"'I didn't realize he was a werewolf at first. My nose isn't at its best when surrounded by axle grease and burnt oil ...'
Mercedes Thompson runs a garage in the Tri-Cities. She's a mechanic, and a damn good one, who spends her spare time karate training and tinkering with a VW bus that happens to belong to a vampire. Her next-door neighbour is an alpha werewolf - literally, the leader of the pack. And Mercy herself is a shapeshifter, sister to coyotes. As such, she's tolerated by the 'wolves but definitely down the pecking order. As long as she keeps her eyes down and remembers her place, the pack will leave her in peace. Hardly a normal situation, but then, Mercy Thompson is not exactly normal herself...and her connection to the world of things that go bump in the night is about to get her into a whole lot of trouble."
I loved this book. I love that Mercy isn't the toughest girl around, until the beginning of this book she's never killed, and certainly not deliberately. She cares a lot and she's pretty friendly, easy going and she's got a sense of humor. Her relationship with the alpha wolf, Adam, is pretty funny at times too. She clearly enjoys annoying him a little, but she also cares and knows how easy it would be for him to kill her and she respects him.
We get quite a bit of back story on Mercy as the book goes on, finding out about the oddness of her relationships with the other supernaturals around her, how she came to be living beside an alpha wolf and how she knows so much about wolf life when she's not one herself.
Mercy's problems start when a newly turned teenage wolf, not a member of the pack, appears at her garage and asks for work. She quickly decides to do what she can to help him, before realising he's in much more trouble than she first thought. Trouble follows Mac and soon Adam finds himself and his (human) daughter well and truly caught in it, with Mercy doing everything she can to help them.
The main plot is tight and moves at a good pace. The interaction of werewolves, fae and vampires, along with of course Mercy, a coyote, gives you a lot of supernaturals to enjoy, all with their own talents and agendas. It didn't take me very long to figure out this was going to be a series I'd adore. It's smart, funny at times, dark and pulls no punches. There is a little romance, but it's only a hint and I actually really like how it's just subtly worked in rather than being a major plot at this point. I love the friendships Mercy has with Adam and his daughter, who is one of my favourite characters of the series. While the main plots get wrapped up nicely, I was left wanting a whole lot more. The book isn't flawless, but I loved it far too much to care.