Born the only female in an all male race, Jessica McClain isn’t just different—she’s feared.
After living under the radar for the last twenty-six years, Jessica is thrust unexpectedly into her first change, a full ten years late. She wakes up and finds she’s in the middle of a storm. Now that she’s become the only female full-blooded werewolf in town, the supernatural world is already clamoring to take a bite out of her and her new Pack must rise up and protect her.
But not everyone is on board. The werewolf Rights of Laws is missing text and the superstitious werewolves think that Jessica means an end to their race. It doesn’t help when Jessica begins to realize she’s more. She can change partway and hold her form, and speak directly to her wolf. But the biggest complication by far is that her alpha father can't control her like he can the rest of his wolves.
When a mercenary who’s been hired by the vampires shows up to extract information about the newly turned werewolf only days after her change, they find themselves smack in the middle of a war and there's no choice but to run together. When it’s up to Jessica to negotiate her release against her father’s direct orders, she chooses to take an offer for help instead. In exchange, Jessica must now swear an oath she may end up repaying with her life.
Amanda Carlson is the author of the upcoming Jessica McClain series. The first book, Full Blooded, will be released by Hachette Book Group, ORBIT US & UK SEPT 2012. She’s been writing for over ten years. Full Blooded is her first novel. She lives in Minneapolis, with her husband and three kids.
Watch out Amanda Carlson, I think I'm in love! I inhaled her debut book like my life depended on it. I haven't read a werewolf novel this good since... since... probably my re-read of Kelley Armstrong's Women of the Otherworld books earlier this year. Seeing how her novels are the bar by which I measure all furry fiction, that's saying something! Full Blooded's lore is unique and bewitching, her characters are dynamic and her wolves are howling-ly formidable. The action is unrelenting and the world building is so fluid that you don't even realize its happening. Every page is better than the last and the ending pretty much guarantees that you'll be reading Hot Blooded in 2013.
I enjoyed the premise behind this book. Jessica is the only female to have ever been born from a werewolf father but she doesn't carry the shifter gene. She's been making a life for herself as a private investigator living outside of the pack for a number of years now when all of a sudden, *poof*, she wolf's out. Well... that was... unexpected! Her biggest dream and nightmare have come true. It's a neat way for Amanda to introduce readers to her heroine and to her breed of werewolves at the same time. Even though Jessica's father is alpha, she wasn't raised as pack which means that this world is as new to her as it is to us readers. I enjoyed the learn-as-you-go way that this story unfolds.
Carlson's mythology is fresh and exciting. She not only put a new spin on the genre but actually reinvented it; from the Cain legend, to the lycan twist to the inner workings of the pack. Each new discovery is better than the last. I was a little worried about the "only female werewolf" storyline because that's a Kelley Armstrong trademark in my opinion but, Amanda took a completely different route than what I'd expected and really made this angle her own. Full Blooded is absolutely overflowing with werewolf excellence; every page reveals something new and interesting. I've definitely caught the Jessica McClain fever!
When I first met Jessica in Blooded it was insta-love. She's loyal, courageous and a wicked savage fighter. I think that I might have a bit of a girl crush on her... In this book she handles herself beautifully in the face of the monster of a wake-up call that she just received. McClain takes everything in stride and behaves like you'd expect the daughter of a powerful alpha to. Jessica definitely knows how to make an entrance and her debut onto the Urban Fantasy scene will not go unnoticed.
Not to steal any of McClain's thunder but the side characters in this book are equally as extraordinary. James is sex incarnate. I couldn't stop drooling! Even though he's not Jessica's mate that doesn't stop her from exploring his hot bod. Danny is fun, a great friend and will definitely make you crack a smile. More than once, I might add. Tyler is the brother that I wish I had and one of Jessica's biggest supporters. I loved their alpha and father as well. He's a formidable force and has his kids' backs. Last but not least is Rourke. He puts an interesting spin on the age-old battle of dogs vs cats and I can't wait to learn more about him.
Full Blooded is the first installment in what I predict to be the next big werewolf phenomenon. If you like being at the forefront of "the next big thing" then I'd advise you to read this one. Stat. One last thing before I wrap-up my review... OMG! OMG! OMG! SQUUUUUEEEEEE! (hey, I'm allowed one fan girl moment!).
This book was entertaining enough until the last few chapters where it fell apart. Jessica had grown up in a pack of werewolves of which her father was alpha. Females are an anomaly and no one expected her to change. The other hitch is when she was born an anonymous letter arrived called the Cain myth that predicted her existence would destroy the pack. Jessica was living her life out apart from the pack when she late blooms into a werewolf one night.
Where are the stakes? She's the alpha's daughter and has complete control over her wolf when no other werecreature does. How does she do this but need everyone else to risk their lives for her just because she's female?
I never warmed up to Jessica or her plight of being the only female werewolf that had to be protected at all costs. Her powers were too Mary Sue. She told us time and time again she had to earn her right to live off the compound but her dad gave in and listened to her every time. When was he overbearing? Jessica is twenty-six years old and had been living on her own for years. I was glad he respected her but she kept claiming she had to fight for her right to live alone. I never saw an example to prove this. Show not tell. Why did he let the pack abuse Jessica? She was more powerful than even the Alpha but always had to be protected. She needed a scene where she protected herself if I'm going to believe this. It made more sense to kick people out of your pack that asked for your baby daughter to be murdered. They dropped the Ray plot line for half the book. Jessica used to be a cop until one cop became suspicious and started stalking her. This could have been where she handled something on her own but instead the pack handled all of her problems. We were told time and time again she was special because she's female, lycan, etc. etc. These were all attributes she was born into.
Jessica McClain is one of a kind; a female werewolf the first one ever born unfortunately the rest of her race doesn't view this as a miracle, instead thinking she is the daughter of evil and will destroy their race. Until now though she has been living in relative obscurity under an alias to keep her safe, but her first change hits her and all hell breaks loose as different sects of the supernatural world seem to want to get their hands on her, including the very sexy but extremely dangerous Rourke...
Both myself and Annie wanted to read this after having read the novella Blooded, but I managed to beat Annie down, Jessie style, and grab the book of course I also decided to let her have a peek being a nice girl and all, so here is our combined review!
Describe this book in three words
Annie: I. WANT.MORE.
Suzanne: Action packed mayhem!
What do you think of the newest UF heroine on the block – Jessica McClain?
Annie: I loved Jessica! I thought she was fun and smart without being too snarky or cocky. She was kickass even when she wasn’t fighting and I loved that there is still a lot to learn about her. As the token woman of her pack, she’s going to be in the spotlight a lot. So it will be interesting how she handles it!
Suzanne: I know Annie loved her, and I did like her, I like that she wasn't overplaying the bad ass chick thing all the time and instead was a good balance between attitude and sense. But, I didn't feel like she was anything original or new, she was likable and I will read the next book, but she doesn't stand out in the crowd of heroines that are cram the UF section.
The author, Amanda Carlson said that humor and action are her two biggest passions while writing. What did you think of the balance of humor and action?
Annie: I can definitely see the emphasis on both the humor and the action. There was a great balance that fit Carlson’s writing style. I think Jessica’s character definitely held the most appeal to me in terms of humor. I loved her witty comebacks and spit-fire attitude. And the action? I was blown away by how fast-paced this read was. I finished it almost immediately.
Suzanne: There was definitely a lot of action in this book, which I loved, it kept the book moving at a nice fast pace that had you dying. Ow what would happen next. The humour was good as well, it stopped the book from getting bogged down with blood 'n guts, I especially liked the interactions between Jessica and her wolf, especially when it came to a very sexy werecat.
What are you most looking forward to in the next book?
Annie: I want to learn more about Rourke! That guy is sex on a stick! Hopefully, we get some sexy time too :P
Suzanne: I am 100% with Annie, I want more Roarke, and especially nekkid Roarke *starts panting*
An exciting premise, but this book and I have gotten off on the wrong foot. Carlson's delivery is not particularly immersive, and I'm not a fan of her Latina accent for Jessica's neighbor (it's distracting to have such a strong stereotype in the narrative, even as a drive by).
That is nothing compared to how much I don't like her werewolves, however. The prophecy and general panic about a female werewolf aside, when Jessica has an obviously expository rehash of werewolf mating practices, I was very unpleasantly surprised. As there are no female werewolves, they mate with human females. They have a low birthrate, so they sleep with lots and lots of human females. These women don't know they are sleeping with a werewolf. A werewolf that maintains his disguise through magic "saliva roofie". It is not implied that the roofie helps them get women into bed, but there is mention of instigating some "process" to impregnante them (I'm imagining big werewolf claws poking holes in a condom), which the women don't sound like they're aware of. The final nail in the coffin is the fact that carrying a werewolf baby has a high mortality rate for the women, which they're also not told. These guys are essentially using these women as disposable brood farms and endangering their lives without their knowledge.
