Reviewed by JenThis series just gets better and better! As much as I loved Judd (in Caressed by Ice,) I enjoyed this book even more than the last. Nalini Singh breaks the mold a bit with this pairing. Where all of our previous couples were a mix of Psy and changeling, here she features a changeling/ human pair. They have deep and troubled history with each other that has plagued each of them for years.
Clay and Talin were best friends as children. Both were dealing with difficulties in their home lives and each found much needed solace in the other. Until Clay found out Tally was being abused by her foster father, and he proceeded to rip the man to shreds in front of her eyes. He was sent to juvie and she was shipped off to another family to try to start over. Traumatized by the violence, Tally convinced her social worker to tell Clay she had died, so when he got out he had no chance to find her.
Now grown, Tally needs help and she seeks Clay out. She works with at-risk kids and someone is kidnapping and killing them. She reaches out to Clay, knowing if anyone can track the killer and recover the surviving kids, it's him.
Tally's return completely blindsides him. He is thrilled that the love of his life has returned, but heartbroken at how she ran from him in the first place. Of course, no matter what sadness and anger surface, he can't turn his back on her. And slowly, they rekindle the deep connection they always had between them.
The two still care deeply for each other, but there is so much to work through: what Clay did those years ago, Tally's abuse, her rejection of him... oh yeah, and the fact that she is dying. There is so much delicious angst. And it IS delicious. No matter what other feelings have Clay knotted up, ultimately, he loves Tally in a deep, constant and abiding way that is undeniable. I loved watching his struggle between his animal and human sides... and the thawing of his frozen heart.
I didn't love Tally quite as much. She hurt Clay a lot. But she endured a lot too. It wasn't really fair how much she put on his shoulders, but at the same time, she was very young and very traumatized. I desperately wanted them to find their way to each other, because they both needed it so much!
This book wasn't quite as sexually focused for me as the last one, but it was very, very emotionally engaging. And there was a solid plot surrounding the kidnapping that tied in seamlessly with the larger storyline involving the Psy's plan to create a hive mind. The fabulous Dark River leopard pack is featured prominently, from previous couples like Lucas and Sacsha --and Faith and Vaughn-- to great side characters who are itching to have their own stories told, like Dorian, Kaleb, and the mysterious Ghost.
Simply put, it was fantastic. Bring on book 5!
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Mine to Possessby Nalini SinghRelease Date: February 5, 2008Publisher: Berkley Sensation