Author: Nalini Singh
What I’m Talking About:
Payal and Canto are considered flawed, yet both thrive and succeed. Payal is a Cardinal telekinetic and runs her family’s vast company. Canto, a Cardinal telepath, is a hidden member of the powerful Mercant clan. Both are also part of the rarely discussed Anchor designation. With the Net in danger, Canto begins to collect the As to form a plan to save their future.
Last Guard continues the story of a the post-Silence Psy world. This time around, the story focuses on the little discussed A-designation. The Anchors hold the PsyNet together at a foundation level. Unfortunately, there are fewer and fewer As, and the work of holding the Net together is becoming difficult for these few. Canto realizes this is a huge problem and decides to bring the As out of the shadows. This is how he connects with Payal, a formidable A. While the concept of As is all very interesting, I felt the book focused too much time on the mechanics of the Net and the As’ function within the Net. I found these lengthy discussions repetitive and hard to follow at times, while also detracting from the romantic elements of the story.
Meanwhile, we continue to get glimpses of the Architect, the self-ordained queen of the “new world order.” She is growing her network of Scarab Psys, allowing the Scarab disease to run rampant. I like her story so far and believe she’ll make a powerful antagonist in the future. I wish there was actually more of her POV. I want to know her plans!
I enjoyed the romance of Payal and Canto, except I felt their story took a backseat to the Anchor storyline. Payal and Canto are two different Psys, yet they share a strong bond. He was never Silent, hides in the Net, and has a strong familial bond. She is the picture of perfect Silence, the face of her family’s vast holdings, and loathes her father and brother. The bond between the pair seems unlikely until one looks at the commonality of their shared experiences. I enjoyed watching the slow transformation in Payal… how she recognizes the connection she has with Canto and how she struggles to find a balance between control and the girl with passion.
In the end, Last Guard is another entertaining story in Ms. Singh’s vast Psy-Changeling world. The story is solid, but it just couldn’t hold my interest at times. The romance is lovely, but it often took backseat to the problems facing the Net. I recommend it to fans of the series, but newcomers should most certainly not start here.
My Rating: B-/C+
About the Book:
Termed merciless by some, and a robotic sociopath by others, Payal Rao is the perfect Psy: cardinal telekinetic, CEO of a major conglomerate, beautiful—and emotionless.
For Canto Mercant, family and loyalty are everything. A cardinal telepath deemed “imperfect” by his race due to a spinal injury, Canto cares for the opinions of very few—and ruthlessly protects those he claims as his own. Head of intel of the influential Mercant family, he prefers to remain a shadow in the Net, unknown and unseen. But Canto is also an Anchor, part of a secretive designation whose task it is to stabilize the PsyNet. Now that critical psychic network is dying, threatening to collapse and kill the entire Psy race with it.
To save those he loves, Canto needs the help of a woman bound to him by a dark past neither has been able to forget. A woman who is the most powerful Anchor of them all: Payal Rao. Neither is ready for the violent inferno about to ignite in the PsyNet…or the passionate madness that threatens to destroy them both.
Release Date: July 20, 2021
Series: Psy-Changeling Trinity #5; Psy-Changeling #20
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Format(s): hardcover (384 pages), e-book, audiobook
Book Source: Publisher/NetGalley
Amazon (affiliate link)
Reviews in the Series:
Bonds of Justice by Nalini Singh (Psy-Changeling #8)
“Whisper of Sin” by Nalini Singh (Burning Up) (Psy-Changeling #0.6)
Play of Passion by Nalini Singh (Psy-Changeling #9)
Kiss of Snow by Nalini Singh (Psy-Changeling #10)
Tangle of Need by Nalini Singh (Psy-Changeling #11)
Wild Invitation by Nalini Singh (Psy-Changeling #0.5, 3.5, 9.5, 10.5)
Heart of Obsidian by Nalini Singh (Psy-Changeling #12)
Shield of Winter by Nalini Singh (Psy-Changeling #13)
Shards of Hope by Nalini Singh (Psy-Changeling #14)
“Secrets at Midnight” by Nalini Singh (Night Shift) (Psy-Changeling #13.5)
Allegiance of Honor by Nalini Singh (Psy-Changeling #15)
Wild Embrace by Nalini Singh (Psy-Changeling #15.5 – Anthology)
Silver Silence by Nalini Singh (Psy-Changeling Trinity #1, Psy-Changeling #16)
Ocean Light by Nalini Singh (Psy-Changeling Trinity #2, Psy-Changeling #17)
Wolf Rain by Nalini Singh (Psy-Changeling Trinity #3, Psy-Changeling #18)
Alpha Night by Nalini Singh (Psy-Changeling Trinity #4; Psy-Changeling #19)