Monday, March 31, 2014

Night Broken by Patricia Briggs

I knew this novel was going to be too short when I saw the page count (250) on my Nook as the story began. Ah well, I suppose it was exactly the number of words that needed to be written to tell the tale that must be told.

Mercy gets an unpleasant surprise when Adam's ex-wife, Christy, is fleeing from a former lover turned violent stalker and calls Adam for help. His sense of responsibility for his "pack" as alpha wolf forces him to let her seek refuge in the home which now belongs to him and Mercy. You can probably see that this is going to lead to fireworks, perhaps literal, from the moment it begins.

But Christy's stalker turns out to be far more dangerous than anticipated, and we get the first indication when the townhouse where she lived burns to the ground, killing four innocent bystanders.

About this time, one of the elven Grey Lords shows up at Adam and Mercy's, looking for his father's walking stick, which Mercy gave to Coyote to keep, after she used it to kill the river monster a couple of books ago. He threatens all sorts of dire consequences, oh so politely, as the fae are known to do things, if she fails to turn it over within a week.

Mercy begins trying to get in touch with Coyote - not something any sane person wants to do - and ends up in jail. Well, not that way, but she visits a "half-brother" of hers, Gary LaughingDog, where he's being held for stealing a police car and a case of expensive scotch, and asks him if he knows how to contact Coyote. Shortly after her visit, Gary has a vision of disaster unfolding and breaks out of lockup to warn Mercy, Adam and the pack.

When Christy's stalker turns up at Mercy's garage and demands that she be given back to him, our favorite shape shifter finds out that he's not even close to being human, and is an immensely powerful bad guy - Guayota. With a little help from Adam and Tad (half fae son of the Dark Smith), she manages to drive him off and kill one of his minions, but it's obvious to all concerned that they're going to have to deal with him more permanently at some point.

All of which, of course, leads up to a big battle scene at the end of the book, and some new possibilities forming for the overall plot arc.

Too short. More, please, for Mercy's sake!

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