Book Review - Marked in Flesh, by Anne Bishop

Marked In Flesh - Anne Bishop

Vision in Silver ended with an unsettling phone call mysteriously made by the Elders to Simon. Now Simon and the Courtyard residents struggle to figure out what the Elders meant when they said they should decide “how much human they are going to keep.”

“We can’t trust humans anymore.”

“Did we ever trust them?”

“No. But we counted on their desire to survive being stronger than their greed. I don’t think we can count on that anymore.”

But when push comes to shove, the terra indigene in Lakeside Courtyard protect the human pack that gathered around Meg and their extended families. Thus we get to meet new characters. One of those is detective Monty’s mom, a no-nonsense kind of woman that intrigues the Others. She almost instantly earns the respect of Elliot who asks her help around the office. Her tough love shows the terra indigene that Ms. Twayla is not to be messed with.  

In the aftermath of the HFL (Human First and Last) attack that ended with the slaughter of many wolf shifters, the Elders retaliate and thin the herd. “Namid’s claws and teeth” could lead to the extinction of humankind if they decide to do so. A couple of Elders become intrigued by Meg and they call her “the howling not-wolf”. It is because of her and the way Meg changed the dynamic between humans and terra indigene, that the elders leave this decision to Simon.

“You would kill the sweet blood not-Wolf?”

“If we allow some humans to remain, then what kind of human should we keep?”

But even the Elders realize that Meg is important, not edible, the one who changed the relationship between humans and the terra indigene. She’s worth keeping and she comes with her own human pack. For this, the Lakeside Courtyard is the most progressive of their kind. 

“She was the pebble dropped in a pond that was the Lakeside Courtyard, and the ripples of her presence had changed so many things, including the terra indigene who had befriended her. Because of Meg, the Courtyard’s residents interacted with humans in ways that were unprecedented…Because of Meg, the Lakeside Courtyard had a human pack.”

A major development happens in the way Meg handles her addiction to cutting. Although she’s a blood prophet and she needs to cut and bleed to reveal her prophecy, Meg finds out that she can use tarot cards instead. She calls it the Trailblazer Deck. It’s a skill that still needs tuning, but she gets better every day.

Meg and Simon seem to be comfortable with their relationship status (a.k.a still not together), neither of them knowing how a normal relationship should progress. Frustrating as it is, we do get a bit of a teaser towards the end that they’re ready for more.