4.5 starsThis book has an intelligent urban fantasy world build up a world where instead of AIDS people can be infected with cat virus Depending on the virus strain, those people will be transformed into the respective cat there were five separate strains cougar, lion, leopard, panther, and tiger Roan McKichan read McKee Cann is an ex cop turns private detective is a virus child he was born with the virus integrated to his DNA his strain is Lion and he is a lion for five days out of every month While his partner and lover , Paris Lehane after the myth, not the city is a tiger strain infected This book actually consists of two books In book 1 Roan takes a case to look for a missing child Danny Nakamura is a kitty worshipper those people who want to get infected During the investigation, Roan stumbles into multiple murders, which leads him and Paris into a possibility of a hybrid virus child Book 2 takes place exactly after book 1 ends, and this time Roan reluctantly takes a case from Eli Winter, a leader of Church of the Divine Transformation, the premiere kitty cult The case is missing infected kids who are possibly murdered Along the way in this two books Roan must also deal with changes in him, how he seems to be able to transform outside of his viral cycle as well as an impending doom in Paris s life since no tiger strain victim had ever been documented as living over the age of thirty five while Paris is reaching the age of 30.I m in such awe with the world presented in this book It sets in contemporary there are so many contemporary reference, from Green Day to Pete Yorn, from Law and Order to The Wire to YouTube but at the same time it feels like a different world a world with infected victims and cat worshippers It becomes so real without being too out there Roan and Paris are two enganging characters especially because they are so different Roan is the ideal private detective you find in characters like Sam Spade he has his morality and he isgrumpy He takes such non sense people and will not think twice to hit scum people like wife beaters or child abusers While Paris is the charming partner, he calls himself Roan s Guy Friday a natural manipulator and man whore, Paris can charm anyone into submission Though anything sexual is put in the backburner, there is no doubt about the strong bond and romance betwen Roan and Paris They are one unit, where one just makes the other better The secondary characters are also appaling, from Roan s friends on the force to Paris s fag hag best friend.It s a very well written urban fantasy series with a solid crime mystery element I can t wait to read the upcoming sequel, ALTHOUGH, I sense some melancholy ahead especialy due to concern of Paris s health better prepare tissue for it. First, I have to admit that I ve just finished reading the 8th and final book of the Infected series and I decided that I just had to step back and write a review of the first book Why To encourage everyone to invest the time and read the series.The were cat virus appeared out of no where For three or four days every four weeks, the infected transform into a big cat If you re infected young enough and you re strong enough your body might be able to endure the stress of the transformation but you re not expected to live past 30 years of age If you re over 30 when you get infected that first set of transformations will most likely kill you Ex cop Roan McKichan works as a private detective trying to solve crimes involving other infecteds Born infected with the lion strain Roan has a unique view of the virus that for those infected is basically a death sentence.Andrea Speed has created a fascinating world, where Roan and his tiger strain infected partner, Paris, work to solve cases in a world that either hates and fears their kind or worships them.Infected Prey is one of the best books I have ever read I instantly became invested in the characters Their reactions to a world dealing with the spread of the were cat virus are completely believable There are hate groups that want to round up all infected and quarantine them Even a cult leader that encourages teenagers to become infected because it s the next step in human evolution Despite how crazy all that sounds, in the world of the were cat virus, you know that would actually happen If you finish this first book and don t immediately reach for the second, I ll be shocked I know I did As I progressed through all eight books of the series, I just gotandinvested in the characters This world really sucked me in and I loved it Definitely one of my favorite series and I know that at some point in the not to distant future I ll have to re read it For those who see that this is a gay themed series and say, no thanks, please reconsider If you pass this series by simple because of that you ll miss out on a great story The main character Roan is of course gay but he s also infected which is what the story is about Obviously, other characters in the book are also gay, but there are also, bi, straight and even an asexual character I never found the books to be in your face regarding the whole gay theme If nothing else I think the series gives those with little or no contact with the issues surrounding being gay, a better understanding of the challenges it presents But most importantly, Andrea Speed, has proven that a series