Feral Sins (The Phoenix Pack #1) by Suzanne Wright

feral sins suzanne wright phoenix pack Rating: 4 stars

“Just give me a second. Attempting to give a fuck…Attempting harder to give a fuck…Sorry, there was an error; fuck not given.”

PMDD was bringing me down when I remembered Lei recommended Feral Sins to me last year as a pick-me-up. I didn’t own it then, but I snapped up a £1 deal on Amazon a few months ago. After finally reading it, I can understand the hype surrounding this self-published book. It definitely made me feel better.

book love is something like romantic love. when we are reading a really great book, burdens feel lighter, cares seem smaller. - Steve Leveen

Taryn’s unique brand of snark deserves legendary status. I must memorise some of it for use in real life. I’m one of those people who comes up with appropriately sarcastic comments hours after they’re required.

“What does it feel like to be so old that your birth certificate is in Roman numerals?” The smirk quickly fell from the crone’s face and Taryn smiled. – Taryn to Greta

Greta was by far my favourite character. I hung on her every word. It was very clear that despite her steady stream of insults, she cared for her grandson’s mate. Greta and Taryn are like Bart Simpson and Principal Skinner, they may be enemies on the surface but they’d feel more than a little lost without each other to rail against. Their war of words is integral to their lives, it’s part of their morning ritual. Get up, grab coffee, insult grandmother-in-law / granddaughter-in-law.

“She’s one of those people who are like Slinkies.”
“Yeah. Basically useless, but they make you smile when you push them down the stairs.”

– Taryn about Greta

However, the sex did become tiresome so I skipped a few of those scenes. Repetitive phrases – particularly ‘baby’ as a term of endearment – really irritated me, but this is a common complaint in paranormal romance. I also have to wonder at how realistic it was to have Tao be able to swallow his strong attraction to Taryn and go back to being ‘just friends’ again. I fully expected him to transfer out of their pack so he wouldn’t have to endure watching the woman he was willing to give everything up for be happy with someone else.

“Love is giving someone the power to completely destroy you, and hoping that they won’t.” – Taryn

“How does it feel? To know you hold my sanity in your hands?” – Trey

While Taryn calls Trey ‘Psycho’ for his tendancy to go completely feral during the heat of battle, Roscoe is the psychopath to watch out for. He was obsessed with owning Taryn.

“I’m not a rapist. But I love a challenge, and I love to be in control. Power is a heady thing for me. What greater power is there than to be able to own someone who doesn’t want you, someone whose will you can break, bit by bit, until she has gone from a spirited, dominant, independent individual to a person who is totally submissive to you?”

If that’s not fucking creepy, I don’t know what is.

A lesser enemy comes in the form of Selma, Trey’s ‘mistake’ as a former one-night-stand who won’t let go. Taryn’s way of dealing with her was absolutely epic. Her two words describing to Trey why Selma was on the floor were gut-bustingly funny. Everyone always underestimates Taryn due to her small stature and the fact that she’s latent, unable to shift into a wolf. They automatically assumes she’s weak and submissive when she’s actually a powerful alpha though never announces this fact, preferring to catch people off guard.

“You don’t think that perhaps you have anger management issues?”
“Punching people is managing my anger.”

I wonder if Ilona Andrews has read Feral Sins. It wouldn’t surprise me since there are similarities in Burn for Me, published two years after Feral Sins. Both feature hardy grandmothers, a tight-knit clan and the kidnapping of the female lead right at the beginning and resulting in a deal between kidnapper and kidnappee who also happens to be the deadly love interest.

Overall, I enjoyed the worldbuilding, the characters and the romance. Even the mystery mole surprised me, which is always a good sign.

Other Favourite Quotes

“I’m not tired. I’m just checking my eyelids for holes. It could take a while.”

“As I’m the one who cleans it, waxes it, keeps it tidy, and has it medically checked, I’d say it’s mine. But you can borrow it if you like.”

“Crazy bitch? Oh no, honey, I’m an angel, I swear. The horns are only there to hold up the halo.”

“I’d rather lie under an elephant suffering from diarrhea with my mouth open wide.”

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