Dead Heat by Patricia Briggs

Dead Heat by Patricia Briggs

Praised as “the perfect blend of action, romance, suspense and paranormal” (Rex Robot Reviews), the Alpha and Omega novels transport listeners into the realm of the werewolf, where Charles Cornick and Anna Latham embody opposite sides of the shifter personality. Now a pleasure trip drops the couple into the middle of some bad supernatural business….

For once, mated werewolves Charles and Anna are not traveling because of Charles’ role as his father’s enforcer. This time their trip to Arizona is purely personal, as Charles plans to buy Anna a horse for her birthday. Or at least it starts out that way….

Charles and Anna soon discover that a dangerous Fae being is on the loose, replacing human children with simulacrums. The Fae’s cold war with humanity is about to heat up – and Charles and Anna are in the cross fire.

Dead Heat by Patricia Briggs

Patricia Briggs is one of my absolute favourite authors. I’ve given her books five stars more often than not. And everyone is raving about the brilliance of Dead Heat.

But… I didn’t really like it. In fact I was bored and stopped a few times to read other books, then stopped again at the 90% mark, only picking it up weeks later to finally finish it. Too many bloody horses!

The Alpha and Omega series began with (I swear!) the best novella ever written. Charles and Anna were one of the most fascinating couples I had ever read about. The books that followed expanded on the brilliant world of werewolves and magic Briggs had created in her other brilliant series: Mercy Thompson.

I suppose I had to not love one of these books at some point, but what baffles me is that everyone else loves it so much.

My issues began right at the start, when it turns out Anna wants to have a baby. The #1 thing I dislike in paranormal books featuring immortal characters is when they want babies five minutes after meeting their mate. Worse, the world of this series established that female werewolves can’t have children, and I really disliked that the absolutes of the world were being messed with.

Not every woman needs babies to be “complete”.

My other issues came in soon after. Firstly, the fact a whole new cast of characters was introduced. So far into a series, and I found it a little hard to care. I’d rather have spent time with Charles’ father and brother instead of them being away in another state for the entire book.

There was also the horse thing. I’m glad to see an author who knows her stuff, but even for someone who was horse-mad as a child, the nonstop scenes about horses and horse-riding and horse shows and horse breeding bored me so much I lost track of the plot.

What Briggs is best at is being able to create a magical world you believe in, because her characters are nuanced and the events she conjures shocking and fascinating. There was still a bit of this going on in Dead Heat, but it was in the background. I read this series for the pack dynamics and the politics of this magical world. I don’t read it for ponies and babies.

2 thoughts on “Dead Heat by Patricia Briggs

  1. Yes! I’m so glad to see someone else who wasn’t completely in love with this book. The “I need to have a baby” thing turned me off as well. So did all the constant horse talk.

    Briggs already has the next book in this series slated, which makes me worried. I was kind of hoping this would be the last one. I have the feeling that the next book will be all about a baby.

    1. Hmm. I think I should probably not continue with this series. I bet you’re correct with your predictions, and I’d rather have my nice memories from the earlier books than go through all of that!

      I’m really not understanding why there weren’t more people who found the themes to be problematic. Maybe because we always expect her books to be fantastic…?

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