Review: Tin Cat by Misa Buckley

tin catFormat Read: ebook provided by the author
Number of Pages: 108 pages
Release Date: March 4, 2013
Publisher: Champagne Books
Genre: Science Fiction Romance
Formats Available: ebook
Purchasing Info: Amazon | B&N | Kobo | Author’s Website | Publisher’s Website | Goodreads

Book Blurb:

A year after the accident that put her in a wheelchair, Amber Gerald has more or less gotten used to living with her impairment. It doesn’t make a difference to running a comic book store anyway, and the customers have been the best support group she could have wished for.

When she rescues an abandoned cat, Amber has no idea that she’s interfering in the mad scheme of a time travelling bank robber. Or that the man that walks into her store dressed like Blade is about to become her bodyguard.

Between being an unwitting owner of an android cat and falling for a cybernetic bounty hunter, Amber finds her life a whole new level of weird as science fiction becomes a very real factual threat.

My Thoughts:

The author had me at “android cat”. Not “android’s cat” although Star Trek TNG did that one very, very well, but “android cat”. Being a cat, it’s no more, or less, obedient than the purely flesh and blood kind. But that’s not the end of the story.

Amber Gerald’s adoption of “Cat” brings a whole new level of weird into her life. And considering that Amber owns a comic book store, weird is pretty much her stock-in-trade.

Her adoption of the stray cat brings a stray man into her life. and that’s something that hasn’t happened in over a year. Not since the auto accident that put her in a wheelchair.

But this Blade-wannabe who shows up at her shop says he’s a time traveler. And so’s the cat. Even better, or worse, he proves it to her. He shows her where his flesh meets his cybernetic implants. Hunter Gray is a bounty hunter with a built-in Kevlar vest, and a few other modifications.

What he isn’t is put off by Amber’s physical handicaps. He’s merely curious. No one in the future has any handicaps like Amber’s. Medical science has advanced past that point. Gray feels no pity, only intrigue, and interest. Good old-fashioned sexual interest. That’s not a reaction Amber’s seen from a man, let alone a gorgeous one, since the accident. Too many people, not just handsome men, see the chair and not her.

Amber is the strongest woman Gray has ever met. She accepted his story. She accepted his modifications. She’s even accepting his need to guard her from the time-traveling bank robber he’s pursuing.

All because she adopted that tin cat.

It’s just too bad that whatever relationship they are building will end when Gray catches the villain. Because whatever they are building…it really is something special.

Verdict: Tin Cat is surprisingly good in any number of ways. You expect it to be an ugly duckling story. Meaning that Amber the handicapped ugly duckling gets turned into a beautiful swan by having her handicaps miraculously healed by future tech.

Let me reassure you now, Misa Buckley was much smarter than that. Or Amber was. Amber has come to terms with where her home is, and who her friends are. The ugly duckling in this story is Hunter Gray.

He’s the one who gets redeemed by the power of true love, but not until after he does a few of the usual idiotic male actions first.

He lies about why he’s chasing the bad guy. Not that the bad guy isn’t truly evil, but there is some reason for his actions.

Gray is being punished, and he’s not exactly forthcoming about why. Which doesn’t mean he’s not still a good guy. He’s just typically afraid that he’ll lose the best thing that ever happened to him if he’s upfront about all of his many flaws.

Amber is hesitant about falling in love with anyone, let alone entering into a relationship with a definite expiration date.

Amber’s handicaps are handled with a lot of sensitivity, but are not glossed over or made less in any way. She’s brave but not Pollyanna.

And the cat both gets them in horrible trouble, and saves them in the end.

If you like science fiction romance at ALL, read this.

I give Tin Cat by Misa Buckley 5 proudly costumed stars!


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Ironhaven, by Misa Buckley, was a surprisingly good science fiction romance that I received unsolicited from the author.

The story starts as the last shuttle leaving a dying earth is about to take off from the spaceport. Lucian Hoyt believes he has a ticket on it. But he discovers when he attempts to board the ship that his ticket has been cancelled–by his parents! Since they refuse to answer his calls to clear up the mess, he is left with the conclusion that he is being disowned in a rather permanent fashion because he refused to marry the upper-crust debutante his rich parents had chosen for him.

It’s never specified, but our earth has gotten a lot colder, and things are getting worse. Whether this is a future where the sun is just getting old, or whether we’ve screwed up the planet, it doesn’t matter. The point of the story is that everyone knows the planet is dying, but that there is plenty of time to get some people off planet, just not everyone. And the ones remaining have plenty of time to worry about when death will come for them.

So Lucian gets left behind. He resents his parents for having left him, naturally enough. Lucian is used to being rich, to being part of the upper crust of society. Now, everyone he sees resents him for being one of the people who left them behind, even though he has been abandoned, too.

All is not lost, however. In the first bar he walks into, Lucian meets a pilot, Drew. Drew knows an engineer who might be able to built a ship, if Lucian is interested. Lucian goes looking, just thinking there might be a way out of the death-spiral. What he finds is his past.

Lucian didn’t marry Elspeth “flaming” Pennington, the rich debutante, because he never stopped loving the one woman his parents forbade him from marrying. When Lucian discovers that Genevieve Scott is the engineer, and is the only person who might possibly be able to built them all a way off their dying planet, he finds he wants to build a bridge back over the chasm separating them every bit as much as he wants to help her build that ship.

The question is whether either of them can get past the hurt and the scars, both emotional and physical, that five years of separation, pain and broken promises have left on their bodies and hearts.

Escape Rating B+: I enjoyed this story very much. I really wanted it to be longer! It’s only 49 pages, and there was a certain amount of background I wanted, like what was really going wrong with the Earth, that I just wanted to know.

Gen and Lucian and interesting characters. I wanted to spend more time with them. They deserved their happy ending, they worked very hard for it. Again, I would have liked just a little more background. But as the reader, I definitely felt their pain. There’s a specific instance about the lack of background that made this a B+ and not an A. Lucian is in his 30s. Without more background, it was difficult to understand why his parents still  had such an vise-like grip on his life. There’s something about the way that the society is structured that I didn’t get. Gen couldn’t figure out why Lucian didn’t contact her in the five years they were separated, if he loved her so much, and I couldn’t either.

This book is only 50 pages. The author did a remarkable job tying up all the loose ends. I simply wanted more!