by Andrea Cremer
RELEASED TOMORROW, OCTOBER 19TH!!!
Calla Tor has always known her destiny: After graduating from the Mountain School, she'll be the mate of sexy alpha wolf Ren Laroche and fight with him, side by side, ruling their pack and guarding sacred sites for the Keepers. But when she violates her masters' laws by saving a beautiful human boy out for a hike, Calla begins to question her fate, her existence, and the very essence of the world she has known. By following her heart, she might lose everything--including her own life. Is forbidden love worth the ultimate sacrifice?
Calla Tor is a werewolf, destined to become the female Alpha of the new pack and mate to Renier Laroche. She knows this, and has been planning for it her entire life. Not once has she questioned her future. That is, until Shay Doran comes along. When Shay wanders onto pack territory while hiking and is attacked by a bear, Calla knows she should just let nature take its course. Instead, she faces down the bear, feeds Shay some of her blood, and helps him back to his vehicle. Because of this one act of mercy, Calla's life will never be the same.
My cousin, bless her soul, lent me her ARC of Nightshade the last time we visited. I've been looking forward to reading this book since I first heard about it back in January, and my eyes just about bugged out of my head when they saw it sitting on her bookshelves. Needless to say, I had pretty high expectations for this book. Nightshade delivered all of that and more.
Calla is a strong female character with well-deserved confidence in herself and her abilities. She isn't afraid to stand up for what she believes in. She is loyal, compassionate, intelligent. And now she faces a choice: To continue down the path that has been carved out for her with Ren and the new pack, or to step out of her comfort zone with Shay. Ren has been quite the womanizer, something Calla resents, as she is not allowed to let her "pureness" be defiled in any way. Lately, with their pairing coming up, Ren has turned turned his behavior around, but Calla isn't sure if she buys it. Shay, on the other hand, wants Calla for who she is, not what she can deliver to him. He's human and, until recently, ignorant of all supernatural goings-on. His uncle, however, is a well-known figure within the paranormal community, and Calla can't figure out what he's doing with an adopted human kid. As Calla and Shay dig deeper into the mystery, the answers they discover only lead to more questions. Meanwhile, Calla is precariously balancing this love triangle between herself, Ren, and Shay. Both are realistic choices with both good and bad qualities. Cremer manages to pull off the typically cliché love triangle with panache.
I absolutely loved this book, and I promise you will too. Nightshade will in no way disappoint.
Nightshade is Andrea Cremer's first published novel. The rest of the Nightshade trilogy, Wolfsbane and Bloodrose, will be released in 2011 and 2012, respectively. Oh, and make sure you stop by Cremer's blog here. She has lots of good stuff on there, including links to all of Shay's videos.