Aug 3 2006
Dear Ms. Laurentson:
I read Pack Challenge twice before writing this review. First time I read it, I find it fresh and enjoyable. You have a very modern vibe about your books. Your characters interact in keeping with your world construct. The characters are earthy, with spicy language and corresponding spicy attitudes.
The second time I read it, I wished that you had toned down your characters, particularly the three female leads, and made them have more individuality. Your characters and scenes suffered from a sameness making at least two of the female leads interchangeable at times.
Sara Morrighan is suffering. She has an old wound in her leg caused by a wolf attack that killed her father. She is becoming increasingly aggressive, believes she's hearing voices, and is communing with the local wolves. When a motorcycle gang comes to town, she is instantly attracted to one of the leaders. Zach Sheridan and his Pack have traveled to Sara’s small Texas town with the intent to turn her and protect her from the Whithell Pride. The Whithell Pride is a group of shapeshifting lions who are seeking Sara out to exact revenge. Sara is actually a shapeshifter whose true nature was hidden by her grandmother. Sara’s wolf is dying to get out and Zach has been assigned babysitting duties. Zach, himself, is embroiled in a struggle for Pack leadership.
The attraction between Sara and Zach is electric as are their couplings. But, for me, the true gem in the book was the relationship between Sara and her two friends: Angelina and Miki. Those were the problems in the book two. The two friends had strong voices whose tone never varied. Their voices became one long strident signal that began to remind me of the tone from the Emergency Broadcast Signal.
I like your voice. It's unique and very fresh and I'll read you again. If you could just tone it down a bit, I don’t think you would lose any of your edginess. Not every exchange between the three women had to end in a slap fight or start with the term, bitch. I think these women deserve better verbal skills than that. Less is more in some cases and would have resulted in richer characters with less redundancy. B-.
P.S. And I don't know why, but Sara's constant reference to herself as a whore for wanting to and having sex with Zach bothered me. She wasn't sexing him up for money which is what I know a whore as. I think the appropriate self flagellatory term should have been slut (woman of loose morals).