Shards of Hope by Nalini Singh
Series: Psy/Changeling #14
Also in this series: Caressed By Ice, Mine to Possess, Hostage to Pleasure, The Magical Christmas Cat, Kiss of Snow, Tangle of Need, Slave to Sensation, Heart of Obsidian, Shield of Winter, Shield of Winter, Visions of Heat, Mine to Possess, Caressed By Ice, Branded by Fire, Blaze of Memory, Mine to Possess, Hostage to Pleasure, Hostage to Pleasure, Shards of Hope, Heart of Obsidian, Caressed By Ice, Branded by Fire, Blaze of Memory, Play of Passion, Allegiance of Honor, Kiss of Snow, Tangle of Need, Shield of Winter, Shards of Hope, Allegiance of Honor, Allegiance of Honor, Wild Embrace, Wild Embrace, Wild Embrace, Silver Silence, Silver Silence
Published by Penguin
Publication Date: June 2nd 2015
Genres: Fantasy, Science Fiction
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The “smoldering heat, epic romance, and awesome action”* of Nalini Singh’s New York Times bestselling series continues as two Arrows find themselves caught in a chilling conspiracy that spans all three races…
Awakening wounded in a darkened cell, their psychic abilities blocked, Aden and Zaira know they must escape. But when the lethal soldiers break free from their mysterious prison, they find themselves in a harsh, inhospitable landscape far from civilization. Their only hope for survival is to make it to the hidden home of a predatory changeling pack that doesn’t welcome outsiders.
And they must survive. A shadowy enemy has put a target on the back of the Arrow squad, an enemy that cannot be permitted to succeed in its deadly campaign. Aden will cross any line to keep his people safe for this new future, where even an assassin might have hope of a life beyond blood and death and pain. Zaira has no such hope. She knows she’s too damaged to return from the abyss. Her driving goal is to protect Aden, protect the only person who has ever come back for her no matter what. This time, even Aden’s passionate determination may not be enough—because the emotionless chill of Silence existed for a reason. For the violent, and the insane, and the irreparably broken…like Zaira.
*Jaci Burton, New York Times bestselling author
I loved Aden going into this book, and he didn’t disappoint. Zaira was the wild card. I didn’t dislike her in previous books, as I don’t think we got to know her very well, but I was a little leery about her as Aden’s heroine. She ended up being my favorite part of the book. She was fierce, loyal and 100% behind Aden in everything.
Aden and Zaira wake up in an unknown location with no recollection of how they got there and their Psy abilities blocked. They managed to escape but both are severely injured and they find a device in the back of their skulls that is blocking their Psy powers – and also keeping them from being found by teleporters like Vasic and Kaleb Krycheck – they must remove. They’re discovered by a local changeling pack and taken in, but their abilities are still offline and they don’t know who they can trust.
In the meantime, Aden has realized Zaira is the one for him. He wants her as his partner, but she doesn’t feel she can offer him anything but camaraderie and friendship. Due to abuse she suffered as a child, she has a hard time connecting emotionally to anyone. Not to mention the huge amount of rage she carries inside her that she’s afraid will come out and harm someone. Her biggest fear is that she’ll accept Aden is hers, then kill anyone who tries to get between them, befriend him or harm him. Basically she thinks he deserves better.
Aden knows all of Zaira’s secrets and understands why she tries to keep distance between them, but he knows she’s worth fighting for. Convincing her to fight as well is the biggest problem, but he knows if she commits there will be no going back. As they hunt for the ones hunting them, Aden works on gaining Zaira’s trust enough to let go with him.
This was an action-packed read from page one. I was sucked in right from the beginning when Aden and Zaira wake up in a holding cell with their psy-abilities cut off. Singh has been tugging several threads over the last few books, and the progression of the overreaching story arc really worked for me. I especially loved finding out what Aden’s ability is and seeing how the squad stands behind him.
Though I’ll admit, for all I enjoyed the story, it isn’t my favorite of the series. Parts of it were a bit slow moving and I didn’t feel the connection to the story I experienced with Heart of Obsidian or some of the other books.
I love this world and those who inhabit it. Singh’s imagination and world-building make this a must read series.
4.25 out of 5