Alien 'n' Outlaw - K.C. Burn 3.5-4 stars overall. This book was a little bit uneven in terms of my enjoyment. I loved the first 50% or so when R'kos and Darien were getting to know each other. The next 30% was less enjoyable for me because it focused on the outside forces keeping them from being together more than their relationship. I felt like the story kind of veered a little too far off course in these parts. The last 20% was good, though, because it came back to center and focused on our main couple again and what they needed to work through in order to find their HEA.

The story, briefly.
R'kos, a lavender-skinned alien from another planet, has essentially run away from home in a search for adventure and human contact. He's lived a rather sheltered life as the son of the emperor. In his visits to human planets, his curiosity was piqued by humans...and human desire. Luckily for him, almost immediately after his arrival on a human planet, he meets Darien, a trader who's on the run for engaging in some less than aboveboard activities. The story follows them as they make their way off-planet on Darien's trading route. When misfortune strikes them en route, however, they have to call for backup, and that's when the real trouble starts. After all, an emperor's son can't go missing for long before someone starts looking for him.

The characters.
I loved them! R'kos was such a sweet, gentle giant. The differences between his alien race and humans were different enough to be fun and entertaining without being totally outlandish and gross. A number of those differences were focused on the *ahem* sexytimes aspect of their differences. In a good way, of course. I was giggling and saying "Oh no they didn't!" when R'kos revealed his mobile penis. More on this aspect later. Darien was initially a rather gruff character, but I warmed up to him and his blustery ways. He had a lot of bravado, but I think that also hid a vulnerability that stemmed from his being rejected by his father for his homosexuality when he was a youth. He ran away from home as a teenager and has been on his own ever since. They had great chemistry, and the possessiveness and caring they showed for each other were really sweet and sexy.

The sexytimes.
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Heeeeeeee! Like I alluded to above, alien sexytimes were fun! Darien was super excited by R'kos's *ahem* anatomical variations. R'kos, in turn, was incredibly turned on by the scent and feel of his human lover. These scenes were smoooookin' hot! The only thing that detracted from the sexytimes is the ~30% in the middle when the two lovers are apart or otherwise incapacitated. I felt like the book kind of lost its momentum there.

Overall.
I loved this story when it focused on R'kos and Darien. I think the story introduced too many outside elements, though, that detracted from the discovery of their relationship and compatibility. I can see why those elements were brought into the story, but I think there was too much focus on those parts. Overall, though, I liked it quite a bit, and the discovery of each other's differences (and their attraction and love for each other) was very sweet, touching, and sexy. :) I'm curious enough about this sci fi world to see what's coming next from this author.


Note: Thank you to the author and Carina Press for providing a copy of this book through NetGalley.