Thursday, May 3, 2018

Moon Called by Patricia Briggs | I've Missed This World!

Mercy Thompson Universe #1
Date Read: May 19, 2012 & March 12 to 13, 2018
First Published: 2006
Adult, Urban Fantasy
Mercedes Thompson, aka Mercy, is a talented Volkswagen mechanic living in the Tri-Cities area of Washington. She also happens to be a walker, a magical being with the power to shift into a coyote at will. Mercy's next-door neighbor is a werewolf. Her former boss is a gremlin. And she's fixing a bus for a vampire. This is the world of Mercy Thompson, one that looks a lot like ours but is populated by those things that go bump in the night. And Mercy's connection to those things is about to get her into some serious hot water...
Re-Reading the Mercy Thompson series feels a little bit like meeting up with your best friend again after years of being apart.

It's an interesting thing, the process you go through with novels reading them a second (or third, because I'm fairly certain I did another re-read before this one) time. In the case of MOON CALLED, I actually ended up enjoying the first installment in the series a lot more than I did the first time around.

Don't get me wrong - I've always considered MOON CALLED to be a good book. It's a fantastic introduction to this world as it immediately tells you this is a dark place (I'm still sad, okay?!), but it's told to you by such a fun storyteller that you almost forget that. It shows you how complex it is, but in a manner that makes everything crystal clear. And despite all this, despite the introduction to everything from werewolves to vampires, witches, and fae, the world-building doesn't actually overpower the plot of the book, and leaves enough room for it to be expended and dived into further in future installments.

And who is that fun storyteller? Meet Mercedes Thompson - a mechanic, a walker, and the main character of the story. But everyone just calls her Mercy. If you like independent, strong-willed, and stubborn ladies who would sooner be the prince than the damsel in distress, then you're are going to love this girl. Because she is all of that and more.

A girl like Mercy needs a good man by her side. Sadly, she has two, and she's not quite sure what to do with that. Let me warn you that this doesn't get resolved in this novel, but neither does Mercy string everyone along in a confusion ping-pong between the two men. So love-triangle, but not quite that bad, you know what I'm saying?

Okay, so who are these guys? Entering stage left is Adam Hauptman, Mercy's backdoor neighbor, alpha of the local pack, and all-around total book boyfriend! If I was Mercy I would jump on this one in a heartbeat. He grabbed hold of my heart from the first time we heard of him, and for me he is the perfect match for Mercy - he loves her wildness, he doesn't try to control her (overly. He is an alpha, after all), he appreciates her abilities and talents and isn't afraid to ask for her help. Oh, and he can banter with her like no one's business. Swoon.

Entering stage right is Samual Cornick. My general reaction? meh. Look, this guy should be total crush material. He's a healer, Mercy's first love, one of the most powerful werewolves in America, and he loves children. What's not to like? Well, this guy is annoying. I just kind of wanted him out of the picture. I never felt like he really loved Mercy, the women. Rather, he loved what she symbolizes. And for all that Sam knows Mercy really well, it doesn't feel like he wants her the way she is. He wants her to change. I don't like that in my couples, at all. So Sam, an okay character on his own, is a total no-no as a romantic interest in my opinion.

Now, Adam is clearly my favorite and obviously, I adore Mercy, but there were several scene stealers in this that are neither. First up is WARREN. Let my swaggering gay sweetheart live his best life with Kyle and leave him alone! Like, Warren is one of my favorite characters, and Kyle is his perfect match in every way. I love them. They are total #relationshipgoals and I wouldn't mind a book or two about them.

Then, we have BEN. I know, I know, what am I doing liking the asshole British guy? Well, even the first time around, not knowing things to come, I found Ben an interesting character with surprising depth. The second time around I simply loved him. Idk man, I just love this jerk.

Some other noteworthy characters are Stefan the vampire, Zee the fae, and Jesse, Adam's daughter. All really fun and colorful characters, but this is not their book to shine. Although, Jesse kind of shines in every book.

Honestly, the thing I was most impressed with in this re-read is how many things Briggs actually set up in this one. More than once I blinked at the novel in confusion because I thought this and that happened later on but nope, they were there from the very beginning and apparently Briggs knew exactly what she wanted to do with them. Kudos to that!

Which is also kind of why I am even more disappointed about the villain than I was the first time around. Like, there are no hints for some of it. You've got this really elaborate plan, at the end of the day, searching for clues bore very little fruit, and that bums me out.

Still, a great novel all in all!

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