Blood Bound by Patricia Briggs

Blood Bound is the second book in a new urban fantasy series created by Patricia Briggs (Moon called being the introductory novel).  I really enjoyed this installment.  It steps up to the plate and delivers.  The first book was good but the story was a little stilted because it was trying to provide such a lot of information and I felt the plot became a bit puzzling and suffered as a result.  No.2 doesn’t have the same problem.  We already have a good deal of information about Mercy and the werewolf packs she is involved with and armed with that information we get straight into the story, and it’s fast paced and compelling.

This may contain spoilers (although I’ll try not to).  This book starts off with Mercy being asked for a favour by Stefan.  Stefan is the vampire with the Scooby obsession who we were introduced to In No.1 and frankly Mercy is not in any position to turn Stefan down as she owes him.  Basically, there is a new vampire on the block and Stefan is going to check him out.  He needs Mercy along in her Coyote form to act as his eyes and ears in case anything goes wrong.  As you can imagine things quickly spiral out of control and one blood bath and a battered coyote later it’s fairly obvious to all that this is no ordinary vampire.

This was great.  I really like Mercy more and more.  As I said from No.1 – she’s not stupid, she knows when she’s beaten and can’t win in a situation and isn’t afraid to send in the big guns.  But, that said, she’s also coming into her own and the other creatures are starting to take notice of her (is this good or bad).  On top of that she’s compassionate, she feels for the innocent people who suffer and she really suffers mentally over the actions she must take.  She has a stubborn streak and doesn’t like to back down but she has a good sense of humour as well.  I liked it when she went investigating (but in Coyote form with a collar and tag giving Adam’s telephone number).

No.2 brings us more involvement with the vampires – and a bit more of an introduction to the fey community.  And, again, we are provided with some of the history – but I felt that in this book it was much more smoothly woven into the story.  The plot was good, it was fast, the action was compelling and frankly there was one particularly creepy bit that made the hair on the back of my neck stand up (eugh, shivers).

Also, I particularly like that the main emphasis of the story is not the romance – although there is a romance slowly brewing – exactly who with remains a mystery as there are three possible contenders – but I like that the romance isnt the bee all and end all.  Not that I don’t like a good romance as much as the next person but this is a nice refreshing change.  And, in spite of the fact that there now appear to be three men vying for Mercy’s attention she doesn’t turn into a useless, fawning, doe eyed ninny at the sight of a bicep.  The other good thing about this novel is it stays real.  Mercy has a job, she has to earn a living, she doesn’t have a lot of money and she has to run a business, these things only play a small part but they are considered and it makes it realistic (ha, you have to love the realism in a world of vampires, wolves, witches, sorcerers and shape shifters).

I like the characters  and the way they’re being developed with the introduction of new people along the way.  Uncle Mike is interesting and I can’t wait to spend some time with the fey element which I strongly suspect will play a bigger part in the next novel (Iron Kissed).

Now, I always like to think of a few criticisms but I’m not sure I can here.  Okay, I guess the wolves are a bit stuck in the iron age – but they’re wolves for goodness sake.  They have a pack mentality.  I suppose the only really criticism, and it’s not really a criticism, but I hope that we don’t have any more admirers on the scene – I think three possibilities is enough!

Overall definitely recommend to lovers of urban fantasy and really looking forward to No.3

Rating A

Blood Bound

Blood Bound

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