Rating: 4 🌈
Emmaline Strange is a new author for me. I just stumbled across her book by glancing at that terrific cover, and realized it represented a new opportunity to see a new author’s take on shifters and a paranormal romance.
I found that Mighty Quill has so many wonderful elements to recommend it. Strange doesn’t go too much into the universe her characters inhabit, except that humans aren’t aware that magical creatures exist along side them. That’s pretty typical.
But what’s unique is how each shifter gets their shifter form or Fauna as it’s identified here is. Instead of being born into a pack of like species, a family of shifters can have any number of species within itself. It depends on what each person’s individual fauna is called to be when they mature, be it bear, wolf, or something totally different.
Strange ‘s interpretation has some new and old elements to it. I’ll get to that in a moment.
The story has, as I said, many aspects that will totally pull a reader in. The characters are wonderful. Cassian Rhodes, the human who’s half the romance, also undergoes a bisexual awakening that’s realistic, and so well written. His confusion is balanced by his ease and openness about the possibility. He’s got a great family, who we meet, so the type of person that comes through makes sense. He’s such a lovely human being.
Thor Ambrose, a shifter who’s been unable to learn his true fauna, and has suffered immensely from that, is another endearing character. He comes from a imminent wealthy shifter family, made up of bears, wolves, panthers , who also have made excellent choices in the human world. So Thor, a small, shy, individual, has been made to feel insignificant and a failure due to a lack of a fauna.
Thor and Cassian Rhodes start off as roommates. Cassian due to the fact that some stupid , out of character behavior cost him his scholarship and Thor because he’s trying to keep his independence from his family.
Here’s where I wish Strange had enlarged on her foundation. She hints that shifters have more recourse when it comes to controlling their childrens future. Something shady or at least, known but never acknowledged among the shifter world. But we don’t exactly get a clear idea what that is. Thor hints at it, his domineering father does, but we don’t get it. Very frustrating.
The slow burn romance between Thor and Cas is absolutely the best part of this book. They are adorable. Each dances around the other, until Cas’ cooking starts a conversation. I love how they each made mistakes and then found a way to apologize. Cute, realistic within a PNR storyline.
There’s a mystery that turns into a murder plot. It’s will lead into a off the page assault. Then the ramifications of that on the person and couple.
That’s one of several choices I question that the author made here .
This is a wonderful PNR that goes off the rails at the end as a horror story. One that seems a bit odd.
On the list of elements I had issues with were:
🔹 Strange continues with the shifter predator idolatry. They are always top rung. But when talking about Alpha pairing, there is a Swan/human bonded pair which she made the human the Alpha. Now either she felt the human was truly the strongest character (not sure) or Strange has not researched or met any swans. So, that struck me as odd.
🔹There’s a grisly scene at the end that involves Thor’s father. As it’s written, it comes across less as a necessary part of the storyline, because imo there’s quite a few holes in the scene, logic wise. But more a reason to have the final confrontation between father and son at the end.
It comes across, once you’ve finished the book, as a narratively petty choice to have made for a character that’s come so far.
Strange had written Thor into a better, stronger person. But couldn’t leave it at that. Had to have a shouting match with a wounded man.
Such a shame.
Strange leaves open ended what happens to several important secondary characters, Leda especially. The police Sargent is going to get his own PNR next. That I’m looking forward to. There’s an. Except at the end of the book.
Mighty Quill: An MM Paranormal Shifter Romance (Sanguis Et Fauna Book 1) by Emmaline Strange was a very good romance that, imo, had just a few too many elements to it. It packed in horror, gore, assault, mystery, a unnecessary and often never used ice hockey element, things that overwhelmed the many wonderful aspects of the book like Cas’ large family and the central romance itself.
I won’t spoil what fauna Thor turned out to be. I guessed from the cover and was wrong. That’s the ranger in me. You all will probably get it right.
I’m recommending it and will check out more from this author.
Really love the cover.
Cassian Rhodes is just a normal guy going through normal college stuff:
Weird roommate? Check.
Panic over grades? Check.
Sexuality Crisis? Uh…
Falling for your roommate? Hold on…
Finding out your new BF’s family is magic? Wait, WTF!?
MIGHTY QUILL is a roommates to idiots to lovers, bi awakening, paranormal shifter romance. Lots of steam, fluff & magic goodness.
Author’s note: Quill is a mystery and it does contain some mentions of gore, body horror, & assault
Unless it’s noted, all books reviewed have been purchased by the reviewer.