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Stray (Shifters #1)

3.81 of 5 stars 3.81  ·  rating details  ·  26,907 ratings  ·  1,653 reviews
There are only eight breeding female werecats left...

And I'm one of them.

I look like an all-American grad student. But I am a werecat, a shape-shifter, and I live in two worlds.

Despite reservations from my family and my Pride, I escaped the pressure to continue my species and carved out a normal life for myself. Until the night a Stray attacked.

I'd been warned about Strays
Paperback, 618 pages
Published June 1st 2007 by Mira Books (first published January 1st 2007)
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Marie It's awful. Seriously, go read a different shifter book.
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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The Holy Terror
Jul 18, 2011 The Holy Terror rated it 2 of 5 stars
Recommended to The Holy Terror by: Who's Your Author? Group
I had a really difficult time with this book. I went back and forth from really liking it and then really hating it. In the beginning I could sympathize with Faythe; nobody wants their life decided for them. But as you start to learn exactly what she's running from - responsibility and family obligation - the sympathy turns to annoyance.

Faythe is one of the few female werecats in the United States. For some reason females are very rare, although it's never really explained why. Faythe wants to
*cuing guitar riff for musical review*


Well we guess it would be nice
If we could lick your cat fur
'Cause you can make a tom purr
No hotter furry than you.


But I've got to think twice
Before Marc beats me 'til I die
That shit hurts; I ain't gonna lie
Maybe a kiss or two...


Oh, but I need some time off
To go to grad school
I'll read some books and send my dad the bill.
And when the mean Enforcers
Drag my ass home, yeah
I'll forget about my boyfriend,
And get all up in your grill.

This is me being excited about Stray:

I guess you get the picture.

Alright, let’s see...what’s to say about this book? For starters: I didn't even finish it. I stopped at page 340 of 618. I think I gave it a fair chance, didn’t I?

Our heroine in this story is a 23-year-old werecat named Faythe. Werecats are basically organized like wolves, they’re living together in packs with an Alpha as its leader and they look like panthers. No wait. They can't look like panthers because there is no such thing a
I’m Too Stupid to Live and So Can You!
A Checklist, By Faythe

When sensing a threat to your person, I find it’s best to do the following:

1. Get rid of any potential witnesses. If you’re about to get your ass kicked they could double as rescuers and how can you expect to get kidnapped or die a grizzly death with that type of pesky interference?

2. Forget calling for backup. Who wants to be told to do boring things like “Stay in a well-lit area” or “Get inside and lock the doors”?

3. Find the darkes
Kat Kennedy
When I put this book onto my TBR list, I was immediately asked to confirm suspicions that Faythe was a horrible name. It's true. So very, very true. Especially when her first name is a perfectly respectable Katherine or some such derivative spelling!

This book is a lot like her name. It's a horrible bastardization of an otherwise sound concept. Faith is a perfectly acceptable name apart from the Pavlovian upchuck reflex it gives me when it reminds me of Faith from Buffy and Angel.

The concept is o
I finished this book in one sitting. I could not put it down. I grew up reading urban fantasy and this felt so nostalgic to me. I loved our sassy main character and the witty banter between all of the characters. There were parts of the plot that were a little predictable, but I was okay with that and found it as more of a comfort. I adore urban fantasy and am so happy to have rediscovered the genre with this series.
Emily May
There are a good many reasons why this book was lucky to get 4 stars from me, but also equally as many reasons why it could have possibly got more. I'll start at the beginning by explaining the general plot. So... Faythe Sanders is a werecat in a world where female werecats are rarities and also highly protected by the males in an often teeth-grindingly annoying fashion (but more of that in a bit); after 5 years at college, she is summoned back home in a bid to keep her safe from a wild, tabby-k ...more
This book is Bitten but with werecats. (Yes, werecats.)

In fact it has almost exactly the same premise as Kelley Armstrong's book...

Girl flees uber-intense 'were' family to live alone in the 'real' world. Yet, despite her best efforts to lead a normal life she never truly feels like herself. Girl is forced (literally) to return home to a house full of domineering male 'were-creatures'. Were-females are slim pickings so, of course, all the males fight over her. And there is this one super intense
Stacia (the 2010 club)
Had to redo this review after reading my original review from last year and finding it to be pretty crappy and non-informative.

