Ethan Night is a psychically damaged Arrow, walking a knife’s edge, worried about being used as a weapon by those who long abused him, disconnected from the squad that rescued him, unsure that he is safe to be around others and his world so gray he isn’t sure he should even try.
Selenka is a weary and wary alpha wolf with emotional scars of her own and a pack in turmoil when she is blindsided by the wounded Psy, determined to care for her. When their mating bond slaps into place with little warning, they are strangers who need to learn about each other’s secrets and build on that fragile bond while unmasking dangerous traitors and saboteurs.
In Alpha Night, Singh merges the mating bond/marriage of convenience tropes together and uses them to tell a story about the importance of boundaries and consent. Like many changeling/Psy love stories in the series, learning sensation, discovering desire and learning to revel in physical contact is explored, but in this new Psy-Changeling world, Singh has recast her changeling characters into a new role. While in the first series they would tease, push and cajole, they now carefully explore touch privileges, explain the importance of listening to a partner’s yes and nos and insist on boundaries.
Singh also explores deep themes of belonging and finding a place and a people to love. Ethan and Selenka must negotiate the power dynamics of the pack hierarchy, as Ethan finds his place at her side as the mate of an Alpha in a pack of strangers. That Selenka is his priority never wavers, but he learns to build friendships, and find new allies. Selenka blossoms under his care and attention, able to focus on healing the rifts in her pack and excising hurts, with a partner that cares and doesn’t seek to undermine or overpower her.
While I want everyone who tired and noped out of the first Psy-changeling series to read this series, they are better off starting with Silver Silence, jumping ahead to Wolf Rain before reading Alpha Night as this book is chock full of recurring characters and Singh’s legendary intricate interconnected plot lines. Singh continues to demonstrate that a skilled writer can hone their craft and tell brand new stories, dozens of books deep into a concept and I will be looking forward to each one.
Ana received a digital copy of this book from the publisher for review.
Content Warnings: Past Trauma (mental violation, emotional abuse), Kidnapping/Abduction