Reviewed by: Amanda
Rating (out of 5): 5 stars
C’mon. You know that as soon as I say who the hero and heroine is of Heart of Obsidian, you’ll be spoiled. So if you’re bound and determined not to know anything beforehand, well… Otherwise, read on for as spoiler-free a review as you can get for a book that’s been wrapped in secrecy and cloaked in mystery.
By the time you read this, I’ll have already read Heart of Obsidian again. Possibly a third time.
If you were paying attention to the end of Tangle of Need, you know the hero of Obsidian is none other than Councilor Kaleb Krychek, and you know that he’s succeeded in finding his quarry after years of searching. The Psy who may be the most deadly man on the planet has had one goal, and only one goal: to find Sahara Kyriakus. And when he finds her, he finds a shell that may contain no trace of the girl he knew.
When the blurb for this book was released, it said it was a “love story so dark, it may shatter the world itself.” They weren’t kidding. Kaleb’s Silence is impenetrable to the point I had to wonder how Nalini Singh was going to redeem him, his hands so bloodied, his conscience a thing of the past, and yet, she does. Brilliantly. The man who is cold as black ice, is fiercely loyal to the one person who has always treated him like a human, and he would do anything to keep her safe. Any. Thing. Under the obsidian he encases himself in lies a rage so potent, he doesn’t think twice about killing anyone who has done her harm. The only person who can stop him is Sahara herself.
Sahara, surprisingly, doesn’t break under Kaleb’s will. She sees right through to him, to the soul he claims not to have. She brings him out of the darkness and won’t give up on him, not even after horrors from their shared past are brought to light. She is tiny, her shields fragile, but her Silence was never perfect, and the years she spent apart from Kaleb fractured it all together. It was only her ability and her mind’s fierce will to survive that kept her from being shattered.
Their relationship starts slow with a gradual climb out of the darkened hole of looming insanity for Sahara. She repairs her memories, repairs her shields, and takes advantage of the fact that no one comments on her broken Silence by cultivating friendships within the DarkRiver pack. It doesn’t take long for her to reach for Kaleb, though, touch something she needs to heal on an almost primitive level.
Kaleb, for his part, approaches the seduction with the icy calm you’d expect of a Psy with perfect Silence. He acknowledges her obvious attraction to him, conveniently forgetting the rush of sensations he feels at her touch. Sahara knows his moves could be, and likely are, calculated to earn her trust. But the violence of their attraction to each other is greater than either expected. And it is violent. As a cardinal Tk of unknown strength, Kaleb is rumored to have the ability to level cities. I’m surprised the house was still standing in the end.
While Heart of Obsidian is very much centered on the relationship between Kaleb and Sahara, it’s also about the approaching clash with the Pure Psy faction, those Psy determined to use Silence to prove theirs is the superior race. Catastrophic events around the world devastating both the population and the PsyNet itself lead to final chapters so tightly paced, I’m pretty sure I missed half of what was going on the first time I read them, I was reading so fast. By the end, you realize that what you thought was a conclusion was really only the beginning.
But this is, at its heart, a story of redemption for a hero who may not deserve it, except for the love of one woman who has always believed in him. Heart of Obsidian is a haunting, beautiful, passionate love story that we, the fans, have been waiting impatiently for—and Nalini Singh delivers. In spades.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to go read it again.
Sexual content: Graphic, earth-shaking sex (literally)