So, a few weeks ago, word started to trickle through from different commenters that they had gotten their hands on a great new book from Anne Bishop, Written in Red. People like Charry said that they couldn’t put it down. I have been trying to be good, and for some reason I had skipped right over this one, but all of the positive response made me take a second look. It arrived yesterday…and I finished it last night. And it really is a great book. It gave me a Kate Daniels vibe – not in terms of storyline, but in terms of tone and world-building. Be warned, though, that these “Others” are not your usual paranormal characters – they bite, and they enjoy it. If you need more convincing, Doug Meeks did up a review that can say how great this book is better than I can…
Written In Red
(A Novel of the Others)
As a cassandra sangue, or blood prophet, Meg Corbyn can see the future when her skin is cut—a gift that feels more like a curse. Meg’s Controller keeps her enslaved so he can have full access to her visions. But when she escapes, the only safe place Meg can hide is at the Lakeside Courtyard—a business district operated by the Others.
Shape-shifter Simon Wolfgard is reluctant to hire the stranger who inquires about the Human Liaison job. First, he senses she’s keeping a secret, and second, she doesn’t smell like human prey. Yet a stronger instinct propels him to give Meg the job. And when he learns the truth about Meg and that she’s wanted by the government, he’ll have to decide if she’s worth the fight between humans and the Others that will surely follow.
Meg Corbyn is a blood prophet but while that is a part of the story it is not THE story. This is a novel of multiple plots all taking place at the same time, the motivations of the individuals are myriad and the interactions are unlike most any other UF/PNR you have read.
Simon is an “Other” and what that means in this world is that he is NOT human and is not sensitive and misunderstood and there is no MINE moment at all in this story. Be aware, the wolves in this story will eat humans if they are provoked and I have not seen one looking for a mate ….yet.
Meg was considered “property” of some unseen entity (we assume human) and she represents thousands possibly millions of dollars to him with her prophetic powers. What this means is that getting her back becomes paramount to the story and the amounts of money are enough to motivate people to cross the “others” which has always been a very, VERY bad idea.
The “others” are the predominate race on the planet BUT the humans seem to forget or are unaware of that fact …… and that is going to cost them …a LOT.
The thing that separates this story from almost all others is partly the world Anne Bishop has created but it is a large part of how Meg who has no real personality manages to befriend these non-humans and the growing relations ships that form.
I can’t delve too deep into this story in a review without giving away a lot of information best discovered while reading the pages of this book. Suffice it to say that of the books I have read in the last year (20oish I would guess), this will be in the Top 10 if not the Top 5. It really is THAT good and if she was not writing a series, she could have added a few more chapters and ended this as an epic stand alone novel. There is no cliffhanger, it has an ending and leaves a few threads hanging that will build in the next book but this opener will be hard to top in the “can’t sleep until I finish this book” category.
Saying I rate this book 5 Stars is almost an understatement since it was so good. Get this book, steal it if ya have to but you don’t want to miss this one.
Who else loved this one? Can’t wait to get my hands on the next story, either. There is a ton of potential for great stories from this world, and I look forward to seeing where it will go.