Stray is the start of a fun, action packed series featuring a very kick butt heroine and a yummy love triangle. The female lead can hang with the boys (and pretty much does, since there aren't many females hanging out at their compound). Faythe can fight like a man, and has the balls of a man when it comes to bravery. She has her stupid and selfish moments, but I also fe
I like this series!
Anzu The Great Destroyer
Warning. Review might contain minor spoilers. Read at your own risk.

I have to admit that I wasn’t happy about starting this book because of that horrid cover. I don’t know what it means to represent? Surprise buttsecs? Hos’r’us? Bad tattoos stay with you forever? I don’t know. Horrible cover is horrible.

What made me go ahead and buy this thing is the fact that more than half of my Goodreads friend list gave it either 5 or 4 stars. Well hello mister popularity. I guess we ended up reading differe
Before I began reading paranormal and urban fantasy books, I didn’t really know about the variety of “were” worlds out there. I’m glad to have discovered them.

Stray is the story of a Pride of werecats. The werecats are led by Faythe’s father, in a kind of mafia-like arrangement of leadership and enforcers. There are very few female werecats of breeding age; most of the werecats are male. In Stray, someone is kidnapping the tabbies (female werecats) and our heroine Faythe Sanders becomes a victi
Well I have to admit I couldn't finish it. It was so long that I finally gave up. I was tired of hearing about poor me I need my independence and I will do anything to get it including risking the lives of my friends and family. And don't think for a second that I will see the error of my ways or compromise. AND MY GOD this book was long... way longer then it needed to be so this is a no. Maybe next time she could cut it in half.
I did like how she described the shifting but she didn't get the c
I had only 1 hour and 25 minutes left of the audiobook when I decided I wasn't curious enough to care about the resolution of the plot, so I quit.
After a few hours of listening I started to lose interest in the book since the storyline was very predictable, the book had way too much unnecessary information and there were mayor issues with the main character and the foundation of the story.

Faythe The female main character. I don’t believe her character was well form and that affected the w
Re-read in 2010: Still loved the book. If anything, re-reading made me like the character of Jace even more...
I stayed up all night reading this book. It got to be too exciting and I had to know how the main character would get out of the situation she was in.

I will say that I liked the secondary love interest better than the main one. I don't know if the next book in the series features the same characters, but if it does, I will cheer him on. Go Jace!
I ♥ Bookie Nookie (
I really liked this book. I was a little nervous about reading it because it is so long and I have seen such mixed reviews about the series. Well, let me put it to you this way--it is 600+ pages and I read it in 2 nights.

Faythe is the daughter of an Alpha who is also the lead Alpha for all the US werecat territories. She is also one of only 8 unmated tabbies or females in the US. Of course, she is very valuable as there are probably hundreds of unmated males to their one. Faythe has 2 potential
Honestly, I was disappointed in this one. First of all, it's SO EFFING LONG. It doesn't look like it because the pages are super thin (damn you, marketing ploys! *shakes fist*), but it tops 600 pages. Very fewauthors can sustain a book that long well enough to keep me fully invested. In fact, only 1 comes readily to mind, where I didn't feel anything should have been cut, it was perfect as it was. Stray needed some serious trimming with a sharp pair of editing shears. For real. There was so much ...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Shannon (Giraffe Days)
What was that book where there's a rare female animal-shifter, who has a hottie guy-shifter practically obsessed with her who is convinced she'll eventually say "yes" to him and going all moody on her; who lives with a bunch of other guy-shifters in a pack, who enforce shifter laws in their area and who aren't to be crossed with - who gets kidnapped because of who she is and locked in a cage, and who throws a mean punch?

Yeah, exactly. It's Bitten by Kelley Armstrong (and the sequel, Stolen, for
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
I think this is the fourth time I’ve read this book and I still love it.
I love Faythe, I love Marc, and I also love Jace! Faythe does have her moments when she really shouldn’t be arguing or negotiating and thinking instead, but she’s still such a great character.

The storyline in this is really good! It can be a little slow in places, but most of the time there’s action and sexual tension. So good!
Ezinwanyi~Boo boo kitty  (Oh My Shelves)
liked this one. Faythe is a cat shifter wanting some autonomy from her pride. She tries to live among humans until a crisis forces her home. Faythe has to deal with who she is, who she wants to be and who she can be in the future.
A good book 1 so I went ahead and bought book 2.
*4.5 stars*

Anyone that knows me, knows I love cats. I don't have one currently, because we moved recently, but I had 5 when living with my mum and still go back and visit them reguarly (and her too, I guess, but it's mainly for the cats). So reading a urban fantasy series about WERECATS was just awesome for me. But going into Stray, I was a little dubious due to reviews saying it wasn't a great book. I should know by now not to judge based on other peoples opinions, but when the majority of my f
3.5 stars.It would be a 4 stars rating if it wasn't for the slow beginning.

