Mercy by Eleri Stone (ebook, novella)
What is it about:
To the Yaguara, an ancient jaguar shape-shifting people living deep in the Amazon jungle, nothing matters more than strength. Iada is their champion; genetically pure, she has been trained since birth to fight. Her destiny is to become the next Queen of the Yaguara by winning the tournament of succession—a battle to the death.
Her opponent is Gabriel, a half-blooded outcast whose mother was human. To everyone's shock, he defeats Iada but does not strike the death blow—instead, he extends mercy, thereby claiming her as his mate.
Despite their enmity, the attraction between them is powerful, and soon they are mates in more than name only. Their mutual distrust serves only to fuel their passion—two champions bested only by their overpowering desire for each other.
But Gabriel has an agenda that threatens the most basic tenets of Yaguara society—and that will force Iada to choose between her people or her King.
What did Voodoo Bride think of it:
A surprisingly well rounded story for a novella. There's lots of hot, steamy romance, but the action storyline that frames this romance is well worked out as well. I liked that you got to see in both Gabriel's as Iada's thoughts so you can root for them both.
The whole Yaguara society sounds really cool, but as a large part of the story takes place outside of the Yaguara city it is only hinted at. So if I have one thing to say against this story it's that it makes me hungry for more Yaguara and their fascinating society and that I now have to hope that Stone will write more (and hopefully longer) stories set in this world.
Why should you read it:
Hot Shapeshifter Romance!
* I got this book for review from the publisher through Netgalley