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Iron Kissed : Mercy Thompson Series : Book 3  - Patricia Briggs

Iron Kissed

Mercy Thompson Series : Book 3

Paperback

Published: 1st October 2011
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It wasn't hard to follow the scent of blood to the living room where the fae had been killed.

It had been a violent death, perfect for creating ghosts.

Mercy Thompson enjoys life as a mechanic, but life is never simple given her increasing closeness to the local werewolf pack, and her ability to change into coyote form at will. And when a member of the fae community calls in a favour, needing her skills for a covert murder investigation, she jumps into the hunt.

But the dangers multiply and she clashes with shadowed creatures of great power. When her old boss Zee is charged with a brutal assassination, Mercy find herself fighting alone. There are those who love her, who would keep her safe, but she is wary and holds her freedom precious.

Until, that is, she has nothing left to lose but her life ...

About the Author

Patricia Briggs graduated from Montana State University with degrees in history and German. She worked for a while as a substitute teacher but now writes full-time. Patricia Briggs lives in the Pacific Northwest.

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Iron Kissed
 
5.0

(based on 1 review)

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5.0

Great compelling read

By Cat

from Healesville

About Me Everyday Reader

Verified Buyer

Pros

  • Compelling Characters
  • Deserves Multiple Readings
  • Takes You To Another World
  • Well Written

Cons

    Best Uses

      Comments about Iron Kissed:

      Once I read one from the Mercy series, I had to read them all and each one was as compelling as the one before.

      Comment on this review

      Plenty of Twists and turns . . . Kept me entertained from its deceptively innocent beginning to its can't -put-it-down end [Kim Harrison, bestselling author of Dead Witch Walking] Brigg's third novel featuring [Mercy] Thompson (after Blood Bound) is another top-notch paranormal mystery; her well-balanced contemporary world, where humans live uneasily among werewolves and fae, is still a believably lived-in world; the ever-present [Publishers Weekly]

      Chapter 1

      "A cowboy, a lawyer and a mechanic watched Queen of the Damned," I murmured.

      Warren -- who had once, a long time ago, been a cowboy -- snickered and wiggled his bare feet. "It could be the beginning of either a bad joke or a horror story."

      "No," said Kyle the lawyer, whose gorgeous head was propped up on my thigh. "If you want a horror story you have to start out with a werewolf, his gorgeous lover and a walker . . ."

      Warren, the werewolf, laughed and shook his head. "Too confusing. Not many people still remember what a walker is."

      Mostly they just confused us with Skinwalkers. Since walkers and Skinwalkers are both Native American magical creatures, I can sort of understand it. Especially since I'm pretty sure the walker label came from some dumb white person who couldn't tell the difference.

      But I'm not a Skinwalker. First of all, I'm from the wrong tribe. My father had been Blackfoot, from a northern Montana tribe and Skinwalkers came from the southwestern tribes, mostly Hopi or Navajo.

      Secondly, Skinwalkers have to wear the skin of the animal they change into, usually a coyote or wolf, but they cannot change their eyes. They are evil mages who bring disease and death wherever they go.

      When I change into a coyote, I don't need a skin or -- I glanced down at Warren, once a cowboy and now a werewolf -- the moon. When I am a coyote, I look just like every other coyote. Pretty much harmless, really, as far down the power scale of the magical critters that lived in the state of Washington as it was possible to get. Which is one of the things that used to help keep me safe. I just wasn't worth bothering about. That had been changing over the past year. Not that I'd grown anymore powerful, but I'd started doing things that drew attention. When the vampires figured out that I'd killed not one, but two of their own . . .

      As if called by my thoughts, a vampire walked across the screen of the TV, a TV so big it wouldn't have fit in my trailer's living room. The vampire was topless and his pants clung inches below his sexy hipbones.

      I resented the shiver of fear that surged through my body. Funny how killing them had only made the vampires more frightening. I dreamed of vampires crawling out of holes in the floor and whispering to me from shadows. I dreamed of the feel of the stake sliding through flesh and fangs digging into my arm.

      If it had been Warren with his head on my lap instead of Kyle, he would have noticed my reaction. But Warren was stretched out on the floor and firmly focused on the screen.

      "You know," I snuggled deeper into the obscenely comfortable leather couch in the upstairs TV room of Kyle's huge house and tried to sound casual, "I wondered why Kyle picked this movie. Somehow I didn't think there would be quite so many bare manly chests in a movie called Queen of the Damned."

      Warren snickered, ate a handful of popcorn from the bowl on his flat stomach, then said with more than a hint of a Texas drawl in his rough voice, "You expected more naked women and fewer half-clothed men, did you, Mercy? You oughtta know Kyle better than that." He laughed quietly again and pointed at the screen. "Hey, I didn't think vampires were immune to gravity. Have you ever seen one dangle from the ceiling?"

      I shook my head and watched as the vampire dropped on top of his two groupie victims. "I wouldn't put it past them, though. I haven't seen them eat people yet either. Ick."

      "Shut up. I like this movie," Kyle, the lawyer, defended his choice. "Lots of pretty boys writhing in sheets and running around with low cut pants and no shirts. I thought you might enjoy it, too, Mercy."

      I looked down at him -- every lovely, solar-flexed inch of him -- and thought that he was more interesting than any of the pretty men on the screen, more real.

      In appearance he was almost a stereotype of a gay man, from the hair gel in his weekly-cut dark brown hair to the tastefully expensive clothes he wore. If people weren't careful, they missed the sharp intelligence that hid beneath the pretty exterior. Which was, because it was Kyle, the most of the point of all the facade.

      "This really isn't bad enough for bad movie night," Kyle continued, not worried about interrupting the movie: none of us were watching it for its scintillating dialogue. "I'd have gotten Blade III, but, oddly enough, it was already checked out."