Now compare this impression with Jessica's description of her parents relationship (before her mother died in childbirth, that is), and it paints a different picture. Her father loved her mother, and doesn't fit the whole date-rapist, baby-farmer described above. Unfortunately, the lengthy, awful, technical description dwarfs any "fond memories" related about Jessica's parents, meaning those few sentences don't balance out what sounds like a fundamentally mysoginistic and creepy race of men.
I'm curious about Jessica's destiny, as well as learning more about her mate, but I'm not particularly impressed by the story thus far.
Update after completion: The peaks and valleys of this book have cancelled out into a general "I liked it". The preternatural mythology is interesting, but my excitement over this world was tempered by a few credulity stretches (lots of preternatural action without consequence in this “closed world”) and the breeding mechanism of the werewolves made it very, very hard to forgive them as a species. Bizarre roofie saliva aside, it appears they sleep with as many women as they can with the intent to impregnate them. This is forgivable (and not new ground, *cough* World of the Lupi *cough*), but bearing a werewolf baby also has a very high mortality rate. So a woman don’t know she’s sleeping with a wolf, that he’s trying to knock her up , or that she has an increased risk of dying in childbirth. That is pretty goddamn cold.
The narrative was also rough in a few places. Carlson did a fairly good job presenting a lot of information without data dumps, but there are a few notable instances where she failed. I think the reason that I reacted so negatively to the werewolf breeding culture (ick) was that it was all dropped into conversation in a fairly artificial chunk.
This book reminded me a lot of Rachel Vincent’s Shifter series, both in the world and my reaction (as that is one series that I never quite finished). I look forward to reading more of the Full Blooded series, but I’m not confident in how far I’ll get.
I’ve recently discovered that I love Urban Fantasy reads and Full Blooded had a little of everything I love about them. Kick ass heroine, fast paced action and danger at every turn, and an interesting supernatural world and creatures. Of course, I must have some romance in there, too, and this didn’t disappoint!
Jessica McClain is an anomaly in her Pack. There are no female werewolves but yet here she is, and after years of thinking she would never shift she unexpectedly does, causing havoc and unease. Shortly after her birth a letter was mailed to the Pack Compound called The Cain Myth claiming that a female werewolf would cause the end to their race. So Jessica’s always been viewed as a threat by some in the Pack. After years of not shifting the fear had died down a bit, but now all that’s changed. When news gets out an attack comes almost immediately propelling her Alpha father and the Pack into a war with Vampires as well as their own kind. Danger is around every corner for Jessica.
Jessica is my type of heroine. She’s strong without arrogance, has a good moral compass, and without an ounce of whininess. She seems to have so many things thrown at her but she keeps her head up handling one issue at a time. She’s trying to figure out and control her wolf, but is in awe of the power it gives her.
I love shapeshifter stories because of all the pack dynamics and hierarchy. All the impulses and instincts that come with being part animal are so much fun, as well. I love the idea of a true mate and the strong connection formed once you find that person. I’ve found when reading most UF series’ that the first book lays the rules and foundation for the stories to come, and Full Blooded did that without overloading us with an info dump. There are still a lot of unanswered questions about Jessica, and what she’s capable of, but I suspect we’ll be learning that more as the series goes on.
There is romance, or rather an instant attraction, but it wasn’t a large part of the story. What was there definitely had me sitting up and paying attention, because it was hot! I’m totally on board for this match up!
One thing I’d mention is that this story just sort of stops. I’m not sure that I’d call it a cliff, it’s more like a “to be continued…” situation, but you’d definitely want the next book on hand when you finish. Lucky for me I do!
Full Blooded was a thrilling read, and I plan on diving into Hot Blooded very soon! A copy was provided by Hatchette Book Group through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
It was pretty hard to get into this book, it took me a while to want to actually start reading it. And it felt like the main character took everything so easily! It just didn't feel real (not that I expect fantasy books to be real, but you know what I mean). On the bright side though, once I got caught up in the story, everything went smoothly. The book was pretty fast paced and, though the plot was pretty much a cliche, it wasn't bad.
With Blooded being the appetizer; Full Blooded is the main course.
Jessica is a one of a kind, being the only female to be born to a male werewolf. She is even odder since she didn’t shift once she hit puberty like the other werewolves. Jessica lived her first 26 years of life as a human that was raised by wolves.
But after leaving the Pack life and living a normal human life for the last 7 years she finds herself in the middle of a very painful shift in the late hours of night in her bed.
No one including Jessica’s dad the Alpha of the North U.S. Pack has no idea what this means and why it’s taken so long for the shift to happen especially since they have no guide book to go by with her being the only one of her kind….. a female werewolf.
Jessica finds herself in a whole new world. Yeah sure she lived with the Pack but because she was human and female she was very much not wanted by most of the wolves. She knows the basics of wolf life but there is so much she doesn’t know. So she is learning the rules as she goes. And she does a kick ass job of it. But she’s not all alone. She gets help from her father, brother and a small group of friends from the pack and her witchy secretary.
Carlson does an excellent job with her world building and character development. I would have to say that one of my favorite characters is Jessica’s wolf. That chica is one saucy wolf. And the inner monologue that Jessica has with her wolf is just awesome. If the wolf was to run the show they would be one slutty duo.
I totally approve of the Jessica’s wolf picks for lovers. There is some hot wolf action and a smoking cat that enters their life.
Fans of Rachel Vincent's Faythe Sanders from the Shifters series will LOVE Jessica McClain!
I can't wait for Hot Blooded to release in Spring of 2013.
I wasn't exactly impressed with the beginning of the book. For some reason it didn't click with me--Jessica seemed a bland addition to the urban fantasy genre. She's special for being the only female born to werewolves (and the only female werewolf in the world, something told to us repeatedly), and of course comes with nifty powers that nobody else could compare to. This--I like this stuff, okay, but this was boring me more than anything.
I only really got interested in the book about halfway through, when there seemed to be more progress with the plot other than Jessica suddenly turning into a werewolf and the shenanigans that come with that, considering that a good portion of her father's pack wants her dead. We get a few more bits of information, a few more mysteries, and I settled back to read. Unfortunately I was thrown off again soon later, when Rourke and Jessica meet and shit hits the fan.
Unfortunately all of the other characters were rather flat in general. Jessica herself was a little stale. She's... plain, I suppose. Bland, would probably be a better word. She's pretty indistinguishable from other urban fantasy heroines, and a good deal of her is more reactive than proactive. The other characters just didn't show us much more. Her brother and her best friend are formless blobs in my head, convenient, but not convincing as characters. Other people didn't fair much better.
I was also disconcerted with the fact that Jessica seemed so unknowledgable. Convenient for both the author and the readers, as we get to find out a bit more background because of Jessica's lack of knowledge, but you would think that Jessica, who grew up surrounded by werewolves, would know more about them than she actually did. She didn't know how getting new werewolf blood into the pack worked. She knew about the prophecy and lore surrounding her own birth, but not about lycans in general when all of the other werewolves knew about it.
Then there's Rourke and Jessca. Just... so stereotypical alpha guy with mysterious past. As soon as she meets him it's instant chemistry tempered with a lot of suspicion on her part, not that anyone has told her wolf the plan. I wouldn't mind this so much if it wasn't so inappropriate. The timing, I mean, not anything else. Here Jessica is, dumped in the middle of a mess with werewolves fighting werewolves and people trying to kidnap her, and most of the book focuses on Jessica and Rourke's tempestuous relationship. It could have worked, but in this book it feels more forced than anything else.
The prose can be really clunky at times. And pretty cringe worthy. Example: I'm sorry, but that bit of dialogue was super awful.
The ending was also pretty bad. It was worse than pretty bad, it was ridiculous. And I'm saying this, a person who reads fantasy books like candy. The antagonists were more laughable than anything else. Other authors can write a perfectly chilling antagonist beautifully, but the ones in this book were more of a flop than anything else. It's the dialogue. It's the prose. They're not convincing me in the slightest, which is a shame. Then there's a cliffhanger at the end that just drops you right out of the book. No resolutions. No answers. Just more questions and a setup for the next book.
I wish I liked this book more. A lot of other people seemed to enjoy it. But it felt like a tired and messy plot that didn't have much going for it. 2 stars.
