Author: Patricia Briggs
Warnings: Animal death, abusive relationships, rape (mentioned)
Night Broken is the eighth book in the Mercy Thompson series, and man is it still going strong. This novel takes a slightly different direction than the rest, throwing more emotional messes into the mix. But it’s all balanced out by the introduction of a new and extremely dangerous supernatural creature.
There is so much to love about this series. I’ve been reading through them all (I was a bit behind) in preparation for Storm Cursed, and I’m falling in love with it all over again. I honestly read Frost Burned and Night Broken back to back in a single day, and I have no regrets about it.
Warnings: There are some fairly graphic moments in this novel, so consider yourself warned. There are animals deaths, and not of the werewolf food variety. More like the pet animal type. There are abusive relationships mentioned (both physical and emotional), as well as a story (folk lore) told that involves rape.
Night Broken read differently to me than any of the other Mercy Thompson novels, but I’m not opposed to the change. If anything, it was refreshing to see different threats thrown into the mix. I absolutely freaked out at the introduction of yet another supernatural creature. The world sure is filling up fast!
Mercy and Adam have such a strong relationship, but even the best of relationships will get tested from time to time. What matters is that they make it through it in the end. I took a peek at the reviews before writing this, and it seems like people either loved this novel, or were driven nuts by the way Adam behaved. I was surprised by that. I always interpreted his actions as allowing Mercy to do her thing because it was what she needed to do. I never once felt that it was because he wanted her to deal with it alone. But maybe that’s just my interpretation of the situation.
Related: man do I love to hate Adam’s ex. Everything about her makes my skin crawl. And to make matters worse, I know people like her in real life. I imagine we all do, which is why she reads as such a horrid person to so many of us.
The new antagonist introduced in this novel was fascinating. Horrible, but fascinating. And to be honest, most strong supernatural beings in this world seem to have a very strong potential to be horrible, so it’s not all that shocking.
I have a lot to say about the antagonist and how he was handled, and it’s on the spoiler side, so on the off chance that you haven’t read Night Broken, please stop reading here. First, I just want to say that he was an easy character to hate, for obvious reasons. If the way he acted wasn’t enough, I think that his creatures would have been enough to make me hate him. Because there’s no way those people were given the opportunity to consent to their situations.
As for the conclusion of the novel – I was so conflicted when Adam and his wolves went off to the fight, leaving Mercy behind. I didn’t think that Adam would get killed off during the fight, but the situation certainly gave off that feeling. In a way I was relieved when they ended up being wrong about where the fight would happen. Though I’m sure that Adam will never forgive himself for that (since technically if he had taken Mercy with him she would have been safer – though it’s likely that the humans would have died in that case, including his daughter…so there was no winning for this poor guy).
I also hate to say it, but I love that there’s a sense of permanency with Mercy and her injuries. She took damage during this fight, and I know that she isn’t going to be magically healed and free of scars in the next novel. Though realistically the next book won’t start until after she’s healed enough to be active again (since she’s always in the thick of things – it’s how she works).
All I can say is, I hope Adam’s ex is long gone by the start of Fire Touched. Otherwise I’m rooting for Mercy to boot her in the face. Hard.