      "Any movie with Wesley Snipes is worth watching, even if you have to turn off the sound." I twisted and bent so I could snitch a handful of popcorn from Warren's bowl. He was too thin still; that and a limp were reminders that only a month ago he'd been so badly hurt I'd thought he would die. Werewolves are tough, bless ‘em, or we'd have lost him to a demon bearing vampire. That one had been the first vampire I'd killed -- with the full knowledge and permission of the local vampire mistress. That she hadn't actually intended me to kill him didn't negate that I'd done it with her blessing. She couldn't do anything to me for his death -- and she didn't know I was responsible for the other.

      "As long as he's not dressed in drag," drawled Warren.

      Kyle snorted agreement. "Wesley Snipes may be a beautiful man, but he makes a butt-ugly woman."

      "Hey," I objected, pulling my mind back to the conversation. "To Wong Foo was a good movie." We'd watched it last week at my house.

      A faint buzzing noise drifted up the stairs and Kyle rolled off the couch and onto his feet in a graceful, dance-like move that was wasted on Warren who was still focused on the movie, though his grin probably wasn't the reaction the movie makers had intended for their bloodfest scene. My feelings were much more in line with the desired result. It was all to easy to imagine myself as the victim.

      "Brownies are done, my sweets," said Kyle. "Anyone want something more to drink?"

      "No, thank you." It was just make-believe, I thought, watching the vampire feed.

      "Warren?"

      His name finally drew Warren's gaze off the TV screen. "Water would be nice."

      Warren wasn't as pretty as Kyle, but he had the rugged-man look down pat. He watched Kyle walk down the stairs with hungry eyes.

      I smiled to myself. It was good to see Warren happy at last. But the eyes he turned to me as soon as Kyle was out of sight were serious. He used the remote to raise the volume, then sat up and faced me, knowing Kyle wouldn't hear us over the movie.

      "You need to choose," he told me intently. "Adam or Samuel or neither. But you can't keep them dangling."

      Adam was the Alpha of the local werewolf pack, my neighbor, and sometimes my date. Samuel was my first love, my first heartbreak, and currently my roommate. Just my roommate -- though he'd like to be more.

      I didn't trust either of them. Samuel's easy-going exterior masked a patient and ruthless predator. And Adam . . . well, Adam just flat scared me. And I was very much afraid that I loved them both.

      "I know."

      Warren dropped his eyes from mine, a sure sign he was uncomfortable. "I didn't brush my teeth with gunpowder this morning so I could go shooting my mouth off, Mercy, but this is serious. I know it's been difficult, but you can't have two dominant werewolves after the same woman without bloodshed. I don't know any other wolves who could have allowed you as much leeway as they have, but one of them is going to break soon."

      My cell phone began playing "The Baby Elephant March". I dug it out of my hip pocket and looked at the caller ID.

      "I believe you," I told Warren. "I just don't know what to do about any of it." There was more wrong with Samuel than undying love of me, but that was between him and me and none of Warren's business. And Adam . . . for the first time I wondered if it wouldn't just be easier if I pulled up stakes and moved.

      The phone continued to sing.

      "It's Zee," I said. "I have to take this."

      Zee was my former boss and mentor. He'd taught how to rebuild an engine from the ground up -- and he'd given me the means to kill the vampires responsible for Warren's limp and the nightmares that were leaving fine lines around his eyes. I figured that gave Zee the right to interrupt Friday Night at the Movies.

      "Just think about it."

      I gave him a faint smile and flipped open my phone. "Hey, Zee."

      There was a pause on the other end. "Mercedes," he said, and not even his thick German accent could disguise the hesitant tone of his voice. Something was wrong.

      "What do you need?" I asked, sitting up straighter and putting my feet on the floor. "Warren's here," I added so Zee would know we had an audience. Werewolves make having a private conversation difficult.

      "Would you drive out to the reservation with me?"

      He could have been speaking of the Umatilla Reservation, which was a short drive from the Tri-Cities. But it was Zee, so he was talking about the Ronald Reagan Fae Reservation just this side of Walla Walla, better known around here as Fairyland.

      "Now?" I asked.

      Besides . . . I glanced at the vampire on the big-screen TV. They hadn't gotten it quite right, hadn't captured the real evil -- but it was too close for comfort anyway. Somehow I couldn't work up too much sorrow at missing the rest of the movie -- or more conversation about my love life, either.

      "No," Zee groused irritably. "Next week. Jetzt. Of course, now. Where are you? I will pick you up."

      "Do you know where Kyle's house is?" I asked.

      "Kyle?"

      "Warren's boyfriend." Zee knew Warren; I hadn't realized he hadn't met Kyle. "We're out in the hills of West Richland."

      "Give me the address. I will find it."
      Patricia Briggs

      Patricia Briggs was born in Butte, Montana to a children’s librarian who passed on to her kids a love of reading and books. Patricia grew up reading fairy tales and books about horses, and later developed an interest in folklore and history.When she decided to write a book of her own, a fantasy book seemed a natural choice. Patricia graduated from Montana State University with degrees in history and German and she worked for a while as a substitute teacher.

      Currently, she lives in Montana with her husband, children and six horses and writes full-time, much to the delight of her fans.

      Visit Patricia Briggs's Booktopia Author Page


      ISBN: 9781841496856
      ISBN-10: 1841496855
      Series: Mercy Thompson
      Audience: General
      Format: Paperback
      Language: English
      Number Of Pages: 307
      Published: 1st October 2011
      Publisher: Little, Brown Book Group
      Dimensions (cm): 12.5 x 17.7  x 2.0
      Weight (kg): 0.16
      Edition Number: 1