Howling Moon Mass Market Paperback – Sep 30 2008
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Adams and Clamp reveal more of the laws and mores of the Sazi shape-shifters in their latest compelling romance. The leader of the Sazi shape-shifters, Chief Justice Charles Wingate, asks former Wolven agent Rafael Ramirez to take care of an extremely difficult situation. His goddaughter, Cat, has been bitten by psychopathic serial killer Jack Simpson, who also happens to be a U.S. senator. Sazi risk turning human if they are bitten, and that transformation is brutally painful. Cat, who watched helplessly as Simpson destroyed her parents, is tormented by his telepathic communications. But she survives the turning and become a jaguar shape-shifter, only to be rejected by the Boulder Sazi pack of wolf-shifters. Rafael, who is responsible for training her, reluctantly realizes she is his true mate. Then, after he becomes leader of the pack, he has to confront the wolf shape-shifters' prejudice against feline shape-shifters. When it comes to paranormal romance, nobody does it better than Adams and Clamp. Diana Tixier Herald
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
"It's only taken two books for the dynamic duo of Adams and Clamp to cement their position as premier authors of paranormal fiction. Gritty and unique, with amazingly Byzantine character development, this inside look at the unconventional world of shape-shifters is a page-turner in the truest sense."--Romantic Times BOOKreviews, 4 1/2 Stars, Top Pick, Gold Medal on Moon's Web
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Raphael has been assigned to a help a newly bitten leopard/cat to a new Sazi life. I still don't understand why a wolf would be teaching a cat and why try to merge her in a wolf pack as well. That was a badly written plot device. As was the heroine's name, "Catherine", now shortened to "Cat", makes me want to roll my eyes.
An old homicidal psychopath has been targeting women who look like the woman that he once loved. Cat is now caught in the crossfires because of her resmemblance and her resistance to his charms. While Raphael is training her to become a Sazi, Cat must be on guard all the time from the murderous killer and from antagonism of a wolf pack. On the other hand, Raphael, newly promoted Alpha of the wolf pack must bring pull reel in all the pack members is defiance. It's a trying time for both the hero and the heroine.
Unfortunately, everything about this story was either boring and confusing, and at some point I just started skimming to get it over with. I had a difficult time understanding the whole bonding thing, and back history. Psycho killer hates Raphael because the love of his life, Fiona, bonded to Raphael. Isn't Fiona mentioned in a previous book and already bonded to someone else? Now Raphael was either mated or bonded to the previous wolf Alpha, Lucas's wife, Tatya. Except Tatya left Raphael to marry the Alpha. Don't wolves mate for life? What caused 2 men to instantly want to bond w/ Cat, the heroine? Is bonding a pre-destined soul thing? If you bond to a person who doesn't bond back, can you still bond to another person? The whole thing just did not make sense. After the black mail evidence was taken care of, why wasn't a real assasin like Tony, used to off the bad guy? I'm still not certain why Raphael was forced to retire from Wolven force either.
Of all the Sazi books, this book is the worst in the series. I did not care for any of the characters, the plot, or the world of the wolf pack. Raphael as a tow truck business owner just doesn't cut as much of a romantic figure either. His powers of a secondary alpha didn't seem that impressive since the whole wolf pack ignored his orders and weren't really that afraid of his punishments. Despite killing his own pack members, no one was afraid of him. Not great alpha material in my opinion. The happily ever after ending was a little over the top as well. Does the only thing that make a man an alpha the ability to breed and change shape at will make him an alpha? Aren't wolves territorial? Does another pack using an alpha from outside seem realistic?
I would not recommend this book. Avoid this one if possible, as it doesn't really contribute anything to the overall Sazi world.
I think any reviewer would agree that the majority of this book was centered around plot...the romantic storyline was a tiny part of the story. I think these authors are talented, but need to be reclassified into a paranormal fiction category.
I loved the authors first book, which kept me dragging through this one. Wish I could get those hours of my life back!
In Howling Moon we are finally given the full story about Cat and Raphael. Their circumstances were alluded to in previous books Hunter's Moon and Moon's Web as having a strong impact on the Sazi world as a whole. Now we finally discover why...
Catherine "Cat" Turner's world is turned upside down when she is brutally attacked by a serial killer and turned into a were-jaguar. Her previously uneventful life now takes a drastic turn as she has to come to terms with her new animalistic appetites and desires, as well as the lingering affects of the brutal murders of her family and her own violent attack.
Raphael is a retired agent of Wolven, the Sazi secret police, as a result of a huge scandal several years ago. When he is called in to protect and teach Catherine by her Godfather, who is none other than leader of all the Sazi, Charles Wingate, he knows life is about to get very complicated. Raphael is a wolf and Cat a jaguar, two species that are bitter enemies. Add in that her attacker, Jack, is at the heart of Raphael's past scandal and circumstances are about to get very tense.
Amidst pack politics, societal threats by a madman, and ingrained prejudices between Sazi species Cat and Raphael form a bond that defies all expectations. As their love as mates grows they find their position in the pack even more precarious, until they are forced into a decision that will challenge the beliefs and minds of all Sazi.
In their most ambitious novel to date, C T Adams and Cathy Clamp give readers a chance to delve deeper into Sazi society with Howling Moon. The timeline is also longer than the usual novel in the series, as was necessary to really give Raphael and Cat's story the attention it deserved and needed. We are also given a stronger lesson in the laws of a pack society through Cat's lessons. As she discovers what her new life means, so do we the readers.
It is also fascinating to get in to the mind of a serial killer like readers will here. We see glimpses of Jack's thought processes through his mental link to Cat, which pops up in all sorts of situations. This adds an additional element of surprise to the story as no one ever knows when he'll put in an "appearance" and reveal more of himself to Cat. Through his mind link, Cat and Raphael find out more and more about Jack's plans and grow ever more desperate to put an end to his reign of terror.
I personally think that the love between Cat and Raphael is better and more intense than any of the other couples we've met thus far in the Sazi society. Just knowing how they came together and all the adversity they had to face makes their bond that much more powerful. I cried many tears over the pack's treatment of the couple. As times grow tenser and a decision is forced, my heart was so strongly bound up in the story I wanted to scream and shout and cheer Cat and Raphael on in their passionate relationship.
Now all that said, and as much as I loved this foray into Sazi life, there are a couple things that need mentioned. Due to the circumstances in Howling Moon, there is a ton of information about pack laws and hierarchy that must be relayed to Cat, and in turn, the readers. Though I completely understood the need for these crucial details, they did cause some confusion, due to information overload more than anything. I found I had to go back to previous chapters several times to try to remember what I learned. Sometimes the action gets bogged down by the details. Also, having read Hunter's Moon and Moon's Web a while back, when they were first published I sometimes had a hard time remembering the connections between the supporting players.
On the flip side, we get much of the back story of the Sazi in Howling Moon and it helped to explain more clearly events and relationships we were introduced in previous novels in the series. This is not a quick read as it takes time to process all the data, but that makes the novel no less compelling and action-packed. Howling Moon is definitely a character-driven story and is very heart-wrenching. You will laugh, cry, rage and scream along with Raphael and Cat, and their loved ones and enemies. Be prepared to run the full range of emotions when reading Howling Moon. You won't be disappointed.
© Kelley A. Hartsell, December 2006. All rights reserved.