My break from UF probably has me feeling more generous towards this but...this wasn't bad. It has the been-there-done-that female MC who is a total special snowflake, who gains untold power that immediately makes her stronger and more powerful than anyone around her, without doing anything to earn it. But she loves her family and actually has good relationships with the people in her life so at least she's not obnoxious about her abilities. The story was chugging along nicely until we get to the whole meet-your-mate thing. It's not even that the mate character was the problem. He's fine on his own merits. I just have an issue when characters aren't allowed to, you know, actually choose for themselves who they're going to love...or even get to know each other first...or, hell, spend more than 12 hours with each other before becoming THE MOST IMPORTANT PEOPLE IN THE WORLD to each other. It's just silliness. And since I'm on the topic of silliness...how about beings who are several centuries old taunting each other in the most juvenile of ways? Yeah, that happens too...repeatedly. So, all in all, it wasn't a bad story. It had some entertaining moments to go along with the more eyeroll inducing ones but it was a fast read so, there's that.
Not a terrible book by any means, but one that is extremely predictable. The heroine is not particularly memorable (though of course she's Super Special and has violet eyes), and there's one wham-bam action scene after the other with very little going on in between. This really reads more like PNR to me than urban fantasy.
My biggest peeve, however, is that the dialogue is awful. Just...awful.
This was really enjoyable! Jessica is badass, but also trying to figure things out here as a new wolf. It was nicely packed with details, happenings and actions. though, sometimes it felt like some actions were pressed in a few short pages and the mate-thing happend a bit too fast for my tast.
Blooded was the first book that I read from Amanda Carlson and I knew that she had me before I was even finished that prequel novella. But I was still unprepared for how totally hooked I would be with Full Blooded.
It never fails to surprise me when I read a book from a new-to-me author and it blows me away. I love when a writer is able to capture me through the story and characters. Especially when I get so engrossed in a story that several hours pass without me being aware. Full Blooded is definitely one of those book!!
What a story....I loved every single thing about this book from the entertaining story to the intelligent writing to the interesting characters. I did not want to leave this world created by Amanda and cannot wait to return to it in the next book!!
WOW....Full Blooded was filled with some serious male sexiness, both Alpha and Beta shifter sexiness~Rourke *sigh* James *sigh* Tyler *sigh* Danny *sigh* Nick *sigh* and let's not forget Callum *sigh* I am so looking forward to learning more about these characters and I hope to continue to read about them through out this series. I am totally invested in Rourke and Jessica's HEA. I cannot wait to see where Amanda leads them, especially after that ending. Jessica is such a great character and I instantly loved her. Oh...that sex scene was HOT.. HOT..HOT..!! ;)
I do understand why some readers felt that this book read more like a set~up to Book #2, but I personally didn't get that feeling while reading the book. It definitely kept me on the edge and there are still many questions left unanswered, but I really enjoyed how the story played out. I was left wanting more and greatly anticipating the next book. Which I think shows that this book was a great start to an AWESOME series.
Definitely going into my TBR pile to be reread. 5 out of 5 rating.
Normally, at this point, I would list some of my favorite quotes from the book~but for Full Blooded~I decided to do something different. At the end of the book there was an interview with Amanda Carlson and I loved the answers she gave to these questions: *****May contain SPOILERS***** Rourke is a powerful character and so gorgeous. But so is James. Why did you pick Rourke for Jessica's mate? I love James. There are no two ways about it. But Jessica demanded something different. The standard issue Pack member, even a strong, capable one, wasn't going to suffice. She's a one of a kind wolf who needed an original mate. Rourke is amazing and sexy, and he's completely devoted to her. Jessica hasn't gotten to explore him....yet, but when she does, there will be no question in the reader's mind of why he's The One.
Will we ever find out what Rourke is? Absolutely! But don't get your hopes up too soon.
What's next for Jessica and Rourke? Jessica and Rourke are in for some extreme adventures together. But first Jessica has to fight an evil Goddess to get him back, and if that's not bad enough, trouble manifests itself in a whole new form~one that Jess and Rourke had no idea was coming.
****ARC provided by NetGalley~Thank you so much!! :)
When I think of a strong female lead, I won't be thinking of Jessica McClain. The premise of the story was actually quite fascinating, even if it isn't unique or original. I was very interested to learn how a girl would handle being "The Only One" of her kind. A female werewolf. While the story had merit, Jessica ruins the book completely. In the end, I had to grit my teeth and just read to finally cross the finish line.
What makes me want to throw this book out the window? Well, it's not just Jessica, but she's a start. I read quite a few 4 to 5 star reviews praising this novel. It was supposed to be up there with Mercy Thompson and Kate Daniels. I feel completely misled. I didn't find Jessica to be an independent strong woman. I found her whiny and cowardly. Her wolf had spunk, but she rarely let her wolf have her way. Always backing down from a fight or running away. That was tedious and annoying. She grew up living with werewolves. Yet she knows next to nothing about them. They are so secretive that the Alpha's daughter is left in the dark. It seems highly improbable that she wouldn't know anything useful at all.
Another thing that got me? It was okay for other wolves to openly abuse Jessica while growing up. It was okay for wolves to mistreat, verbally and maybe even physically abuse, The Alpha's daughter. Am I the only one who thought that this would never fly? What kind of overprotective father lets those he's supposed to be in control over do this? The openness of it bothered me quite a bit. The implication, that is never really gone into, that she had to physically fight her way out of the compound, when she isn't even a werewolf (at the time) seems odd to me. I could see quiet discontent. I could see ostracizing her. I could see many minor ways to let her know that they do not approve of her but in the end I had a hard time thinking the most powerful Alpha in the world would let open abuse of his human daughter go unchecked and unpunished.
Trash talk. Most books have it. I appreciate good trash talk. This book was flooded with tons of it. It was no longer something to be amused by. By the end of the book I wanted all the talking to end. It seemed that the author was incapable of showing her readers what was going on or leading up to it so it all just clicked. Instead, for every fight scene we have a Scooby Doo villain break down of what they are doing and why they are doing it. We don't get the good and bloody fight scenes, we get a full confession right before the fight. All that did for me was to kill any sort of anticipation of the fight or scene. Killed it.
I'm glad to see that I'm a minority in thinking this book wasn't up to snuff. I really am. There are very few good werewolf books out there. I'm still seeking another good series to follow. This, for me, was a complete and utter dud. While I feel I have completely wasted the last few days reading this, I'm glad there are others out there who like this one. I won't be trying this one again.
Once upon a time I would have liked this book, but reading so many UF novels has made me jaded. This had too many overused tropes. Jessica was a special snowflake. Not only was she the only female werewolf in existence, but no other living weres were had the powers she did. Jessica was a private investigator. How original. In this the P.I. angle really wasn’t necessary since the plot didn’t revolve around a case.
Many of the men were attracted to Jessica or had some desire to protect her. Of course there was a healthy dose of instalove. Actually I didn’t mind the instalove since it happened with the only character that made this book worth reading. Unfortunately he didn’t show up until halfway through. Before that I had a strong urge to DNF it. The guy was a special snowflake himself, so being with him was complicated. He was very old. Although in her 20’s, she would have been like a child compared to him. But it was instalove, so it didn’t matter. At least Jessica was mature, so it didn’t seem as far fetched that someone older would like her.
Most of the book bored me. A lot of time was spent on world building, but everything was fairly simplistic. Most of it was the usual werewolf lore such as extreme hunger, pack telepathy, etc. I’m not a fan of werewolves, so that may have contributed to my dislike of the book. Jessica’s wolf was a separate entity inside her. They communicated often, and it was weird. It was almost like she had a split personality. I think this book would appeal to some people, but it’s not for me.
Ugh. I was actually going along with the book through most of it, though there are a few problems with motivations—mainly with Jessica's dad. I get the protective vibe. I do. But he's not protecting her so much as imposing his own will based on pure ego and a denial of reality that is, frankly, delusional. Add that the ending is manipulatively cliff-hangery and I dropped completely out of charity with the novel by its end.
Authors: it's one thing to leave a cliff-hanger, it's another to neuter your climax and then drag out into an extended diversion that then simply stops—all while introducing and exploring a completely new element to the novel. This is reader-abuse, clear and simple and rather than make me anticipate the next book, it makes me completely lose charity with you, your heroine, and your stories. If you do this with one book, chances are you will with others. And I'm not up for that kind of abuse. It reeks of desperation on your part. And a lack of trust that your skill in telling stories is enough to draw people into the next part of the tale. I am a case in point: while I disliked certain elements (one-true-mate, for example, or the already mentioned daddy stupidity) I was interested enough to want to continue (it didn't hurt that the one-true-mate was a bad-ass hotty). Until you slapped me in the face with a stupid, contrived cliff-hanger-that-dragged-on-way-way-too-long... Gah.
As a female in Wolf Skin rises, the unborn Daughter of Cain is born; In her the beast shall lie, well hidden in True Form; And from this day forth, the Wolves of the Night shall pay; Blood and flesh of their bones, her mighty hand shall slay; The end of the race will close at hand; When the Daughter of Evil rules the land.
