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Moonshifted (Edie Spence Novel) by Cassie…
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Moonshifted (Edie Spence Novel) (edition 2012)

by Cassie Alexander

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Title:Moonshifted (Edie Spence Novel)
Authors:Cassie Alexander
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Rating:****1/2
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Moonshifted by Cassie Alexander

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Nurse Edie Spencer, who works on a special secret unit in County Hospital that caters to the supernatural, has recently healed from her wounds obtained when on trial by vampires. She’s also dealing with the recent break-up with her zombie boyfriend.

When walking back to the hospital from a lunch break, she and a co-worker witness a man getting hit by a truck which immediately takes off. Recognizing the guy is a werewolf, they’re able to save his life while preventing the gawkers from learning that werewolves exist. It turns out he’s the werewolf king and Edie becomes familiar with some of the local pack. And she’s asked by her vampire friend, Anna, to act as her Ambassador to the Sun in an upcoming initiation ceremony that would allow Anna to start her own vampire line. Edie’s life is endangered a number of times as a rather large conspiracy is eventually revealed.

This one has it all; danger, action, lust, horror, humor, mystery and heartache. Unlike other Urban Fantasy stories, Edie is not a kick-butt heroine. She’s a compassionate, loyal, financially struggling nurse that had been thrust into the world of the supernatural in order to prevent her drug-addicted brother from ever getting high and overdosing again. It’s a good thing she can roll with the punches as she’s thrown some very weird curves.

I’d read the first book when it first came out where Edie is introduced to the supernatural and that felt like a choppy read to me. Although like this book, the nursing angle in the prior book, Nightshifted, was an aspect I really enjoyed. A friend convinced me to give this second book a try as she’s impressed with the entire series. I’m glad she did. Edie is much more familiar with this world now and the story flows a great deal more smoothly with interesting characters and situations. ( )
  dearheart | Feb 4, 2014 |
Review courtesy of Dark Faerie Tales

Quick & Dirty: Enjoyable main character and world but the plot left me a little confused.

Opening Sentence: “Who knew a Code Silver isn’t when an old-timer tries to beat you with their walker?” Charles said as he double-looped his scarf around his neck.

The Review:

The second novel in Cassie Alexander’s Edie Spence series, Moonshifted, begins with Edie witnessing a hit and run accident. A few months have passed since the events of Nightshifted, Edie has since healed up and returned back to work as a nurse on the Y4 floor of her hospital. Y4 is the secret wing that treats supernaturals and those close to them. Thankfully, Edie and her colleague Charles were the first on the scene of the man hit and run so when they realized he was a werewolf they quickly worked to get him under control and to the Y4 wing.

Edie Spence is probably the most unremarkable woman in an urban fantasy series. She doesn’t have anything special that she brings to the plate except for the fact that she is a human that knows about the supernatural. She doesn’t come off as overly pretty, she’s a few pounds overweight but not obese by any means, she doesn’t have a “wow” factor but for some reason, the supernatural is drawn to her. This may come off as harsh but I’m just trying to explain how she is the plainest Jane but down to earth girl in this supernatural world, although she has no problem with cussing and the occasional one night stand. As a third shift nurse she is pretty much a loner, she really only hangs out with her co-workers at work and making friends with the occasional supernatural who gets thrown into her life. In a way I really enjoy the normalcy of Edie because when her life gets turned upside down, it really goes haywire in a way that is often so terrible it is funny. Edie is also a really nice person at heart; whenever someone is in pain or just needs someone to listen to them she is always there, often neglecting something that could be good because she can’t leave someone behind.

Moonshifted was a crazy book in that there were several storylines going on at once. The plot was pretty much shrouded in secrecy and didn’t make much sense until the end and even then I still have some questions. The werewolves are undergoing a shift in power while the vampire Anna is making a bid at becoming leader of her own house. There almost seems to be a civil war amongst the two groups while Edie is getting attacked by those on both sides. This novel really does find Edie being rescued a lot by her supernatural “friends” or her calling for their help. She doesn’t really get herself out of any scraps except for one that I can really think of.

