The Beginning of Charles and Anna (Alpha & Omega 0.5)

Alpha & Omega - Patricia Briggs

I ended up not reading all of the stories in "On the Prowl". I did back in the day, but since I wanted to read this for the "Werewolves" square for my second bingo card for Halloween Bingo 2017, I didn't feel the need to read all of the stories. From what I recall the first time, I was not that impressed with all of the stories, but ended up falling in love with the characters of Anna and Charles.

If you read the "Alpha & Omega" series, make sure you start with this one first otherwise you may be confused about Anna's background.

This story has Charles (the Marrok's son) coming to Chicago to investigate what is going on with a local wolf pack. A werewolf named Anna calls him and right away when Charles meets her, he feels a pull towards her. Charles's wolf decides that it will have Anna as his mate (in like five seconds by the way) and Charles's tells Anna how special she is among werewolves. We find out that Anna is an omega werewolf. When Charles meets with the local leaders, a few things come out about the local pack and Anna is left to decide to stay with them or follow Charles.

I really loved this book. There is some info-dump since in none of the Mercy Thompson books was anything ever spoken about omega werewolves to this point. We get to find out that Anna being an omega means she does not have to obey the alpha werewolf in her Pack. She also has an effect on other werewolves and can calm them down and push away any lingering mental sickness they may have.

I remember feeling awful for Anna when you read about how she was changed, what was done to her by members of her Pack after the change and it just left a bad taste in my mouth about werewolves in general. To this point I was more familiar with Adam and his Pack in the Mercy Thompson series.

Charles was a great hero to root for though I wanted to know more about his upbringing. We know that he is Bran's enforcer, but it seemed to me that he was a little lost until he met Anna. In later books we get to see how being Bran's enforcer affects Charles though so I was glad that Patricia Briggs brings that up in the later series.

The writing was typical Briggs though I will say that there was some repetitiveness in some places that I think show up again in the later story, "Cry Wolf." I was never so happy in my life when Briggs stopped writing about how Omega did not mean weak and she didn't have to listen to others. We got it. Please stop saying it in every story.

The flow was good though I thought the book ended on a weird note. I know when I read "Cry Wolf" after this though, that the action picks up right after the ending of this book though.

A great little story that you should read before reading the full length novels.