Probably the best shifter book I've ever read! I LOVED IT! Amanda Carlson has landed on my auto buy list and after you read Full Blooded you'll understand why. If you're interested in something creative, unique, exhilarating and equally fantastic in Urban Fantasy then Full Blood with quench that thirst. This was one of those books where I kept saying to myself, "okay just one more chapter before I go to bed".....only to find myself going to sleep early into the next morning. Full Blooded is quickly paced with plenty of fantastic world building but without the overwhelming information overload sometimes found in debut novels.
" Jessica, he cannot be trusted. He's a great warrior, one of the best I've ever seen, and I will owe him a life debt for getting you out of the fight, but he's not one of us. He is not pack. If he's led you into a trap by bringing you here...he's also a dead man."
How often have you read a book that exhilarated you from the beginning? Well that's exactly what Full Blooded was for me. From the moment I began reading Full Blooded I was enthralled into this unique world created by Amanda Carlson. Amanda Carlson grabbed me by toes and wouldn't let me go until the last spectacular page. Each chapter is more interesting than the last.
In the prequel Blooded we learn that Jessica is not only the only female ever born to a werewolf, but she also carries the burden of being the rumored daughter of Caine sent to destroy the entire werewolf species. While reading Blooded which I recommend you read first, we learn that Jessica's life is no longer safe at the compound and therefore her father Alpha McCain reluctantly sends her away under a pseudo name to create a new "safer" life living as a human while running her own private investigation firm with her best friend ". ".
If he knew already, the others wouldn't be fooled so easily. Power had swirled as our blood merged. That part had not been a lie. But I knew in my soul, just as my father knew. The Blood Oath did not claim me.
I found Jessica easy to like, she's witty, spunky and a courageous werewolf you'll want on your side. She doesn't come across as a spoiled brat as in the past I've read with female werewolfs, she's not coddled and she actually abused by her fellow pack members, so I find it admirable that she's so loyal to her pack despite their betrayal.
What do you think about that boys? Huh? I'm an unknown risk and the most powerful Alpha in the world can't control me. I'm your worst nightmare come to life. How do you like me now?
One night when Jessica was awakened to discover that she was going through her first werewolf shift as the mature age of twenty six, her dad (pack Alpha) and the entire rest pack are informed through the pack line reserved only for full fledged shifters. To Jessica's horror now she has basically been handed a target on her back, earning her threats from the supernatural community, a private *swoon worthy* mercenary hired to contain Jessica at all costs as well as threats from her own pack.
I needed a shower. Watching James make pancakes with no shirt on was going to ensure it was a cold one. I headed for the bathroom, calling over my shoulder, "Yes, but now the same idiot wants payback, and by the looks of it, preferably in the form of my personal demise. He's going to do everything in his power to get me." "Let him try."
For those of you that love to read a good Urban Fantasy filled with Aloha-Licious males well there's plenty of Alpha deliciousness to go around. Alpha Callum McCain (Jessica's father) has an Alpha presence that demands respect, and he loves both his twins equally despite the horrible rumor that revolves around Jessica's relationship and fate of the pack. Tyler (Jessica's twin brother) is protective, and very loyal. Second in command to Jessica's father is James and he's most definitely an incredibly sexy, loyal, powerful and honorable pack member to the Alpha as well as the other members. The head of security is Danny and he's likable, funny and such a cutie. Oh and there's Rourke *sigh* he stole my attention from the first page he appeared. Not only is he mysterious and edgy, he's also protective, and fierce, and dangerous. I mean who wouldn't find that attractive? He oozes self confidence and sex appeal, and once you read Full Blooded its easy to understand just why Rourke holds such Alpha appeal. My only question about Rourke is; What kind of shifter is Rourke? I MUST know now!!
"That's not going to work for me, Valdov," Rourke said. I'll tear your head off your shoulders if you take so much as one step closer. You don't have the authority to dismiss me that easily, and you know it." Rourke's voice went eerily calm then, dangerous and cutting in its intent. "If you lay one dead finger on her you will be begging me to end your life. Do you understand? You will beg me."
Full Blooded was action packed with exhilarating fight scenes, werewolf mythology, with a little bit of romance sprinkled throughout the pages. If your looking for a unique Urban Fantasy novel about werewolves and other supernatural creatures then you're in for a treat with Full blooded. Amanda Carlson is going to be a huge name in Urban Fantasy and I suggest you familiarize yourself with her brilliant work of art The McCaine series sooner rather than later. Full Blooded is an easy 5 sparkly stars!!!! The only unfortunate thing about this series is that the second novel Hot Blooded is not released until April 2013.
His eyes met mine and my heart leapt into my throat. Warrior of Old. Without a doubt, it was true. What was he? "What are you?" I breathed.
He looked at me curiously and I realized he was seeing me for the first time in my Lycan form. Surprise crept along his features, but we didn't have time to discuss it. "I'm yours," he said simply.
ARC provided for review by author
You can also find my review on my blog at Miss Vain's Paranormal Fantasy where you can enter to win a copy of Full Blooded from September 27th-October 5th 2012.
Full Blooded is the first book in Amanda Carlson’s Jessica McClain series, a new urban fantasy series featuring werewolves. No, let me re-phrase. Full Blooded is the first book in Amanda Carlson’s highly anticipated Jessica McClain series, a new urban fantasy series featuring werewolves and an awesome kick ass heroine.
The book opens with one hell of a scene. Jessica – the only female born into a werewolf clan – undergoes her first ever shift into wolf form. Now, you may be wondering what the big deal is with that? Well you see, Jessica didn’t think she would ever shift because a) she’s a chick and b) her first shift should have happened like, 10 years ago! So shifting into a wolf really wasn’t part of Jessica’s plans. Ever. This scene really grabs you and sets up the rest of the book wonderfully. What happens while Jessica is a wolf, how to explain it without giving anything away to the human populace, why is it that suddenly it seems that everyone wants Jessica dead or captured…you know, your usual everyday stuff. *snort* It’s a great opening scene and really sets the tone for the book.
To me, this whole book felt like a set-up book. Not once did it drag for me but the entire time it felt like I was reading this to get ready for something big. I guess the best way to describe this book is like a rollercoaster. For a good 90% of the book, you are going up and up and up…then you go ‘weeeeeeee’ for a bit near the end during a pretty impressive and memorable action scene, but it only brings you down a notch only to start going back up again. You just know that the next ‘weeeeeeee’ will be awesome and you are totally looking forward to it, even though it doesn’t happen in this book. I did not feel let down at the end of the book even though I didn’t get an ultimate ‘weeeeeeee’. Instead, I felt exhilarated, a little surprised and raring to get a hold of the next book. (By the way, the next book, Hot Blooded, isn’t releasing until April 23rd 2013. After reading Full Blooded you are going to want to read Hot Blooded so just go ahead and mark that date on your calendar now. I’ll wait while you do that… *hums to self*)
You get a really good understanding of the world that Amanda has created in this book without feeling too overwhelmed. I think what helped is that it is ultimately our world of today with a few tweaks. That also means it’s easy to relate to it.
Jessica, even though she is the only female werewolf and I’m well…not, is easy to relate to as well. She is very well written and is exactly the kind of heroine I like to read. She wasn’t weak yet not too strong to be overly stubborn. She interacts well with all the other characters and even though she’s been thrown into things a bit violently, she handles it all well. All in all, I was very pleased with her character and thank goodness for that seeing that this is the Jessica McLain series and that Amanda is contracted for three books as of now. *grin*
Another character I really enjoyed was Jessica’s wolf. She is a voice in Jessica’s head and she is great. It’s not like she’s talking or anything like that but she is making her feelings very clear to Jessica and it’s up to her to decide whether or not to let the wolf lead. It’s a really neat twist to the wolves Amanda writes and one I really enjoyed reading.
I liked all of the characters. Well, except for Ray. I never really got him and sometimes he just got on my nerves. But other than him, I liked them all. The bad guys were great, the vampires really unique and totally creepy and the main grouping of men… Oh the men…
Amanda writes amazing side characters in her men. There are five that really stand out and they are all equally yummy. James, yum. Danny, yum. Tyler, yum. Nick, yum. Rourke, YUM! Heck, even Jessica’s father is yummy in his own right! They all play a part in Jessica’s life and they are all written in a way that you are immediately attracted to them and want to know all about them. Amanda really did good there.
A little more about Rourke here: He is mystery. We know enough to make us want to follow him around like panting puppies but not quite enough that we would lose interest. Then the ending hits and you’re left going “wha’? Rourkie! *cries*” So basically, he is a perfect main hero/love interest for our Jessica. And boy are they good together.
