The Key by Pauline Baird Jones | Science Fiction Romance Novel

The Key

A science fiction/action adventure romance novel

When Sara Donovan joins Project Enterprise she finds out that what doesn’t kill her makes her stronger…

 An Air Force pilot – the best of the best to be assigned to this mission – Sara isn’t afraid to travel far beyond the Milky Way on an assignment that takes her into a galaxy torn apart by a long and bitter warfare between the Dusan and the Gadi.

After she’s shot down and manages to land safely on an inhospitable planet, Sara encounters Kiernan Fyn – a seriously hot alien with a few secrets of his own – he’s a member of a resistance group called the Ojemba, lead by the mysterious and ruthless Kalian. Together they must avoid capture, but can they avoid their growing attraction to each other?

A mysterious, hidden city on the planet brings Sara closer to the answers she seeks – about her baffling abilities and her mother’s past. She has no idea she’s being pulled into the same danger her mother fled – the key to a secret left behind by a lost civilization, the Garradians.

The Dusan and the Gadi want the key. So do the Ojemba. They think Sara has it. They are willing to do anything to get it.

Sara will have to do anything to stop them…

Author's note: Following the release of The Key realized that some readers didn't know that my series is set in the present day, in a kind of alternate reality, I guess. Unless there IS a secret project taking our people to the stars on beyond. If that's the case, it is accidentally true.

Tags: space opera; science fiction romance; alternate universe; no sex; sexual tension; mild swearing

Reviewer/reader quotes about The Key:

"The Key is a huge, sprawling space opera of a book, so be prepared to wallow in the pleasure of exploring this universe for a good long time. Emphasis on both “good” and “long”.” Science Fiction Romance Quarterly

"This is a series that is a keeper for me and I will enjoy reading them all again. I did get The Key on Audible. I wasn't crazy about the narrator at first but she grew on me.  Or better... the story became so engrossing I didn't notice any more!  That is a sign of a really good story! This is a great series for anyone who likes sci fi action, like Star Trek or Galaxy Quest (funny movie!), with a clean, warm, intergalactic romance." Reviews by Martha's Bookshelf

"From the beginning, action is non-stop and filled with suspense. Sara is more than the quintessential kick-butt heroine. She is the perfect warrior, a woman confident in her abilities in the air and on the ground, and so loyal to her country that she is willing to make personal sacrifices to ensure its safety. Peripheral characters are well-developed and the plot so thrilling readers will be reluctant to put the book aside. This sci-fi adds a nice dose of romance and a touch of humor, placing it at the top of the list for a danged good read." Christy Tillery French for Midwest Book Review

"Award winning author Pauline Baird Jones has created a dynamic other worldly story. Her characters are strong, well defined and interesting; capturing the reader on the first page. Ms. Jones has given her readers wonderful dialogue, adventure, humor, kick-butt action and thrilling romance; all set in alien territories. So, slip into another galaxy and revel in THE KEY by Pauline Baird Jones." Single

"I don't generally seek science fiction, fantasy, or romance stories. Books in these genres must come to me as recommendations from trusted sources. After several people suggested I would enjoy The Key, I picked it up - and then couldn't put it down until the last word. Anyone in the market for a fun read should check out this book - just be careful when you start it as you just may find yourself staying up all night to finish."

"This thrilling adventure and love story is the stuff of dreams for a perfect romantic space adventure. Stories like this are why I love to read, and I definitely understand why this novel has been  nominated  for awards. Forget sleeping, plan on take out, and invest your time relishing this magnificent tale." Five Stars, Featured review from Manic Readers

"The Key was good in every way a novel can be. It's an engrossing story with full character development and growth. There is an ultimate battle between good and evil and Ms. Baird Jones even makes the villain likable on some levels. For me, The Key is one of those rare books that strengthened my love of reading. Thanks for the story Pauline." Night Owl Romances Top Pick and Reviewer's Choice.

