Collared and controlled, Shifters are outcast from humanity, forced to live in Shiftertowns. But waiting within are passions that no collar can contain…
Like most Shifters, Liam Morrissey has learned that trusting humans leads to no good. But when beautiful attorney Kim Fraser enters Shiftertown alone in order to prove her client’s innocence, Liam’s alpha nature leaves him no choice but to offer his protection.
by Jennifer Ashley
Shifters Unbound #1
April 26, 2010
It only took me four months to finally read this from my to be read stack of books, and I am kicking myself for waiting even that long! So now I know I have started something, and I need to continue with this series soon, as in really soon.
Kim is an attorney for a big law firm, and has taken on a big cat shifter client, one that is going to be on trial for murder of his human girlfriend. She decides since he won’t tell her anything helpful, that she will go to Shiftertown and speak to the man’s mother. Sounds simple-not even close. When she gets there, she encounters Liam, an Irish shifter. Meeting him changes everything for Kim.
In this author’s world building, humans learned about shifters twenty years previous to this. In order to live with them, humans collar them. Literally. The collar reacts anytime a shifter gets extremely mad or aggressive and shocks them into stopping. The shifters hate the collar but submit to it for the betterment of the shifter community. Without the collar, ferals(as they are called)are pretty much out of control and kill indiscriminately. Shifters are also segregated in shiftertown communities in areas that human’s don’t live. I found this premise to be unique and refreshing for a shifter book. I certainly don’t read a lot of books where shifters are anything but dominant over humans.
Characters. I absolutely loved Kim and Liam’s journey together-insta love and all-at least on Liam’s part. It didn’t matter one bit because the chemistry between these two characters was off the charts, the conversations were easy and real between the two, and the adoring way Liam treats her from the beginning was nothing short of amazing. Kim was feisty, smart and determined, Liam was loving, dominate, strong, and loved by all his clan. These two made this read for me, and in addition, there are a lot of side characters that I found were just as fleshed out, and I can’t wait to see if some of them have their own books.
Of course there is much more to this story. Not only the mystery of Kim’s client and whether he is guilty or not, but all kinds of pack politics and hierarchy are explored. Prejudice against the shifters, and what they go through because of this was reminiscent of another period in American history, and how African Americans were segregated. I am not sure if that was the authors intent, but my mind went there early on while reading this. It just added another dimension to this read for me.
This was a can’t put down read for me, and I pretty much read it in one day. It was just that good. I recommend it to adult paranormal romance readers, and I think even some urban fantasy fans might find a lot to like about this read as well, due to plenty of action and violence. Definitely a top read for me.
The review copy of Pride Mates was purchased by the reviewer.
ABOUT JENNIFER ASHLEY
New York Times and USA Today Bestselling author Jennifer Ashley writes historical and paranormal romance as Jennifer Ashley; paranormal romance and urban fantasy as Allyson James; and mysteries as Ashley Gardner. Jennifer’s novels have won RWA’s RITA and RT Reviewer’s Choice awards among others.
For information on all her novels visit http://www.jennifersromances.com. Also see http://www.gardnermysteries.com (Ashley Gardner) and http://www.allysonjames.com (Allyson James) for her other works.