Title: Hunting Ground
Series: Alpha & Omega #2
Author: Patricia Briggs
SummaryThe Marrok has decided that the time has come for the werewolves to reveal their existence to the rest of the world; it is only a matter of time before technology proves their existence, and some of the wrong people already know that werewolves are real. But before this happens, Bran has arranged a meeting in Seattle for all of the European Alphas where they can express their concerns and receive assurance that the Marrok will aid all of the wolves in any way he can.
When Charles has the bad feeling that things will go horribly wrong if Bran attends the conference, Bran concedes by sending the newly mated (and married) Charles and Anna in his stead. Though this eases Charles' feelings of dread, his and Anna's presence also causes more problems. Not all of the werewolves are happy about the big reveal and Charles, for all that he is his father's hitman, is not the authority and many of the Alphas do not respect him as they would his father. Anna is still not comfortable around dominant, male werewolves, and a conference full of them is not the best place for her. And though their mate bond has finally settled in, there are still many aspects of their relationship that both Anna and Charles are still learning to navigate. Add in a group of vampires using pack magic to attack werewolves, and Charles and Anna have their work cut out for them.
My ImpressionI loved this book. I still love Anna and Charles, and though their relationship seems to be moving pretty fast (after all, they are now mated and married), their problems are far from over. Their human sides are still learning how to navigate their relationship and how to read the other person. Charles still has his need to close himself off and his fear that Anna will run any time she sees the killer in him, while Anna still has to call on her wolf during intimate moments and is still learning what it means to be an Omega. And all of these problems are offset by their love and protectiveness of each other.
I also really enjoyed the expansion of Briggs' werewolf sociology. It's the first time we get to see werewolves from outside the United States and how their governing structure varies from the Marrok's rule. There is also further development of the varying personalities of werewolves and what it means to be a good vs. bad dominant. I also liked seeing another pack from the United States, as well as seeing Moira and Tom, the werewolves from "Seeing Eye".
Another thing I liked about this book is the use of Arthurian legend. I love mythology and folklore, so I really liked seeing how King Arthur is discussed in relation to werewolves and the fae. However, the book keeps the reference simple and explains most of the relevant details, so you don't need to be an expert on King Arthur in order to appreciate or understand the reference.
Something I would have liked to see more of in this book is the Emerald City Pack. I really liked Angus, the Alpha, and I want to know more about how his pack is run, as well as more about Tom, Moira, and Alan (the doctor and submissive of the pack).