Shifter by Alma Alexander
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
In a world where Were and Not-Were live in a fragile balance, an abandoned were-child must make his way alone, figuring out who and what he is, risking his life to find friends and something of a family. The themes of brotherly love and loyalty make this compelling and exciting.
While this is book three of the series, following Random and Wolf, the world is sufficiently developed for the book to stand alone. The first-person narrator learns about himself and his world, so the reader is taken along for the ride—and it is quite a ride.
I enjoyed the narration, the character’s perceptions and understanding of how he came to be and why he is in the situation where he finds himself. This is a fresh take on what a world with were-folk and humans living together might look like in a modern day world.
There are several places where the story jumps over several years, summarized succinctly to get to the next place in the story, some of which I found a bit rushed and disconcerting. There are also sidebar chapters that explain some background as part of the information that the character has compiled in his research. While this was interesting, it also stopped the story, and I was tempted to skip over it.
Overall the story and the characters kept my interest, and I found all of them believable, and the conflicts of the story well-grounded in the setting. I wanted all the characters to succeed and to make their way into the kind of life that they wanted to have, despite all odds against them. There are more stories here to tell, but the ending of this was satisfying and well designed.
I received a copy of this book for an honest review.
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