Mercy gets hurt/nearly dies and still manages to save the day.
This installment probably wasn't the strongest in the series but I think I enjoyed it more than some of the earlier ones. However, I don't feel compelled to devour these books as I do with Kim Harrison's Hollows series, or Ilona Andrews's Kate Daniels series or even LKH's Anita Blake series before Anita ...well you know:
That being said I think this is a good starter series for someone who hasn't read much PNR/UF. I like that Mercy is mixed heritage, doesn't wear leather (not that there is anything wrong with leather), or is excessively proud/arrogant. She isn't the girl every guy wants to hop into bed with the minute they meet ( looking at you Anita Blake/ Sookie Stackhouse). Some people may find her too average to be a UF lead but Mercy has just enough chutzpah for a UF heroine. She is who I think I would be like if I had some form of supernatural power. Yes this series is formulaic but really aren't most series. There's comfort in knowing what to expect but at the same time enjoying it when things don't turn out like you expected.
Recently, I've had to rethink my reading philosophy. Sometimes in my search for those 5 stars holy grail stories, I miss alot of precious 3 star gems that would make lovely earrings. I asked myself what I really, truly wanted from my reading experience. My answer simply put is to finish a book and not be disappointed.
Do I have to be blown away every time I finish a book? Not at all. I just want to be able to say I like this story or I like this character. I don't think that's asking for alot and the Mercy Thompson series has delivered.