Savage Nature (Leopard)
By Christine Feehan
Published May 2011, Penguin
Paperback, 367 pages
Danger lurks in the shadows and desire shimmers in the sultry heat as leopard shifter Drake Donovan is sent to a Louisiana bayou to investigate a murder. He's ready for anything except the insatiable hunger that rocks him when he meets Saria Boudreaux, a woman with a compelling motive-and ability-to distract him from the task at hand...I have only read the short story that fits into the Leopard People series, so I am sure there is much that I am missing about this series. I wanted to read this book mostly because of the Louisiana bayou setting, my home state. Even though I spent most of my life in Louisiana, I did not spend much time at all in the bayou, so this was as much a nostalgic experience as an education for me. I found Christine Feehan's descriptions and uses of the setting to be very well written and quite engrossing, as this actually kept me involved enough in the book to keep reading, over the actual plot.
Much like when I read the short story in Fantasy by Christine Feehan, I found the plot to be overly dramatic and forced. Every scene, every interaction was told with such extreme emotion that I had to wonder if these characters ever had a chance to relax. The melodrama felt like something out of a t.v. soap opera with no natural flow to the time line.
I did like a few of the characters, such as Saria and the woman who ran the inn. Many of the characterizations matched the typical stereotypes of the Cajun people who reside in the backwaters of Louisiana. The dialogue hinted at the Cajun accent without muddling the vocabulary so much that I would have difficulty reading it.
While I loved Christine Feehan's use of Louisiana culture in Savage Nature (Leopard), I do not think I will be continuing to read any more of the Leopard People series.
The Cover: This cover was more like cover plus first page, but I did not might since the man and woman pictured both matched the descriptions in the book. The nature scenes in the background also matched what I know a Louisiana swamp to look like, so I liked it.
First Line: "The swamp had four distinct seasons and within each she had moods as well."
While this opening gives me an appropriate idea of the setting of the novel, there is nothing to really entice me to continue reading.
Read For: Off the Shelf Challenge
*I received this book free of charge from the publisher for review purposes.*