Friday, August 22, 2014

Review: Branded by Fire by Nalini Singh

Title: Branded by Fire
Series: Psy-Changeling
Author: Nalini Singh
Read copy: Mass Market Paperback
Published: July 7, 2009
Publisher: Berkley
ISBN: 042522673
ISBN-13: 9780425226735

Though DarkRiver sentinel Mercy is feeling the pressure to mate, she savagely resists when Riley Kincaid, a lieutenant from the SnowDancer pack, tries to possess her. The problem is not simply that he pushes her buttons; the problem is that he’s a wolf, she’s a cat, and they’re both used to being on top.

But when a brilliant changeling researcher is kidnapped from DarkRiver territory, Mercy and Riley must work together to track the young man—before his shadowy captors decide he’s no longer useful. Along the way, the two dominants may find that submitting to one another uncovers not just a deadly conspiracy, but a passion so raw that it’ll leave them both branded by fire…

My rating:

This book was a bit of a disappointment for me.

I loved the nicely forward moving plot, each book uncovers a little bit more about the whole Psy-Changeling-Human universe, the intricacies of their history, the intrigues, the mysteries, what makes each "race" tick, and I absolutely adored Riley "The Wall" Kincaid, the gorgeous wolf, hero of this story.

The disappointment came with the heroine, Mercy, a leopard. I liked her in the first five books (and one novella), but I disliked her with a passion in this one. She came through as a haughty, snotty, arrogant, slightly racist bitch who though a wolf was beneath her. I felt she was just using Riley to scratch her itches, and even in the end I couldn't quite believe she actually gave in and fell for him.

I just didn't feel the love vibes, while he walked, talked, and breathed his love for her. Sadly, this pairing didn't convince me at all. I felt Riley deserved more.

On a better note, I'm more and more intrigued by Kaleb and the Ghost. Could this two really be one and the same? It is said the Net would break with the Ghost breached his Silence, and Kaleb is pretty "cozy" with the Net. Makes you wonder.

And who is this mysterious Psy or whatever pulling the strings from the background? And what about the Human Alliance? So many questions, so few answers.

I'm so happy for Lucas and Sasha, not so happy about the whole Hawke-thing, though. It's Lora Leigh's Mercury's War all over again, with the only exception, Mercury went after what he wanted, instead of moping around. Because that's what Hawke's doing. He's moping, feeling sorry for himself, because the wolf that was supposedly his mate died a long time ago. They were kids, how could he have known? His wolf knows better, it's the man that's slow on the uptake. And that irritates me to no end. I hope you-know-who makes him suffer, though I didn't read much in the holding-hands-and-going-into-the-woods scene.

This story was a fifty-fifty deal for me, half of it was great, half of it (thanks to high-and-mighty Mercy) not so much. 3 stars, hoping Dev's story turns out better.


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