Paperback, 2011, 282 pages
Published July 5th 2011
by Berkley Sensation
Series: Shifter Unbound, #1
Genre: Paranormal Romance
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 a beautiful attorney enters Shiftertown alone, Liam's alpha nature leaves him no choice but to offer his protection.
Tasked with defending a Shifter accused of murder, attorney Kim Fraser is completely out of her depth in the mysterious world of Shifters. To prove her client's innocence, Kim will need the help of someone on the inside, even though relying on Liam goes against everything society says about Shifters.
And when an un-Collared Shifter threatens both Kim and Liam, the young attorney will have to learn to trust her unlikely protector and face the passion she feels for a man who can't be tamed.
This book came to my attention years ago. But, like so many books, it went on my to be read list, and got overlooked for a while. Actually, it got overlooked for a long time. And every now and then I'd kick myself for not getting to this book because I'd heard so many wonderful things about this series.
Sadly, book one was a bit of a miss for me. The author has created a world with potential, and I liked the Morrissey men. I am admittedly curious to see if Sean finds his mate, and whether Dylan ends up with Glory, to see Conner grow up. The characterization is well done for the most part...but it did fall a little flat when it came to Kim, the heroine.
I just didn't really connect with her. She seemed a bit two dimensional to me, and I didn't see why she was doing everything sort of against her better judgement. Was it because she was beginning to emphathize with the Shifters? Was it because she was bonded to Liam? I just didn't get what made Kim tick, and that made a lot of this book fall flat for me. A lot of the scenes lacked the emotional intensity that can make or break a book for me. It was easier to connect with Liam, he was more charming, more alive somehow for me, but he also didn't seem as well fleshed out as he should have been in some ways.
The writing is clean, and the plot does a decent job of introducing Shifter society. But some key events seemed glossed over towards the end--considering Brian's case brought Liam and Kim together, I was expecting that the case would be more of the focal of this book, and it's not, which struck me as odd. However, the story was engaging enough to see me through to the end, and some of the supporting characters, as well as Liam's new position in the Shifter hierarchy, showed promise. Despite my disappointment with this first novel, I would consider reading book two in the series, and fully intend to give Jennifer Ashley's historical romances a try.