This book is so good that I must recommend it. I loved it. And if this book is supposed to be the worst of all the books in the series, I can't wait to get my hands on the nexts.The first half of the book wasn't as good as the second, but what an ending!

I loved the fact that the book was written in first person, and also that all the books in the series are about Fayth, at least I Hope they are.
Fayth is just this awesome
Erin (Paperback stash) *is juggle-reading*

When I dig into Urban Fantasy, I prefer shapeshifters to be part of the background, blending in, doing their thing to propel the plot while other supes shine as the star players. I rarely invest in series which focus on shapeshifters as the mains – just not my thing (although Kate Daniels has proven to be a nice exception). This book is pure shapeshifter material – instead of werewolves, you have werepanthers, and there’s no other supe in sight. Still, the back blurb promised an entertaining
I feel like I have been missing out! I am surprised at the reviews of this book on Amazon. Though more good than not, they are pretty mixed. I have read a lot of books in this genre and this has added the series to my new favorites. Some reviewers didn’t warm to Faythe, one even called her a B**** ! Well, I disagree!

I LIKE Faythe and kinda want her to be my friend. I don't expect my heroines to be perfect, if they were it would be an awfully short book now wouldn’t it? I need a touch of reality
I fell in love with this series 5 years ago and it's still one of my favourites. I'd forgotten how pig headed and stubborn Faythe can be but I find that surprisingly easy to ignore - I guess I can forgive anything from characters I have such fond memories of.

I already reviewed this book properly HERE but I loved it just as much the second time around & can't wait to carry on my series reread :o)
Terrible book. In the first two chapters, Faythe goes on and on about how she wants to be independent. Then she introduces Marc, her love interest, in a way that you can't help but dislike the guy. They had a history and, apparently, not a terribly good one. Anyway, if her words don't convince you, then his actions do. He's a complete Neanderthal that doesn't understand that no means no. Of course, this wouldn't be a problem, except that he likes to make this point by getting physical about it.

I think I want to start off by saying that werecats are way awesomer (yes, I said awesomer :P) than werewolves! I would choose a werecat over a werewolf any day!! The idea of werecats is so unique that I love it! Maybe there’s more books out there about werecats, but this is the only book I’ve heard about them. I really liked how Rachel said in this book how Hollywood got the transformation right but got the species completely wrong!! I was LMAO! Ha ha werewolves, ha ha :)

Okay, so the review…
I'm waffling between 3 1/2 and 4 stars.

***Sidebar***First - I LOVE that a large portion of this book takes place in East Texas. Rachel Vincent says that Ranch is located in Lufin, TX. This was very amusing to me, because when I was 17, my parents moved us to Tyler, TX, which is awfully, awfully close to Lufkin. The only thing that would have made this setting more believable is if Vincent has her characters saying "fixin'" every few minutes. Such as, "It's fixin' to rain." Or, "I'm fixin' to mak
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[Note: Though Rachel's blog entries are cross posted here, she does not frequent Goodreads. The best ways to contact her are FB, Twitter, or her Wordpress blog. PLEASE DO NOT SEND HER MESSAGES HERE. SHE DOES NOT CHECK THEM.]

A resident of Oklahoma, Rachel Vincent has a BA in English and an overactive imagination, and consistently finds the latter to be more practical. She shares her workspace with
More about Rachel Vincent...

Other Books in the Series

Shifters (6 books)
  • Rogue (Shifters, #2)
  • Pride (Shifters, #3)
  • Prey (Shifters, #4)
  • Shift (Shifters, #5)
  • Alpha (Shifters, #6)

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“The moment the door opened I knew an ass-kicking was inevitable. Whether I'd be giving it or receiving it was still a bit of a mystery.” 570 likes
“Apparently the complete works of Shakespeare packed quite a wallop. To think, my mother said I'd never find use for an English degree. Ha! I'd like to see her knock someone silly with an apron and a cookie press.” 174 likes
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