Piracy is a Game
What Are You Worth?
Since she was a little girl, everyone - from her father to the Great Creator himself - told Lyssa Peate the same thing: she's worthless. But when she becomes the pirate bounty hunter Razia, she can see the price tag on her own head. Employed by one of the four pirate syndicates, she uses bank transactions and her considerable wits to capture rival members. At least, she would be if Razia's boss ever gave her a chance. It's a man’s world, and all she’s allowed to hunt are purse snatchers while she languishes on probation.
To pay the bills, she's stuck in her old life as Lyssa, discovering and analyzing distant planets and selling them for cash. She's doing just enough to stay out of trouble, pretending to be continuing her father's mysterious research while away for long periods of time. Her slimy boss is always asking questions and even assigns one of her younger brothers, Vel, to intern with her. Already struggling to keep the balance between her double lives, she tries everything to rid herself of the kid...
...until the universal police mistake Lyssa’s intern for Razia's hostage.
The first book in the Razia series takes readers on a journey through the worlds of Lyssa Peate and her bounty hunter alter-ego, Razia. Download it for free today! Or get the whole series in an eBook Box Set!
It was Ganon, Sage’s pilot. Dark-skinned with lively dark brown eyes and a voice that carried for miles, Razia wasn't sure if Ganon was always drunk, or if he was just naturally that obnoxious, but she rued the day Sage had hired him onto his crew.
He came barreling over, his arms opened wide to toss her up into one of his usual over-the-shoulder hugs, but she was ready.
"Don’t touch me."
"Okay, okay, okay!" He laughed loudly, garnering the attention of two pirate in front of her who finally noticed she stood there. "Woo…you’ve got a bounty! Look at this, Sage!"READ MORE
"Yes, that’s what happens when you’re a bounty hunter," Razia snapped, hoping this conversation would end quickly. The last thing she wanted was to draw attention to herself with such a pathetic bounty in hand. But thanks to Ganon's barking, Sage and the other crew member, a quiet, tall man named Nalton, joined the impromptu and unwelcome party.
"Razia, you will not believe what just happened!" Ganon said, slapping Razia on the back. "Sage, you have to tell her!"
"I’d…rather…" Sage said, suddenly looking very much like he would've rather kept walking out the door. Ganon waved him off, and turned to Razia, excitedly.
"Okay, so get this: After we did that museum thing, we noticed this guy would not leave us alone, right? And Sage was like, aw, he’ll get tired of us, just hold off. But I mean, this guy—right, Nalton? I mean, this guy!"
"Very nice," Razia said, shifting uncomfortably, hating how more pirates had taken notice of her.
For once, Sage seemed to share her eagerness to get away. "Ganon, I really don't think—"
"So, finally, we’re all at Eamon’s…you know what Eamon’s is, right?"
"Yes," Razia snapped. It was one of many clubs that catered to the top pirates—only. As Razia had found out three weeks ago when she'd been tossed out for sneaking in through a window.
"Okay, so we’re at Eamon’s, and Sage gets fed up with him bothering us, and we do our bit." Ganon grinned. "And, guess who it is? Guess!"
"Dalton Freaking Burk."
"What?" Razia screamed, whirling around to face Sage, who already had his hands up in surrender.
"Look, I didn’t want to turn him in!" Sage said quickly. "I mean, he just wouldn’t leave us alone! What was I supposed to do?"
"Sage, you knew I wanted him!" Razia cried. "What in Leveman’s—"
"I don’t see how you could've possibly thought you'd be allowed to capture him, seeing as you’re only…six hundred? Seven hundred?"
Sage and Razia shared a look of annoyance. Royden Relleck stood behind them, his hair buzzed shorter than in his photo, and his high cheekbones accentuated by his smug smile. He'd joined the pirate web only four or five years ago, but had quickly become Contestant's favorite for his brash cockiness. For the longest time, Dissident and Contestant boasted the best two webs, spending most of their time one-upping each other and ignoring the other two. But since Tauron's death, Dissident had struggled to reclaim his former glory, and Relleck had taken it on himself to claim the mantle. He never missed an opportunity to capture Dissident’s pirates or taunt his favorite ones.
Or, in Razia’s case, his most embarrassing ones.
"I know Dissident is desperate for good pirates, but I doubt he’d let a little girl hunt someone like Dalton Burk," he said, smugly folding his arms over his chest.
"Well Contestant lets you hunt, what’s your excuse?" Razia retorted, before Sage could say anything. "Where’s all your boyfriends? I’m surprised you let them out of your sight. Hope you don’t run into any pirate who can hit."
"It’s a good thing I ran into you and Teon, then," Relleck shot back, sneering at her bounty. "Leveman’s Vortex, I haven’t even heard of that guy—is he a real pirate? Looks like he was already drunk when you got to him. Hope you didn’t break a nail."
Before Razia could respond, Sage chimed in with an unhelpful, "Leave her alone, Relleck. She’s still on probation."
"God in Leveman's Vortex, Teon," Razia swore through clenched teeth.
"Probation?" Relleck laughed. "You’ve been on probation for what…two years now? Why don’t you quit embarrassing yourself already?"
Razia watched him turn and walk away, and smiled knowingly. "Hey, at least I didn’t lose a couple hundred credits in five minutes at the casino last night."
Relleck stopped dead in his tracks. "What’d you say?" he whispered, turning around.
"I said," Razia repeated, slowly, "I may be in the six hundreds, but you obviously need to work on your poker skills. And your lady skills—three times you've visited a cat house in the past week? Can’t get a woman to sleep with you unless you pay them, hm?"
"How…how do you know that?"
"Oh, you mean, how I know all your aliases?" Razia said, feigning innocence. "How I’ve been tracking you for the past six weeks?"
Relleck’s eyes narrowed.
"Because I’m a damned good bounty hunter, that’s how," she said. "Now why don’t you quit embarrassing yourself and get lost." She paused and chuckled. "And next time, try to make it a challenge, will ya? Leveman’s, you’re worse at hiding than Teon here."
Relleck glared at her wordlessly then hotly turned and slunk away.COLLAPSE
Danielle Hanna on Danielle Hanna wrote:
It didn't take long to decide that this book is driven far more by its characters than the sci-fi elements. You could have put Lyssa in any number of settings, and her personality and struggles would have resonated just as strongly. Her sass captured me early on, but by the end, there was so much more to her character that makes her a strong main character.
Zach Tyo on Indie Reviews wrote:
This book rekindled some long-lost feelings I had when I was young and steeped to my eyebrows in adventure novels. Lyssa – or Razia, as she prefers to be called – was a real kick. At times, I wanted to punch some sense into her, but usually I was laughing too hard at her red-hot temper or sympathizing too deeply about what it felt like to be trapped between a rock and a hard spot. I enjoy kick-ass heroines, and she was one of the best.
There's a certain laid back nature that comes across in Evans' writing. While the story gets deeper and more thrilling, there is a certain easiness to her writing that keeps you in that moment without being overwhelmed. There are a few places where the calm writing affects some of the places where you would expect some more emotion from either Lyssa or Raiza, but both characters lean towards anger and Evans has no trouble portraying the fiery anger that emanates from this character.