This one was published as a part of "Alphas After Dark" an anthology containing 9 short stories. I only read this one. I can't invest myself with more series at the moment, nothing personal here.. It takes place somewhere around book 4 not after it. If you read the last one (especially the last chapter) you'll get why it's not possible it took place AFTER it.
and oh! I guess is you haven't read the previous ones it doesn't matter. You can just jump into it and see what you feel about the world. You'll meet some of the people in the previous books but it doesn't really matter since there aren't any spoilers to the plot itself (and since there isn't a lot of it anyway.. :P)
I should say i didn't even remember who Derek Ford was.. then I remembered the reference to him getting hurt and walking home with a broken leg.. ouch! the other main character is Mia. I think I remember her name being said but I don't think there was more to it than that. She came from Sector 2, same house as Lex.
If you read my review of the second book in the series - the one about Lex and Dallas you might remember I HATED it. Not because it was "bad" because I expected SO much more about the main characters and I didn't get it. Here we have a short novella yet we got so much more of Mia and her life before she came to Sector 4, so much more of how she feels and WHY. I like reading motives, thoughts that based somehow in previous experiences which makes the character more "real" or should I say more believable. I think Mia is my favorite woman in this series in the sense that she it best "explained" so I could relate to her better than other characters I didn't "understand".
We didn't really get Ford's past only the way he is in the present (which we didn't know before this book, unlike other main heroes we met in the previous ones). BUT what we did get was so accurate. I mean, it gave the right impression of who he is and why. I really loved him. Maybe he is my favorite male character in the series as well! I have to think about it hehe I loved that he wasn't obsessed with owning her as the other men are. He wasn't into submission submission submission. I kinda get tired of all of that especially after Rachel's book which is what she was after.. Ford truly cares for Mia and he showed it all the time even if he doesn't say it in words he acts it and for me, it's the true way of showing a person your feelings.
Only thing I didn't like is that the ending was a bit rushed but hey! it's a short novella (round 150 pages) and what it gave in those pages was SO MUCH MORE that I expected to have and I think it's one of the best books in the series even if it's half or less than the previous ones. As I wrote before, for me it's about the story not about the sex. That being said don't expect a lot to be going on, it's short and it's basically about them and how the relationship is built and also describing the world for people who haven't read the previous ones but nevertheless I simply LOVED it.
5 SHINING STARS!