Shift by Rachel Vincent

Just when you think you know all there is to know, Rachel Vincent throws something completely out of left field. Her fifth novel in the shifters series, Shift, is an exciting addition with a lot of forward plot movement.

(Start from the beginning with the first book Stray.)

Being the first female werecat enforcer isn’t easy. Scars accumulate, but I’m stronger in so many ways.

As for my personal life? It’s complicated. Choices worth making always are. Ever since my brother’s death and my father’s impeachment, it’s all I can do to prevent more blood from spilling. Now our Pride is under attack by a flight of vicious thunderbirds. And making peace with our new enemies may be the only way to get the best of our old foe.

With the body count rising and treachery everywhere, my instincts tell me to look before I leap. But sometimes a leap of faith is the only real option…

It’s no secret that I love this series. The characters are strong, the world is believable and there is this tiny part inside of me that wishes I could be a werecat. In this book, Vincent throws a curveball — thunderbirds. I loved this idea of thunderbirds. I feel it’s something that’s original and hasn’t been played out. Their customs, actions and attitudes added a ton of tension and really amped up this book. It was a good choice on Vincent’s part. By including this other aspect (however unexpected), Vincent avoided creating a repeating plotline where all that ever happens is the packs ganging up on the south-central pack. Not to say that if that was the only thing that happened, it wouldn’t be good. I LOVE watching werecat politics, especially watching Faythe struggle to find loopholes to achieve the best possible outcome. Go girl!

The plot literally thickens when the truth comes out to Marc about what happened between Jace and Faythe in the most inconvenient, awful way. (That’s what you get for lying by omission all that time!) The anticipation of what would happen was killing me! I felt like Marc handled it in a very surprising but also legitimate way. Faythe’s admission to Marc about the underlying truth of the relationship between her and Jace was a shocker to me. It’s the ultimate love triangle! Who will she choose?

There is a lot of action in this novel which sometimes gets gruesome but it’s necessary to show the seriousness of the situation. War is imminent and the pack will fight. People will die, the consequences are grave, but it has to be done for the good of the pack. I loved this do or die mentality. It pushes the characters into uncomfortable situations where their true colors get to shine. There is no mercy in this book, Vincent created a story where good doesn’t always triumph evil right away. People get hurt; people get scarred.

My favorite part of this book is watching Faythe grow. She’s learning from her mistakes; she’s taking responsibility for her charges and the pack; and she’s going to do everything in her power, including giving up her own life, to keep them safe. I see the making of an Alpha here. It’s kind of corny, but I am so proud of her! I want her to succeed and to finally reach that point where she doesn’t just screw up but contributes to the pack for the better.

All in all, this was another wonderful installment in the world of Faythe Sanders. I want it to go on and on. Unfortunately, in my search for the next few books, it became clear that the next book, Alpha, is the last in the series. I am so sad right now. I don’t want to read it because I don’t want it to end, and if I know Vincent, it’ll go out with a bang. The implications of such a blowout could be disastrous to the pack, but either way I’m rooting for Faythe and the south-central pack. I can’t wait to see them finally get to kick some serious werecat ass!

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