Tuesday, December 20, 2011

True Colors

Summary: Good stand-alone novella set in the Elder Races universe.  Recommended for fans of  paranormal romance.

True Colors, by Thea Harrison, has likable characters and a sexy-yet-believable relationship at its core, with a little bit of a thriller thrown in.  I liked it, and, if you're looking for a quick read of the werewolf-meets-soul-mate variety, then this fits the bill.

The premise is that a serial killer is targeting the rainbow chameleon shape shifters, and it looks like our sweet school teacher/chameleon heroine is next on the list.  The hero is a werewolf policeman (more or less) who leads the case.  They almost immediately recognize in each other their soul mate and the rest of the story is them getting to know each other and settling into the relationship while figuring out who the killer is.  HEA, the end.

OK.  That all being the case, I'm a little torn in looking back at this story.  I think if it had been written by almost anyone else, I would be able to end this post with a happy "I liked it" type of statement and go along my merry way.

The problem is that I've read the past three of her Elder Races books and have come to expect really memorable, exceptional characters and stories from her.  But this just seemed like a decent version of stuff that I've already read a bunch of times before.  It seemed more ordinary than I've come to expect from her.  I guess that's not really fair to hold her to a higher standard, but there you are.

Now, I have to stay the idea of a rainbow chameleon is different.  In her world, rainbow chameleons are extremely rare supernatural creatures from the Amazon rain forest that can completely control their color and patterns.  But usually her characters' supernatural race imparts a convincing and unique flavor to their narrative voices.  When she writes from Dragos' POV for example, I'm convinced that this is what it's like to be inside the mind of a dragon, and it cannot be mistaken for any other type of creature.  In this case, when she writes from a rainbow chameleon's POV, she's taken this really unusual character concept, but I don't see it translated into the character's voice.

Don't get me wrong, I like the heroine and she has a voice that is distinct from the hero, but she could just as easily be a were-deer or a were-rabbit or something as far as I could tell.

Anway, that's my nit.  I liked the book anyway, so don't let that dissuade you from reading it.

Oh, and if you're a fan of her Elder Races universe, then Bayne is a secondary character and you get a quick glimpse of Dragos and Pia and what life is like for regular mortal wyr, but it focuses entirely on its internal story so doesn't look like its necessary for keeping up with the timeline of the series as a whole.

More in the Series
  1. Dragon Bound
  2. Storm's Heart: A thunderbird shapeshifter and a 300 year old dark fae princess - she makes them work too!
  3. Serpent's Kiss: An immortal gryphon shapeshifter and the 1,000 year old Vampire Sorceress Queen - and it works too!
  4. Oracle's Moon: A djinn demon prince and the oracle - Due out March 2012, but I have it on pre-order

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