So far I have really enjoyed how this series is really different from other urban fantasy novels. Anna is a different type of vampire; the wolves have terrible life spans; Shadows control and hide the existence of the supernatural from humans; and the shapeshifter changes into humans not animals, although there were no zombies in this novel as opposed to Nightshifted.

I don’t think it is necessary to have read Nightshifted before reading Moonshifted. It could be read as a standalone but I don’t really recommend it. It is easier to understand some of the characters and the Shadows with some more background. And you’ll definitely want to read the next novel with the way this one ended. No cliffhanger here but I don’t know how Edie will survive without help.

Overall, not an entirely perfect novel but I enjoyed the flawed Edie and the world that she lives in. I can’t wait to see what is next for her in Shapeshifted.

Notable Scene:

He looked over to me, and the shadows in the room made his eyes glow copper, like an animal’s in the night. “Don’t worry. I won’t hurt him. He’s already as good as dead.”

He patted Winter’s chest again and came back toward the door. Instead of passing me, he grabbed my shoulders and spun me sideways to press me against the room’s wall, pinning me there. To call for help would be humiliating at best, injurious at worst. I remembered Charles’s story about weres saying they didn’t know their own strength afterward, and completely believed him.

I squeaked out, “How were the fights?” like a normal conversation with him would be possible now.

His face an inch away from mine, he said, “Easy.”

He kissed me like he owned me. My head was pressed against the wall behind me, and his tongue ran deep inside my mouth. He only pulled back to tease, his hot breath gentle on my lips, before kissing me again.

Half of me wanted to leap outside my skin and run away, or scream. The other half wanted everything else from him, here, now, forget propriety, forget the disgusting hospital floor.

He planted his hand against my mouth so I couldn’t scream, and licked up the side of my face. His other hand trailed down my body outside my thin cotton scrubs, stroking my breast, diving between my legs.

“You still want me,” he said, finally letting me go.

I wiped his spit off my cheek. “People often want what they can’t have.”

FTC Advisory: St. Martin’s Press/Macmillan provided me with a copy of Moonshifted. No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review. ( )
  DarkFaerieTales | Jan 6, 2014 |
Edie Spence, nurse on Y4, the secret floor of County Central Hospital where the supernatural are treated – the vampires, the werewolves and, in the past, even zombies and dragons. She doesn’t have nearly enough time, especially with the holidays coming up, and even less money hence her taking overtime during the holidays in the hope of more money to pad her rapidly disappearing paycheck.

That in itself would be exhausting, but that’s before the king of the werewolves gets run over in a hit and run right in front of her. He’s badly injured to the point of death and even the medical professionals on Y4 can’t raise the dead – but the werewolf politics should he die (and the accusations that fly) are dangerous things to get in the middle of.

And then there’s Anna, the vampire she preciously helped and even considers a friend. She has a job for Edie as she prepares to found her own vampire house, a job that requires her to keep a ceremonial knife safe.

Whichever is the cause – werewolf or knife –people start trying to kill her, ransacking her home and even risking the wrath of the shadows, the hospital’s mystical protectors, to get at her. And to make matters worse, her drug dealing brother is digging himself into trouble, her parents are coming for Christmas dinner and she has a German Ghostly Cyborg eating her electronics.

That was immense fun. I liked the first book, Nightshifted, and found it interesting and pretty entertaining, but Moonshifted is head and shoulders above it. With the beginning of this world introduced, we’re now running with this story in all directions and nearly everything is pretty much excellent.

