Completion Date: January 14, 2011
Reason for Reading: Sequel to Masques.
I read this book back in January for a buddy read, but sadly the person that was going to review it with me has stopped blogging. When I was doing my post for the Once Upon a Time Challenge V, I was very annoyed that I was so bad at reviewing books. I really want to at least say something about all of the ones I read this year, so we will see how that goes. I am really behind right now, so if I don't catch up soon things will get bad. The further behind, the harder it is to get a grasp of the situation.
Shapeshifting mercenary Aralorn leads a dangerous existence. Now she must return home for her noble father, the Lyon of Lambshold, has passed away. But when Aralorn and her companion Wolf arrive, they find he's not dead, but ensorcelled by the ae'Magi, using him as a conduit to destroy Aralorn and Wolf. She must overcome this mysterious mist or fall to the blackest of magic.
Patricia Briggs actually wrote this book many years ago and never imagined it would see the light of day. With her popular series, though, she felt she had the fans that would be interested in seeing what her early books were like. This one was never published and Masques was very hard to find. She even admits that they are not perfect, but die-hard fans, like me, are going to read them anyway. I enjoyed this book for the most part, but it is mostly because you knew it wasn't going to be perfect. When you get that out of the way, you can just enjoy the story. I would have rather had a new book in the Alpha & Omega series, but that doesn't mean I am not glad I read this.
This is another story of Aralorn and Wolf. She had left her family home, but with the death of her father she has a reason to return home. Things are not quite that simple, though. Her father is not actually dead, but is being used as a trap. As a result, the book becomes a bit of a fantasy version of a mystery novel. They have to get to the bottom of everything. I think it all came together quite well, though. I am glad I had the chance to read it and you can really see the early influences on Briggs' later books. There are actually many elements in these books that she uses in her later books. Likely because she didn't expect the book to ever see the light of day. I have to say that for her first two books, she did a really good job and managed to write interesting stories. I am looking forward to reading the last two books in the series very soon.
I still wish she had concentrated on her on-going series before releasing these, though. There was no Alpha & Omega book last year as a result and now it has been pushed back until 2012!