Diamond Dust by Vivian Arend
Takhini Wolves #3
August 20, 2013
Reviewed by Helyce
Caroline Bradley is a human knowingly living among wolf shifters. Over the years, she’s earned her place with them and is a trusted and respected part of the community. But things are about to change. For one, her lover, Evan, pack alpha, has sniffed out his mate leaving her on her own. If that wasn’t enough, the bear shifters from neighboring territories have moved in on Whitehorse for their huge conclave where they will pick a new leader. She expects nothing by chaos to reign.
Tyler Harrison is a grizzly shifter who is hoping to win the vote and bring the bears together. He’s the right man for the job, but he’s got to win over several of his constituents in order to get their vote. Unfortunately, his lack of a mate is looked upon as a negative to many.
When Tyler arrives in Whitehorse and finds Caroline barely breathing in the hot tub in his room she triggers something in him. Though he’s not looking for a mate, he sees a strength in Caroline that may very well suit his needs, if only temporarily. When he later witnesses her in action, taking control of situation with some bears without any fear, he knows she is the right woman for the job.
I really enjoyed the character of Tyler, a grizzly shifter who wants very much to win the vote to lead the bear contingent. He’s got some competition, though. Tyler is a successful businessman and while clearly the front runner- the fact that he has not found a mate is seen as a flaw; his not having a mate thus translating to his inability to commit to the position of leader. When he meets Caroline and sees her strength and the way she is respected among the wolves, he approaches her with a proposition to stand by his side during the conclave, appearing as a united front, allowing Tyler to win over the male bears while Caroline does her magic with their mates. It’s a sound plan, but they both end up with so much more than either expected.
I was not a fan of Caroline’s character in the previous book. While I can’t remember specifics, I know that part of it was that I didn’t like her with the wolf pack alpha, Evan. Though they made a good team and Evan depended on her, their relationship didn’t work for me. That said, I did like Caroline much more in this book. Her personality and strengths were very suited to the bears and matching her up with Tyler worked for me. While bears don’t find their mates the way the wolves do, it was clear that this paring was meant to be.
Only one thing didn’t sit well with me in here. Evan sniffs out his mate early in the story. He comes across her scent and attempts to track her but comes up empty and throughout the book I kept looking for hints as to who this woman was. As this is Caroline’s story, and she certainly could not move on to another relationship while attached intimately to Evan, I understand the author doing this. I just didn’t like that the matter was introduced and then completely forgotten and not mentioned again. I have a soft spot for Evan and have high expectations of his mate to be!
Once again, Ms. Arend delivers a satisfying read by giving us a kind of shifter that I have not seen much in my paranormal reading, bears. She expertly brings us these unique characters with descriptive writing and heartfelt emotions as she tackles some important subject matters within the bear world, namely spousal abuse. While wolves have often become the standard where shifters are concerned, this author brings us a different dynamic and took me for a fun ride.