There is a prequel novella available titled Blooded. I don’t believe it is necessary to read it before diving into Full Blooded but I think it would help set things up a bit better if you do. Full Blooded starts off with that HUGE event and I feel like people would understand the colossal-ness of this opening event better if they read Blooded. But as I said, you don’t have to but…you should maybe go check it out. ;)
Overall, I really enjoyed Full Blooded. Amanda’s voice is perfect for this genre, Jessica is a fantastic heroine and the supporting characters are all incredible. On top of that, the story is interesting and it leaves you wanting more. If this book and the novella are any indication, this series will hook you in, keep you on your toes and leave you wanting more. All in all, a great read that I definitely recommended.
I don't envision this novel, which I enjoyed, will have many negative reviews around, and I'd hazard a guess that this one will be one of the more critical ones, and that's a good thing... I think. Full Blooded by Amanda Carlson is as close a sure thing debut as any I've read in the urban fantasy genre. It's appeal will make it a fan favorite right off the bat, and a novel that will surely charm its way to be among the favorites of the year for urban fantasy enthusiasts, particularly those that enjoy some kick-ass action accompanied by a small dose of the sexy.
It's just an ordinary night for Jessica McClain, waking up in the middle of a nightmare as she's turned into a werewolf. Completely normal, happens to everyone, wouldn't you say? Problem is that she's an impossibility, something that could never be; a female werewolf. Throughout all her life she's been subject of prophecies that indicate that she'll be the destruction of her race, which doesn't bode well for her now that she's turned. What follows is a story about how she, her family, and her friends will handle keeping her secret in the midst of traitors, of clan members that want her dead, and an overzealous detective that suspects her of being in league with the criminal underworld.
Full Blooded was an interesting novel, as far as plot structure and pace. As for plot, I felt it was a bit unfocused, something that I'd consider a big negative just about any read I'd stumble upon. In this case, I more than welcomed it. Will we be dealing with a traitor? Will we be focusing on the police that's out to get her? Will have to be concerned with keeping her new werewolf self a secret? Will we be dealing with the investigation aspects of her workplace? Will we be trying to figure out who's trying to kill Jessica? As the story went along I really didn't know where Carlson was heading with this story, until it clicked for me. It doesn't matter what the plot focuses on, when one considers it's really about Jessica's life and how she deals with the suddenness of her situation and adapting her life accordingly. And the answer is pretty much "yes" to all the above, which leads right into the interesting pace.
Pace was what I can only describe as patiently fast-paced. Patient because the scenes themselves took a bit to develop, and where at times lengthy. Fast paced, because not only does it have a lot of badass action, but because it deals with all the plot issues above in a timely and efficient manner. Some of the plot points could've easily been stretched and milked for all its worth in a span of several books, which is a tendency I find becoming more common as of late. Instead Amanda Carlson tackles all those situations without missing a beat, promising a fresh set of dilemmas for the sequel. I really enjoyed this aspect, no stringing the reader along with a lot of bullshit to avoid issues that can be dealt with in the present.
Jessica McClain was a fun character. Not only was she strong physically, she's had to live through a shit plate of a life, and she's faced her problems head on determined not to become a victim. She's constantly positioned herself to improve her quality of life. Now that's she has turned into a werewolf, you can tell that she might be enjoying how the tables might be turning a bit... of course, when she's not worrying about those that are trying to kill her or undo all the life she's built for herself. She's a fun character and an energetic narrator. If you've ever had the chance to interact with the author, you can tell that the enthusiasm she seems to have in real life has influenced Jessica's persona.
Jessica is accompanied by a decent cast of side characters. Still am unable to commit fully to them, but I see two of them that I'll be looking forward to seeing more of. The main overall problem for me were that about three of Jessica's closest confidants were hard to distinguish from one another, they had similar voices. By the end of it though, they started to stand-out a bit more, so will be looking forward how Carlson further develops them. That said, I really enjoyed how they all interacted and I think most will find Jessica's relationship with her She-Wolf quite amusing.
I won't lie though, Full Blooded was a tale of two halves for me. And I won't lie either about how it was the promise of kick-ass action which attracted me to this novel in the first place, so that perspective influenced majorly on how I perceived the novel. In all, loved the first half, but I encountered a few issues in the second half that prevented me from enjoying this novel as much as I could have. Some of it are issues that I think the author can address and improve on, other have more of a personal taste nature (though I still think it can be handled better).
Let's start with the most obvious one as it concerns me, how the sexy, erotica, lust scenes were handled. Just to be clear, there was only one sex scene here, and all that went down was appropriate as far as I'm concerned. In the first half, there really wasn't anything that I found problematic on this regard, some great banter among friends and some good humor flirting which I could identify with as it resembles just fun dialogue between friends. At times surprisingly refreshing. The aforementioned sex scene was a bit awkward as it came about, but fitting with the story, so even then not much of a problem for me. The problem came in the second half when Jessica became isolated with certain character, after avoiding an action scene that had the making of being awesome, in favor of 26 or so pages I didn't handle well. It was filled with a lot of ogling and descriptions of how sexy this dude was, how the sweat was dripping off him, description of his muscles, etc. There was an amusing side to all of this with Jessica interacting with the wolf inside her, but just too much for me during this span. What made it worse was that it all occurred during a long trek which really interrupted the great pace the story had to this point. And of course, we had to go through a body of water, so an excuse to get wet and partially undressed so the characters could leer at each other a bit more.
Then there was the action, which is the aspect where I hope Carlson can improve on in the future, which is certainly doable. The evidence is in the novel itself. By this I mean is that in the first half, the action was some of the best I've read this year, and probably ever in this subgenre. It had all the elements I look for: limited dialogue, fast, hard, and violently detailed. It became even better with the good energy and excitement of Jessica's narration in a setting that was blissfully silent, except for the screams from pain. Also, surprisingly graphic which was great. So it came as a bit of a disappointment when some of these attributes were dropped in the second half. The major problem was the dialogue, it became quite obtrusive to the action and plagued with characters cursing at each other that came off as a bit immature shouting and uninspired. I had made this observation previously in my Blooded novella review, and was encouraged by how well the action was handled in the first half of Full Blooded, so it was a bit of a shame that these problems crept back into the narrative as the climax to this novel was unfolding. That's not to say that the action was bad, it was still hard and awesomely violent, but these other issues prevented me from enjoying them to its full capacity despite how action packed it was.
All this said, I really enjoyed the novel and the above shouldn't be used to discourage interested readers from trying it. They're merely some areas I think could be improved on and could have made this novel much better for me personally. As mentioned, the first half was really good for me, and the second half shouldn't have bothered me as much as it did. Regardless of all this, I'm of the opinion that this is a well balanced novel that the great majority of urban fantasy readers will get a kick out of. Full Blooded fulfilled it's promise with a main character that kicks major ass amid a fun and energetic narrative, and I invite others to give Amanda Carlson's debut a shot. I know I'm just about ready for the sequel Hot Blooded, but it comes out during Spring next year.
From everything I knew about wolves, not being in control was an extremely bad sign. If I couldn't subdue my wolf-- couldn't master my Dominion over the new beast inside me-- I wouldn't be allowed to live. Holy shit, I'm a wolf
One of the best Shifter books EVER! Absolutely LOVED!Amanda Carlson is the next big thing in Urban Fantasy! Obviously, if you a huge Shifter fan you'll love it and if you're not, you'll want to devour more shifter books after this one! As soon as you begin reading you become so into the story that you cannot stop reading and it's just full of so much awesomeness. You will seriously be craving for the next book the moment you finish the FULL BLOODED.
What do you think about that, boys? Huh? I'm an unknown risk and the most powerful Alpha in the world can't control me. I'm you're worst nightmare come to life. How do you like me now?
The Story: Jessica McClain is the only female born from a werewolf. There is the myth or legend that she will bring about the destruction of the entire pack and what’s bad is the whole pack believe’s it and so they are trying to kill her before she hits her 20th birthday. Fast forward like 10 years later I believe, Jessica makes her change into a werewolf and all hell breaks loose. Everyone wants a piece of her!
"Rourke, what kind of werecat are you?" He seemed genuinely surprised by the question. Then he narrowed his eyes, flashing me a toothy grin. "I never kiss and tell on the first date."
The Men: There are a lot of men in Jessica McClain's world that you will fall in love with. We have Tyler, her brother, Nick, her best shifter friend, Danny, Tyler's best friend of the pack, James, the sexy Second in command and Callum, Jessica and Tyler's father and the Alpha of the pack! Oh, I must mention Rourke too! I don't know what to make of him yet, but we'll see! I'm pretty hot for James right now! But WOW! Lots of men to drool over!
He wasn't technically breaking in, you see, since he had his own key, but nevertheless he woke me out of a perfectly lovely sleep. I'd been dreaming about the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders, who are, for the record, a naughty lot of---" "Danny," I said sharply. "Please stay on topic."
