Frost Burned (Mercy Thompson, #7) - Lorelei King, Patricia Briggs Could this be Mercy’s new gold sheep necklace? The original one can be found at www.maxandchloe.com - however, not with the emerald for the sheep’s eye; I added that.

★★★★★ (This is a review of the audiobook.) [a:Lorelei King|334840|Lorelei King|http://d.gr-assets.com/authors/1299935946p2/334840.jpg] delivers her best narration yet in the seventh installment of the Mercy Thompson series. It is like she’s right there with all of us adoring fans of these novels, and is just as enthusiastic to find out what happens next to our little coyote - and her world - as we are. This makes for great pacing in her reading.

There are many returning characters this time around and, therefore, many voices. (As Sara in GoodReads’ Who’s Your Author? group said, it is like a Reunion Special!) Ms. King keeps them all straight and seems to kick them up a notch, too. Werewolves, vamps, ghosts, feys, humans, whatever. Or maybe that is just because the book is so great! I’ve said it before, but it bears repeating: I love her Italian accent for Stefan (a vampire); it has kind of an “I want to drink your blood…” cadence to it, but Ms. King totally gets away with it.

I’ve also said in the past that Ms. Biggs writing is simple, but that doesn’t really convey her talent. I don’t mean bland, as she is far removed from that boring fare. I mean she doesn’t have a lot of superfluous words in her books. Some authors sound like they are writing with at thesaurus open beside them at all times. She’s all about the story - and she knows how to deliver an excellent one. Plus, she loves to slip in a vital little tidbit of information when you least expect it, so you’d best pay attention.

Ms. Briggs gets her point – and her plot - across in an economically elegant style. For example, when a certain someone apologies:
“Hell must have been experiencing some climate change.”
See? No fluff or $64 words, but you know it is a momentous occasion because of the characters’ history. Still, she does throw in a high-rent word here and there, like at this point:
“You will eat this and go to sleep, so your pronouns get their antecedents back.”
Nevertheless, there is one scene, which had me cracking up:
“Obstreperous, ‘huh,” said Tad. “I see you’ve been using that Big Word of the Day calendar I got you last Christmas.”

“That is irrefragable,” I told him solemnly.
Of course, there is also a lot happening: Eep! The wolf pack has been kidnapped! Is it just political? A consequence of the cliffhanger at the end of Fair Game - third in the Alpha & Omega series? Or something else entirely? There are several nice twists, which put me on the edge of my seat throughout.

Despite the seriousness of the situation, there seems to be more humor in this one, if I’m not mistaken, and it is pitch-perfect, although some of it I’m afraid the younger generation might not get: In the opening chapter? With the car Mercy is driving (her VW Rabbit), Jesse’s question (don’t want to spoil it for you), and the whole “rabbit died” connotation? That was just too, too clever! LOL!

Yes, Ms. Biggs is so smart. I wasn’t a “Team Adam” member when Mercy had a choice between him and another, but we actually get a couple of chapters with his thought-processes; he has completely won me over. He remains his über-alpha male self, leader of his wolf pack; however, we get the added treat of finding out what is going on in his handsome head and earnest heart. It is neat to discover his thoughts on his brave little coyote mate, his deep love for her, his need to protect.

All in all, I can’t recommend this one enough. Mercy is not only a clever, kick-ass heroine; she is brave, loyal, compassionate, and filled with common sense, plus her own brand of magic.

P.S. If you don’t read Urban Fantasy, this is the series with which to start. Before you know it, you’ll be drawn into Ms. Briggs’ world. Do you need to read Alpha & Omega series along with this one? No. But, you’ll have a deeper, more rewarding reading experience, if that one is read, too. Luckily, http://www.hurog.com/* has a neat visual timeline for the reading order of these two wonderful series.

*Be sure to scroll down to see it.