Hunting Ground (Alpha & Omega, Book 2)
by Patricia Briggs
Review by Gayle Surrette
Ace Mass Market Paperback ISBN/ITEM#: 9780441017386
Date: 25 August 2009 List Price $7.99 Amazon US / Amazon UK / Show Official Info /
Charles Cornick and his mate Anna Latham have been sent by Bran to a werewolf summit to present Bran's proposal to out the werewolves. Anna is beginning to feel more comfortable around Charles and is beginning to accept her wolf. Every precaution was put in place to protect the delegates but Charles worries, especially about Anna. But delegates are being killed and something is definitely not right with security. They have little time to find out who is behind the killings--because Bran intends to bring the world's attention to the werewolves no matter what happens at the summit.
We first met Charles and Anna in Cry Wolf. At that time, Charles has just rescued Anna from her original pack where they had been torturing her after turning her. She was frightened and skittish about Charles's intentions and her place in this new pack headed by the Marrok. In Hunting Ground, Anna has learned to trust--herself and Charles. She's becoming comfortable with her status as a rare Omega wolf. Luckily someone in the pack had actually lived with an Omega in the past and has been a great help to her in understanding her abilities.
This conference is the first big assignment that Anna and Charles have been on together. Briggs manages to show us the interrelationships of her characters, their weaknesses and their strengths without overwhelming the plot with digressions. I admire writers who manage to pack so much personal, environmental, and societal information into a story so seamlessly. Without realizing what's happening other than a great storyline that's very good mystery -- who's doing it and why -- you also learn about the characters and how they relate to each other in the structure of their packs.
The story takes place in the same world as the Mercy Thompson stories and some of the names and places will be familiar, which makes sinking into the story environment even easier. However, if you haven't read previous books there is enough information in the narrative to fill you in on the background of the main characters.
A cross between a mystery and political thriller, Hunting Grounds is definitely a great addition to the series.