July 11, 2014

Book Review ~ Sheild of Winter by Nalini Singh

Title: Shield of Winter (Psy-Changeling #13)
Author: Nalini Singh
Release Date: June 5th 2014
Publisher: Gollancz
Source: Received from the publisher via BooksellersNZ

Assassin. Soldier. Arrow. That is who Vasic is, who he will always be. His soul drenched in blood, his conscience heavy with the weight of all he’s done, he exists in the shadows, far from the hope his people can almost touch—if only they do not first drown in the murderous insanity of a lethal contagion. To stop the wave of death, Vasic must complete the simplest and most difficult mission of his life.

For if the Psy race is to survive, the empaths must wake…

Having rebuilt her life after medical “treatment” that violated her mind and sought to suffocate her abilities, Ivy should have run from the black-clad Arrow with eyes of winter frost. But Ivy Jane has never done what she should. Now, she’ll fight for her people, and for this Arrow who stands as her living shield, yet believes he is beyond redemption.

But as the world turns to screaming crimson, even Ivy’s fierce will may not be enough to save Vasic from the cold darkness…

Nalini Singh is a big hitter.
If you read her stuff, you know what you’re generally going to get.
Great story, great writing, great tension, intrigue, adventure, romance, and sex!
And that can be said for Shield of Winter, however there is a but!

This (book #13) was a much better read than the previous installment; but that doesn’t mean it was a truly fantastic read either.
The story was slow to start.
It was slow to heat up.
And it was so slow to get to the sexiness that usually comes with any book penned by Nalini Singh.

I can only conclude it has to do with the Psy/Psy relationship.
For me, there was a distinct lack of heat - and that’s understandable when you consider the way of their society – their upbringing – their silence. They are, as a whole, a closed off emotionless breed.
So is that the reason for the slow start, perhaps.
The basic continuation of the story is good – the subplot intriguing – the sneak peeks in to the lives of previously loved couples insightful.
But I just didn’t warm up to the relationship between Vasic and Ivy initially. I didn’t really like or connect with Ivy, but Vasic was a little easier to grasp as we’d seen him in previous books. I always knew he’d be a great leading man!

So yes, it took me quite a while to get in to Shield of Winter – to warm up to another Psy/Psy relationship (book #12 was also a Psy/Psy romance) but Ms Singh came through in the end.

In fact, the emotional roller coaster of Vasic’s situation was rather touching, and the progress gained for all Psy great – and I can only hope that carries forward to the next book, pushing the series ahead somewhat, so we can enjoy more great stories and less info dumping about Psy.

So all-in-all, Shield of Winter is a good read if you can manage to get past the very slow first half of the book. And because it was rather emotional at the end – I may have even had a tear or two – I’m giving it 4 stars.

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