Fair Game by Patricia Briggs (Alpha & Omega #3)
March 6, 2012
Reviewed by Mandi
I love this urban fantasy world Patricia Briggs has created. She has expanded it over two series, her Mercy Thompson series and this one, Alpha & Omega. In this series we explore the complex relationship of Charles and Anna. Charles is the only known born werewolf, and son of the Marrock (Alpha of ALL werewolves of North America, Bran). Anna is an Omega, a wolf that can calm the fiercest of tempers and is also strong enough to look the Marrock in the eye. Of course, her human appearance makes her look like a fragile woman, but don’t be fooled.
In Fair Game, book three, Patricia Briggs continues to explore the dynamics between this very alpha, serious and quiet wolf Charles and his stubborn wife. Charles is the Marrok’s punisher for lack of a better word. Recently, werewolves outted themselves to the public and it is all about keeping a positive spin with the public. Patricia Briggs writes her werewolves to be very carnal in nature. While they can assimilate with the general public, they have a very violent edge and it doesn’t take much for them to eat someone. Trying to keep the peace, Bran sends Charles out to kill those wolves who have stepped over their boundaries. Which means Charles is killing many and it is starting to weigh him down. I love how Briggs presents it to the readers as well. You flip-flop by wondering if Bran is using his son to do all his dirty work, or if he really has no one else to send out. Bran can’t send out other alphas, fearing they couldn’t handle it and the older wolves already carry around too much and they would go insane.
Charles has the ghosts of his previous kills lurking around him. They talk to him, scare him, and he is terrified if he acknowledges them too much, they will take control of him an eventually harm his wife. So he keeps this pain and torment hidden from her. Anna knows something is wrong with Charles and after she begs Bran to help, and he stubbornly says no, she is at a loss for what to do.
Brother Wolf, also has a big role in this book. Brother wolf is Charles’s wolf, who has his own personality. There are kind of two people living inside of Charles, Charles and Brother Wolf. They both love Anna, but sometimes they disagree with each other. It is fascinating how Briggs writes it.
Bran does come up with a somewhat temporary solution for him. There have been a string of murders in the Boston area involving werewolves. The FBI are desperate to catch this serial killer, and have given into the fact they might need a werewolf to give them some insight. With Adam Hauptmann home helping Mercy recover (awww!) Bran sends Anna and Charles to Boston. When a powerful Fae’s daughter becomes the next victim, Charles and Anna stick around until they can bring justice.
Fair Game gives us many great things. First we get a super creepy string of murders that must be solved. We are introduced to some new characters like Leslie with the FBI and Isaac, alpha of the Boston wolves, both who I really enjoyed meeting. I think the plot in this one regarding the murders is one of the more stronger ones I have read in this series and in Briggs’ Mercy books.
Besides that drama, we get lots of conflict between Charles and Anna. Charles is so stoic and quiet, and protective over his mate, that he has this huge internal struggle going on. He can’t let go of the ghosts that he has killed, and it is completely wrecking him. Being stubborn, he refuses to let Anna in on what is going on with him, although she knows something is up. They haven’t touched each other for weeks. Anna slowly works her magic but it is a long and serious struggle for Charles.
As I said above, I LOVE how Briggs writes her wolves. They are decent humans, but can be so violent at the snap of your fingers. They are killers first. And I love it. Their political maneuverings are so interesting to me as well. And with Bran in the background pulling the strings, I seriously can’t get enough of this world. So well built.
The end sets up something big. BIG. I’m so excited to read the next book to see where this all goes. Definitely a series that I think should be read in order. If I had to think of a complaint, it would be that I want more Bran. I’m a Bran hussy and I have no shame in it.
**Today, I have a brand new, signed copy of the anthology, On the Prowl to giveaway. Patricia Brigg’s novella in this one introduces you to this wonderful world. To enter, just leave a comment. Open to US/Canada through March 4th.