Orbit (June 2008)
Paperback, 308 pages
‘I didn’t realize he was a werewolf at first. My nose isn’t at its best when surrounded by axle grease and burnt oil…’ Mercedes Thompson runs a garage in the Tri-Cities. She’s a mechanic, and a damn good one, who spends her spare time karate training and tinkering with a VW bus that happens to belong to a vampire. Her next-door neighbour is an alpha werewolf – literally, the leader of the pack. And Mercy herself is a shapeshifter, sister to coyotes.
As such, she’s tolerated by the ‘wolves but definitely down the pecking order. As long as she keeps her eyes down and remembers her place, the pack will leave her in peace. Hardly a normal situation, but then, Mercy Thompson is not exactly normal herself…and her connection to the world of things that go bump in the night is about to get her into a whole lot of trouble.
I have heard such good things about this series and I’m so glad to have now started it as Moon Called was really good.
Mercy Thompson is a mechanic and also a Walker, the refreshing twist is that she doesn’t turn into a werewolf or a big cat, but a coyote. She can also change at will and it’s not painful or ruled by the moon as it is for the werewolf. I loved this aspect to Mercy’s character, although she is surrounded by the popular supernatural creatures such as werewolves and vampires, it was fun when she turned into a coyote because it really gave the book a different dimension.
Mercy is very independent and lives on her own in a trailer – well, relatively alone as she also has a cat. Her immediate neighbour is Adam, the Alpha of the local werewolf pack, and despite not being a werewolf herself, Mercy has been accepted into the pack and is protected by them. The other reason Mercy is so “in” with the werewolves is because she was raised by them.
One of the aspects of Mercy’s character I found really likable is that she acknowledges she doesn’t have the supernatural strength of the werewolves or the vampires, so has to rely on weaponry and her wit, she also trains to give her body strength, and combined with her fearlessness, she’s one tough cookie.
While working in her garage, Mercy finds a young boy called Mac. She instantly realises he is a werewolf and finds out he’s on the run from some very bad people. To keep him safe, Mercy hands him over to Adam, but things go badly wrong. Adam is nearly killed and his fifteen year old daughter, Jesse is kidnapped.
Moon Called is very much an urban fantasy and is fast paced and action-packed, and is particularly light on the romance. However, there is potential for a love triangle. Her relationship with Adam, although just friends at the moment has the possibility of being much more. But there’s also Sam, Mercy’s ex-boyfriend who only wanted her for breeding purposes. This didn’t sit well with me or for Mercy for that matter. When she found out she left him straight away – good for her!
There are certain scenes where, through Mercy’s actions, shows that she cares for Adam and his daughter, Jesse very much. I felt as though they were almost like family and she would do anything to protect them. However, I didn’t really get the vibe that Mercy had romantic feelings for Adam. Her thoughts are quite detached, statements, a matter of fact rather than emotional, and when she goes on a date with Adam and they share a kiss, it is all a bit flat. There isn’t any heat or passion and I really wanted there to be, especially as we knew Adam had feelings for her with the small details that hinted to the fact, like a picture of Mercy in his bedroom!
I do hope that Mercy’s narrative gets a little more personal as I like her very much; I just don’t think I know her or how she feels to be really connected with her character yet. Overall though, the characterisation is great and I enjoyed meeting all the other characters from fae to vampire, werewolf to witch, they were all well rounded and interesting.
I really enjoyed Moon Called and look forward to reading the rest of the series. I love the author’s writing style and world building – I just hope that I begin to connect with Mercy a little more as I like her character a lot.
BOOKS IN SERIES ORDER
- Moon Called
- Blood Bound
- Iron Kissed
- Bone Crossed
- Silver Borne
- River Marked
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