Author: Anne Bishop
Series: A Novel of the Others (Book 5)
Publication: Roc (March 7, 2017)
Description: New York Times bestselling author Anne Bishop returns to her world of the Others, as humans struggle to survive in the shadow of shapeshifters and vampires far more powerful than themselves...
After a human uprising was brutally put down by the Elders—a primitive and lethal form of the Others—the few cities left under human control are far-flung. And the people within them now know to fear the no-man’s-land beyond their borders—and the darkness...
As some communities struggle to rebuild, Lakeside Courtyard has emerged relatively unscathed, though Simon Wolfgard, its wolf shifter leader, and blood prophet Meg Corbyn must work with the human pack to maintain the fragile peace. But all their efforts are threatened when Lieutenant Montgomery’s shady brother arrives, looking for a free ride and easy pickings.
With the humans on guard against one of their own, tensions rise, drawing the attention of the Elders, who are curious about the effect such an insignificant predator can have on a pack. But Meg knows the dangers, for she has seen in the cards how it will all end—with her standing beside a grave...
My Thoughts: This was another amazing entry into The Others series. What I love most about this series is that the Others are not just humans who can turn into wolves or hawks or crows. They truly are alien to the human characters. In this world, humans exist on sufferance. The land is owned by the terra indigene. Humans are just another kind of food for most of them. The Lakeside Courtyard is one of the few places where humans and smaller forms of the terra indigene interact.
After the events of the previous book, everyone is on edge. The Elders are trying to figure out how much of the humans to keep and whether or not they are worth the bother. They send two of their Elders to observe the interactions between humans and Others in the Lakeside Courtyard. They haven't picked a really good time.
Lieutenant Crispin James Montgomery is one of the humans that the Others trust. He is living in their compound with his young daughter Lizzie. His sister and her two daughters and his mother have recently come from the destruction in Toland. His mother is making a place for herself in the Courtyard but his sister is too much under the influence of his brother Jimmy to fit in. When Jimmy arrives with his wife and two children all sorts of things start to go wrong. He is a bad person. The wolves want to expel him from the Courtyard but the Elders want them to keep him around to observe. He wreaks all sorts of havoc.
This was a smaller story than the previous book but just as emotionally intense. Simon Wolfgard and Meg Corbyn are falling in love which is a new experience for both of them. Meg is a Blood Prophet who is trying to find a way to control her need to cut herself to trigger her visions. She is the role model for the other younger blood prophets. Simon is trying to understand Meg and take care of her but he wonders if they can ever have a relationship. A wolf and a human seem an unlikely pair.
Despite the emotional intensity, there were all sorts of elements of humor too. The actions of the human pack which the Others tend to refer to as exploding puffballs is constantly baffling and sometimes scary to the Others who deal with them. Talk about cultural misunderstandings!
I loved the way that Meg makes friends with all the various others from wolves and crows to vampires and elementals. I also love her relationship with Simon's nephew Sam and his friend Skippy. I thought the potluck and the humans acceptance of Skippy was one of the most touching things I've read in a long, long time.
I love this series and gladly point to my keeper copies when people want to know what great paranormal books look like.
Vlad wasn't fooled. Just because the female pack weren't predators in the traditional sense didn't mean you could let your guard down. But, to be fair, there was a rational reason for what they did.I got this one in exchange for an honest review from NetGalley. You can buy your copy here.
Usually. Mostly. Sometimes.