"Love Linnea Sinclair? Get a kick out of Susan Grant? Then you'll want to glom up on releases by Pauline Baird Jones. The Key isn't so much a sci-fi release as it is a dang good read, and this reviewer is anxious to read more of Baird Jones. Fun and fantastic at the same time, The Key is an intergalactic space adventure that will thrill readers to the very tips of their toes." Heartstrings Reviews

"Clearly this author knows how to tell a story no matter what the genre. Her character development, pacing and humor satisfy across genre boundaries." Mostly Fiction Reviews.

For the SFR buff this is a must read. Don’t bother if you are looking for futuristic erotica. The characterization is good and the romance is compelling. There is plenty of sexual tension but little actual sex. There is adventure and suspense. Also, something I personally require, there is an HEA. If you like a few nanites and ray guns in your romance you should pick this one up." The Good, The Bad, The Unread reviews

Action is the name of the game as a feisty and hard-hitting heroine rises to the challenge in this rousing space adventure. Not only is this a fast-paced tale, the rampaging deception and cultural clashes ensure this hero and heroine will need all their survival skills." 4 stars from Romantic Times

"Great plot! Superb workmanship on the characters! So sit back and take the ride of your life. This was by far the best Sci Fi novel in a long time. Pauline Baird Jones, a marvelous creator of some remarkable characters, put a new twist on a great Sci Fi story, The Key." Simegen Reviews

"There were many characters, good and bad, on all sides of the plot, with most of the characters filling important roles. Sara was a wonderful character, I could have seen her walk right out of the book...I loved the development of love between Sara and Fyn. Ms. Jones wrote a wonderful book. I will certainly put her on my to be read list." The Romance Studio

"I have to admit that The Key did surpass my expectations, and I found it an entertaining, surprisingly quick read (especially considering it is about five hundred pages in length). This is an enjoyable novel, and a solid entry in the SF/R genre." Thea at Booksmugglers

"...the biggest draw for me was Sara. She was an immensely sympathetic and enjoyable character." Ana at Booksmugglers

"Dang! That's what Sara Donovan would say. What a ride! Pauline Baird Jones has ventured where she's never ventured before, and I'm on pleased, satisfied reader who tagged along with The Key's characters for the ride of a lifetime. Dang! A US Top Gun, a woman, is part of a mission to another galaxy where three factions are looking for the key to the secrets of a lost civilization. Sara is shot down and rescued by a seriously hot alien pilot, with dreads, who's stranded on the same small planet. The rescuere, Fyn, becomes the rescued when Sara's team picks them up--but they both have secrets, secrets that can destroy the love the grows between them and promises to rescue them both. The Key is full of believable military, flying and combat lingo and characters. Sara Donovan never slips out of character. In fact, she never blinks. Oh, and if you happen to be male and read the words 'throw down," run away. If you read the word 'nice," read faster. You won't be sorry. Neither will anyone else who reads The Key. Sharon K. Garner, Author of Sanctuary

"I don't remember how I discovered Pauline Baird Jones' books but I do know that once I did, I made a concentrated effort to get my hands on a copy of each release. The thing is, living in Canada, her books aren't easily available to me and it takes time and effort to find copies. It was well worth it. Pauline is one of those authors who keep getting better and better with each book. Take, "The Key," her newest release; I started reading it on Friday night and had it finished in the early hours of Saturday. I just gulped it down. Then on Sunday, I started over again and savored it over a period of three days. It was even better the second time around. The story is a romantic suspense like all her books, but it's also a science fiction. As far as I'm concerned this is her best book yet. The characters are well developed and likeable. The setting is intresting and the story line very imaginative. In fact, I sincerely hope she's planning on making a series starting Sara and Kiernan. I can't wait to see what happens to them next. I highly recommend this book to everyone; whether you like romance, science-fiction or suspense, you're covered. It's an excellent read and if you're like me, you'll be clamoring for more." Michele Dube

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