Mercy Thompson is a shapeshifter, a walker. She can transform herself into a coyote at will. Mercy was raised by werewolves, though her kind of shifter magic is different.
She has connections with several factions of the supernatural community. She works as a mechanic at a shop that used to belong to the gremlin Zee. She lives next door to alpha werewolf Adam. And she has friendly relationships with a human cop and a vampire.
Our story kicks off when a young werewolf named Mac wanders into Mercy’s shop. She gives him some work and gets pulled into his problems. Mac was turned against his will and experimented on by other wolves. Now, they’re after him. So Mercy reaches out to Adam, hoping to help Mac. But things go bad quickly, when the bad guys raid Adam’s home. They hurt the alpha badly, kidnap his daughter Jesse and kill Mac. Mercy has to take Adam back to Bran, the werewolf leader who helped raise her… and it forces her to come to terms with a past and a man she left behind. Samuel is Bran’s son and his unresolved relationship with Mercy makes things even more complicated. Samuel joins Mercy and Adam as they work to unravel the plot of the nefarious wolves and try to rescue Jesse.
I love the world-building here. It’s richly layered, without being too complicated to understand. There is a broad cast of characters, but they are so clearly defined, they are easy to keep straight. The author has set the foundation for a great love triangle between Mercy, Adam, and Samuel. But don’t expect a romance novel. While it is character driven, this book is all about the action. There is solid resolution, but it’s easy to see how more books could follow –and exciting to see how all the relationships will progress. Mercy is a great lead character. She has many gifts associated with her shifting. But what is really special about her is her ability to use her head. She thinks things through more than most UF heroines –and she is willing to look weak to be strong.
4 1/2 stars.
Moon Calledby Patricia BriggsRelease Date: January 31, 2006Publisher: Ace