Reviewed by Tori
Favorite Quote: “At times you might have thought you were my puppet but you’re my anchor. Without you, I’m adrift. “
Muin “Vinni” T’Vine has been the prophet of Celta since he was six years old. A unique and lonely child, his strong psi power made most people wary of him. But now that he’s older, he’s ready to marry and protect the girl he’s known was his HeartMate for years.
Avellana isn’t as fragile as Vinni believes…nor as compliant. She fights to be considered Vinni’s equal and a strong member of her Family and community. Both of them have kept Avellana’s main power secret for over a decade.
But rumors of her strange psi talent are spreading, and Vinni is experiencing premonitions of danger to Avellana—even from the highest people of the land. When the whispers become threats, Vinni and Avellana must discover and defeat their secret enemies before they can finally claim happiness together.
Fans have waited years for Vinni and Avellana. We’ve watched them grow up through the series and now the time has come for their story to be told. We first met them both in book two-Heart Thief. Vinni was born six years before Avellana and knew upon her birth she was his heartmate. We see them again in Heart Change when Vinni convinces the Hazel’s to send Avellana to Signet D’Marigold for help through her first passage. We catch glimpses of them in Heart Fire and Heart Quest. The one common denominator in all this is Avellana is very rarely seen in Druida City. Vinni has had premonitions of her death for years and has used his influence to keep her away from home. However, Avellana is now an adult and refuses to allow Vinni to manipulate her into staying a way any longer.
She had hated those years without Muin. Worse was when she got to Druida City only to be banished again after a month or two. She set her chin. Never again. She would live or die with him.
Vinni is in for more shocks as Avellana informs him and her family that she has invested in a housing project with Antenn Blacktorn-Moss and will be living in this new community. Alone. Vinnie soon realizes that his actions over the years have deeply hurt Avellana and their relationship. As Vinni gets to know his beloved all over again, he is dismayed to discover that the greatest threat to her comes from his own family.
“Someone in my family thinks you are so different and unusual that you don’t belong with me.”
Heart Sight is the fifteenth book in Robin D. Owen’s romance based futuristic Celta series that is based on several families whose earthen ancestors colonized the planet they live on. Though each book in this series can be read as a stand-alone, the story arc and the couple featured in here has a history that reaches deep into the series so I do not recommend starting here.
Solid plotting with a well-seasoned base, strong narrative, and characters easily engage the reader as Owens takes us back to Celta and Druida City for another adventure. In her last few books, Owen turned her focus towards the second generation of Celtas; intermingling the families despite the bigotry and elitism exhibited by some first families. Friendships and romantic connections are made with less thought to bloodlines and family names and more to compatibility and loyalty. Yet, as with all societies, there are those who choose to cling to the old ways and will do anything to maintain the status quo.
Avellana Hazel has a powerful and unusual primary flair (gift) that almost killed her as a child and frightened everyone around her. From that day forward, her family and Vinni has strived to hide her gift from the other first families and protect her from herself. She has spent most of her life developing her secondary flair and wanting to start her life with Vinni, Instead, she is shuffled shuttled around like a chess piece from place to place. The past two years however has shown her that in order to have the life she wants, she’ill have to grab her independence with both hands.
“I determine my own actions, now.”
Vinni has also led an unusual and lonely existence for most of his life. With his sometimes unpredictable prophecies, most people avoid him at all costs. Confirmed as Celta’s premiere oracle and Greatlord of the Vine family at the young age 6, he was raised by his cousins and servants after his mother’s death. Despite him now being 30, they still treat him like a child and attempt to manipulate and maneuver him into their way of thinking.
The relationship between Avellana and Vinni is a curious mixture of sexual yearning and innocence and where I had the most issues. While they have long been heart mates, they have yet to heart bond. They promised their families they’d to wait till after the wedding, however, both families have dragged out the marital negotiations for years. While Vinni and Avellana have been intimate both metaphorically and physically, there is an awkwardness to their dialogue and interactions that contradicts their longevity. Their subdued chemistry doesn’t help. Neither does the repetition. Vinni constantly refers to being sexually aroused in some form or fashion while Avellana seems to switch between an independent woman and a Stepford wife.
The mystery and romance play well off one another though I found them both a bit dry. While this couple waxes poetic about their attraction and love for one another, there is little action beyond kissing. The mystery is an ongoing storyline thread that is reactivated and drawn it out to included Vinni and Avellana in its web. Owens finally lays it to rest with an acceptable resolution.
Readers will enjoy seeing some familiar faces and meeting new one as Owens’ continues to expand the world building. As always, it’s the non-human characters who steal the show. The dynamics of their personalities are well fleshed out and add humor and depth. While Vinni and Avellana both have long-term fams, Avellana’s is the star. Proud, vain, and arrogant; he never lets Vinni forget that he, unlike Vinni, has never disappointed or hurt Avellana.
“I take care of MY FamWoman. Always have. Always will. Better than you ‘cuz I stay WITH her.”
The Vine and Hazel residences prove quite vocal and informative as they help to catch the villain(s), plan a wedding, and keep multiple secrets.
The finale drags as Owens tries to prolong the suspense as she wraps up the various plotlines; making sure they are accounted for and dealt with. Vinni, Avellana and the authorities finally root out the mastermind behind the attempts on Avellana’s life and Vinni learns he can’t let fear rule his life.
Overall I liked the story though I felt it wasn’t the strongest in the series. A large part is due to the romance. It has grown through the series without much reader interaction and that hurt my connection with it. I wanted to see their emotional bond grow and strengthen. This felt too much like Owens was relying on the mating bond rather than her couple’s actual feelings.
Regardless of my qualms, Ms. Owens continues to entertain with her futuristic adventures and romances.