And we have quite a few different side characters which I won't go too much into, but you will love all of these characters, main and side ones! Amanda Carlson has created a lot of likable characters! And Jessica is no weakling either, she's a real tough girl! And I love her as the heroine! I really look forward to the next book, Hot Blooded! Trust me as soon as your finish FULL BLOODED you'll want to get your hands on the next in the Jessica McClain Series immediately!
I love UFs. I have also been wanting to read this book/series for a long because it sounded like just the kind of book I'd like.
It started out really well. Jess McClain is of the werewolf McClain clan. Her father is the alpha of the pack. Sounds normal right? Except Jessica is the first/only female to have been born from a werewolf. Werewolves mate with human females and can, usually, only give birth to males. To make matters worse, there is this prophecy of sorts, that paints Jess in a bad light, as the first female born to werewolves.
So from a young age, Jessica has been plagued this prophecy. Most of the clan dislikes her, and only her father's status, her brothers' protection has kept her safe and her own kickass fighting skills have kept her alive and breathing. But even she wearies of this prejudice and leaves the clan to make a life for herself outside in the real world.
Except, one day, Jess shifts. Where other male werewolves undergo the shift to werewolf at puberty, Jess's change came years later, to the point where she had accepted that she wouldn't change at all.
So it was pretty good at the beginning. I liked the heroine, I liked the setting and context of the book.
What I didn't like was how quickly she found her one and only mate. Werewolves go years, if not decades, if not forever, searching for the right one. Jess finds hers in two or three days following her shift. Not only that, but she finds herself engaged in the battle with her mate's ex by the end of the day.
I didn't really love her mate. I mean he wasn't bad or anything, but we don't really know much about him, because they have one real conversation that lasts a few minutes and then bam! An epic fight to end the book in a cliffhanger. Plus there was all this suspicion hanging over their short duration of a relationship.
I reckon I would have enjoyed it more if Jess could have gotten a bit more quality time with her mate. She obviously, for fated reasons, feels a connection to him, but I was missing that connection, and even by the end of the book, he was just a stranger to me.
ARC courtesy of Netgalley and Orbit: Hachette Book Group.
This book really grew on me! 4 stars but if the next book starts with the same intensity that this book ended on, I can see this series being a favorite of mine!
I was totally surprised by how much I ended up enjoying this book. Before I saw it on Net Galley to review, it wasn't even on my radar. In a genre that is just FILLED with amazing books, it is hard to stand out. However, "Full Blooded" really came through in the end.
Admittedly, this book starts off on the slow side. I am very particular about my shifter books. I don't really like them on the trashy side (aka Feral Sins) but more in the Kate Daniels vein. This book is another one that includes a variety of supernatural creatures: Vampires, witches, werewolves (and other shifters) all make appearances. Now, when I read an urban fantasy book I like it to have a bit of wit and humor in it (my top favorite being the Halfway to the Grave series). This book isn't really like that. There isn't the sharp humor that I look for in these types of books, which put me off from this book in the beginning. However, as the story and the world-building developed, I found myself being rapidly sucked into the story.
Jessica McClain is the world's first full-blooded werewolf- and she just made her first change a decade later than she was supposed to. Every other werewolf in the world is born a male so Jessica is viewed as a possible threat by both the were community and other supernaturals alike. Her father, the North American werewolf Alpha, and his pack are on her side, but she is facing heat from every other direction. The supernaturals are worried about what she is and what she is capable of... and Jessica doesn't even know the answers herself.
Fair warning to readers out there: This book ends on somewhat of a cliffy. You will want to pick up book two as soon as you are finished with this one!
The book starts with a bang (worst "wake up call" ever) and just keeps going. The action is great. I love that we are thrown into this world, and even though Jess has been on the periphery of it, she now has to learn quick, and we get to tag along.
Werewolves, witches, vampires (not romantic, these are evil suckers), demons, and so on. Jess has just become the only female werewolf - something everyone in the supernatural community seems really pissed about. Through in prophecies, conspiracies, and betrayals and this is a fun ride.
There is some romance, but this isn't a Romance. I thought it fit well with the story.
Love the characters - Jess is my kind of heroine. Marcy is fantastic as the witchy firend. Tyler, James, Danny & Nick - I love them all, but have to go with Danny as my fav. Cocky with an accent. That'll do it. And Rourke, very well done indeed.
I received a ARC of this book, and I got to read this story from the beginning, eagerly awaiting each new chapter, so I feel a lot closer to these characters than I would a new to me series. That said, I would come to the end of each chapter and howl at having to wait for more, so I really liked it from the earliest start.
This review is going to be a little different from my usual reviews. First I won’t be doing it alone, my sister Juanita is joining me today, she is going to help me review Full Blooded, but that is not the only thing different, Full Blooded is the first book Juanita have read in this “kind” of genre. Her books usually don’t have supernatural creatures or different worlds in them. I can honestly say that Full Blooded popped her Urban Fantasy Cherry.
Marcela: Welcome and thank you for trusting me and getting out of your comfort zone. I loved Full Blooded so much that I knew if I book was going to get you addicted to “my kind” of books, Full Blooded was going to be the one. For what we’ve talked I can guess you really liked it but I rather hear (read) you say it. Let me know what was your first impression while reading it and we go from there.
Juanita: Thanks for giving me this book, as you know it’s definitely out of my comfort zone and choice of books, but I am very glad I took the chance to read it. It was a very smooth read, to the point that when I was almost finished I had to check to make sure it really was the end, I read it too fast! My first reaction was to search when the next book is coming out! I loved everything in it (except that I have to wait for the next book), I usually have to force my self to finish fantasy books and I don't feel like I want to read anything about it for a while. Not in this case! I even set an alarm for the day the next book, Hot Blooded, comes out. So if you want to convert someone into this genre Full Blooded will do the trick.
Marcela: I’m very glad to hear that! Now let’s talk about Jessica. I really loved her, in my opinion she is the perfect heroine, she is smart, snaky and brave; I loved how she affronted her situation and instead of hiding she wanted to be in the frontline of the action. I can also imagine how difficult it must had been for her growing up hearing she is an anomaly, with people hating her and wanting her dead just because she is female and despite that she hasn’t let it affect her life much, she has done the best with what life has given her.
Juanita: I really liked Jessica, I loved that she feels so "normal", regardless of being supernatural, and nonetheless a werewolf what makes her very strong, and like many people say "bad ass", and somehow she is still very feminine, I really liked that about her. It's great to see how the author made her past into something that will help her become someone better and stronger instead of dwelling in the past or becoming someone afraid to live. I am looking forward to see what she is going to do in the next book, but I don't think we can give all the praise to her alone. She has a great support group that definitely helped her be who she is... And who better than her business partner and best friend, Nicky. There is something about the guy that you have to love; we all like to have that dependable friend. It's cool that he is from a different "species" and they still work great as a team. He is smart, funny and a great complement for Jessica
Marcela: I agree completely, Nicky is the perfect sidekick; he is not only funny and caring but also very loyal. But if we are going to talk about secondary characters we need to talk about Jessica’s brother Tyler and her father Callum. I really loved how they love her and fought for her, putting her wellbeing above everything else. I can’t imagine how difficult must be for them especially for Callum as the Pack Alpha to see your own daughter attacked by his own people.
Juanita: Indeed, the balance he has between being a father and the Pack Alpha is very interesting; he keeps a balance of the packs best interest and Jessica's. I'm really looking forward to learn more about him. Also the relation between Tyler and Jessica is the typical siblings interaction, is very entertaining to see the way they tease each other, but at the same time how much they really care for the other’s well being. Now that we moved to strong characters, we have to mention James...I really want to hear a lot more about him! He is that bad boy that we all love, strong, smart, hot… I really hope that we get much more about him. Another character that will have you thinking is Danny; he is the typical "player" all the time ready to flirt when the opportunity presents and even if it doesn't he'll make one. Now to cool the mood a little, what do you think of the villains?
Marcela: Before talking about the villains I need to talk about James, OMFG he is sex on a stick, that guy is not only hot as hell but also a great friend, one you can trust with your life (and your body…), You may think bad boy when you see him but he’s nothing of the sort, he is loyal, smart and commanding, that’s why he’s Callum’s Second in the Pack. About Danny, I loved how funny he was, with only couple of words he was able to light up the mood. I really hope to see more of them in future books. Now on the villains, I hated the pack guys that went against Jessica; they are a clear example of how bigotry can affect somebody to the point to make them betray their own people. And about the vampires, wow, Mrs. Carlson writes in a way that made them freaky creepy and the best part is that they don’t sparkle! I’m dying to know what is the secret agenda the vampire Queen has in regards to Jessica.
