In the futuristic world of Celta, honor, tradition and family bonds are vital
to the survival of a people. With her Heart books, Owens has built a complex society whose traditions can work to the benefit or detriment of her protagonists. The complex social structure and rich dialogue, not to mention the comedic element of the FamCats, combine to make her latest top-flight reading. The hero's determination to protect his mate, even at the cost of his own happiness, gives this story emotional punch.

For Druida City Guardsman Black Ilex Winterberry, finding his HeartMate is not the problem. For years, he's known that Trif Clover is his destined mate. Watching stubborn Trif embark on her own quest to find her HeartMate is difficult, for even if she learns the truth, Ilex won't acknowledge the claim.

As a guardsman and detective, his job can be hazardous, and as he's already foreseen his upcoming death, Ilex won't condemn Trif to die with him. Trif, however, has other ideas and will not give up so easily. Still, matters may be taken out of their hands when a series of horrific murders plagues the city. (BERKLEY SENSATION, Sep., 352 pp., $6.99)
Reviewed by: 
Jill M. Smith