Her race, the Alterants, were already feared and reviled. But now several have shown themselves in beast form and killed. So when Evalle stands before the Tribunal to answer for herself, she finds herself judged for their misdeeds. Brina, the leader of the Beladors, stands up for her, but that can only take Evalle so far. In the end, she is charged with bringing in three Alterants known to be on the loose. If she can't do it, not only will they be sentenced to die, so will she.
On her mission, Evalle finds herself thrown back with Tristan, the Alterant she met in the last book. He doesn't trust her since she sent him back to his prison; And she doesn't trust him either. But he's the only one with any idea where the other Alterants are. Storm, the jaguar-shifter is back too. His role as a protector and love interest is jacked up a notch. It's obvious he's falling hard for Evalle, but he has secrets he hasn't shared with her yet. And though Evalle is developing feelings for him, she has a lot to overcome, especially with her history of sexual assault.
While all this is going on, the Medb are plotting to overthrow the Beladors and are planning to use the Alterants to do it. This brings back the priestess Kizira... and her relationship with Evalle's friend Quinn. Plus, we delve into what's happening with Brina and Tzader. If all this sounds like a lot going on... that's because it is. And I still feel like I've barely scratched the surface. The books in the Belador series are complicated. There are legions of characters, each with their own histories and agendas. This is not light reading... you have to pay attention. And even then, you may have work to keep up.
But if you can stay on top of it all, it's really good stuff. Evalle is a great character: fragile yet strong; both naive and jaded; afraid of love and still desperate for it. Storm is mysterious, sexy, powerful and loyal. The romance is gentle, but exciting. The action is non-stop... filled with strategies, machinations and violence. And when the book is done, you know the story is far from over. It's not really a cliff-hanger, but the stage is set for the next installment and I can't wait for it to get here. I really enjoyed it... but I would suggest reading Blood Trinity first, if you haven't already, or you may end up feeling lost. Almost 5 stars.
*ARC Provided by Pocket Books
Alterantby Sherrilyn Kenyon & Dianna LoveRelease Date: September 27, 2011Publisher: Pocket Books