Burn Bright

Burn Bright - Patricia Briggs 4.25 stars

While Mercy Thompson is a huge favorite of mine, the Alpha and Omega series has a special place in my heart. I love how Anna and Charles have overcome difficulties to become a cohesive unit. They have come a long way from Anna’s first terrified days as Charles’ new bride. They have become a couple, they have learned to trust each other, and they will do anything to keep the other safe. I have enjoyed watching as their marriage has solidified, giving each of them strength, as well as helping to ground their wolves.

Burn Bright took a few chapters to really find its stride, but once it did, I couldn’t put it down. Charles has been left in charge of the Aspen Creek pack, while Bran is on vacation, visiting Samuel in Africa. When two of the wildings are attacked and killed, Charles is determined to protect the rest of the vulnerable outcasts of the pack. The wildings are just that – they have a tenuous hold on their wolves, and because they pose a danger to the world at large, they live in isolation near the rest of Bran’s pack. The wildings are so dangerous that only a handful of trusted wolves even know them. When Charles determines that there is a traitor in the pack, and that the wildings might be being hunted by their enemy, he decides that they need to be warned.

Most the action in the book takes place during one eventful day, when Anna helps to use her powers to break a curse, save Charles, and root the evil hunting the pack out into the open. While the action is exciting, I enjoy the interactions between the characters the best in this series. As werewolves a hairsbreadth away from violence, it’s always an iffy proposition to get a group of them together. Leah, Asil, and Charles are not the best of buds, and Anna and Leah just rub each other the wrong way. All four of them have to cooperate if they hope to save the wildings and keep the pack safe in Bran’s absence. When some of them go out of their way to annoy the living snot of each other, it’s always an unsure thing as to who is going to lose control and lash out at their antagonizer.

I thoroughly enjoyed Burn Bright, and am now impatient for the next Mercy Thompson book. There is just enough overlap with the bad guys and their plot to take down the werewolves (and the vampires and the fae), to whet your appetite for the next book, but the series are different enough to stand on their own. I think that the Alpha and Omega books are more focused on Anna and Charles’ relationship, while the Mercy books are more about how the paranormal beings interact with the rest of society. Both are fun reads.

Grade: 4.25 stars