But, you know what? It doesn’t matter. Even without all those past experiences and knowledge under my belt, I still loved this book. Built into the story are all the nuances necessary to understand why Vasic is so very cold, right down to his very soul, and why Ivy is so very broken and why they’re so utterly perfect for one another.
With HEART OF OBSIDIAN (the book right before this one) Kaleb, the most powerful Psy in the world, broke the Silence for the sake of the future of his race. In SHIELD OF WINTER, Ivy and the other Es, with the help of the Arrows, set about fixing things so the Psy would survive the break of Silence. These two books together made a fulcrum, swinging us up and over a massive climax and, quite possibly, into a new overreaching plot arc.
As an Arrow, Vasic has had to work in the darkness and keep a solid shield of Silence, without even the slightest trickle of emotion. Of course, when he meets Ivy, a “broken” Psy, one who has emotions, who can’t live without them, his Silence cannot stand up against her and his shield cracks just enough to let her in. The slow dance, the slow burn that builds as they grow to trust and love each other is gorgeous in its entirety. Can I go back and read this one all over again…for the first time?
There’s quite a bit going on in this story besides the broken Silence. There’s also the battle against the infection corrupting the Net that every Psy needs to survive and thrive. Thousands are infected, breaking out in homicidal rage and killing everyone they come across for no apparent reason. Then there’s Vasic’s biofusion gauntlet: a pretty cool bit of hardware that’s going to kill him soon. No ifs, ands or buts. Man’s gonna die because there’s no way to remove it (without killing him, that is. Which kind of defeats the purpose). There’s also the ongoing threat of a Very Bad Dude who wants Vasic back under his thumb. It’s a lot, yeah. But, hey. We’re at book 13. That means there’s a lot of crap that *has* happened, that still needs to be addressed. But I never felt like it was too much.
Maybe this summer I’ll head over to the library and get the first pile of these. Ooh! Binge time!! I do love a good book binge, don’t you? And that’ll give me an excuse to ignore the outside world as well as a chance to reread these last couple books and pick up on all the nuances I missed the first time around.
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