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Book Review: Priceless, by Shannon Mayer

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I’m so happy I stumbled onto this story! I was hooked from the first paragraph and enjoyed it from beginning to end. I’m a sucker for urban fantasy, and this had everything I usually look for: a kick butt heroine, a bit of mystery and, of course, magic.

The main character, Rylee (I love that name) is someone with a supernatural ability to track people. She can find anyone, anywhere, but she prefers to focus solely on locating missing children. Like any person with a cause, she has a past that motivates her to find these kids and bring them home, even if she can’t bring them alive. Giving closure to the family is her goal. A worthy goal, indeed, and truly priceless.

Of course, she’s hounded the entire way by an FBI agent who thinks she’s snatching these kids and then returning them for reward, and that she killed her sister years ago. It doesn’t help that he finds her very attractive, and his instincts tell him something is off about her but he can’t figure out what. That’s because in this urban fantasy, the supernatural world is hidden from our “normal” one. But behind the veil lies every magical creature you’d expect, from harpies to unicorns.

I found her take on werewolves to be different and interesting. Rylee has a werewolf for a pet, so basically it’s like a giant talking dog. I’m not sure it gets any better than that! She has a witch for a best friend, a seer as a mother figure, and of course the FBI agent for a bit of sexual tension.

If anything was lacking in this story I’d say it was all the promise of sex without delivering. There’s tension, but if you’re looking for romantic moments or all out flesh on flesh scenes forget it…they aren’t here. This is not an erotic fantasy, it’s a mystery with some sexual tension. It’s a giant tease in other words, which actually doesn’t make it any less sexy. Maybe this novel is just foreplay for a future one.

I’m also not a huge fan of the cover. The girl on the cover looks too young for Rylee, and I’m not sure what the moon is doing over her head like that (or the wolf inside the moon). I know she has a werewolf for a pet, but it’s not the main part of the story.

First Line:

“The couple in front of me looked like any other parents who’d lost a child—their hands gripping one another, dark circles under their eyes, skin sallow from not enough food, water or sleep—except for the faintest glimmer of a possibility, a scrap of hope that someone had thrown them, by sending them my way. That was the only difference. A difference they were banking on. Every parent’s worst nightmare is the reason I have become the best at what I do. Or maybe more accurately, the only reason I do what I do.”

Right away, we know a child is missing, and we know the main character is the best at finding them. We might not know how, yet, but the fact that a child has gone missing and the police have given up is enough to keep me reading a page or two. What happened? Why are they gone? Did one of the parents do it? (I watch too many crime dramas, I know). Looking back at the first chapter, it’s hard to say exactly what drew me in other than the tone of confidence and competence that surrounded the protagonist. I felt like those parents…I felt like something was horribly wrong but I was going to be in good hands. Someone was going to help. And then, of course, magic and mystery kicked in and I was a goner.

I found this to be an easy, fast, entertaining read, and I’m looking forward to Rylee’s next case.

 

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