by Captain James Narisco, once court marshaled for gross insubordination, on a rather controversial subject is attended by young Isolde Tai, daughter of a high ranking family, who has no intention of returning home afterwards, as well as thousands of others whose views, the ruling powers apparently don’t agree with nor do they tolerate them very well.
 The speech is well received by the huge outdoor crowd, after which the arrival of a company of suppression guards leads to an outbreak of violence with the guards indiscriminately shooting into the crowd.

Bride Price:

The last in the book but also the oldest/first chronologically in both setting and first published, I would recommend reading this one first as it give the reader more insight into the society structure where social rank and money mean political power.
 An arranged marriage, a broken engagement, and an unwilling bride lead to a tale of intrigue.

Regina Makon, becomes a willing pawn in the maneuvering for status and power through an arranged marriage to William Harlo Junior. This union will bring two rich and powerful families together in a union that will supposedly benefit both families through status and money.

This union is not looked upon favorably by William though, for he has already chosen his bride the beautiful and pregnant Lyselle.

Powerful manipulative parents, determined young lovers and greed for money and power are a mix that is certain to provide a story loaded with intrigue, which Bride Price gives you in abundance.

All in all the 942 series left me wishing the stories were longer as I didn’t want to leave them so soon.

I hope we will see some complete novels come from these tales.

Sherry Terry’s Review: 4.2-Stars

The 942 Series by J.I. Rogers is a good read overall. I’ve never seen a cover like this, and I think it works well for the short stories. I think they are written well with some good strong sentence structures.

I was a little confused and a bit lost with the first story, Protocol 9. There were a lot of characters, and I had a hard time keeping up with all of them. I’m pretty sure it was written in Omni, and the hopping around from one character’s internal thoughts to another was a little difficult. I felt that the action of some the search and rescue team getting killed could have been shown. I had a hard time figuring all of that out because it was told from the past.

But overall, Protocol 9 was a good read. I thought the setting was cool and the author did a good job of putting me in the story even though I felt kind of lost. This is worth a read.

The second story, Forget Me Not was better. A sad little story that brought out my emotions. I thought the characters were more well-rounded in this story. A young girl, Isolde runs away from home to attend a speech with the intentions of never going home again. What she didn’t expect was the suppression guards showing up and shooting into the crowd. I don’t want to give away the ending, but this story pulled out all of my emotions. Very well done! The characters of this story are done very well, the setting shines, and the writing is strong.

The third story, Bride Price was the best out of the three for me. I was giving more insight into the world the stories are set in. Regina is betrothed to William so both families will gain riches and status, but William isn’t so keen on the idea.

The writing is strong, the setting descriptions and world building are amazing, and I loved it. I recommend this book, it’s a great addition to the series and I’m looking forward to the rest of the books.

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