Genres: Urban Fantasy
Published by Penguin Group
Released on March 6, 2012
Werewolves, fae, and government agents, oh my!
This third installment to Charles and Anna’s story was impatiently waited for by several people- me included. I began years ago with the first Mercy Thompson story and ever since I have devoured that series and this spin-off series. Patricia Briggs is a world builder and story teller par excellence.
A quick word to any newbies to Patricia Briggs-
This series can be read without having read Mercy’s series, but personally I get more out of these stories when I read both. The time lines are slightly different, but there are references in both to the other series in fact there were a couple of mini spoilers to the last Mercy book.
Fair Game begins about six months after book two, Hunting Ground. The wolves have just come out of the closet with the fae to the human public and it has made their every action much more important. Charles, as the enforcer, has been forced to go out time and again and put down any wolves who have broken the rules. Before the coming out, certain infractions were left as a warning. Now, it is a killing issue and these killings occur more frequently than ever never leaving Charles time to recover from what he must do. Charles’ has always done his duty and performed in the name of justice, but as of late he is weighted down heavily by guilt and remorse. He cuts himself off from Anna and she is terrified that they are losing him.
A creative solution is found. Bran decides to send Anna and Charles to liaison with the FBI in Boston to stop a serial killer who has targeted humans, fae, and werewolves. The killer has just taken another victim.
Anna and Charles find that the FBI team also includes people from two other agencies who can barely tolerate each other (surprised?) let alone the idea of working with werewolves. Some of the team consider them as nothing other than monsters (yay team). They are joined by the fae father of this last victim. Time is running out as they all work to find the answers. In the meantime, Anna and Charles have Charles’ inner demons to work on too.
The plot was as intriguing and captivating as what one can usually expect in this series. It is multi-layered and kept me on my toes. The relationship between Charles and Anna is obviously a keystone to the story, but the action was exciting too. I was bouncing up and down enthusiastically in the end to know that I had guessed who the bad guys were before being told (obviously it was not meant to be difficult or I wouldn’t have figured it out). This did not make it boring because knowing who they were and knowing how to stop them especially when they took another victim was the exciting part. Something big happens at the end that will have repercussions on both series.
The characters were well written. I loved the introduction to the new characters in Boston. The Boston alpha, Isaac, was amusing the way he deliberately tried to irritate Charles and soon learned that he had a tiger by the tail. The FBI agent, Leslie Fisher is tough, skillful, but has intellect and humor too. Charles and Anna as individuals and together have such depth. I felt their pain when Charles kept his distance and shut down their mate bond to protect Anna while only succeeding in leaving Anna bewildered and a little scared for him. The small scenes with Bran and Asil are always good.
But as great as the plot and characters are, it is the world building that takes these books from just the ‘great’ to the abso-fabulous level. Now I’ll be impatiently waiting for the next installment.