Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Stray By Rachel Vincent

Stray (Shifters Book 1)

Rachel Vincent
Paperback 618 pgs

Amazon's blurb -

Vincent's debut, an urban werecat fantasy, is a good story that suffers from about 200 pages of bloat. Faythe Sanders is a Texas grad student with a secret: she's a shape-shifting werecat. After she's attacked by a Stray—a werecat without ties to any pride—Faythe's father, the Pride Alpha, orders her to return to the family compound. As it turns out, two other werecat tabbies have gone missing, indicating an organized effort by the formerly go-it-alone Strays. The author's world building is intriguing but overly narrow, reducing the range of jungle feline behavior to a keen territorial instinct. Secondary characters abound, including Faythe's intended, formerly human werecat Marc; five years earlier, she escaped the pride on what was supposed to be the eve of their wedding. Unfortunately, they both have frustrating character tics that are only exacerbated by the novel's length: Faythe is more often too-stubborn-to-live than kick-ass, and all the tears Marc wells up over Faythe don't forgive his insufferable jealousy. A polished tale may hide within this one, but Vincent needs to rein herself in a bit if she wants to build a readership. 

I enjoyed this story.  Miss Vincent did a great job crafting the tale here, no pun intended...heehee.  I found myself enjoying the book, and it held my interest with some excellent suspense.  The characters personalities are forming well for the 1st in a series, I didn't find the building of this story to be dragging as I did in Kim Harrison's Hollows series.

That said, let me state that I found Faythe very trying on my patience.  She is a bit of a spoiled brat who can't make up her mind if you ask me.  Should she be a kid or a mature adult, tussling back and forth between the two.  I also don't like Marc, her hand picked by Mama and Daddy wanna be fiance, too much.  His temper and jealousy really got on my nerves and thought if it was me, and I was her parent, I would have given him the boot till he had some anger management classes.

Faythe is one of 4, in her family, the only girl who has been away at college for the last 5 years.  Escaping the pride, and her chosen on the eve of their supposed wedding to go to school instead.  The sudden abduction of the various pride tabbies has spooked her father to reel her in. 

Coming back home she reunites with the "guys" and you see that she was and still is quite the tom-boy who loves to be with them.  Jace, one of the pride members is stuck on her real bad, and I like him much more than Mark to be honest.  She gives him a bit of hope and he suffers for it.

She is moody, stubborn, nasty to her mother unnecessarily, fickle and just a pain in my opinion.  Her decisions throws her into a very dangerous situation and we travel down the road with her on this journey.  A very shocking discovery along the way could have been played a bit better, but all in all I think this series will be a great one that I will continue with.

I will give this book 3 1/2 cannoli's since Fayth ticked me a bit, but with faith ; )  that they will get better as it progresses!


  1. Nice review, Paula! So you have already finished your 500 page challenge this month too!

  2. Back from a quick trip to VT. About 5 hours. I read a book about werecats. Can I remember the title? No - but she was a calico (and that was what her human-like hair appears to be) but she gets turned into a vampire. If the Vincent book is the first in a series then I wonder....?
    But I thought your review was perceptive and read quite professional.

    Catch you soon!

    Fangs, Wands and Fairy Dust


Please take a minute to leave a comment. Good or bad I always read them : ) and respond.

Related Posts with Thumbnails