of books doesn t have to be set in the cookie cutter world of the heterosexual to be great My ratings for the eight main books in this series ranged from four to mostly five stars The whole series rates a firm five stars Have you ever finished a series and realized you re going through a brief grieving process because you know there won t be any books to read Well, that s how I felt after finishing Infected Epitaph It s a great series of books and I highly recommend it to all readers age 14 and up. In A World Where A Werecat Virus Has Changed Society, Roan McKichan, A Born Infected And Ex Cop, Works As A Private Detective Trying To Solve Crimes Involving Other InfectedsThe Murder Of A Former Cop Draws Roan Into An Odd Case Where An Unidentifiable Species Of Cat Appears To Be Showing An Unusual Level Of Intelligence He Juggles That With Trying To Find A Missing Teenage Boy, Who, Unbeknownst To His Parents, Was Cat Obsessed And When Someone Is Brutally Murdering Infecteds, Eli Winters, Leader Of The Church Of The Divine Transformation, Hires Roan To Find The Killer Before He Closes In On EliWorking The Crimes Will Lead Roan Through A Maze Of Hate, Personal Grudges, And Mortal Danger With Help From His Tiger Strain Infected Partner, Paris Lehane, He Does His Best To Survive In A World That Hates And Fears Their Kind And Occasionally Worships Them 3.5 starsI think this might be the beginning of a serious hook up for me Roan and Paris have started worming their way into my heart and I know I am heading towards serious feels Hope my heart is up to it.This was a slow read, I did not manage to gobble it up in a day or two like I gorp up other books But I didn t mind this at all I loved the world building, Ms Speed s brilliant take on shape shifting Just a totally believable exploration of this world she created and the pulls and pushes that make it up No glorification of shapeshifting here I also love her wit and social commentary via her characters, such nuggets as Matt s blue eyes shifted nervously between Roan and him, as if he knew he didn t have a shot in hell at this, but he was far too committed to back out now Also known as the Iraq war strategyRoan is like a cat dog with a bone when it comes to solving crime Once he gets his teeth into something he does not let go The couple of crimes solved in this one were nicely intricate and allowed for the characters to develop and is a proper showcase for their relationship with its banter, care, lies, denials, worries and most of love.I am looking forward to the next one.Buddy hunt read with Rosa, R A, Otila BR thread First, a couple clarifications This is actually two novellas, Infected and Prey, rather than one long novel Also, there is no sex in this book though it s very much M M , but that didn t actually bother me at all.I spent most of my reading time with Infected Prey thinking about how great it almost was but wasn t quite I actually put it down for a couple weeks in the middle of the first novella and felt no particular compulsion to return to it, though in the end I m glad I did Andrea crafts a fascinating world, and though I ve not read too many shifter books, I ve seen enough of it in pop culture to say safely that her concept of the shifter felt quite unique to me The infecteds live a brutal and unglamorous life and constantly battle both the impression that this isn t the case, and widespread hatred Shifting is a disease spread by sexual or blood contact, much like AIDS Also much like AIDS, it s an eventual death sentence the stress of shifting eventually kills people , it carries a huge social stigma, people blame the gays for it, and children can even be born with it via infected mothers It s a wonderful social commentary, subtle enough not to leave you feeling bludgeoned over the head, clear enough that you can t miss it.My single biggest issue with these novellas was the writing itself The author could really have done with a stronger editorial hand, for while her writing in general is solid, she is also extremely prone to tangents and repetition I actually came to dread the introduction of new characters, because every single one, no matter how minor random prostitute on the street, random barista behind a counter, you name it , got full descriptive treatment, generally several sentences long and almost universally pointless I don t need precise physical descriptions of every person to wander on and off the page And it happened so often that it really killed the pacing I also thought the intro to the first novella was pretty weak it was told from the POV of a minor character and meant to set up the mystery, but failed to draw me in , though by the end of the first novella, I didn t want to put it down The weaving of the mystery in Infected was beautiful, the ending perfect, and the character development for Roan left me hungry to see what would happen next.Prey starts off much stronger than Infected did, drawing me in right away Again, it was told from the POV of a character about to be murdered, but it was much smoother, and even in her few short pages of life I was made to care about her The pace of Prey was also much smoother and faster than Infected, the writing overall felt stronger, and while the glut of character description was still there, there were fewer random tangents where the author just went off and