Play of Passion
Release Date: November 2, 2010
Publisher: Berkley Sensation
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Format(s): paperback (321 pages), e-book
I received a copy of this book from the publisher for the purposes of an honest review.
From the author’s website:
Passion and reason collide with explosive force in the newest installment of Nalini Singh’s “mesmerizing” Psy/Changeling series. As a conflict with Pure Psy looms on the horizon, two powerful wolves fight a far more intimate war of their own…
In his position as tracker for the SnowDancer pack, it’s up to Drew Kincaid to rein in rogue changelings who have lost control of their animal halves—even if it means killing those who have gone too far. But nothing in his life has prepared him for the battle he must now wage to win the heart of a woman who makes his body ignite…and who threatens to enslave his wolf.
Lieutenant Indigo Riviere doesn’t easily allow skin privileges, especially of the sensual kind—and the last person she expects to find herself craving is the most wickedly playful male in the den. Everything she knows tells her to pull back before the flames burn them both to ash…but she hasn’t counted on Drew’s will.
Now, two of SnowDancer’s most stubborn wolves find themselves playing a hot, sexy game even as lethal danger stalks the very place they call home…
What I’m talking about:
After two books which did not feature a Changeling in the “main couple,” Nalini Singh makes up for it in her ninth Psy-Changling story with the pairing of two Wolf Breeds: Drew and Indigo. And what a treat it is! For me, the Changelings are the heart and soul of Ms. Singh’s series, and this book highlights all the wonder that is Changeling. They are full of powerful emotions that help shape Ms. Singh’s sensual, yet action-packed world.
For those unfamiliar with this incredible series, the world is made up of 3 races: Psy: cerebral and emotionally void people that hold most political and financial offices; Changeling: shifters of many different species, in-tune with nature, emotionally fierce and loyal; and humans: the supporting race in the middle. The books focus primarily on two dominant Changeling packs: SnowDancers, which are wolves and DarkRiver, which are leopards.
Play of Passion is set in SnowDancer territory – the home of the wolf pack. We learn a great deal more about the SnowDancers, which was a real treat. With the focus away from the cats of DarkRiver, we begin to see that the wolves are an equally, if not more dominant force in the Northern California region.
The primary focus of this book is the love story between Drew and Indigo. She is a powerful, dominant female, only out-ranked by 2 wolves. Drew is a predatory, less-dominant male that does not fit into Indigo’s image of pack hierarchy – nor suitable mate. Drew spends most of his time trying to convince Indigo that her perceptions are false, and of course, he makes a few predictable mistakes along the way. Their dance is a beautiful one, and because the Changelings wear their hearts on their sleeves, we are privy to an amazingly romantic tale. Of course, the Changelings are also known for their need to touch and have “skin privileges,” so this is an extremely sexy story!
The overall series story-arc of Psy verses Changeling and the threatening collapse of the Psy Silence pretty much takes a back seat to the love story. The SnowDancers discover that there are Psys trespassing onto their land, leaving behind locator beacons. The Pack must race against an unknown clock to figure out what the Psys are doing and who is behind it all. With respect to the Psy-Changeling conflict, this book felt like a set-up for the next story: Kiss of Snow, which will complete the current series story arc. In Play of Passion, we see the Psy flex their muscle, we hear of lines being drawn, but there isn’t much progress in the fight.
I do have to mention this for all of those fans of the series… we are treated to a lot more from inside the SnowDancer den. We learn more about how the Pack functions and what makes the wolves tick. Ms. Singh also writes a handful of scenes in the POV of the Snowdancer Alpha, Hawke, and since we experience “life in his head,” we learn who he is thinking about *wink*.
Drew just melted my heart and I fell in love with Drew and Indigo as a couple. Drew’s emotional highs and lows, his playfulness and desire, warmed my heart and made this story such a good one to read. This is an excellent romance and I love just adore the Psy-Changeling series!
Loved it – enthusiastically recommend (A)