Heart Mate - Robin D. Owens
Robin D. Owens
At the age of 6, Rand T’Ash, member of one of the elite GreatHouses on the planet Celta, watched as his entire family perished in a fire set by another GreatHouse. In hiding, the young boy fled to the slum area and scraped out a living until such time that he could return and claim his heritage. Now, having secured his house and his place, by violence when necessary, T’Ash is a master jeweler. Most of the inhabitants of Celta have some form or another of psychic power. T’Ash’s power allows him to shape gems like no other. One such gem, in particular, waits for the arrival of his Heart Mate. On Celta, everyone is free to marry as they wish, but the best match and fondest hope of each person is to find his or her Heart Mate; the perfect match, the soul mate.
Danith Mallow was also orphaned in childhood, but her heritage is much more common than that of T’Ash. She has been in his shop often, however, and is drawn to a specific necklace. When T’Ash informs her that it is his HeartGift, she believes he’s deceiving her with some kind of cheap seduction spell. Why would a noble be interested in her? She’s a commoner with no real psychic power. But T’Ash continues to pursue her, certain that he’s found his Heart Mate. The more Danith withdraws, the more T’Ash pursues.
The world building is rock solid and includes a complex yet realistic society. Both main characters are strong individuals who have very legitimate reasons for acting in the ways that they do. No silly misunderstandings here. There are real issues that both stand in their way, and bring them together. I also enjoyed the telepathic byplay between T’Ash and his familiar tomcat. Anyone who enjoys good fantasy will want to seek out these books. I’m very much looking forward to reading the rest of them.
Rating: 8 ½
September 2006 (reissue)