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Iron Kissed (Mercy Thompson Series, Book 3) by Patricia Briggs
Edited by Anne Soward
Review by Gayle Surrette
Ace Paperback  ISBN/ITEM#: 9780441015665
Date: 02 January 2008 List Price $7.99 Amazon US / Amazon UK / Show Official Info /

I've learned from Brigg's previous Mercy Thompson books, so I cleared the decks and sat down to read. No disappointments here -- open the book and you're off on a wild adventure as Mercy tried to prove the innocence of her mentor Zee against the wishes of Zee, Uncle Mike, the fae, and the Gray Lords. All this while hoping the vampires don't realize she's killed two of them and trying to decide whether she's more in love with Samuel or Adam -- while her indecision weakens the pack. How much tension and blame can one mechanic with a history degree and the ability to change into a coyote take?

More Patricia Briggs:
Moon Called
Blood Bound

I also start a book thinking I'll take notes as I read for the review. At least that's the plan. In actuality, by the end of chapter two I was so engrossed in the story and characters that I finished the book before I realized I hadn't taken notes, but an awfully lot of coffee was consumed and the chocolate supplies seemed a bit low. Reading about Mercy Thompson tends to do that. Briggs has created a character and setting that is grounded in reality so that all the magic, werewolves, fae, and vampires seem not only possible, but actual.

This time, Zee asks Mercy to come to the fae reservation to see if she can sniff out something at the sites of some recent murders. Mercy owes a favor so she does her best. When Zee is accused of killing the suspect she led him too, she knows he's innocent -- not because he's incapable of killing but because he wouldn't be that messy. But it seems that the Gray Lords are willing to let Zee take the blame so that things can go back to normal. But Mercy doesn't abandon her friends, and jumps in to prove Zee innocent by finding the real killer.

The search causes Mercy to question her loyalties, her abilities, and her morals. These philosophical questions are threaded throughout but never hit you over the head. No one will be the same after these incidents -- not the characters and not the reader. There's some surprises, some tears, and lots of action -- don't miss this book.

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