Juanita: Oh, My God, those vampires were creepy in a way that I haven't heard in a long time. There was certainly nothing cool about these ones; they were scary and not fun in any way. I also want to know what is the plan they have with Jessica, why she is so important for them (and other creepy creatures). In general this is a book that I know I will recommend to all the people I know who like to read, and even if they are not avid readers Full Blooded is a good way to escape reality. All I can say is that I am really looking forward to Mrs. Carlson next book, Hot Blooded. Full Blooded was such an easy and smooth read that I might become a fan of this genre.
Marcela: I’m really happy to hear (read) that! I agree completely with you; with its solid plot and its fast pace Full Blooded have you glued to its pages from beginning to end, and talking about ends we need to talk a little bit about that other character (Rourke) we haven’t mention to avoid spoilers, let’s just say about him that he’s dreamy and I would love to make him “purr”, just thinking about him made me want to break into Mrs. Carlson house to get a sneak peek at Hot Blooded, I can’t wait to April 23rd, 2013 to get my greedy hands on him, sorry on it.
Juanita: Well since you mention that character that makes you want to "purr", well, I am sure he will be an important part of the next book (I should hope so), Rourke is a full package, strong, powerful, sexy, smart, hot... Oh! My! Guess all is left is to wait for April. Once again, thanks for the recommendation! And I'll be looking forward for the next book.
Marcela: Juanita thank you for believing in me and taking the risk to read Full Blooded, I’m very happy you loved it! I knew you would ;)
Ok, people as you can see a no-fan of this genre loved Full Blooded with that you can imagine how good this book is. Mrs. Carlson created a new addictive series, one I recommend to all of you, trust me as Juanita did, I promise you won’t regret it. My only thing left to say is: “Mercy Thompson and Faythe Sanders should watch out because there’s a new girl in town and Jessica McClain is here to stay”.
Jessica McClain is the only female to be born pack in the last couple hundred of years. As she is regarded as, “the evil apocalypse that will end their race” and constantly fighting for her life, she leaves the pack and heads to the city to live on her own in seclusion. When she awakes in the middle of the night, in the throes of her first change, Jessica realizes that everything has changed. Now she is the only true female werewolf in the world and everyone wants a piece of her.
I was thrilled when I received an arc of Full Blooded. I was also thrilled to have met Amanda Carlson in New Orleans at the Authors After Dark convention. It’s easy to see where the humor and energy in this series comes from. She is a whirlwind. I read the prequel, Blooded, which left me jonesing hard to know what happens to Jessica once she leaves her father’s pack. Full Blooded is Amanda Carlson’s debut urban fantasy novel that takes us into a supernatural world of hot, sexy shapeshifters, nasty, political advancing vampires, and a prophecy that all revolves around the first female to be born into a wolf pack in hundreds of years-Jessica McClain.
A strong character driven series, a majority of the book sets up the world and introduces the characters who are important to the arc and storyline. Carlson does a wonderful job of explaining shapeshifter politics and the world around us and integrating them into the main conflict. A steady pace combined with humorous dialogue and action packed scenes keeps us moving along as we get up close and personal with our protagonist, Jessica McClain. Jessica is her pack’s alpha’s daughter. She is also the first female to be born into the pack and her birth is shrouded in secrecy and a prophecy. A prophecy that claims her existence heralds the end of the werewolves existence. This puts a damper on her childhood. Faced with never ending dominance battles and death threats, when she fails to change in puberty, her father agrees to let her leave the pack and move to the city to live on her own as a human. When the shift does come upon her, six years later, Jessica knows she has no choice but to reunite with the pack. While she loves seeing her dad and brother again, the majority of the pack still see her an an instrument of evil. Jessica also learns that while she is a shapeshifter, she has certain abilities that have never been seen before and put a huge target on her back.
Once Jessica shifts, the whole world seems to know it, and suddenly Jessica finds her apartment ransacked and she is attacked out of the blue. Jessica now has enemies she’s never heard of-creepy vampires, sneaky witches, and even a psycho goddess-each one more name on the “Get Jessica” list. Someone wants her and it’s up to her family and friends to figure out why.
Jessica is a great UF heroine. Intelligent, intuitive, and independent; she does a great job of handling her life and problems without falling prey to arrogance and/or bitchiness. She’s not one to deny help from anyone if she needs it, but she has no problems taking care of business on her own. She has a healthy outlook on life and sex, but who wouldn’t with all the sexy shapeshifters prowling around her? I love her internal monologue, which is distinctly snarky as she tries to acclimate herself to all the changes she is going through. Especially in relations to her wolf, whom she has named Jezebel.
“Hold on their Jezebel…I’m not interested in becoming a slutty werewolf. We are not lifting tail for every good looking guy who comes along.”
I loved how she and her wolf were able to balance their natures and align themselves with each other. They communicate well and even the wolf brings some snark to the table.
The secondary cast are all strong, personable characters who could each carry a storyline all by themselves. I love Jessica’s dad, Cullum. He truly loves Jessica and wants her to stay where he can protect her, but realizes that his love will probably get her killed. You can tell letting her go breaks his heart. Her brother is delightful and I like the relationship they have. I also enjoyed meeting James and Danny-pack members. James is Cullum’s second and he just screams DO ME every time he opens his mouth. RAWR! Danny has some of the best lines,is a complete perv, and I can’t wait to see more of him in the next installment. Rourke is the most interesting to me as he is an mercenary shape shifter for hire and approaches Jessica to “talk.” Gorgeous, alpha, and a complete bad-ass. Jessica is not what he expected and when one thing leads to another, both Jessica and Rourke find themselves in a situation neither of them planned on but don’t know how to escape. And their not sure they want to.
The main conflict intertwines with the “meet and greet” storyline and we find ourselves drifting along comfortably, until towards the end when suddenly it merges with an explosive scene changing game and climatic ending. We learn who was targeting Jessica and why.
There is a cliffhanger that left me feeling a little deflated though. I’m not a huge cliffhanger fan, especially this early in the game. The epilogue clues us into the storyline for the next book, Hot Blooded, and while I will beat you all up for this book, I did feel that the set up for the cliffhanger was done prematurely, hence I’m knocking my grade down. I would have liked to have seen that particular storyline manifest itself later in the series as the characters involved got to know one another better.
Amanda Carlson is a new, must read, author in the urban fantasy genre and I recommend to all those who love an action packed story with engaging dialogue, smoking hot characters, and a heroine who is guaranteed to make you laugh while she’s kicking butt.
7/12 - Hmm, not sure about this one so far (page 20). I don't want to say it's got plot holes (too early to assume), but it has got a bit of plot sieve action going on. So, you know how if you dump a cup of flour into a sieve a little sprinkling comes out immediately, but then it stops? As long as you don't poke at it, jiggle it, or breathe too heavily, right? Well, that's the stage I'm at in Full Blooded, the flour's in the sieve, a fine dusting leaked out, but it's stopped for the moment. I'm afraid if I poke at the plot too much the sieve will disappear and there'll just be a gaping hole where the plot used to be and a pile of flour on the bench.
You see, we've just been told that Jessica's father has been with his 2IC for over 100 years, that makes him well over 100 years in age. If he's that old why does he only have two children, 26-year-old twins? You would think he'd be sowing his seed wherever he could in order to prolong his bloodline (he's the North American alpha). Also, where's his wife? Is this going to be a 'mated/bonded/one and only forever and ever' kind of thing? Because I'm looking forward to reading a werewolf/shifter book where a spouse can die or divorce and the one left behind is allowed to move on, in stead of being permanently attached to the dead or ex (that doesn't happen often) spouse for all eternity. When is someone going to write a book with a werewolf/shifter who's had a life partner/spouse who died, but as they weren't 'mated/bonded/one and only forever and ever' they were able to move on and find another life partner/spouse? That's what I want to know. To be continued...
8/12 - I feel like I'm missing something with this book. It's as if the first 100 pages, where Jessica's back story is explained, has been accidentally edited out of the book. Jessica frequently talks about events from her time at the 'compound', but exactly what the 'compound' is, where it is or details about these events are never given. Something bad happened between her and Hank while she was still living there, leading to her needing to escape, but we have no idea what. This is all discussed, either via internal monologue or with other characters, as if there was a prologue that showed the reader what happened, BUT THERE WASN'T. It's really frustrating me! Plus, I don't understand why it took till page 150 to hear anything about Jessica and Tyler's mother. We didn't even know if she was dead or a woman who couldn't handle raising werewolves or just decided she hated Callum (J & T's father). Turns out she died during childbirth due to the strain put on her body from giving birth to twin werewolves. I would have thought that would have been mentioned in the 'introduce the MC' phase of the book in the opening chapter(s).
