Nalini Singh and Psy Changling

Recommended for: fans of shifty romance, psychic powers
Read in September 2021
★   ★   ★     1 /2


#2 in my chain-smoking. I don’t know what’s happened, truly I don’t. I probably have QB™ again.

At any rate, now I understand why Singh is so popular and approximately ninety books in this series. First, brilliant set up: a race of highly emotionally restrained but psychic people finally getting in touch with their emotions and the physical sensations in their bodies (we’ll set aside pain at the moment, but I’m sure Singh has that in store somewhere). Second, a race of changeling people that are in tune with instincts and sensation. Third, she’s an above average writer, unlike Laurel Hamilton, who started phoning it in somewhere after book six. Sure, there are tropes but at least they are smoked over with competent writing.

This does have the feel of first book about it, relying a little more heavily on those tropes than I would like, particularly lots of focus on dominant structures of changeling society–it’s basically boilerplate. But I assume it’ll get better, because Val said it’s her most favorite series ever.

I mean, thank heaven these are books, and not cigarettes, because I’m definitely inhaling.


Recommended for: people who liked book one, because you are going to get it again
Read in September 2021
★   ★   ★ 


It’s not horrible.

World-building got progressively intriguing. I admit to curiosity as to how Singh was going to keep forcing members of these two ‘races’ to interact enough to overcome prejudice. (As an aside, Singh, can we talk about ‘race’ in your world? Because I’m almost 90% sure you mean ‘species’ at most. I mean, everyone’s humanoid. How do you explain that?). And, not to be too spoilery, but is it weird that I found the most interesting character the juvenile (view spoiler) I’ll concur with Her Shrimpiness that there was a lot of cut and paste with the storyline, although unfortunately, Singh didn’t seem to be able to cut and paste the emotion of the characters from the first one. Which, you know, makes a romance less interesting. Definitely one for the world-building, and for the occasional appearances of Sacha and Lucas.


Recommended for: fans of shifty romance, psychic powers
Read in September 2021
★   ★     1 /2


Chain-smoking. Sometimes it’s because it is fun, an almost mystical experience of waving a small fire around, occasionally breathing in the smoke of a campfire that goes all the way back to memory. Then there is the angry kind, burning away the thoughts, trying to smoke out the emotion. Last, of course, is the necessary kind, the only kind that’s left after one has been doing it for too long.

–I wonder what if I’m having fun, or am I avoiding something?–

This installment is both better and worse than the last; more plotting, less romance. A switch to the wolf-pack gives and a Psy assassin gives more insight into the different communities. The Psy community is ramping up their antagonism with the changelings and it feels like there are more pieces put into play. It’s a different narrative technique than I usually enjoy, as there are a few scenes that seem to have very little to do with what is happening in this book, but appear to be laying groundwork for subsequent plot and character development. ‘Implants’ are mentioned a great deal, and I see from peeking ahead that a couple of mentioned characters will be in subsequent stories.

–pass me that pack, will you?–

It’s intriguing on that level, certainty, because there’s are hints of societal-wide conflict coming about mental freedom and emotional freedom. But major, major down points in the continuing propping up of a controlling male and an emotional female. I had hopes that this relationship pairing might offer a new emotional dynamic (honestly, I would have accepted taking the characters from the last book and doing a simple gender-identity swap of the female hunting the male), but no, not in the least. There’s a lot of lip-service to not infantilizing the woman, but the action doesn’t follow through as our female wolf is rescued again and again. And don’t get me started on the trope of the fabulous male-virgin lover. Oi, people. Storywise, it’s just not about romance as much as doubts people have about their own emotional states and traumatized past. It’d be different if they did more working through it as a couple, but mostly they struggle on their own (I’ll take my role models where I can get them, even in a PNR).

–excuse me, do you have a light?



Cannibal Princess

★   ★   ★

There’s a cute little short on Singh’s website about Lucas and Sacha attempting to tell an appropriate bedtime story to a couple of leopard cubs:  Not intregal to the plot, but as Singh tells is, a ‘cut scene’ of domestic life.

About thebookgator

avid reader and Goodreads reviewer looking for a home.
This entry was posted in Book reviews, fantasy, Urban fantasy and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to Nalini Singh and Psy Changling

  1. Andreas says:

    First thing I read was „fans of shitty romance“… wait… what?! 🤣

  2. pdtillman says:

    Huh. Not a Romance reader, in general. Definitely not a Smoker reader.
    Were you one? A chain-smoker? I smoked briefly, in the Navy (they were almost FREE), but pretty much hated the smell it left on everything. I dated a girl in college who was a smoker (unfiltered Pall Malls). she made it sexy! obRomance? I just spent 15 min looking for a VERY Sexy photo of a young couple sharing a smoke, clearly apres Um.

  3. Ola G says:

    LOL, shifty romance 😉 I imagined clandestine meetings under bridges and fedoras and stuff 😉
    Not for me, but I love your description of reading the series as chain smoking. You know it’s bad for you, but the compulsion is too strong!

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