Shards of Hope also introduces us to the new antagonist, The Consortium which was a welcome relief, Pure Psy ran out of steam far too quickly and seemed too disorganised to have ever been lethal. We also meet a new changeling pack and more changelings. This was the other thing I liked about Shards of Hope, it gave us new characters as well as subtly moving the old ones to the side. Not a bad move considering that their stories have already unfolded. Which is not to say that I don’t still want to see them pop up occasionally (and when it Mercy having her pupcubs? She’s been pregnant for what feels like forever.)
Singh had already established that Aden held the reins when it came to the Arrows and in this one, she only expands on that. We learn more about him and what led him to make the decisions he made. I don’t think he was ever fully Silent. As a character, though, he fell a little short because there was no inner conflict. He was always too in control. What I did like was that he was fully committed to Zaira and did not question her importance in his life. He also gave her space when she needed it and stayed by her side, always supporting her. He was also good with the other Arrows, making them feel like they mattered and were important to him.
I liked Zaira a whole lot more. She was kickass, ruthless and fiercely protective of those she cared about. I also liked that she didn’t take crap from anyone, even Aden. What I wish these heroines didn’t do though, was all the self-doubt. She spent so much time torturing herself for actions that she was clearly not accountable for. She was a child and she was mercilessly tortured by her parents.
As for the other characters, I think we’ll be seeing a lot more of Remy and Miane in the next few books as well as their packs. But I’m curious, will we only look at predatory changelings? I don’t know if I’ll be able to take a rabbit (or a fish) changeling seriously. I’m curious what marine changelings we’ll see with regard to BlackSea.
The other thing I was very grateful for was that the Psy, Changelings and Humans communicated with each other. When the Consortium started trying to create trouble, things could have escalated into utter chaos if not for people being willing to clarify and check facts before they got trigger happy, Such a welcome relief.
Also, I want to see more of the bear changelings we’ve read about but haven’t yet seen. And let’s have more female alphas. I’m always happy to see strong women, the more the merrier