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review 2018-10-23 18:27
Hard to Read After Alpha & Omega Retcon
Bone Crossed - Patricia Briggs

Please note spoilers from previous three books are discussed here. Also trigger warning: rape. 

 

Ugh. So I was busy all weekend and just read books and didn't update because I just didn't have the energy. Sunday ended up being a time suck day (saw Halloween) and then I couldn't sleep (cause I saw Halloween) and every noise had me tense up and it didn't help matters that my cat kept looking past me like someone was there. I bring up these points to explain how I finished this book and the two other Christie books I am going to be posting reviews on later. 


I read "Bone Crossed" years ago. I own all of the Mercy Thompson and Alpha & Omega books, but after finishing "Burn Bright" this year, I was reluctant to even revisit Mercy. I have to say, that this one was a tough read just because I just couldn't get into it. I already knew what was going to happen, and I knew what other crap is going to be thrown Mercy's way, so I just felt frustrated and annoyed while reading. That said, this is still a good book. We have Mercy still dealing with being raped in the last book. She wants to be with Adam, but doesn't know if she's ready for all that entails. If that isn't enough, Mercy is now "marked" by Marsilla the Queen of the Vampires seethe in her area. Mercy killed one of Marsilla's people so she leaves crossed bones above her place of business letting everyone know that her days are numbered. Stefan is left a husk (literally) with the other werewolves in the Pack stepping up to make sure that he lives. Things are not that simple though at first glance. 

 

I do feel bad in this one that we finally have Mercy with an older female friend (Amber) who she hasn't seen in years. Amber comes for help with getting rid of a ghost that is bothering her family. We all know that Mercy can see ghosts and as she showed in Blood Bound, is able to get rid of them too. Too bad for Mercy that has walked into another trap dealing with vampires. I really do wish that Mercy had more human female friends. She's been all up in Pack business for the last 5 or 6 books and it's getting old. I think I called Mercy a Mary Sue in the later books, and she honestly is one. There's no situation she cannot win. 


The strengthened relationship between Adam and Mercy is wonderful to see though. Now that she has made her choice between him and Samuel, you get to see them both just totally go all in for each other throughout the book. There is a little hiccup with Stefan though and us finding out what it really means when a vampire bites you. 

 

Bran shows up in this one. Whatever to him. Used to be one of my favorites, now I just want to clobber him with something. 


Mercy's mother shows up in this one too. I really wish that Mercy had let her mother stay and actually talk to her about what happened to her. I think that Briggs glossed over this a bit in the later books. We know that Mercy was raped and it's even discussed how gentle Adam is with her because of this, he also asks permission with her and gets her full consent. I just think that it would be great for Mercy to just talk to someone about it that is a female friend. 

 

We do find out more about the vampires in this one and we get the first time that Mercy meets her faithful walking stick. That thing needs its own backstory. 


The writing was good, crisp with new information not previously known. The flow was off though. We had Mercy going back and forth between the Tri-Cities and Amber's place in Spokane. I just thought that there was a bit too much going on in this one starting off. Things get revealed in the end and make sense, but at first I felt a little lost.

 

The world-building with the vampires are more fleshed out in this one. I didn't realize how much I needed a break from the Pack in this one until now. 

 

The ending leaves Mercy with her walking stick and doing what she can to free/save some people that mean a lot to her. We get a lot of ghost action in this one too. 

 

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text 2018-10-16 23:11
"Silence Fallen -Mercy Thompson #10" by Patricia Briggs - read for the Shifter square in Halloween Bingo
Silence Fallen - Patricia Briggs

"Silence Fallen" is the tenth Mercy Thompson book, a point where some series start to creak, strain and repeat themselves. Patricia Briggs avoided this by filling "Silence Fallen" with firsts: the first time Mercy has been to Europe, the first time sections of the story are told from Adam's point of view and the first time that the Patricia Briggs has gone with a not-entirely-linear timeline.

