I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
This is my second time reading something by Jessica Freely. I wasn't really sure what type of story I would be getting considering the first book I read from her didn't blow my mind. That can't be said about this book. I really enjoyed it.
Lake Clearwater is a naiad (a water nymph), who has been homeless for eight years but finds himself lucky to be finding a new home at Gem Lake as a conservation officer. On his way there he becomes lost, but feeling the pull of the lake decided to risk his well being believing he's very close to the lake and can make the trek before he freezes. Forrest Oakley is a dryad (a tree nymph) and senior officer and new partner to Lake. He's awaiting Lake's arrival and while doing his job hears a distress call which turns out to be Lake. The attraction between the two are instantaneous but through a majority of the story they remain friends and coworkers. Neither knows about the others sexual preference so they try to hide their attraction to avoid awkwardness or discord in their otherwise wonderful relationship.
For a small portion of the book it's also kept a secret that they're both guardians of their respective nature/element. With the help (er...push) of friends and Lake, Forrest accepts his true nature and with that finds the confidence and bravery to face off with their superior who poses a danger to their beloved woods.
The build up of Lake and Forrest relationship was something I look forward to reading in books. It was nice and I was looking forward to see when they would fall and who would initiate their relationship beyond friendship.
I liked that Forrest had the support of his town and that he had wonderful friends who could keep his secret. I was highly amused at the extent in which Forrest would go to catch glimpses of Lake when he was out on the lake. I especially loved the scene where he took on his dryad form and was the tree that sprang wood.
The mystery of what happened in Charlevoix was a major factor in what kept me intrigued with the book. Everyone who was sworn to secrecy kept dropping little hints to Lake that Charlevoix was a story he should hear from Forrest.
I was left with a few questions about how who guardian went to was chosen and what type of requirement were need. I also would have liked to know more about about the nature spirits in general. What their skill was and whatnot.