- YOWZA!!! I felt Branded by Fire, alright!!!
September 2011 - Review to come... But just a few thoughts, for now... This is probably my favourite of the series, so far, along with Dorian's and Ashaya's book and the first book with Lucas and Sascha (which will always have a special place in my heart). I adore the DarkRiver alpha couple. *sighs* And I loved Mercy and Riley. LOVING this series!!!
March 2012 - Finally wrote my review.
Also reviewed at: Lady Jayne's Reading Den
This installment of the Psy-Changeling series started out SCORCHINGLY HAWT!
When Mercy Smith, a sentinel of the DarkRiver leopard pack, leaves her best friend Dorian’s wedding to go for a run, as it was difficult seeing him and the other sentinels all happily mated, she is found by none other than the highest ranking Lieutenant SnowDancer wolf who pushes her buttons, the sexy Riley Kincaid. Riley can see that Mercy is in heat and antagonises her into a “wrestling” match that turns into something primal…all in the first few pages! As I said, YOWZA!!!
Who you calling hot, wolf???
Yield to me, kitty. You know you want to.
This is the first changeling-changeling romance in the series, and I must say, it was certainly EXPLOSIVE! The chemistry and sparks between Mercy and Riley is off the charts.
This is also the first book with a wolf hero. While I love the DarkRiver cats, I also enjoy getting more of the SnowDancer wolves. And while I’ve loved the stories with the Psy/Changeling and Psy/Human pairings, it was great that Nalini Singh changed pace with this one.
Mercy and Riley, as the representatives for each of their packs in their still new alliance, are thrown together often, and in this one, they have to work very closely together.
Mercy a.k.a. Miss Bikini Babe 2067 is afraid she’ll never mate, because she’s a dominant female in her pack and she doesn’t want to be with someone she is more dominant over nor does she want to submit. Mercy is kickass, and her family and pack are very important to her.
Miss Bikini Babe 2067 - Rawr!!!
Riley a.k.a. The Wall…or Mr Mud Stick/Muddie, as Mercy refers to him … is responsible and serious but is also so deliciously sexy and caring. I love these kinds of heroes! Just like my darling Marcus, Lord Westcliff, of Lisa Kleypas Wallflowers series. They are so outwardly controlled, but when they fall for a woman, their control is decimated and their passions are incredible to behold. Riley is so protective and he has a big heart. Just love him!
“Be gentle with him, Mercy. He's got a heart as big as Texas— he'll die for you without blinking. But he doesn't expect anyone to do the same for him.”
Be gentle, Mercy!
Physically, these two are far from gentle with each other. Being changelings, biting and scratching certainly factors into their passions - it was very primal. They simply can’t keep their paws off each other.
On the emotional front, Riley is convinced he wants a domestic female for a mate, not an independent, kickass one, who would be putting herself in danger on a regular basis. But when things develop deeper with Mercy, he realises that Mercy is the one for him. But how can Mercy bring herself to submit to Riley?
[Edit: Or in Karla's mind....
LMAO! Love ya, Karla sweetie! ^_^] I absolutely loved their banter!
Riley: "Do you want to claw at me, kitty-cat? Come on." While there was no slow build-up to their physical relationship, like with couples in previous books - though there was already sexual tension brewing between them, earlier in the series - I loved reading about the development of Mercy and Riley's emotional relationship.
Mercy: "Sorry, I don't beat defenseless puppies.”
These two struggled with how to make not only a relationship between two dominants work but between two different changeling packs. Things aren’t easy for Mercy and Riley, and as much as I enjoyed the banter, I loved the moments of intimacy as they both bared their souls, making this a truly satisfying read. And when they submit to each other, in the end, it was simply wonderful!
“I have something for you.”
“Yeah? What? Is it shiny?”
They both waited until Indigo had jogged away before resuming their conversation. “So,” Riley asked, “what have you got for me?”
Taking his hand, she placed it palm-down over her heart. It would hurt like a bitch, she thought, but he was hers to protect as much as she was his. “Me.” And she opened up her soul, laid herself bare.”
*sighs*I loved seeing Mercy and Riley get their HEA!
I love how Nalini Singh lets readers into the ongoing relationships of couples from earlier books after they get their HEA, such as with Lucas and Sascha, who hold a very special place in my heart, and the development that happens in this installment was just “Awww…”. And seeing Judd and Brenna in their HEA, too, was great.
Sienna is all grown up now and tensions are rising between Sienna and Hawke. Looking forward to getting to their book!
I enjoyed meeting Mercy’s three gorgeous brothers – Bastian, Sage and Grey.
I’m enjoying the progression of the overall series story arc and the tensions growing between the Psy, Changelings and humans.
The mystery of The Ghost continues to intrigue me.
And is it wrong that I find Kaleb Krychek alluring in some dark way? Could he be The Ghost??If you still haven’t picked up a Psy-Changeling book by Nalini Singh, then you really should do something about that!
My Mercy - Amanda Righetti
My Riley - Aaron O'Connell
~*~*~*~*~*~Psy-Changeling Series Reading Order:
1. Slave to Sensation – (Review here
1.5 "The Cannibal Princess" - Free short story:http://www.nalinisingh.com/freebies.p...
- (Review here
2. Visions of Heat - (Review here
3. Caressed By Ice - To be reviewed.
4. Mine to Possess (Review here
5. Hostage to Pleasure - (Review here
5.5 "A Gift for Kit" - Free short story: http://www.nalinisingh.com/freebies.p...
6. Branded By Fire - Reviewed.
7. Blaze of Memory - To be reviewed.
8. Bonds of Justice - To be reviewed.
9. Play of Passion
10. Kiss of Snow
And there are also stand-alone novellas:
1. "Beat of Temptation" in An Enchanted Season
2. "Stroke of Enticement" in The Magical Christmas Cat
3. "Whisper of Sin" in Burning Up
But if you wish to read in strict chronological order, see Nalini Singh's website (link to the page here): http://www.nalinisingh.com/psybehind.phpCOPYRIGHT DISCLAIMER: I do not hold the copyright to any of the images used in this review. They are posted to add visuals to the review and for fun. If any of these images are yours and you would like me to remove them, please let me know, and I will do so as soon as possible. If I can identify the copyright, I will do so.