I am currently reading my way through a long list of science fiction and fantasy titles. (http://www.npr.org/2011/08/07/138938145/science-fiction-and-fantasy-finalists if you are interested in the list).
Mechanic Mercy Thompson can shift her shape - but not her loyalty. When her former boss and mentor is arrested for murder and left to rot behind bars by his own kind, it's up to Mercy to clear his name, whether he wants her to or not.
Mercy's loyalty is under pressure from other directions, too. Werewolves are not known for their patience, and if Mercy can't decide between the two she cares for, Sam and Adam may make the choice for her...
Stefan! Where are you??? Seriously, he is MIA in <i>Iron Kissed</i>. Bloody vampires, they think they have all the time in the world….
One of the things that I appreciate about Mercy Thompson is her loyalty to her friends. And she has to be very loyal indeed to make her way through this third installment of the tale, because everyone seems to be trying pretty hard to convince her not to trust them anymore.
She takes a big risk to fulfill her obligation to the Fae and what do they do? Make her life miserable! Even her mechanical mentor Zee is reportedly saying nasty things from the jail cell that he has ended up in. Despite the fact that she is trying to exonerate him and the rest of the Fae seem to be willing to let him take the fall.
Plus, the werewolves are behaving like werewolves (i.e. bossy, pushy, insistent) when maybe they ought to just tone it down a notch. There’s a reason that Mercy is such a tough cookie, and it’s from dealing with them for her whole life. At least by book’s end, it seems that Mercy has made a choice between Adam and Sam, and it seems well reasoned and sound.
Mercy needs some women friends in the worst possible way. Much as I love Kyle and Warren, they just can’t replace what female friends have to offer—people to talk to, no holds barred, about the things that are bothering you, not trying to fix, just to listen while your sort it out for yourself by trying to explain it to a trusted other. As strong as Mercy is, she could be even stronger with a woman or two on her side.