The world building is incredible – there has been such a lot of research that has gone into the various supernatural lores that are relevant in this book – including the 101 ways to make a werewolf which is drawing on some really obscure legends that I had to re-look up and I thought I was pretty overwhelmed with shapeshifter legends already. The way the vampires work, the way the werewolves work – they’re all really really deep and with their own separate twists that add a lot of originality to the story; concepts like the werewolves’ shorter life span (which makes so much sense when described) and the vampire shortage not of human blood, but of actual vampire blood since it takes so long for them to produce. All of these add wonderful new facets to old myths and legends and a completely new spin on everything.

But along with the mystical world building which is wide open and growing, there’s also the powerful realities of being a nurse. I love books when the protagonist has a profession and I’m left thinking “this author has worked this job” because it’s so real, they’ve either worked it or really put some sterling effort into making it real. John Hartness does it, Diana Rowland does it and Cassie Alexander certainly does it. It’s not glamourised, it’s not sugar coated and it’s not clean – but the nitty gritty of nursing is there, the good and the icky, the sheer value and importance of it coupled with how undervalued and difficult it is. It’s a really good depiction and makes the entire series so much stronger and more real because of it.

What is best about both of these elements of world building is that they’re used appropriately. There’s no massive info dumps and no long monologues. It is shown rather than told, what we need to know is revealed in as much detail as we need to know it. It’s completely restrained and leaves me hungry to know more – like what exactly the Consortium, and Meaty, actually are for one! everything feels natural because the knowledge is presented in a realistic fashion without every leaving us floundering.

And the story is fun – it intertwines excellently with Edie’s life but her life doesn’t stop because of it. This is something else I love about this book, in a lot of Urban Fantasy it feels like the protagonist can just put their entire lives on pause while they deal with the plot of the book. Edie isn’t like that – she has a job, she needs money, she even needs the desperate holiday overtime. She can’t just not take those extra hours because the plot has been dropped on her, life goes on. And it’s not just her job – she has family she can’t just drop because dramas are happening, she had her brother and his issues, she has her parents coming round for Christmas Dinner. She can’t cancel all this – and she has to clean up the flat ready for them – just because she has plot drama! Life goes on! Perhaps most impressive to me is Edie’s friend’s – they have their own lives, their own issues and that isn’t subsumed because of Edie’s plot issues. Charles has a thing with werewolves, he’s not setting that aside because Edie is having problems. Gina has relationship drama, Edie can’t just ignore it because of plot reasons – he’s Gina’s friend, she owes it to her to be supportive. Edie can’t just refuse Anna’s plea because it would be convenient to do otherwise. This is such a change from so many urban fantasies where friends just exist to support the protagonist.

But aside from twining nicely with both the world building and Edie’s life, the plot is fascinating. It’s excellently paced and written, even with those elements blended into it, the book continues moving forward and never has slow periods. Even Edie having to go buy a couch cover just fits so neatly and adds to the book, these mundane tasks all add something, all develop something and help highlight the relationships without long monologues or info dumps. The mystery behind the injured werewolf king is a curious one. From the beginning I realised that the accused was clearly not the person behind it – it was too obviously a red herring – but I didn’t even remotely predict who was actually behind the attack nor how it all came together with werewolf and vampire politics interlinking. It was really well done, all made sense, and all was a complete surprise. On top of the mystery, the actions scenes, when they arrive, were well written and had that perfect balance of pace versus description.

Read More ( )
  FangsfortheFantasy | Sep 20, 2013 |
In all honesty, I'd rate this book just a shade above crap, that is if you're considering it within the realm of a published novel with even a hint of literary merit. If, by chance, you're interested in sub-par porn with an needlessly and poorly executed elaborate plot, then this is the book for you!

Seriously, I'm disappointed. The first book wasn't exactly a mind-blowing pieces of literature either, Alexander is certainly not a Dickens, but it was fun and entertaining. The main character was a strong woman, mildly promiscuous, but not slutty, and then Shapeshifted happened.

