- Title: Shifting Selves
- Author: Mia Marshall
- Series: Elements #2
- Genre: Fantasy, Urban Fantasy
- Format: eBook
- Source: Netgalley
- Reviewed by: Sonja
- Rating: 4.5 out of 5
Description: Aidan Brook’s world was shattered when the actions of a brutal murderer revealed long-buried secrets about her past–secrets even she didn’t know. A powerful elemental, Aidan discovered she possesses the wrong kind of magic. It’s a secret that could cost her sanity—or even her life.
What she needs is some peace and quiet. What she gets is a phone call from a division of the FBI so secret it doesn’t even have a name, asking for her help with a series of shifter disappearances.
Before Aidan can settle into a new routine of pancakes and evenings by the fire, the case develops claws. She quickly finds herself caught between uptight bears, deadly mountain lions, overprotective parents, and unhappy federal agents. Throw in a stalled romance with an enigmatic shifter and the slow dissolution of her chosen family, and it’s hard to say which will drive her mad first: her magic, or her chaotic life
Review: Ok. I would just like to say that Mia Marshall simply cannot write books fast enough. To me, she is quickly joining the shelf with Lisa and Patricia as an author whose works provide me refuge to escape the trials of my life and immerse myself into another world with the company of characters I love and hate to leave. And, I dream about the characters and their worlds. They make me happy. Trust me when I say this is not an easy shelf to which to gain access and arriving here gets you a crazy, whacked out fanatic who will not let anyone say a word against you. Ok, maybe not *quite* so dramatic, but I take my fanaticism seriously. VERY seriously. (You have been warned.)
As in all my favorite stories, this has a plot, but the plot is totally immaterial to me. Ok, not *totally*, but if it passes for a plot and there is character consistency and at least an attempt to tell a new story, it is a fairly easy ride for me. I do not read this type of novel for its great value as literature, I read it to spend time with characters I love and encourage them in their adventures. And, I realize they do not require my encouragement, but they have it anyway. Just as long as I get to share the ride.
Oh, yes, the plot. In this latest adventure of Aidan and Sera, they have been ‘hired’ by their FBI cohorts from the last novel who, because of their newfound knowledge, have been transferred to a new supernatural division. The guys ask the gals to investigate a rash of shifter disappearances. This includes the disappearance of their, for lack of a better word, friend Mac’s cousin. While the relationship between the elementals and the shifters is still quite raw, because of their friendship, Aidan and Sera are allowed access by Mac’s family. Thus, the groundwork for the tale is complete and the story takes off. We still get to be in awe of Josiah, their dad, but this time around, we are treated to more interaction with Aidan’s mom, Fiona. In addition, there are shifting otters. I mean, seriously, how can you go wrong with shifting otters? Ok, *friendly* shifting otters.
My one gripe with this book is the ending. I am not completely convinced I liked the ending. Oh, I didn’t *dislike* it, it just kinda went someplace with which I am not entirely sure I am comfortable. Because of my deep and abiding love for Aidan and Sera and Mac and Simon, I am willing to ride out the transition and have faith that Ms. Marshall is ultimately taking this somewhere that will make me completely happy. I guess I just have to hope the final destination is several books down the road.
I would also like to give a shout out to the covers for these books. I didn’t really notice the first one, but open looking at the 2nd, I went back and looked. They are really quite cleverly done and tell stories in and of themselves.
I gave this book 4.5 stars and, because I rounded the last one down, I rounded it up to 5.
Oh, and, still no vampires in sight.