Wednesday, January 20, 2021

TBR Challenge: Nalini Singh - Alpha Night

Alpha wolf Selenka Durev’s devotion to her pack is equaled only by her anger at anyone who would
harm those under her care. That currently includes the empaths who’ve flowed into her city for a symposium that is a security nightmare, a powder keg just waiting for a match.
Ethan Night is an Arrow who isn’t an Arrow. Numb and disengaged from the world, he’s loyal only to himself. Assigned as part of the security force at a world-first symposium, he carries a dark agenda tied to the power-hungry and murderous Consortium. Then violence erupts and Ethan finds himself crashing into the heart and soul of an alpha wolf.
Mating at first sight is a myth, a fairytale. Yet Selenka’s wolf is resolute: Ethan Night, broken Arrow and a man capable of obsessive devotion, is the mate it has chosen. Even if the mating bond is full of static and not quite as it should be. Because Selenka’s new mate has a terrible secret, his mind surging with a power that is a creature of madness and death...

Comment: Time for the first post on the 2021 edition of the TBR Challenge. Again, it is being hosted by Wendy, the SuperLibrarian and it's still time to join! :)

The themes are slightly different this year, to make things more interesting, and January begins with some comfort read, which obviously reads as something people choose to make them feel good. At least, that's how I saw it so I picked the latest psy-changeling book by Nalini Singh, whose paperback edition I've waiting to be released.

In this book, we continue to follow the main plot regarding the fracture of Silence which has been the key focus of the "trinity" stories. In these books, the Psy race have come to terms with what they did so long ago and the repercussions it caused in their people. Now, a new order has been established but there is a lot to be done so people can have peace. Ethan is another Arrow who has suffered while conditioned since he was a child. He now wants to feel useful until the time comes for his life to end, for he knows he will become unstable as time goes by. He wasn't counting on Selenka, the alpha of the biggest wolf pack in Russia, to be his mate and that their bond would happen so quickly. Now the two of them have a new situation to deal with but one thing is certain for both of them, they will both try their best to make the relationship work and for those they care about to be happy with their pairing...

A new reader finding the little text above would probably feel a little lost. It's true all books have a start, middle and end which works for the story itself but these are not books to be read without having read the previous ones too. Also, what a pity if that doesn't happen for the best part is to think about all the characters and their HEAs, the family bonds, the links between them all... more than the romances, I'd say this series and these books are wonderful from the perspective of the connections between the characters.

This is why I feel these books work as comfort reads for me. Each story might be more or less appreciated, depending on the reader, but the overall sense of them is that the characters care about one another and there are several connections among them all which simply make me happy. In fact, many times the main romances aren't the best part of the books for me, and lately a bit more so, but I still love to spend time with these characters in their world.

Ethan is a character who, again, provides a new unique aspect for the Psy race. Now they came out of Silence many adjustments need to be done so that everyone can have the feedback necessary for their mental stability. Ethan, like most children who were raised to become Arrows, has suffered and now only wants to make things right so that new Psy children won't have to be afraid of who they are. I liked Ethan although, like the majority of the Psy characters, he is a little hard to read, he is obviously aloof and lacks the emotional skills which other races use without thought. Still, the beauty of this is in the small things, and how we can glimpse emotions in them as they accept they ae worthy of them. Plus, by the end we discover something abut Ethan which was surprising so I liked his evolution even more.

Since Selenka is a wolf alpha, many of her scenes involve her pack but I must say it wasn't as easily addictive to read about her wolves as it was when SnowDancer was introduced in the early books. I suppose if more books featuring them are coming, this will change but so far, it seems the author is just adding a lot of mentioned characters here and there and giving them stories... how cohesive this can look in the end, I don't know. Selenka's pack also has some interesting novelties regarding pack hierarchies and situations we have not found yet, so it was nice to see different things.

As for the romance, well it was instantaneous. This is also a new look at mating, because usually it would only happen if both partners were in" the same page" so to speak, but this time we have a mating happening pretty much as soon as they set eyes on each other. It's not my preferable way for romances to go, but it was, again, a fresh perspective in this world. When the book ends, I was glad for them but I admit, their relationship was not the amazing journey other couples have had in previous books. It was certainly nothing like the path taken by my favorite couple in the series.

All things considered, this book ticked all the boxes I hoped for: comfort read, captivating world building and characters, satisfying (if not out of this world) romance and a believable HEA. I'll certainly keep on reading this series and its spin offs because even the less than good books (to me) are still good reads. I'm looking for to the next!

Grade: 8/10


  1. I think I'm only three books into this series, the sheer number of characters and storylines is awesome because it can support a long series but also intimating.

    1. Hello! Thank you for posting :)

      It's true that there are many... but if you liked the first three, even allowing for some of the stories to be less appealing, you are in foe a treat. My favorite aspect of this series is the atmosphere we see within the relationships/connections between the characters.

      Whether you read them or not, have a good reading year!

  2. Great review, Sonia! I've only read one book by this author - A Madness of Sunshine, and can understand her appeal for series books. I keep hoping "someday" I'll get started with this series. Good to see you with us this year. :)

    1. I have not read her thrillers. The angel series I've read some books but it doesn't have the addictive factor for me as this one does.
      I like doing this challenge! :)
      Thank you for commenting!