wrote a page about something completely irrelevant to the story Overall I enjoyed Prey muchthan Infected from a craft perspective, as if the author had really grown as a writer between the two pieces Alas, I did have trouble keeping all the names straight in Prey there was a big cast of characters involved in the unfurling of the mystery, and the author used their first and last names interchangeably, which made it very hard to keep track of who was who just when I thought I remembered who one guy was, she d call him by another name and I d have to flip back and figure it out all over again Still, there was a very satisfying conclusion to the mystery in the end Despite that, the book ends on a distinct downer an HFN at best that felt kind of unnecessary to me, a bit like the author made the conscious decision to kick us in the teeth at the end I respect that, from a craft perspective, it s not always realistic to have an HEA, and presumably the author made a conscious choice to remind us that even with the mystery solved it s not all rainbows and puppies But in this particular case, I don t personally think that an HEA or an unblemished HFN would have affected the integrity of the story, and the ending as it s written left a very sour taste in my mouth.That being said, if she writesof Paris and Roan, I ll be reading it The worldbuilding was wonderful, the characters multilayered, and Andrea makes us care about them deeply Though there s quite a bit of ugliness in her world, and reasons to be depressed, there s also the kind of loving relationship that we could all only dream of, and some really fabulous humor, especially from Roan, the super cynical detective at the heart of the books Favorite line There were so many good reasons for hating people on an individual basis that mass, generic hatred seemed idiotic Hate a person for who they were, God knows he did, but for what they were Moronic and lazy If GR had half stars, I d have given this one 3.5 If the editing had been sharper, I d have given it 4, maybe evenit s hard to tell how muchdeeply I might have found myself sucked into the world if all the pacing problems hadn t gotten in the way, but I suspect the answer is quite a bit If you re not bothered by that sort of thing, and you love strong worldbuilding and strong characterization sexy shifters, you will almost certainly LOVE this book Even if you are bothered by that kind of thing but love worldbuilding and characterization and shifters, you will almost certainly quite like the book Read it and find out for yourself 2.5 starsI won t be reading book 2, because Paris All the hugs for Paris. In Andrea Speed s world of the Infected series a part of the population is infected by a virus, similar to AIDS, which has turned people in to various types of cat strains The cats have viral cycles which can t be influenced and the transformation is accompanied by pain and loss of the conscious human mind Being infected with the cat virus is nothing romantic or fancy it s scary, hurts like hell, eats away a great deal of your body weight and depending on the type of strain you have costs you your longevity Roan McKichan is a virus child which means he is born with the cat virus and is used to being an outcast his whole life On top of having the lion strain, Roan is a foster child, Scottish, gay and a redhead Safe to say he doesn t have it easy Except there is Paris Lehane Roan s superhunkydory boyfriend, formerly supermanwhore, now super manipulator The love between Roan and Paris is palpable We get to feel their feelings of love, trust, insecurity and fear The romance is very subtle but there is no sex except for some kissing , the sex scenes are pretty much faded to gray That s because Infected is mainly an urban fantasy series The focus is very much on the story The suspense plot is detailed, innovative and engaging And while Roan is trying to solve his mystery cases, we try to solve Roan and Paris Throughout the story we learn bits which we can piece together and I ended up falling in love with both Roan and Paris, while mind you they are imperfect in so many ways Same goes for the secondaries, Gordo, Murphy, Matt, who are very lovable despite or maybe because their quirky ways Roan s cynicism gave the story a humorous tone, but together with the impending doom of one of the beloved characters it also added to the bitter sweet feel in general I can t wait for the next book to come out in December I do hope we get to seeof Roan and Paris antics in the bedroom I don t want to sound dirty but I want to see their love consummated goddamnit A great read for urban fantasy lovers 4 stars. Roan is an ex cop turned PI He s cynical and snarky is there any other kind and the only person whom he s let get close to him is his current boyfriend and business partner, Paris This book is divided into two novellas and each has a case that Roan is hired to solve In the first he s hired to find a missing teen and in the second he s hired to look into the murders of werecats Of course the deeper he digs thecomplicated everything gets.Roan and Paris are werecats also known as infecteds Paris s tiger strain has a high mortality rate and so there s that feeling throughout the book that he won t be around for long This probably isn t going to help Roan be any less cynical I love their relationship, though