Clay Bennett is a powerful DarkRiver sentinel, but he grew up in the slums with his human mother, never knowing his changeling father. As a young boy without the bonds of Pack, he tried to stifle his animal nature. He failed...and committed the most extreme act of violence, killing a man and losing his best friend, Talin, in the bloody aftermath. Everything good in him died the day he was told that she, too, was dead.
Talin McKade barely survived a childhood drenched in bloodshed and terror. Now a new nightmare is stalking her life--the street children she works to protect are disappearing and turning up dead. Determined to keep them safe, she unlocks the darkest secret in her heart and returns to ask the help of the strongest man she knows...
Clay lost Talin once. He will not let her go again, his hunger to possess her, a clawing need born of the leopard within. As they race to save the innocent, Clay and Talin must face the violent truths of their past...or lose everything that ever mattered.
I was waiting for a human to be a central character in one of these books and this is the one. Loved it.
Clay and Talin knew each other as children. Clay was living with his human mother and trying very hard to pretend he wasn't a leopard. Talin a human ophan living with others and was being abused. When Clay found out, his leopard took over.
Clay has made me nervous in the first few books in this series. Such a loner and on the very edge of going rouge. But his experience with Talin is the reason. She was his from a very young age. And when she was gone, he hurt. His leopard hurt. He never got over it.
When Talin unexpectedly shows back up in his life, it's a huge shock. These two have a strong relationship that started as children. But Talin just wants to stay friends. Clay has other ideas.
As they struggle to help the missing children and deal with their feeling for each other lots of sparks and words flare. These two are very much like a married couple who knows all of the buttons to push. I must say, the BEST fight was when Clay shifted to his cat to avoid talking about something he didn't want to. It was perfect. Such a guy thing to do. Hehe.
I loved the heat as Clay tried to convince Talin they were always supposed to be more. He's patient with her because she has so much pain and abuse in her past. Tender is the word I would use to describe how he treats her. And I never thought Clay and tender would be in the same sentence. I loved seeing this strong closed off male open up to the women he has always loved.
The story in this world continues as Clay and Talin deal with one problem but it effects the overarching story. I love how this author introduces characters that are needed for the next book and how the story unfolds effortlessly. I'm always satisfied at the end of book but wanting more. That's a great skill for an author to have.
If you haven't read this series and you love paranormal, then you need to get this one in the short line. I do think it could be read standalone because things are explained well BUT why? This whole series is so dang good.
Don't miss this one.