I received this book via Netgalley. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of this review.
Series: The World of the Others #2, The Others #7
Published by Ace on 2019-03-05
Length: 496 pages
Reviewing eARC from Netgalley
Reading Challenges: #NGEW2019, 2019 Finishing the Series Challenge, 2019 New Release Challenge
In this powerful and exciting fantasy set in the world of the New York Times bestselling Others series, humans and the shape-shifting Others will see whether they can live side by side...without destroying one another.
There are ghost towns in the world—places where the humans were annihilated in retaliation for the slaughter of the shape-shifting Others.
One of those places is Bennett, a town at the northern end of the Elder Hills—a town surrounded by the wild country. Now efforts are being made to resettle Bennett as a community where humans and Others live and work together. A young female police officer has been hired as the deputy to a Wolfgard sheriff. A deadly type of Other wants to run a human-style saloon. And a couple with four foster children—one of whom is a blood prophet—hope to find acceptance.
But as they reopen the stores and the professional offices and start to make lives for themselves, the town of Bennett attracts the attention of other humans looking for profit. And the arrival of the Blackstone Clan, outlaws and gamblers all, will uncover secrets…or bury them.
Wild Country by Anne Bishop is everything I wanted Lake Silence to be and more! While I enjoyed Lake Silence, it wasn’t what I had come to expect from The Others series. Wild Country however is everything I wanted in a spinoff series with some Wild West flare thrown in. Following the people and Others sent to resettle the town of Bennett, the book is a thrill ride from start to finish.
The Bennett Humans and Others
So in the Lakeside Courtyard, humans and Others have been working together for a while. The addition of Meg Corbyn helps with any tension, because Meg isn’t all human but she isn’t Other either. I say all this because there is no Meg in Bennett.
Tensions remain high. The sheriff and his deputy are Wolfguard, the only surviving members of their pack. The mayor is Sanguinati. The saloon owner is a Harvester (like Tess, except she’s never been around humans before). I could keep going, but I think you get the picture. These are not like the Others from Lakeside. These Others are not used to humans. Humans are prey to them, and at best only minimally tolerated.
The humans of Bennett are endearing though. I loved Barb Debany and Jana Paniccia! Barb is Michael’s little sister, the would-be vet. She is in charge of the pets and animals left behind after the Elders wiped out Bennett. Her duty is to find feed, care and find new homes for them.
Jana is the unfortunate young deputy assigned to the Sheriff’s department. I love her encounters with Virgil, the Wolfguard sheriff. It reminds me so much of Meg and Simon without the romance. Their relationship is great, and I found myself laughing out loud through most of their interactions.
In addition to Jana and Barb, there are Jessie and Tobias Walker, a mother and son Intuit family from a small town just below Bennett. Jessie is older and the only human the Others seem to trust, specifically Tolya the Sanguinati mayor. Tobias unlike other Intuits has an affinity for animals which seems to extend to the Others. This comes in handy as they can tell when to approach and how to approach them.
The Blackstone Clan
The story revolves around two things: the resettling of Bennett and the Blackstone Clan. Resettling Bennett comes with challenges of its own. The Elders are watching closely. The Others who live in Bennett are in just as much risk as the humans. The Elders won’t hesitate to wipe them both out if need be, creating an edge-of-your-seat read.
The Blackstone Clan though is a problem. They are a family of Intuits that use their gifts to gamble and swindle away money and jewels from others. I knew from the moment this family was introduced that they would cause trouble, and that they do! I found myself amazed at their stupidity. Obviously they’d never dealt with Others before. As a reader, I almost felt sorry for them….almost.
Wild Country is a fantastic, high stakes read. I could not sit it down. I read it in under two days. Seriously, y’all it is that good. What I enjoyed most is that it took place concurrently with the final book in The Others series that featured Meg. So if you’ve read it, you may recognize some events in this book. I loved finding those easter eggs, but I also loved all the new. I really hope the author continues with stories from Bennett. I’m not ready to say good bye to these characters just yet.