They complete each other Although my pervy side did miss the sex, it s probably not needed I enjoyed the world building and the characters and I loved the humor This isof a mystery series than romance and I m ok with that It definitely seems like a series I m going to be sucked into Can t wait to read the next one but I ll have to since the rerelease isn t out until mid October BR with Sofia, Rosa and R A Reader Obsessed This is made up of two novellas Book 1 Infected 3 stars Book 2 Prey 4 stars Overall 3.5 stars This is an Urban Fantasy, Paranormal Romance and Crime Thriller, really focusedon the mystery element than the romance However, it was the complexities and the great characterization that was the driving force behind the story.This book is a very different, unique and aintelligent interpretation of how humans become shape shifters and as this is an m m novel, I found it interesting that the author used the same infection process of the disease, as that of the AIDs virus, transferred by bodily fluids through blood and sex The infected victims also being dogged by the same hysteria and pariah status in the population as those of the AIDs virus, especially towards the gay community as this was also thought to be the origin of the infection.but of course, this is fiction and the infected take on a variety of forms from the cat family, however the cat has no attachment to his human form during the change and kills indiscriminately on instinct alone This change is no fluffed up beautiful Hollywood transformation either, it is brutal in the intense pain suffered by the victims, some not surviving the broken bones and trauma to the body alone, never mind the gangs of vigilantes and religious freaks intent of ridding the world of this scourge.Roan has grown up with the hatred, scorn and suspicion of his kind He is different, he was born with the virus and suffered because of it Growing up as a ward of state, in and out of foster homes he was only too aware of the prejudice and fear of the ignorant To them he was a diseased freak and learned to fight hard to defend himself from an early agealone in a world that thinks of him an abomination.When Roan meets Paris he is close to death, in complete meltdown having lost the will to live and burdened with the guilt of realising he had killed during the change Paris is infected with the Tiger virus, the fiercest and deadliest of all the strains As a Tiger he is capable of killing whole families with no recollection, it is also the strain with the highest mortality, where the victims die young, if they can get through the first transition at all.I liked how this was different to normal romance novels, for as we meet our two MC s they are already in an established relationship, happy and comfortable, despite being total opposites on everything apart from the deep love and affection they share, their warped, wacky and snarky sense of humour and of course the virus that rules their existence.I am so very glad the publishers author combined the two novellas in one book, as I found the first a slow struggle, at times drifting and loosing interest through the cluttered descriptions, world building and characterization, some of which was lost and wasted as it wasn t pertinent to the future plot I just couldn t seem to get a grip on the story, which was also challenging as there were two investigations ongoing It was information overload This was mostly told from Roans POV and at times his inner musings were completely randoma small thread of information, taking him off in a different direction, only to return to the task at hand In the first book I would have likedinteraction between Roan and Paris, Roan seemed to spend most of his time with and conversing with his former colleague and friend on the force Gordo, who by the way is just one of many great characters but I just wantedof the beautiful and charming Paris who is also manipulative this is repeated on numerous occasions unnecessarily The writing in this book is excellent and I understand the stigma attached to first novels, with lots of world building which I know is essential for the future series, but I just felt that perhaps she was trying to hard, at 30% if I were a DNF kind of person, I would have given upso thank goodness I am not.as I would have missed the second novella where the author completely redeemed herself This hadaction, flowed smoothly and we actually got to seeof the relationship between our main characters So in the end I thoroughly enjoyed the second book and will definitely read the rest of the series. Great Shifter Mystery 3.5 StarsThis is not your typical shifter story I liked the originality in this urban fantasy, my first book by Andrea Speed Although I have read books where Shifters were ostracized for what they were, here they were shunned for being mindless killers For the most part, this held true in this alternate reality.I would have likedof a backstory on the cat virus as well as on the page sex I also found some of the dialogue dated and trying too hard to be funny.Still, I enjoyed it and will continue with the series since I really like the MCs.
Super nerd Former EIC at Cx Pulp I ve won Rainbow Awards, and still can t believe it A small medicinal horse The Meryl Streep of stunt corpses Enby.
- 384 pages
- Andrea Speed
- 06 October 2019 Andrea Speed