Silver Silence (Psy-Changeling Trinity #1) by Nalini Singh #BookReview
Psy-Changeling Trinity #1 / Psy-Changeling #16
Paranormal romance (shifters & psychics)
Poison and Psy and bears, oh my!
This first story in Nalini Singh’s Psy-Changeling Trinity series prowls into the land of the bear shifters, and they are at once lovable and ferocious. Bear Alpha Valentin Nikolaev has his eye on Silver Mercant, and he isn’t frightened away by her forever dedication to the controversial Silence protocol.
He’d thought— once— about dressing up for Silver, but he figured if he was going to coax her to the bear side, he should go full bear mode.
No point in false advertising.
While this story is the first in the Trinity spin-off from the Psy-Changeling (PC) series, I would not advise new readers to start here. The events of this book build on a rather epic story arc spun by the books in the PC series, and you need some of that information to enjoy Silver Silence to its fullest. And also to keep from being totally confused about the history of some of the characters.
What he didn’t say was that he intended to charm her into making the move permanent. Cats did the suave overconfident thing. Bears knew taking a woman for granted just led to a fall right on your smug face. In this, he’d take the bear approach. Charm first, be smug later.
The Stonewater den is ruggedly—and unexpectedly—beautiful, a warm-fuzzy surprise much like the shifters themselves. The bears are a rough-and-tumble group with big hearts, boisterous personalities, and rather lovable antics. Not even a Silent Psy could resist their charm.
“Do bears metabolize alcohol faster or better than other changeling groups?”
Valentin’s shoulders shook as his laughter filled the air. “Yes. It pisses off the wolves.”
That explained the bear liking for alcohol a little more— it wasn’t simply the drinking they enjoyed, but the fact they could take it better than the other predators in the area. It put paid to her belief that bears were unsubtle. Bears, it appeared, could be subtle. They were just very, very clever about it, hiding the subtle under the blunt edge of an axe.
And Valentin was their alpha.
I adored the teasers into a possible future gay romance, the first of this (including the larger PC) series! LGBTQ romance is underrepresented in mainstream romance coming out of the big publishing houses, so seeing this made my heart soar.
“Are you in the market for a permanent position?” she asked after the first hour.
“Yasha would cry if I left him.” Pavel kept his eyes on the screen in front of him, even as he spoke. “But maybe if you throw in your scrumptious brother as my bonus.”
“Arwen should be coming to see me again soon,” Silver replied. “If you’re half the bear you claim to be, you’ll get his call code from him.”
“Oooooh, that was a burn as cold as Siberia!” Pavel thumped his fist onto his chest, shooting her a dimpled grin over his shoulder at the same time. “I can melt a Mercant, just you wait. I’m a bear.”
Oh the bear cubs, they are SO ADORABLE! It is impossible not to love Valentin, and the bear clan is different than any other changeling group we’ve seen so far. I’m looking forward to watching these happy-go-lucky bears pair off with their big hearts and even bigger laughs.
“You doing okay, Starlight?”
“Given my tiredness, my efficiency is no longer at its peak, but I haven’t made any errors.” Silver’s eye fell on the empty drink container on her desk. “The food was appreciated.”
“You’re being sneaky, thanking me by using fancy words.”
Silver toed off her heels, flexed her feet. “I was brought up to be polite.”
“Hang around with me long enough, and we’ll change that.”
Valentin is one of my favorite heroes of the larger series, and—considering there are 15 of them so far—that’s a considerable compliment. He and Silver are so different in personality, you’d think they wouldn’t make a good match, but I love them together. Her cool-headed, analytical approach to life is even more fun to watch when she gets angry for and protective of him. And he has this huge, giving, loving heart that compliments his boisterous, stubborn personality perfectly. They are both so strong-willed, yet don’t think twice about backing up the other on important decisions. And the “scariness contest” is one of the highlights of the story’s off-beat humor.
“Here’s how we do the interrogation—you be scary and I’ll be scarier.”
“To a human with ordinary shields,” Silver said coolly, “I am far scarier than you.”
Valentin’s claws sprung out, curved and razor sharp. “What do you want to bet?”
Silver took in those deadly claws. “If you sharpen them to a point, perhaps.”
