of redemption and vengeance coverRating: 4.5 stars
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Length: Novel

 

Of Redemption and Vengeance is the third book in the Winsford Shifter trilogy. As the books read as one long story, this review has some mild spoilers for events from past books. 

Emery had finally found freedom from Mercer and his cruel experiments. He had even found a pack where he could fit in. But now Emery has once again been captured, and while Mercer is dead, his horrific shifter experiments continue under Stone’s leadership. The only solace is that Emery is not alone this time, as Graham is being held along with him. Graham, who comforts Emery like no other and who, inexplicably to Emery, actually seems to really like him. Trust isn’t easy for Emery; everyone in his life has eventually hurt him. But if there is anyone he can believe in, it’s Graham.

Back at home, Quinn and the others are frantic to get Emery and Graham back, and that may mean making a deal with the devil by reaching out to Rowan’s father. They know that they can’t trust him, but he may know more about the group that is holding Emery and Graham.  Against all odds, however, Emery and Graham manage to escape, with some fellow shifters in tow. But it is not that easy, as Stone is determined to get them back, and his pack of violent, deadly shifters is a never ending threat.

Soon, the Winsford pack finds themselves embroiled in danger from every front. Emery and Graham are racing to find their way home and stay out of Mercer’s clutches. Rowan and Ari are trying to stay out of danger as they try to find clues to Emery and Graham’s whereabouts, and Quinn and Logan are doing all they can to bring their pack mates home. It seems no one is safe, but the Winsford pack has become a family and they will do all they can to make sure every member makes it home alive.

Alice Winters does an amazing job bringing this series to a close with this exciting final installment. The first two books had plenty of intensity, but things really ramp up a notch in some great ways in this final book. Over the course of the story, we have action happening on three fronts, which really keeps things moving. At times, one group (and the reader) knows details about what is going on that the others aren’t privy to yet, which makes things even more exciting as we watch the drama unfold.

The main thread focuses on Emery and Graham and their attempts at escape from captivity, as well as their developing relationship. There are so many twists and turns here, and each time we think they may be home free, something else crops up and the guys have to fight with all they have to survive. The final showdown is intense and scary and so well done. On top of that, we see these men come together as partners. It is difficult for Emery to let Graham in, as he has such trust issues. But Graham shows Emery time and again that he will be there for him and, eventually, Emery comes to accept it. Emery has been such a fascinating character from the start of this series, and I have loved watching his progression from a near feral shifter to a man who is finally finding happiness in his life. The little moments of delight he gets at having some bits of normalcy really bring home how horrible things have been for him, so it is rewarding to see him happy. I enjoyed Emery and Graham together and we get a lovely resolution for this couple.

Alongside that are two other threads that interweave with the main action. The first is Rowan dealing with his father, and bringing Ari along for the ride. Ari continues to steal the show in almost every scene he is in, and I liked here how we see him as both his adorable (and manipulative) self, but also get to see him bad ass his way through some dire situations. We get some closure here for Rowan, both with regard to his father, as well as with his brother, Brennan. We also see Quinn working desperately to help his pack and to bring everyone home, often with Ari’s mate, Logan, for backup. Quinn has taken so much on his shoulders and feels such responsibility for all his pack members. I liked the balance of these two working together, as Logan is basically unflappable and he helps to calm Quinn and keep him from rushing into danger.

Quinn and Rowan were are main couple in the first two books and, while this story focuses more on Emery and Graham, we do get many POV chapters from both men, so they are very much a part of this book as well. We also tie things up nicely for them at the end of the story.

Winters really brings the series to a close nicely, wrapping up both the suspense plot with regard to the experiments on the shifters, as well as the romantic relationships and assorted pack dynamics. The author has created a tight, exciting story with this trilogy and the series arc builds nicely across the three books and all comes together so well at the end. I really adored this series and can highly recommend it for fans of both paranormal and suspense, particularly if you like some humor thrown in as well.

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