Wednesday, January 21, 2015

TBR Challenge: Patricia Briggs - Alpha and Omega

Anna Latham never knew werewolves existed, until the night she survived a violent attack... and became one herself. After three years at the bottom of the Chicago pack, she's learned to keep her head down and never, ever trust dominant males. But when she discovers wrongdoing in her pack, she has to go above her Alpha's head to ask for help.
Charles Cornick is the son — and enforcer — of the leader of the North American werewolves. Now his father has sent him to Chicago to clean up a problem there. Charles never expected to find Anna, a rare Omega wolf — and he certainly never expected to recognize her as his mate...

Comment: This month, as usual, the theme for January is short stories or novellas or something short. I don't have anything against short stories but I confess I prefer the (expected and hopeful) development in a full length book to better show me everything.
Nevertheless, I knew this short story would be a must and considering I plan to start the Alpha and Omega series soon, reading this prequel now was quite handy.

In this short story, we meet Anna and Charles, two very different people who happen to be werewolves. Each one comes from a different background and lived different experiences, but there's something common between them and it's not just an enemy to face. Could they get along to solve a mystery?

Anyone who has doubts on how a short story should be, needs to read this one.
Content aside - although it was quite good too - the best aspect of this short story is how full and well structured it is. I think it can only be a show of talent from the author to have written a short story where the reader goes through it as if it were a lengthier one instead. I tell you, this 60 page story is introduced, developed and concluded like so many bigger stories are.

The story presents a world where werewolves exist and have lives like any human. We learn quite a lot from this little story, not only how werewolves can exist and are made or born, but we have an idea of how werewolves communities should be or not. Many information is inferred through characters' reactions, but this is where we can see the author's talent. All the things we learn aren't done in a boring way, there isn't any information dumping and all the details are enough to engage the reader but not detailed enough to tell all. Very well done and this kept me riveted to the plot development until the very end.

I'm not new to the author, I've been a fan of her Mercy Thompson series for years now so I know what to expect, style and voice included. But this world has different key characters, it's told from a third person narrator, unlike the Mercy series, so the way the reader sees things obviously changes. But I liked reading this and going through all the aspects presented.

There's the start of a romance between Charles and Anna. Of course nothing important happens at least not to the point where we can fully understand, but the promise alone is enough to make me want to keep reading. One thing we can know right away is, their relationship will always be balanced, even if there are things to see and know before any further developments happen. This really made me happy, to see how, after such a short amount of time, I can just know things will be interesting and special.

All in all, the people who kept recommending this short story to me were correct, it's fascinating, entertaining and feels fuller and bigger than its mere 60 pages. Of course some things are still too dark to understand and that's normal. There are things in the story we could see done different but overall it doesn't ruin the book.
I can't wait to read more next month.
To those who haven't read it yet and are interested in the series like me, go get it.
Grade: 8/10


  1. I loved this novella too! I am still behind on the Alpha & Omega series, but I have re-read this many times. Great review!

    1. Hi! Thank you for stopping by!
      Yes, isn't it amazing how complete it feels despite the few pages?

  2. This is On the Prowl, right? I'm glad you liked it. I read it back in September of 2013 and liked the world-building and writing, but did not fall in love with the story itself. Still, I went on to read Cry Wolf and really liked the book. If you loved this novella, you will simply love the book. :)

    1. I only picked this story, not the whole anthology but yes that's the one.
      I'm very eager to read the book yes. I will, next month!

      Thank you for commenting here so much, Hilcia! :)

  3. Replies
    1. Hello!
      I'm hoping to love it as well, can't wait!