Both men laughed, but it was Valentin’s laughter that sank into her bones. “Silver Fucking Mercant.”
A paranormal romance full of boisterous laughter, big hearts, and unbreakable ties, Silver Silence is exactly what the Psy-Changeling series needed to reboot and reinvigorate. Silver and Valentin will charm your heart, and his “small bear” clanmates will steal it away when you’re not looking. Like pretty much every PC book published so far, Silver Silence was worth the wait!
Usually, I can trim down the number of quotes I’d earmarked to make them fit within the review text (above), but Silver Silence had SO MANY FANTASTIC little sections and one-liners that I couldn’t resist sharing a few extra. These really give you a feel for how different Valentin and the bears are from the other changeling groups. Enjoy!
Bears with big hearts…
“Your heart’s too big, Mishka,” his childhood friend said. “No one has the right to stomp on it just because you have a capacity to forgive that shames the rest of us.”
Bears and fashion…
“You have a lot of gray suits.” Valentin got up, began to fit in the second part of the new lock. “Light gray, dark gray, blackish gray, gray-gray, gray with fine pinstripes, gray so pale it’s nearly white…” A shake of his head, his hair all tumbled black strands. “I never knew there were so many types of gray before you.”
Satellite connection made, Silver watched the clean-sweep icon come on. “Gray is a very versatile shade.”
“I’m no fashion critic, Starlight. My style is ‘it’s clean, put it on.’”
Bears and their egos…
Valentin wrapped his hand more firmly around her throat. It should’ve felt like a threat. It felt like something else altogether, the sensation one she didn’t have the experience to process. Ignorance was not a concept with which Silver had an acquaintance.
“Explain what’s happening.”
“We’re happening.” Valentin stroked her throat with a gentleness that did nothing to hide the blatant possessiveness of the contact. “But you’re exhausted and now that I’ve made you boneless”—unconcealed smugness—“I’m going to allow you to sleep. The church should give me a sainthood.”
New to the Psy-Changeling world?
In order to truly understand the nuance—and, really, even the basic world premises—you should start with Slave To Sensation (Psy-Changeling #1) and read all the way through the PC series first. But that series is FIFTEEN books long, not even counting assorted novellas and shorts, so if that’s just too daunting, give Silver Silence a try. If you like it and are intrigued, you can always go back and read Psy-Changeling between Trinity releases. =)
Recommended for readers who…
- Are already caught up in the Psy-Changeling series
- Love romances about shifters
- Fall for gruff, stubborn heroes with huge, vulnerable hearts
- Cheer for stalwart heroines who go toe to toe with unflinching alpha males
- Want to see just how adorable a changeling bear cub can be
This review copy was provided by the Publisher. No compensation was received for this review.
Silver Silence by Nalini Singh
Series: Psy-Changeling Trinity #1
Published by Berkley, Penguin on June 13, 2017
Genres: Contemporary Romance, Paranormal Romance, Shifters
Add it to your To Read shelf: Goodreads
Also by this author: Archangel's Viper
New York Times bestselling author Nalini Singh returns to her extraordinary Psy-Changeling world with a story of wild passion and darkest betrayal... Control. Precision. Family. These are the principles that drive Silver Mercant. At a time when the fledgling Trinity Accord seeks to unite a divided world, with Silver playing a crucial role as director of a worldwide emergency response network, wildness and chaos are the last things she needs in her life. But that’s exactly what Valentin Nikolaev, alpha of the StoneWater bears, brings with him. Valentin has never met a more fascinating woman. Though Silver is ruled by Silence—her mind clear of all emotion—Valentin senses a whisper of fire around her. That’s what keeps him climbing apartment buildings to be near her. But when a shadow assassin almost succeeds in poisoning Silver, the stakes become deadly serious…and Silver finds herself in the heart of a powerful bear clan. Her would-be assassin has no idea what their poison has unleashed...
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The ADORABLE bear clan and Valentin's gruff, huggable personality.
Being (essentially) #16 in a series, it's hard to read if you haven't kept up with Psy-Changeling. Still fairly approachable for a new reader, you'll just be dealing with a lot of unknown characters and lore.