For once, mated werewolves Charles and Anna are not traveling because of Charles’s role as his father’s enforcer. This time, their trip to Arizona is purely personal, as Charles plans to buy Anna a horse for her birthday. Or at least it starts out that way…
Charles and Anna soon discover that a dangerous Fae being is on the loose, replacing human children with simulacrums. The Fae’s cold war with humanity is about to heat up—and Charles and Anna are in the cross fire.
Dead Heat is a good example of why I love Patricia Briggs as much as I do, to me its the perfect example of what paranormal romance should be. It is by far my favorite book in the Alpha and Omega series so far, and one of the best book set in the Mercyverse to date. Patricia Briggs has proven herself to be a master of taking the classic trappings and tropes of urban fantasy and paranormal romance and turning them into something uniquely her own. I would put the world she has created with her Mercy Thompson and Alpha and Omega series right up there with that of Jim Butcher.
When Charles decides its time for his wife Anna to have a horse of her own, they take a trip to Arizona for her birthday to buy one from the herds of his oldest friend. It doesn’t take long for their pleasure trip to turn into one of business when the family of a local werewolf is attacked be someone who stinks of Fae magic. Charles and Anna will have to help protect the children of a small Arizona town while attempting to figure out if this is the act of a single rebel Fae, or the beginnings of a war.
I found this to be the most interesting book about Anna and Charles so far, as it gives us a good look into the personal history of Charles, something that has only been hinted at in the previous books in the series. It’s a little saddening when you realize the sacrifices Charles and all of the werewolves have to make for bearing their curse. They get to watch almost everyone they know grow old and frail before their eyes. Dead Heat shows us just what that means for a werewolf and how it affects their lives.
It will be interesting to see how the events of this book play out across the rest of the series and the Mercy Thompson books, the Fae can be a terrifying people when they want to be.
Patricia Briggs writing is excellent as always, with Dead Heat she has created an amazing story and an interesting mystery for us to try and solve alongside Charles and Anna. She also gives us an interesting look into werewolf politics outside those of the Marrock or Adam’s pack, as well as the introduction of several new characters who I hope to see again in the future. The only thing I didn’t really enjoy was the the strong emphasis on horses, they aren’t something I particularly care much about, and a large portion of the book was dedicated to them.
Overall I would suggest this book to anyone who reads paranormal romance or urban fantasy, though I would strongly suggest that everyone reads the books in order. It should also be kept in mind that you get a better understanding of whats going on in the world if you read both the Mercy Thompson and Alpha and Omega series.
I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Dead Heat by Patricia Briggs is set to be published March 3rd 2015 by Ace.