by Robin D. Owens

September 2006
ISBN: 0-425-21084-7
Reviewer Graphic Button Berkley
Mass Market Paperback

As Black Ilex Winterberry investigates some murders, he has to deal with the young woman that he recognized three years ago as his HeartMate. Trif Clover is determined to find her HeartMate, but she does not know that Ilex is the man. Though Ilex yearns for her, he does not want to divulge his identity to her. He is not only more than twice Trif's age, but he has also had some rather disturbing visions… visions which have told him that he will not live to old age.

The murders that Ilex is investigating involve young people with somewhat unstable Flair, not unlike Trif. When she acquires her own Fam, he fully realizes that she could be a target.

Trif is on a HeartQuest to find her HeartMate and despite the fact that all her friends and family disapprove, she is determined to find him. She wants her happiness and she wants it now… little does she know that her neighbor and friend, Ilex, has been right there in front of her since she connected with him during her Second Passage three years ago.

HeartQuest is book five in Robin D. Owens sci-fi series known as Heart. This is a fabulously romantic series that I have been following over the past three years. This time, the readers are treated to the story of Ilex Winterberry and Trix Clover, both of whom had been introduced previously as secondary recurrent characters. Different to the previous books, this time the hero and heroine have a substantial age gap, and that provided an added layer of emotion to the story. Ilex is quite older than Trif and worries about that and the fact that he suspects that he is bound to die soon. That deters him from trying to claim her. Trif, on the other hand, has the energy and exuberance of youth. She wants her happiness and does not believe that there is any reason for her to wait longer than necessary. Although I found this story utterly enjoyable, I have to say that it did not engage me as strongly on an emotional level as some of the other titles did. However, the writing is flawless, the plot is interesting and quick paced, and the characters are quite likeable. Although the book is part of an ongoing series, it can fully be read as a stand-alone. If you enjoy well written sci-fi romance this one is definitely for you, and HeartQuest is now in my keeper shelf... and I dare go as far as recommending the whole series.

Reviewed in March 2007 by Mireya.

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