The interesting werewolf/vampire dynamic, though elaborated upon in the next book, did not draw me further into the book's universe. I had wrongfully predicted after reading the first book, that I would be interested in the following two, but as it turns out, I no longer have plans to read the third installment. The main character was a total slut in this story, and practically owned up to it. I can assure you, I am no prude, but books like this, where the protagonist seems to have an implicit goal to have kinky sex with a member of every present species in the series before it ends, is part of the reason that the Urban Fantasy genre gets a bad rap. It is becoming a stereotype that I abhor.

Also, if an author is going to obviously add a character into the story in order for them to conveniently save the main character, it needs to be done tactfully. It must also not be overused. This is the second time that Alexander has done this. The first instance was Asher, who then played a similar role in the second book as the first, and then the second example was the bear-shapeshifting boyfriend, who had only a tentative attachment to the main character. No doubt Alexander employed this method so that the reader "wouldn't see it coming".

My intelligence has been insulted.

This kind of writing is painfully formulaic and reminiscent of -shudder- Stephanie Meyer. And yet even Meyer employed strategic symbolism. Shapeshifted reeks of amateur mimicry, to the point that I've read fanfiction more original than this.

My advice, don't read this book, and if you don't believe me, that's fine, go rad it and then afterwards regret having wasted precious moments of your life. ( )
  kitsunekami | Jul 14, 2013 |
This is second Edie Spence book and better edited than the first one. Edie witnesses a hit and run accident and helps save the victim who is a werewolf pack leader. She assists in caring for him and ends up in the middle of werewolf war. She doesn't know who to trust and in the end is shunned by all supernatural creatures. ( )
  Coltfan18 | Jul 13, 2013 |
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Book description
Check in to County Hospital’s secret ward - where paranormal activities lead to medical emergencies for one tireless nurse.

After surviving a brutal vampire attack, nurse Edie Spence is ready to get back to work attending to supernatural creatures in need of medical help. But her nursing skills are put to the test when she witnesses a hit-and-run on her lunch break. The injured pedestrian is not only a werewolf, he’s a pack leader, and now Edie’s stuck in the middle of an all-out were-war.

With two rival packs fighting tooth and nail, Edie has no intention of crossing enemy lines. But when she meets her patient’s nephew - a tattooed werewolf named Lucas with a predatory gleam in his eye that’s hard to resist - Edie can’t help but choose sides. The question is, can she trust this dangerous new ally? And can she trust her own instincts when she’s near him? Edie can’t seem to pull away - even if getting involved makes her easy prey.

Haiku summary

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0312553404, Mass Market Paperback)

Moonshifted
An Edie Spence Novel
Cassie Alexander

After surviving a brutal vampire attack, Nurse Edie Spence is ready to get back to work—attending to supernatural creatures in need of medical help. But her nursing skills are put to the test when she witnesses a hit-and-run on her lunch break. The injured pedestrian is not only a werewolf, he’s the pack leader. And now Edie’s stuck in the middle of an all-out were-war…

With two rival packs fighting tooth and nail, Edie has no intention of crossing enemy lines. But when she meets her patient’s nephew—a tattooed werewolf named Lucas with a predatory gleam in his eye that’s hard to resist—Edie can’t help but choose sides. The question is: can she trust this dangerous new ally? And can she trust her own instincts when she’s near him? Either way, Edie can’t seem to pull away—even if getting involved makes her easy prey…

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:42:04 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

After surviving a brutal vampire attack, nurse Edie Spence is ready to get back to work attending to supernatural creatures in need of medical help. But her nursing skills are put to the test when she witnesses a hit-and-run on her lunch break. The injured pedestrian is not only a werewolf, he's a pack leader, and now Edie's stuck in the middle of an all-out were-war. With two rival packs fighting tooth and nail, Edie has no intention of crossing enemy lines. But when she meets her patient's nephew--a tattooed werewolf named Lucas with a predatory gleam in his eye that's hard to resist--Edie can't help but choose sides. The question is, can she trust this dangerous new ally? And can she trust her own instincts when she's near him?… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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