 

It mostly worked.

 

The parts told from Adam's point of view did give me a different perspective and also rounded-out some of the secondary characters but Adam lacks Mercy's snarky optimism and, surprisingly, her ruthlessness, which made him less fun to be around. The politics was interesting but went on a little too long.

 

Mercy sparkles from the first line: 

"I died first, so I had to make cookies."

What a way to start a book.

 

The move from this kind of silly domestic humour, with werewolves LARPing as Pirates to Mercy taking sudden violence in her stride, is central to the appeal these books hold for me. 

 

Moving the story to Europe was a smart idea and opened up some interesting back stories but Mercy sometimes sounded too much like a guidebook to Prague without really giving a sense of the place. I didn't like the World War II stories being woven into the werewolf world. It felt a little exploitative and wasn't entirely necessary to the plot.

 

I enjoyed Mercy's resourcefulness and the way she thought her way out of difficult spots. There were some new developments on her relationship with ghosts that seem promising and I thought having her fight using a scythe was inspired.

 

This was fun but not more than that. I'm hoping the next book, "Storm Cursed", will go back to a more Mercy-centric way of telling the story.

 

Click on the SoundCloud link below to hear the start of the book. The audio version gets two narrators this time and manages the shifting timelines without too much fuss.

 

[soundcloud url="https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/310662490" params="color=#ff5500&auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false&show_teaser=true&visual=true" width="100%" height="300" iframe="true" /]

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review 2018-06-16 15:04
"Fire Touched - Mercy Thompson #9" by Patricia Briggs - a nice ensemble piece
Fire Touched (A Mercy Thompson Novel) - Patricia Briggs

Having been a little disappointed in the eighth book "Night Broken" I was pleased that "Fire Touched" was a return to form for the Mercy Thompson series.

 

There were lots of things to like about this book. Personally, I'll grin at any series where, at the end of a period of domestic discussion, the step-mother says to her step-daughter, as she and her husband rush from the house,"Gotta go, kid, there's a monster on the bridge."

 

It was large and hard-to-kill monster and the battle scene was only exceeded by the melodrama (which I thought was actually quite stylish) of the rallying call that Mercy gives, blood-spattered, walking stick/spear lit with pulsing red sigils raised above her head, her mate apparently unconscious at her feet. No wonder it made national television.

 

This story avoided being another Mercy-takes-on-the-big-bad-almost-alone-nearly-dies-but-is-saved-by-friends theme that was becoming repetitive (albeit well done each time). Instead, it was more of an ensemble piece with some strategic ideas about the relationship between the wolves and the fae that moved things in interesting directions.

 

The Pack now feels real, populated by people I know who are acting from motives that I understand. It helped that Adam finally stepped up and did the full-on Alpha thing.

 

Three new characters are introduced, none of whom are narcissistic psychopaths who could run for President. Old characters re-appear but doing new things and sometimes working to new agendas. The politics is has become more complex and less easy to second-guess. The depiction of Fairy Land is original and quite chilling.

 

There was also some clever but unobtrusive cross-over references with the Maroc and Charles that reminded me to make a start on the Alpha and Omega series.

 

While there is still a lot of action, much of it involving Mercy taking on things many times her size and the body-count is satisfyingly high, the action was there to illustrate the story, not drive it. We're back to a story driven by the characters and their situation. 

 

I ended the book having enjoyed my visit with Mercy and looking forward to the next one.

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review 2018-05-29 17:24
Audio Book Review: Fire Touched (Mercy Thompson #9) By Patricia Briggs
Fire Touched (A Mercy Thompson Novel) - Patricia Briggs

 

I'm surprised at how long this series has been around. It still manages to keep people interested and that speaks for the quality of the stories the author comes up with. Every book is a different adventure and adds to what happened in the last novel.

 

Mercy is as kick*ss as ever. She stands up for herself and doesn't take crap from anyone. It's refreshing to read about when I consider the last few books I've read. I also adore her sense of humor, which is showcased at its best at the beginning of the kitchen scene.

