Genres: Urban Fantasy
Published by Penguin Random House Audio
Released on November 1, 2009
The Mercy Thompson Series Readalong hosted by Anne @ Books Are My Heart continues to be a shining highlight to my month as I return to the world of Mercy Thompson where the supernatural community is darker and more dangerous and the monsters aren’t always obvious. Mercy is the type of heroine that isn’t the strongest or most powerful in her world, but her heart and loyalty make her tenacious as she bucks the odds. I can’t get enough of her adventures including this latest.
Iron Kissed is the third in a strongly connected urban fantasy series.
Mercy owes the fae a favor and that is not ever a good idea, but their request seems innocuous enough when she goes to the fae reservation in coyote-form to sniff out who was present at a series of murder scenes. But, then of course it all goes sideways when she ends up where she shouldn’t, points a finger at the culprit, and discovers her friend old Zee, an iron-working fae ends up pinned for the murder of the man she scented at each scene.
The fae are intent on keeping their activities under the radar of human eyes so they leave Zee facing the human charges of murder when Mercy knows he didn’t do it. Zee warns her as do others to stay out of it, but that only cements her determination to get to the right answers in spite of the escalating dangers in investigating what no one wants uncovered.
At the same time, her personal life is hitting a crisis point when a few of the werewolves in Adam’s pack warn her that leaving two alpha werewolves in limbo since she won’t openly decide between them is going to cause bloodshed. Mercy’s instinct and heart tell her that declaring for one will deeply hurt the other and, more than that, she worries that one might not survive her decision. She is leaning toward one, but is afraid that her own hard-won independence will get steam-rolled by the power of an alpha werewolf mate and love wouldn’t be enough if her true self got smothered. But, the events of her investigation may make the decision for her in a devastating climax.
This was not even my first re-read of this book and, like the earlier books, it felt as riveting as the first time. It is a testament to the strength of these characters, the world and the plot that one of my most detested plot types, the romance triangle, didn’t detract more than a smidge and I totally got what had her hesitating to make an irrevocable decision between two wonderful guys- which she does make, by the by.
This book goes into a dark place near the end and left tears burning for Mercy and another who suffered something similar as well as another victim of the villain. Oddly, this latest time was the most emotional I got over this book which took me by surprise. Ben’s role in it was my favorite part though Mercy showed her internal toughness more than ever in this one.
The focus on the fae shows the author’s gift for worldbuilding and clever plotting that added to the reader knowledge without making it a tedious dump, but fascinating background. And, the fae that were introduced beyond series regulars like Zee or Uncle Mike were creative choices and exciting additions.
Lorelei King continues to be a queen at narrating this series and exceeded herself when greater depth than ever was called for on the emotional spectrum for several characters.
Onward I look toward the next book in the series with as much eagerness as if it were my first time. This series is an urban fantasy must.
Library Love #4
Literary Pickers #36 hated trope (love triangle)
Romanceopoly #14 City Lane (UF)
COYER With Frineds #46