Fair Game by Patricia Briggs
MY RATING: 5 of 5 Stars
I have to confess, I’ve had Fair Game since the day it came out, sitting in my To Be Read basket, unopened. For weeks, I’ve walked by it and mentally whispered, “Sooooon, My Precious!” (I like to torture myself that way when I have a new book that I KNOW I’m going to love. Kind of like saving the best thing on the dinner plate for last!) Finally, I let myself sink into the pleasure of another visit to the world as created by Patricia Briggs, and I’m so glad I didn’t prolong the agony another day!
I’ve been following the Mercy Thompson books since the first one was released, and of course, I went straight into the Alpha & Omega series as soon as they were released, as well. I had hoped this second series would be just as good, and sure enough! If anything, I like the Alpha & Omega series even better than the Mercy Thompson one. The worlds & characters do overlap, especially in the first A&O book, “Cry Wolf.” But I have a special fondness for Charles & Anna. Especially Charles, who is a very complex, yet extremely sexy, character. His role in life, and his tight control over the ensuing emotional issues, is unique, and his stoic personality just tugs at my heartstrings. Not to mention, in spite of his terrifying effect on transgressors, he has a wonderful, dry wit, which only Anna and we readers get to see or understand.
Then there’s Anna, herself. Everyone who reads Urban Fantasy knows what an Alpha wolf is. But this series introduced me to the idea of an Omega werewolf, which I’ve not read about before. Anna is so interesting, and her power so unusual, it really adds a new dimension to a pack tale. She’s a lovely character, and her bond with Charles is very special. It’s a joy to read about the two together, and it makes me happy that they found…and rescued…each other.
Briggs has a way with developing her worlds that always pleases me, and the politics of the werewolf structure really pull me in to each story, regardless of whether it is about our favorite coyote shifter, Mercy Thompson, or our favorite deadly enforcer and his mate, Charles & Anna Cornick. I’m also very fond of the Marrok, btw, so while this is a review of “Fair Game,” it is also a testimonial to both of these great series.
In “Fair Game,” a rift has developed between Charles and Anna, and that was almost a problem for me. The first few pages made me feel really sad. I can handle all the trouble the outside world wants to throw at any of my favorite couples, but I hate to see them having problems that threaten their relationships. I had to trust that Briggs wouldn’t let me down. She never had before, and sure enough, she didn’t this time. The book was riveting, and I loved every single second of it, once I quit worrying about Charles & Anna’s bond.
I usually save my 5 star rating for books that in addition to wonderful & clever plots, have something magical and lyrical about the author’s writing style. I won’t say that Briggs writes with the same poetic flow of my most treasured writers (Sarah Addison Allen, Marisa de los Santos, or Maggie Stiefvater, for example), but her writing style is exactly what these stories need. It is very strong, and always totally compelling, and that’s enough to make this book a solid 5 stars, in my opinion. I couldn’t put “Fair Game” down and finished it in 2 sittings (having been interrupted by my own “mate” who needed dinner). I can’t wait for the next Alpha & Omega book! And, in the meantime, another Mercy Thompson would be just fine, too.
As an afterthought, if you haven’t yet tried these books, what are you waiting for? Run, don’t walk, to the nearest bookstore, and get to reading! Be sure to start with Mercy’s first book, “Moon Called,” and read the books in order. They will make more sense that way, and you will be able to watch the complex character relationships develop. Just do it! Great times await you!
If you decide to place an order with amazon, clicking through from my links will give me credit. If you are enjoying my reviews on Bookin’ It, it’s a great way to let me know! Thanks!