The first book in Silke’s Strike Force superhero series. It can be read as a stand-alone.

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Publication year: 2020

Format: ebook

Page count from Amazon: 303

Silke Butters is a supermodel. She’s also Indian-American so her way to the top wasn’t easy. She was often dismissed because she’s not blond and fair-skinned. But with determination, she clawed her way up and is now finally the face of Candy Girl Cosmetics

Now, she finally has what she wants. Then she starts getting strong headaches and seeing strange visions. One of them is of her father whom she hasn’t seen in many years. The next day, her adopted brother Joe comes to her and tells her that her father is dead.

Silke has mixed feelings, mostly regret. Her father was strongly against her modeling career so she hasn’t really talked with him after she left for New York when she was fifteen. Her father, Duke, was a soldier and after retiring from the Army, he started a private security firm, the Enforcer Factory, which is now doing extremely well. Joe is Duke’s partner in the firm. Joe also has secrets from Silke. For example, Joe himself is an Enhanced, person with superpowers.

And now, Silke has strange feelings and visions. Also, her attraction toward Joe is surfacing.

The ruthless, super-powered Sin Squad is targeting the Enforcer Factory. They’ve even infiltrated it. Now, they won’t stop for anything to get what they want.

This was a very interesting beginning to a series. It introduces us to a world where superpowered beings are mostly secret pawns in a larger game. Silke has no idea about them and the revelations in the book are a shock to her. It’s also her origin story; she’s learning about her powers and learning how to use them.

Silke is impulsive, but also very determined. Also, her life as a model needs her to be quite disciplined; she loves food but must restrict her diet. Also, Silke’s roots are from India which means that she’s no stranger to prejudice. However, these days she’s a famous model so she has to deal with her celebrity. There’s also a romance subplot: she was attracted to Joe before she left for New York, but never acted on it. Now, Joe has a girlfriend.

Joe is a stoic soldier who hero-worshipped Duke Butters who took Joe in after Joe’s parents died. Duke was sick for a while before his death, so it wasn’t a surprise to Joe. Joe has also promised that he doesn’t tell anything to Silke and he feels that he’s protecting her.

My favorite character, however, was Mackenzie ”Maki” Monroe whom Silke calls Mac n’ Cheese. She’s a computer expert. She’s also happily married with kids and heavily pregnant. But I feel I need to give a content warning about miscarriage.

The book has several POV characters, but Silke is the most prominent one. She’s mostly a very good main character who is trying to figure out what is happening to her and what’s happening around her. However, right at the start of the book, she makes some stupid choices: mixing painkillers and alcohol that felt out of character for her.

Also, the author does sometimes use more ”tell” than ”show”. Sometimes she just summarized the scene quickly rather than writing it out. It takes a long time until Silke gets any sort of handle for her powers. I’m also not a fan of plots where the main character is deliberately kept in the dark, especially ”for her own good”, so I didn’t really like that. Unfortunately, the book has also quite a few typos.

Still, it was an enjoyable and exciting read.