All this talk of events prior to the story was really bringing the rating down in my head. Every time something was mentioned without an explanation being given (which was pretty much every time) the rating got lower, I was even starting to think about not finishing it. Then a ray of light shone through the clouds of confusion in the form of Jessica's fight with Drake the paedophilic imp. After that the plot finally started to pick up and the past was no longer mentioned in EVERY scene, as it had (or seemed to have been) up until then. To be continued...
10/12 - I'm giving this 3.5 stars. I really can't say four because of the irritations I mentioned above, but it wasn't so bad as to be just 'average' (three stars). There were some things I liked, like Jessica and Rourke's interactions after he helped her escape and the fact that she's extra special (not just the only female werewolf, but a Lycan). I will definitely get the next book in the series, would have it on hold already but I've reached the limit of holds allowed.
After reading Blooded, the novella of the story (that takes place before this one), I was more than curious to learn more about our heroine, Jessica McClain. The contrary isn’t possible! I must say that I was impressed by this strong woman and I was looking forward to the rest of her history. I can affirm now that this impatience was rewarded when I see how much I enjoyed this first volume.
Some time has passed since the end of the novella and Jessica is installed and lives away from home, working with her friend, Nick as a private detective. However she lives now under a new identity and nobody knows who she really is. This life suits her perfectly but nothing would be perfect if an event didn’t turn everything upside down, threatening to destroy the life she worked so hard to build. In fact, now against all odds, our young heroine turns, for the first time, into a werewolf, something that will break the life she had been forged and reinforce the myth where she is the main issue. Moreover, being the only woman in this case does not bring her much sympathy, far from it! And when everyone decides to come after her, Jessica doesn’t have much choice.
I have not had much opportunity to immerse myself in a werewolf book featuring the first adaptation of a new shape-shifter, and I must say it was very pleasant to discover it. I’m sure that it must ultimately be more complicated for the author to get to show the feelings and the stages of the transformation processing. But Amanda Carlson perfectly succeeded in this challenge and she brings us with her in her story that we don’t want to leave. It was very interesting to follow Jessica in all her changes and challenges. We can quite easily relate ourselves to her, as her only dream is to have a normal life, but if only it was possible ... She is a strong young woman, who doesn’t run away where there is a problem and she has more problems than a normal person! I was really impressed by her composure and her desire to be accepted and to be treated equally.
But there is more than our heroine and all the other characters are also very intriguing. It was a great pleasure to discover more about them every time and to get to understand them well. James Tyler, Callum, and many other people are incredible, we can only admire their sense of family. Oh, but have I forgotten to mention Rourke? Me? Impossible! I think this is the character about whom we askes myself many more questions throughout the story and I'm really curious to learn even more now. I must say that he is a difficult man to forget (yes, you'll see!).
I think you understand now that this first volume was a wonderful discovery and the only thing I want to do now is to be able to immerse myself in the second one. With such an end, it would be surprising if this wasn’t the case. I was almost in despair when I saw that there were no more chapters. The story ends with the beginning of something much bigger. I really can’t wait! So, here we discover a novel mixing love, betrayal, but also many changes, something that keeps the reader in suspense throughout the story.
I had many surprises all along the novel and I didn’t expect that the author would introduce us so many things and characters here. This is something that allows us to better understand the world in which we evolve but that also makes us ask many other questions. I think, or at least I sincerely hope that we can discover more in the second volume.
It’s been a great year for Urban Fantasy and the winning streak continues with Carlson’s new series Jessica McClain. The author has given life to a fierce and uncompromising society of werewolves where Jessica is not supposed to exist. In this world, there are no female-born werewolves and hasn’t been for a very long time. Until Jessica.
Superstition is rampant among the werewolves and most in the Pack fear her. Some even believe she is the prophesied one spoken of in the ‘Cain Myth’ (the true Daughter of Evil who would eventually destroy the entire werewolf race).
In the last novel, fear of what Jessica meant to the Pack was smoldering to a point where her life is at risk so she moved away and created a new life off Compound. This novel picks up a few years later when Jessica’s turning into a werewolf triggers all sorts of trouble and the adventures begin.
The worldbuilding in this series gives a unique spin on werewolves that makes for a very compelling read. It has great characterization all around with completely believable main characters and great supporting characters. The story captivates from Page 1 and the excitement continues throughout. It’s full of hot testosterone-laden werewolves that seriously kept my pulse above normal for most of the book.
FULL-BLOODED is a thrilling read and one that’s left me anxiously awaiting the next in the series. ________________________________________ About the Characters ________________________________________ Even is Jessica wasn’t the only female werewolf, she would still be cool. She’s bold, fearless and totally kickass but not afraid to show vulnerabilities. She takes her punches and always gets back up and moves forward. She’s fiercely loyal to her Pack even when they are distrusting of her and apprehensive of accepting her as a member of the Pack. She has quite a sense of humor as well that had me laughing out loud a few times.
The hero, Rourke is a were?. The question mark is not a typo. It’s intended to be there because Rourke is a mystery. We know he is some sort of cat shifter but not what kind. The author has created a great character by showing Rourke’s mysterious side as a mercenary and his sinister reputation for gruesome killings. He’s secretive about his past, which adds to his charm. Then we see him as this awesomely protective guy when it comes to Jessica. He’s very intriguing and I’m just dying to find out more of his story.
As I mentioned above, this Pack has some fabulously hot weres. Starting at the top with Callum, (the Alpha and Jessica’s father), James (the second in command), Danny (an enforcer for the Pack), Nick (Jessica’s best friend) and Tyler (Jessica’s twin brother). The author gives each of these supporting characters a storyline and develops them enough so they really add to the story. I was left wondering if maybe we’ll see a spinoff series down the road for some of them. Trust me, this would be a very good thing. ________________________________________ Bottom Line ________________________________________ Again, this novel is golden!! The characters are believable; the story is compelling and expertly delivered. It’s fast-paced with non-stop action from Page 1. A true Urban Fantasy gem! If you’re a UF fan or a fan of werewolves and shifters, you will want to add this one to the top of your To-Be-Read list.
"This is one hell of a crazy ride! The beginning of a new series that will get you hooked from the first page!"
My Thoughts After reading that crazy ride of a novella BLOODED I coudn't wait to read this novel Full Blooded!
Full Blooded is the first (full) installment of the Jessica McClain Series what promises to be an exciting addition to the UFRW " (Urban Fantasy Readers World), Amanda Carlson has given me a unique world full over werewolves and a kick-ass heroine that I like to be BFF's with!
Full Blooded got me hooked from the first page. This story has everything an Urban Fantasy novel should have: lots of action, a kick ass heroine, lust, smoking hot men men, werewolves! This series has all the potential to grow in to a fantastic series.
I have to say that Jessica is my favorite in this story and I love to read as much as possible about her but there is more than our super ass-kicking heroine. Just as in the Novella James, Rourke, Callum and more of the pack where there also.
One minor: The ending of the book was a little bit of a disappointment.. I just kept tapping my iPad hoping that there would be more pages but nothing came up. The story ends in the middle of a new storyline. Damn!
I can’t wait! I am so excited... I am curious to what book 2 will bring me. Maybe more different kind of shifters?
Cover: I think the cover is brilliant. The cover girl looks just like I amagined Jessica would be.
This new series of Amanda Carlson has taken up a permanent on my keeper shelf and I look forward to reading many more of her books. I highly recommend this book to any paranormal or urban fan.
P.S. I would recommend to reads first the prequel novella Blooded before reading Full Blooded.
Jessica has pretty much come to terms with the fact that she will never turn into a werewolf, she has finally convinced her father that she needs to get away from the pack that hates her with a passion and she has been living on her own when the unthinkable happens. She turns.
Jessica was an instant like character for me. She stands up for herself, doesn't take anyone's crap and even though she might be at a disadvantage she will put her all into kicking your ass if you get in her face. The pack treats her like she will be the death of them all and when she actually turns things get even worse for her. Being the only female werewolf ever is hard on a girl but she takes it all in and carries the burden beautifully. The action is non stop in FULL BLOODED if Jessica isn't dodging murder attempts she is fighting her way out of trouble with the local law enforcement agent that has it out for her. The men in her life are loyal and protective and its always nice hearing her describe them. I loved her brother as well as James (fans herself from his hotness). Jessica is also lucky to have found her mate. Their meeting is brief but their connection is strong and I cant wait to dive into book 2 HOT BLOODED to get to know him better. I honestly don't know how anyone could not love this book and I will leave it at that as I don't want to give away to much.
After reading BLOODED the Jessica McClain series quickly became one of my must read series, reading FULL BLOODED didn't lesson that one bit. I highly recommend you jump in to this series immediately by getting a copy of BLOODED so that your ready for FULL BLOODED the moment it hits the shelf. The ending of FULL BLOODED came way to soon and ended on a huge cliffhanger. I'm dying to read HOT BLOODED.