This is one of my favorite Urban Fantasy series on the market today. Kate is a kick-ass heroine and Curran is an even more of a badass hero. In this book, we have Kate and Curran traveling out of Atlanta to the edges of the Black Sea to mediate between three packs over the birthing of a set of twins (each twin has a different father from a different pack). They bring a large group from the Atlanta Pack with them, including Derek, Andrea, Raphael, Mahon, Doolittle and others who we just meet for the first time along with some other great favorites (I didn’t want to give even small spoilers here). Saiman is even brought along as the owner of the ship for travel (He is forced to do this as a favor he owes Kate. We learn how she earned this favor in a deleted scene at the end of the book). As payment, the Pack will receive over a year’s worth of supply of Panacea, an herbal/magical medicine that greatly reduces the risk of teenagers going loupe.
This book is a highly emotional rollercoaster. At the beginning, we see Julie’s best friend go loupe, where she is stuck halfway between man and beast. Both Julie’s reaction and the mother’s reactions are hard to read while keeping a dry eye. Curran has agreed to attend this meeting overseas to acquire a large supply of the medicine that can cure, not just Julie’s friend, but all the children in the pack.
When we arrive in this new land, there are a lot of surprises. There are some unexpected people in the gathering that different members of the Pack have known from their past (I know it’s vague, but I don’t want to give any spoilers). This doesn’t bode well for our little group. This also tests the loyalty of everyone to loved ones and the Pack itself. We see Kate in probably the most vulnerable position we have ever seen from her and she stands strong through it as only Kate can. This isn’t to say it wasn’t hard for her, just she fought her hardest to do what was required from her as the Consort to the Pack and the Beast Lord, without showing what was really going on inside her head. This is extremely hard for Kate, as she usually wears her emotions on her sleeve.
We also get to meet many new types of strange creatures in this new world. I’ve always loved how Ilona Andrews describes these new, never before seen types of creatures. They are always so descriptive and the way they are described always makes me laugh even as I’m terrified.
This book is one of the more emotional books I’ve read/listened to in a while. There are some areas where I was so upset either for someone or at someone. The ending is bittersweet to say the least. The narration was wonderful as well, which is to be expected since we have the wonderful Renee Raudman who has done all the Kate books up to this point. She does a great job portraying the anger and sadness that goes through Kate throughout the book. I saw that this book made the New York Times #1 bestseller for Mass Market Paperbacks and it is well deserved. This book has hit me harder than any other book in a long while. It will make you watery eyed in some places, make you laugh in others. You will also be cheering on Kate in some great fight scenes. I highly recommend it to all the Kate lovers out there. If you haven’t read this series, you need to start now.