Maya used to be Marjorie Chevalier, but had to change her identity after she escaped the evil super scientists at TechCorps, where she was trained as a data courier (basically a human hard drive), with her senses specially enhanced to remember flawlessly everything she hears, reads, sees, hears and experiences. She used to work for one of the Vice Presidents of TechCorps who was secretly orchestrating a rebellion, However, her boss (also the only maternal figure Maya ever knew) was caught and executed, and Maya had to be smuggled to safety.
She found that safety with Nina, now one of the sisters she never had. Along with the lethal Dani, they have been working to help the residents of post-apocalyptic Atlanta by passing on free information (books, videos, music) and technical know-how. They also occasionally go off on adventures to recover more books and resources. After the events of the previous books, their little found family has expanded a lot, with the former supersoldiers from the Silver Devils squad having settled down in a warehouse next to the librarians’ headquarters. The group is hired to retrieve what turns out to be a genetically modified child, and it turns out that Rainbow (which is the name the child chooses for herself) is not the only one. Since Maya doesn’t have super speed or strength, she stays back home holding the fort, accompanied by Grey, the former sniper of the Silver Devils, who can’t be trusted on a tense mission since his body might betray him.
All the Silver Devils have technical implants that have enhanced their senses. Supersoldiers like them don’t normally have a very long lifespan, but in rare cases, their bodies might start rejecting the implant after decades of being used to them. This is what is happening to Grey now. He can suddenly be struck with seizures and an operation to replace the implant has a less than 5% chance of survival, even if they could find a surgeon skilled enough to perform the operation. So Grey is accepting that he doesn’t have long to live. One of the things he wants to do with his final days is make sure Maya has the skills and confidence to defend herself and keep herself safe. She’s always been told that she needs to be careful not to overload her brain, or she can pretty much short-circuit, but Grey suspects that she’s limiting herself out of fears told to her to control her and keep her from reaching her full potential. He shows her that not only is she an absolute wizard with all things technical, but her perfect recall is a superpower in itself, if not as physically intimidating as those of her chosen sisters.
There is a very strong attraction between Maya and Grey, however, the only man Maya ever loved before was literally tortured to death in front of her in an attempt to get her to reveal the secrets buried in her brain after her boss was executed. She’s also prone to sensory overload and doesn’t really know how she’d react in a physically overwhelming situation, like having sex. Letting herself fall for a man who’s dying is bound to lead to heartbreak, but not acting on the attraction before it’s too late might be a bigger mistake than keeping her distance.
While Maya and the Silver Devils all had very skillful people hiding their tracks and faking their deaths (complete with falsified bodies with their DNA planted), Tobias Richter, the VP of Security at TechCorps is a ruthless and deeply driven man, convinced (rightly so) that he can find them if he searches hard enough. When a video from a farmer’s market surfaces, proving to him that his quarries are still alive, Maya and Grey’s days together might be numbered sooner than they think.
Full review here.