Shield of Winter

February 24, 2015 - 4:04 pm No Comments

Psy-Changeling Book 13
Author: Nalini Singh
Reviewer: Theresa Derwin

Silence has fallen. Throughout this series so far, Psy have been trapped in ‘Silence’ a net hive mind created to control emotion and eradicate it, but with the passionate changelings from SnowDancer and Dark River, many of the Psy such as Sacha Duncan, Judd, Sienna and Walker Lauren have escaped the net, hidden with the changelings and found their emotions, free will and love.
After the raging war in the last few books, including terror attacks from the ‘Pure Psy’ contingency, ex Councillor Kaleb Krycheck has pulled the Silence away, because of a disease/infection running rife through it. He is intent on saving the Psy, and using the Arrows (deadly assassins) he has just taken control of, plus Empaths (E-Psys), he will do everything he can to save his race.
Vasic is embroiled in Silence. For him, there can be no emotion. He is dangerously suicidal, so Arrow leader Aden sends him off on light duties to recruit E-Psy Ivy Jane. Ivy escaped the Net and is no longer Silent, she was reconditioned at the age of sixteen, dragging her back in line, brutalising and torturing her, which is why she is do afraid of the stone cold telekinetic Arrow who comes to offer her an employment proposal; to stabilise the Net. Ivy is sorely tempted, because finding out she is Designation E and not broken gives her a chance to learn control and discover more about herself.
In a compound in DarkRiver/SnowDancer territory Vasic and Ivy begin to form a bond, that soon blossoms into something more.
Romance is at the heart of this entire series, but as the series has developed, so has the plotting, the relationships between wolves, leopards, Psy, the Forgotten and Humans and more specifically, the politics. There are clever individuals and machinations going on here, and it makes for interesting reading. As for the romance element, it is always deeply satisfying for a romance reader; carefully handled, sizzling chemistry between those involved, the right amount of erotic details which never borders on tasteless, and often witty dialogue. This is one of my favourite dark fantasy/romance series and the development of civil war in this future world adds extra dimension, Singh not shying away from the brutal cost and devastation of war. Great stuff.

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