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Silver Borne: A Mercy Thompson Novel    by Patricia Briggs order for
Silver Borne
by Patricia Briggs
Order:  USA  Can
Ace, 2010 (2010)
Hardcover, e-Book

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* *   Reviewed by Hilary Williamson

Silver Borne is the fifth in Patricia Briggs' popular urban fantasy series, starring down to earth mechanic (and shapechanger) Mercy Thompson. Raised by werewolves and friend of an ancient vampire, Stefan (who however has no role in this episode), Mercy can turn into a coyote and is impervious to most magic (handy when the fae are involved). Gremlin Zee, whose natural element is metal, is her friend and mentor.

The mystery begins when Zee's half-fae son Tad calls from college with a message for Mercy from Phineas Brewster who had lent her 'a book about the mysterious fae, written by the fae'. Tad is concerned for Phin as he can't get hold of him by phone, and Mercy is unable to find him at his home or bookstore.

At this stage in the series, Mercy and werewolf Pack leader Adam have sealed their bond as a mated pair, though many in his pack are unhappy about it. They show it by using pack bonds to influence Mercy's behavior. While she's trying to come to terms with this, her depressed roommate Samuel (a lone werewolf and physician) turns suicidal and his wolf takes control to keep them alive. Which creates another problem - a werewolf whose wolf is dominant is always killed. Mercy must keep Sam's condition a secret.

This complicates her life in many ways, not just in her relationship with her mate. After a misinformed bounty hunter shows up at Mercy's garage, shooting silver bullets, Mercy loses her assistant Gabriel, whose mother Sylvia is furious with her. Next come an arson attack and a kidnapping - a rogue fairy queen is after what Phin gave to Mercy. This crisis has to go on the back burner when matters in the Pack come to a head and a weakened Adam is challenged (fans will approve of Mercy's quick action that saves the day).

Finally, aided by Zee, Sam, Adam's daughter Jesse and a powerful new ally who has a history with Sam, Mercy enters the fairy queen's perilous Elphame in a bid to rescue a friend - and only escapes again with all the strength of the Pack behind her. Silver Borne is another exciting episode in a thoroughly engaging series. Don't miss it.

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