C. T. Adams & Cathy Clamp
Tor, 2006 (2006)
Reviewed by Martina Bexte
ere-cat Antoine Monier is his species representative on the SAZI council. When he's not busy with council affairs, he travels the world entertaining thousands with his animal acts. During a recent trip to Stuttgart, several of his prized cats were stolen and some killed. When police capture what they believe is one of his missing cats, Antoine wastes no time in heading to the location. The moment he sees the beautifully marked tiger he realizes two things: she is a shape shifter of a breed he has never before encountered, and she cannot hold her current shape for much longer. Using mind control Antoine convinces the police to relinquish her. Both make their escape with only moments to spare before she takes her true form. Antoine has every intention of finding out the real origins of the intriguing Tahira Kuric, while she works hard to shield herself from the probing of a SAZI, sworn enemies of her own secretive Hyalet Kabile.
ahira and her brother Rabi were visiting their Turkish grandparents to learn more about their heritage when both were kidnapped. Now that she's free Tahira's greatest concern is finding Rabi, but she knows she can't do it alone. Despite the ancient rivalry between the SAZI and Tahira's ghost tribe, Antoine and his family set aside any differences to help Tahira piece together the hours she lost after being drugged and handed off to a second set of accomplices. It soon becomes clear that she is a rare
, which gives her the ability to store magical energy from other shapes, a much-sought-after talent coveted by other more sinister and power hungry members of the SAZI. Now Antoine and Tahira must find Rabi and de-fang a far-reaching conspiracy that's poised to unleash a horrifying evil - and then confront their own unbridled and blazing attraction.
dams and Clamp score another winner in their latest shape shifter story. They continue adding new and interesting branches to the greater shape shifter hierarchal tree; with so many animal species to choose from the sky is literally the limit in their imaginative and complicated mythology. Antoine and Tahira's fiery attraction and quickly developing relationship - amidst mistrust and growing chaos - is well done. There's also a nasty set of power-hungry villains of assorted snake species, whose characters and sinister agenda will literally make your skin crawl.
is another worthy addition to this exciting and very readable series.
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