Amaryllis, Zinnia and Orchid by Jayne Castle

Jayne Castle (also known as Jayne Ann Krentz and Amanda Quick) has written several books sent in a futuristic parallel universe.  The first three are Amaryllis, Zinnia and Orchid.  These books are linked by their protagonists: all of the men are off-the-chart talents and friends and all of the women work for a company called Psynergy, Inc.  Since the books are linked, I figured I would review them together, lumping them into a trilogy even though Krentz has never explicitly labeled them as such.

I love the world-building that’s been done for this universe.  The books are set on a different planet, discovered in the future by residents of Earth.  People travel to this new planet through the Curtain and begin the colonize.  One day, the Curtain closes and the colonists are forced to adapt to life on this new planet, creating a new society while attempting to salvage as much as possible of the old.  The books take place a few hundred years after these events, so society is well-established.  Major differences between their world and ours include the development of psychic powers in all of the colony’s residents, and a different concept of marriage.

Each book focuses on a different romantic relationship, in which the protagonists come together to solve a mystery of some sort.  I re-read all three back-to-back and am pleased to say that each person has a distinct voice, different from the other main characters, all equally charming.  These books were one of my first forays into paranormal romance and I think they’ve held up quite well over time. Unfortunately, I don’t think they’re readily available (they were published in the late 90s and don’t seem to have been reprinted) so I would urge you to check your local libraries if you can’t find them in stores.  They’re fun, they’re funny and they’re a nice, quick read.

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