Thursday, March 26, 2015

Patricia Briggs - Hunting Ground

Anna Latham didn’t know how complicated life could be until she became a werewolf. And until she was mated to Charles Cornick, the son — and enforcer — of Bran, the leader of the North American werewolves, she didn’t know how dangerous it could be either...
Anna and Charles have just been enlisted to attend a summit to present Bran’s controversial proposition: that the wolves should finally reveal themselves to humans. But the most feared Alpha in Europe is dead set against the plan — and it seems like someone else might be too. When Anna is attacked by vampires using pack magic, the kind of power only werewolves should be able to draw on, Charles and Anna must combine their talents to hunt down whoever is behind it all — or risk losing everything...

Comment: This is the second installment in the Alpha and Omega series by Patricia Briggs. Having recently read the previous stories in the series and also the Mercy Thompson series, I feel more than eager to enjoy a new book by this author, who I think is very talented.

This new adventure sees Anna and Charles meeting other packs from Europe to discuss the Marrok's wish to come public and let the world know about werewolves. Not all are in agreement and after Anna is attacked by vampires but using pack magic, all bets are off to find out who's behind everything.
Dodging fae, vampires and opponent werewolves should be complicated but Anna and Charles are a team and they certainly will do their best to catch the villains.

I'm a fan of this author's writing. Her stories flow so easily even among such imaginative descriptions and scenes that I get the feeling her work is as easy as breathing although I know that must be very far from the truth. The thing is, her effort and talent show and it's admirable that he can do it in such a way that looks deceivingly simple.

In this new book, there are lots of pack interactions to study. I think the author was clever in doing this because one of her strongest points is exactly the pack workings and hierarchy and so many details that makes the story feel more structured, stronger, with a better base. All the facts pile up and they make sense in the world created. With every new book, the reader gets to know more and is able to construct a growing puzzle about the wold itself and why things matter. I like that a lot.

The action/plot of this book centers around the conversations with European packs - that don't depend on the American Marrock as much - to come public. I think the way the plot was done seems simple but has a lot of politics involved and I feel the story only gains from serious ways to work things out in a paranormal story that could be ridiculous or too fantasy to be believable but the way things happen it is almost too easy not to believe it's just fiction.

Another key element is the developing relationship between Anna and Charles. The wolf factor could be an easy way to solve everything but those who know the writer's work are aware of how intricate a wold relationship really is and why it's powerful. I liked seeing how both the sides of this couple, the wold and human, reacted and took into consideration the other's feelings in all things. It's wonderful o see how their relationship is growing and settling but it's not instantaneous, it takes time, effort and real feelings to develop as they feel it should. I like this side of the stories, the personal development.

In fact, there isn't much I can't fault with these books but I always have the feeling there's something I'd change even when I can't exactly pinpoint what. I just know that some things could be explained better namely some characters' interactions that, despite looking well done, sometimes are too inferred for me to fully understand. And the books happen very quickly. I mean it's good that the author doesn't stretch endlessly the plot but a a few more pages to take time to show some things wouldn't be totally lost.

Overall, I liked the book, I liked seeing more about the wolves and the main couple even when the focus was on the plot, something I find very clever indeed in terms of writing techniques.
I'll await eagerly for next month to read the following story.
Grade: 8/10

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