Joint Review: Ocean’s Light by Nalini Singh

Thoughts on heroine

Lou: A new chapter and story arc began in Silver Silence within the Psy-Changeling world. Ocean’s Light brings us further into the new story arc with a step into the BlackSea Changeling world. Kaia is stationed as head chef on one of the underwater levels of Blacksea. After suffering a terrible loss early in childhood she has no love for the human race and as far as Kaia is concerned Bowen Knight is the leader of a dangerous group who is responsible in the kidnapping and deaths of her fellow changelings. As Kaia helps treat Bo and brings him back to health, the two of them fall deeply for one another.

I adored Kaia—one of my favourite heroines in this series for some time. Her initial wariness at Bo and her playful humour made for such enjoyable reading. Not only is Kaia so loving and caring, but she put aside her initial justified anger towards Bo and helped him when he was in need. Bo falls so hard for Kaia, yet she has gone through so much heartbreak. Seeing her be so brave and taking that leap with Bo made me champion her on so hard. I loved her! Her relationship with her cousins is also hilarious.

Has: I also really liked Kaia’s character; the playfulness and the protectiveness she projected really shone on the page. Even though she had a tragic past it didn’t pull her down or made her bitter, despite her mistrustful thoughts that humans were very dangerous for the Changelings and Bowen is a man who represents everything she dislikes about them. But I liked how she overcame her distrust and fear and is soon won over by his charm despite herself. I really like they interacted with each other and the dynamic between them really brought out a sexy sweet chemistry that slow burned with a fun undertone.

Thoughts on hero

Lou: Mysterious Bo is the leader of the Human Alliance. A man of mystery, his aim and cause is to protect humans in a world where Psy have caused such monumental world-scale damage mentally, emotionally and physically. Bo as a child suffered at the hands of a Psy along with his best friend. In the previous book Bo was assassinated and by rights should be dead. Yet he was miraculously saved through high-end tech and he has this chip inside his brain that is going to kill him at some point. Bo was also an amazing match for Kaia and I adored him too. He falls so fast and deep for Kaia. So swoon-worthy and romantic. He is patient with her and so protective (as are all of Singh’s heroes). Bo has put his life literally on the line so there is a fighting chance he could save others. Bo and Kaia have this instant attraction between one another that sets off Kaia’s body instincts. He woos Kaia and is so patient (as Bo can be heh) with her because she has good reason not to get involved with him (ticking death chip inside his head). Knowing he might only have so long to live, he goes in full guns blazing with Kaia and she also takes that step with him.

Has: I am glad we finally got Bowen’s book. We finally got more history and insights to his character and I really enjoyed the more personal side of him with his story. Like Lou said, I loved how he instantly fell for Kaia and was totally head over heels in love with her and it was so entertaining and enjoyable to see him slowly win her over with his charm. I definitely enjoyed how he let her see a more vulnerable side of himself from the cool exterior that we have seen in previous books. Bo also has a strong moral compass and is also very stubborn in his drive to protect humans as well as maintaining tentative new ties with the Psy and Changelings, and with suspicions rising with disappearing Changelings that point to his organisation, he has to resolve and find the real culprits before the alliances he has forged comes crashing down.

Thoughts on conflict and romance

Lou: The conflict in this book is a mixture of suspense from those kidnapping and torturing changelings, and Bo and Kaia knowing that their romance might end soon with Bo’s deadly chip. Nalini is definitely ratcheting up more dark suspense in this series and I’m really enjoying it. This book also had a twist because it shines a light on the fact that not all changelings will do good for the pack. It was super twisty, especially the ending. There’s also some conflict on Bo’s end when a reveal is made about Kaia. I sort of understood where Bo was coming from because of what happened to him as a child, but it felt a little forced.

Has: In many ways both Kaia and Bo have a past that have many similarities. The danger that Bo may die due to the experimental cure and Kaia’s mistrust because of humans who harmed her family. I also agree about the darker tone, even though this was very humorous book, I would argue that this is one of the darkest books to date in the Psy/Changeling series. I am glad that the humour balances out the darkness and the romance especially is a highlight to the book because it’s so sweet and flirty and fun.

Favourite Parts

Lou: The romance and humour. So good. The humour had me in stitches with some of the characters (tentacle sex girl!!) and trying to guess what sea changeling was what. Kaia’s cousins were also hilarious and I can’t wait to read more about them.

Has: What Lou said! The romance and humour was just a joy to read and it had me giggling out loud several times. I especially loved the scene with Bo trying to chase down Kaia’s cousins before they shifted and left the station to see what shape they were. The image of this fearsome security human leader failing in this circumstance was hilarious.

Least Favourite

Lou: The pacing. It was so slow the pacing and it wasn’t until almost the halfway point that my glomming mode activated. I was also surprised we didn’t have another bear book. Trying to keep track of all these new characters is hard.

Has: I definitely agree. The pacing was slow in the first half of the book, even though the romance buildup and humour flowed beautifully. But I felt the suspense lacked tension in the beginning and it wasn’t until it stepped up a gear by the second half that everything gelled together.

Summary and final grade

Lou: Ocean’s Light was such a romantic read with two characters I fell in love with over the course of the book. It sets up a new world within an already established and large world and while I enjoyed the book for the most part, the pacing made it slow and so did some of the worldbuilding. Nonetheless this is a solid read with new characters to love who are fighting the good fight against those that would tear down their world.

I give Ocean’s Light a B.

Has: Ocean’s Light expands the Psy/Changeling series even more with a personal look at the Blacksea enclave and the sea faring Changelings. I really loved the quirky humour and the romance between Bo and Kaia. It was so sweet and entertaining that the huge dark price and sacrifice which is a major theme of the book is balanced out. I am very curious about the new characters that Nalini has introduced and expanded upon because they were so mysterious in previous books that now they feel part of a bigger and exotic world filled with unexpected twists and surprises. I can’t wait to see what crops up next!

I give Ocean’s Light a B.

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