 

I love her relationship with Adam. Though I don't necessarily love Adam himself. I love the level of respect and harmony there is in the relationship. Adam is a very interesting character and, when needed, can put everyone in their place. I like what he represents, but (from the little I remember from the first few books in the series) I was Team Samuel. I don't remember my reasoning behind my decision (because it's been soo long since I've started this series), so your guess is as good as mine.

 

This adventure was entertaining. I especially loved the car scene with Mercy and the female Fae (whose name escapes me right now). It was very interesting seeing that side of Mercy. It also had me hooked for a separate story for the female Fae and her vampire. The witch (whose name is in a different language so I haven't the slightest idea on how to spell it) was an interesting character with all her premonitions that weren't officially premonitions and her silly one-liners.

 

The Audio Book:

 

The narration was good and I could tell every character apart throughout the audio book.

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review SPOILER ALERT! 2017-10-09 15:30
When Mercy Thompson Blew Me Away
Iron Kissed (Mercy Thompson, Book 3) (Mercedes Thompson) - Patricia Briggs

Trigger warning: Rape

 

This is the Mercy Thompson book that left me feeling raw for hours. I am glad that I got a chance to re-read it for Halloween Bingo 2017 though. I recall this book had me in tears a few times and that I loved how Briggs wrote this story and the continuation of Mercy's fallout from a brutal attack.

 

In "Iron Kissed" Mercy's boss and friend Zee is arrested for a crime that she knows he could not have committed. Though Mercy is warned off by Zee and a bunch of other people, she keeps investigating. While dealing with that, she finally has to face who she wants to be with in the future, Adam, Alpha of the local Pack or Samuel the son of the leader of the Werewolves in North America. 

 

Mercy is a fighter and when one of her friends or loved ones is in trouble, she goes all in, however, this time there are repercussions to Mercy forging ahead. Mercy is already starting to see that her feelings for Adam are stronger than her feelings for Samuel in this one, but she still feels hesitant to make a choice even though she finds out later that Adam has made a choice that will cause problems with his Pack if it's not resolved soon.

 

I know others have mentioned that it's a shame that Mercy doesn't have more real life girlfriends in this series, and I have to agree. Especially considering what happens to Mercy in this one, I am surprised that Mercy didn't reach out to her mother and her one time best friend that was mentioned three books ago. 

 

I will say that the series doesn't get better with regards to Mercy having a close female friendship. Considering how close Honey is to Mercy (or at least she is to my mind) I hope that gets resolved in the series. Or heck, have Mercy actually talk to Anna once in a while (Charles wife and mate). 

 

Adam is the best. Seriously you guys. He is the perfect book boyfriend. I loved him from beginning to end in this one. He loves and gets Mercy and nothing is ever going to change things for him at all with regards to who he wants to be with. 

 

We get appearances by many characters we know and that I love (Jessie, Warren, Ben, and Honey) and I loved each and every one of them. 

 

We get some interesting insight into the werewolf Ben in this one. I maybe cried a bit when something in his past is revealed. We get to see that though Mercy doesn't realize it, that Ben really does care about her. I did get annoyed about how Mercy treats Ben in one of the later books (River Marked #6) especially based on this scene, but at least Briggs hasn't done that again since that time. 

 

The first part of the book moves a little slow though. When we have Mercy investigating what Fae could be behind some deaths I was not invested. When all is revealed though it took my breath away. And when Mercy is raped I had to put the book down for a bit. It's a lot. Briggs spares nothing and you are wholly in Mercy's head as she deals with the fallout from being raped. I applaud how thoughtful Briggs was to write this story and how we get to see Mercy dealing with the fallout from the events in this book for the rest of the series. 

 

I have to say that I loved how things ended in this book. We have Mercy choosing to go on from what happens to her and choosing to love the man that she wants to be with in the future. 

 

 

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