February 9, 2016

AUDIOBOOK REVIEW: Caressed by Ice (Psy-Changeling #3)

Caressed by Ice (Psy-Changeling #3), by Nalini Singh
Publish Date:
September 4, 2007
Publisher: Berkley Publishing
Format: audiobook, purchased
Genre: adult paranormal romance
To Buy: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Rating: 5 STARS

(Synopsis) Nalini Singh explores new heights of sensuality, returning to the world of the Psy - where two people who know evil intimately must unlock the good within their icy hearts...

As an Arrow, an elite soldier in the Psy Council ranks, Judd Lauren was forced to do terrible things in the name of his people. Now he is a defector, and his dark abilities have made him the most deadly of assassins - cold, pitiless, unfeeling. Until he meets Brenna...

Brenna Shane Kincaid was an innocent before she was abducted - and had her mind violated - by a serial killer. Her sense of evil runs so deep, she fears she could become a killer herself. Then the first dead body is found, victim of a familiar madness. Judd is her only hope, yet her sensual changeling side rebels against the inhuman chill of his personality, even as desire explodes between them. Shocking and raw, their passion is a danger that threatens not only their hearts, but their very lives...

Paranormal romance doesn't get any better than this. Not only is there some awesome shifter goodness, but the Psy-Changeling series continues to be one epic Romeo and Juliet story after another, which in my opinion, makes the best ships EVER. 

We met Judd and Brenna previously in the first two books. At first glance, Judd is the typical cold, emotion-less Psy - except, he's not. He's an Arrow, which is an elite assassin Psy. Being who he is, he has a whole host of new problems when it comes to his abilities that make it nearly impossible to break from his Psy conditioning like Sasha and Faith were able to do before him. But, there's enough humanity in Judd to recognize that the things the Psy want to do to further their kind are not remotely humane, so he's willing to do what he can from outside the Net to bring them down.

Brenna is still reeling emotionally and physically from the brutal attack on her by the former Psy council member. Strangely, despite being surrounded by her pack and her brothers, it's Judd that appears to be the only one she feels comfortable talking to. But, breaking through his layers of icy self-preservation is a challenge that she might not be up for. 

Although I loved Sasha's and Faith's stories, I think Judd's may be the best yet. Mostly, because it was the most challenging. His abilities definitely complicated things in a way we haven't seen yet, and it made me wonder how Nalini Singh was going to get him out of the box in which she had put him in to begin with. 

I loved how Judd's transformation was extremely gradual. It made it much more believable. And it made those moments of progress so much sweeter. Every moment he had with Brenna was fascinating and sweet and so very swoon-worthy - and that has to do with the fact that in those moments, he's very far from the Psy we know he was and can still be at times. 

Brenna's in a precarious place. She's trying to find her way back to "normal," but everyone is coddling her, and she's not sure how to get back to where she was before. I felt so awful for her so many times. Nalini Singh did an excellent job making Brenna both vulnerable and strong, scared and brave, fearful and commanding. It was like Brenna was trying to fight who she is with only the knowledge of who she WAS as a weapon. It's an impossible battle, but with Judd there to help her, she's unbeatable. 

We get to see plenty of our favorite cat shifters in this book, as well as Sasha and Faith. The wicked Psy council also plays a major role, and new mysteries are begun that, I'm sure, will play out in future books in the series. The world building and the mythology that Singh has created continue to be phenomenal. I love this complex world and all the cool things the different races can do and how they all interact together. It's a brilliant series, and the coupling of two completely incompatible people make it even better. 

About the Audio Version
Once again, I listened to the audio version. I think I may continue doing this as I work my way through the series. Although it means it will take me much longer to get through all the books, the production makes it totally worth it. Angela Dawe is an incredible narrator, and I love what she has done with the characters. I definitely would recommend the audio version to anyone. It has enhanced the story lines for me and made the experience that much more enjoyable.

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