The Cauld Ane series is about a non-human race secretly living among the humans going about their lives in much the way those around them do not seeming different on the outside. They have long life, extra strength, and special gifts. Each spends their life searching for that special someone who is their soulmate.
This is only my second visit to the series after reading the book immediately before this one. I had plans to go back and catch up on the series, but that hasn’t happened yet. I’ve managed to muddle through with the worldbuilding and the recurring characters and ongoing plot, but yeah, definitely need to get up to speed eventually because I very much had the feeling that I was missing something. Something good. That being said, there was plenty I could enjoy in this book and did. The main plot introduces a new pair of soulmates, Thane and Sydney.
The story opens with Sydney Warren learning of her mother’s death. She is devastated, naturally, and turns to the only family she has left for comfort. She moves from America to England to live with her mother’s brother’s family in London. Her family is quite wealthy and she is an heiress in her own right. Sydney is taking some time to grieve and then will decide what to do with her life. Into this situation, she has a chance encounter with movie star, Thane Allen. It is a surreal experience, but even more surprising is that he is interested in her and wants to see her again.
Thane is Caulde Ane living among the humans in plain sight. He is slightly envious of his friends and older siblings who have all found their mates. He knows sometimes it takes a long time for mates to find each other and it’s possible his mate might even be human. That’s when it happens. He suddenly meets her and he likes what he sees, but Sydney is suspicious and uncertain. He has the job of not only convincing her that what they have is real, but explaining about him being different.
As Thane and Sydney begin a relationship, disturbing revelations come out about her mom’s death. Sydney may be in danger. Thane and her uncle have the job of keeping her safe even as the authorities work to solve the crime. Thane is desperate that nobody will take away from him the mate that he has waited for a long time.
Alright, so this one took me some time to get into and stay in, but overall it was a light, heartwarming paranormal romance. Let’s start with what I found troubling and then move on to the good stuff.
There were a few times when I encountered…well let’s call them distracting issues. They weren’t huge uglies, but they took me out of the story. The heroine is a newbie to the world of Cauld Ane and she didn’t get much of an explanation. She finds stuff out as she goes and most of it was after she committed to him which happened super quickly. Went from stranger to I love you in a week. I found it hard to believe that someone would be that accepting of something so monumental. She had a harder time accepting that a movie star wanted a date with her than she did that there were such things as near immortals who could communicate mentally and had extra strength and powerful gifts lived among the humans who had soul mates and now she was part of it. So yeah, fated mates story with not a lot of intro and build up there.
Now, as to what worked for me. The romance isn’t isolated, but surrounded by family, friends, love, affection, humor, and a light tone. The string of gentle, sweet scenes such as family gatherings and events like births and birthday parties, sisterly shopping trips, cuddling over a movie, and double dates were adorable. For those who enjoy snarky fun dialogue then this will definitely tickle your funny bone. Thane was quick and flirty, but Sydney was a sarcastic gal with a short fuse especially when it came to his need to protect aka smother her. I appreciated that she understood the danger and didn’t pull any stubborn-stupid stunts.
And the suspense element, whew boy, did some of those last twists come as a shock. I had no trouble figuring out part of it as it was foreshadowed earlier, but the ‘why’ was something else. I also liked that the struggle with their new emerging gifts made them have to work at their relationship and rely on each other as a partnership. Sometimes folks are opposites, but in this case these two have so much in common that its double the trouble. Poor things! I was exhausted just reading some of it as they worked through it, but was gladdened when they pulled together over it.
Oh, and I really loved that nod to the author’s other time- travel series with Thane acting in a movie about ‘Jamie’ and ‘Sophie’. Loved that series so it was fun to encounter it again here.
In summary, I got cozy and enjoyed a lighter paranormal that is heartwarming and on the sweeter end. I am still determined to go back for the earlier books because I really enjoyed the scenes with the previous couples who are now starting families. I would recommend this one with the caveat that it be for those who can enjoy quick fated mates sweeter romance.
My thanks to the author for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for an honest review.
Romance Roundabout #293 PNR
Cliché Klatch #181 ‘just keep telling yourself that’