Flashback Sunday Review: A book that is at least 12 months from publication date that I have finally moved to the top of the reading list
Title: Branded by Fire
Author: Nalini Singh
Publisher: Berkley Publishing
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Print ISBN: 978-0425226735
eBook ISBN: 978-1101080801
Publication Date: July 7, 2009
Length: 368 Pages
Length: 368 Pages
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…
First I want to say that I have a bit of a girl crush on Ms. Singh, I started reading her Psy-Changeling series several years ago and usually devour them the second that the new book is released, however, when I was finishing up my latest degree - I fell behind. Since I want to read the newest book that just came out - I've been reading like a mad fiend to catch up so that everything flows and makes sense to me. So far I have never been disappointed in a book written by Ms. Singh, and I seriously doubt that I will be as the books seem to improve as the series progresses.
I absolutely loved Mercy, the heroine of this book, a sentinel or leutenant in the DarkRiver Leopard Pack. She is both physically and emotionally strong and realizes that there are many men who will have issues with her strength. She wants a mate and a family but is realistic about her chances and is trying to handle whatever fate hands her. Mercy also has a fantastic sense of who she is and what she wants in life and is more than willing to put forth the effort to get both what she wants and what she needs. She's fiercely loyal to her leopard pack and to changeling society in general and understands that in order for her pack to continue to grow in strength that they must get along with the wolves in the bordering bordering territory. She's also aware that she's becoming more and more attracted to Riley, a wolf changeling that she works with as a liason between both groups but doesn't think that she can seriously consider him "mate" material since he is not from her leopard pack.
Riley is a lieutenant in the Snowdancer Wolf pack and is highly attracted to Mercy. He's physically very strong and is very dominant. He's also very protective of both his family and his pack and is dealing with some slight feelings of having failed his family from when his sister had been kidnapped by a crazy Psy scientist. Riley realizes that if he starts the mating dance with Mercy that it could have some serious repercussions for both groups but he can't deny his attraction and is willing to take the risk. It's a risk for Riley because ultimately the female changeling decides if the mating bond will stick or not- no matter how dominant the male is the female has to make a final acceptance.
Added to the mating situation is the continuing saga of the political struggle going on in their society between the Psy, the Changelings and Humans. A militant group of humans, known as the Human Alliance, have decided that now is the time to strike and remind both the Psy and the Changelings that they are not the only two races that live on the planet. The Human Alliance is determined to make their point and they don't care who they hurt or kill in the process.
The romance between Mercy and Riley was spicy and very well done. The continuing struggle between the three groups of people on this planet is extreemly engaging. There is a happy ending to this story and also more than enough open issues that can be addressed in the next book in this series, Blaze of Memory (Psy-Changelings, Book 7). I really can't stress how wonderful this series is to read.
My Rating: 5 out of 5 Crowns