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Posted December 24, 2012
When I was first introduced to Shifting Pride, I had no idea what to expect. I had never read a shapeshifter story before this, and the whole world of panthers was completely unknown to me. So on page one, I began the story of Nickie, and her family, who was torn apart by the loss of their father and husband, Richard.
When Xavian, the blue-eyed hottie who took a sudden liking to Nickie appeared, I wasn’t sure what to expect from his character. But his witty sense of humor and “never give up” attitude won me over pretty quickly—Not to mention the fact he’s Ken meets bad-ass meets shifter meets hunk meets…well, you get the idea.
The plot progressed steadily, but I have to admit that I enjoyed the second half of the book more than the first. While the first half of the book was filled with mystery and character building, the second half was action packed, left me breathless at times, and I couldn’t put my darn Nook down until two in the morning! Finally I gave in to my burning eyes, but when I woke up and fixed my first cup of coffee, I sat my butt in my living room and finished the last hundred and fifty pages.
Xavian and Nickie’s interaction was fascinating. She was by no means kind to him when they first met, but he kept after her and wouldn’t retreat—even after a swift knee between the legs! His dimples and bright blue eyes were so gorgeous the entire book, but the way Nickie began to long for him was really what won me over. She recognized her desire to be close to him, and when their desire for each other finally collided, their contact was more than just a little hot. I found myself anticipating the next time they would kiss, or when she would finally trace her fingers along his abs.
I fell in love with Andrew, Nickie’s little brother. His character was so well portrayed for a young boy, and I enjoyed his teasing and the way he annoyed Nickie—like little brothers tend to do. I don’t have any brothers or sons, so it was fun spending time with a little boy for a change!
The last clear observation about the story I’m going to make is how impressed I was with how Laura managed to show communication between the panthers in their animal form. I had no idea how she was going to pull it off, but seeing that I’m a huge animal fan and know a thing or two about real panthers, I appreciated her accuracy to their species. Their communication between each other was so lifelike, and I never had trouble understanding what one panther was saying to another, even when there were no words to bridge the gap.
I won’t feed you any spoilers about the book, but what I will say is I’m drooling over the sequel. I can’t wait to get more of Xavian and Nickie together, and I’m interested to see the family dynamic between Nickie and her family now that her father is back home. Who will the new bad guy be? And what adventures will they face?
I’ve rated this book 5 out of 5 stars because it was a fantastic introduction to the world of shapeshifters, seductive, adventurous, captivating and completely engulfing. I’d highly recommend this book to anyone interested in the world of paranormal, shapeshifters, romance and adventure.
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Posted March 16, 2013
I read the novella prequel (New Pride by Laura Diamond) and absolutely loved it! Laura's gift for writing the young adult voice is amazing! So I couldn't wait to start Shifting Pride. This full-length young adult novel was a fun, fast-paced read with a mystery element weaved in. As much as I love plot, for me, I want to connect to the characters on a deep emotional level, and Laura definitely delivers!
The heroine, Nickie, is so sassy and kick-ass. Yet, she has this authentic, teen personality. Despite the loss of her dad and discovering that she's a werecat, she's able to grieve, learn and come through everything that's thrown at her as a stronger person.
Oh and the hero, Xavian, hot! A total bad-ass werecat with the sweetest sarcastic side ever! He matches Nickie so perfectly. Even if they don't realize it for a while!
This is a fantastic coming-of-age paranormal romance with a very real teen voice. Highly recommend!
Now, for some of my fave quotes from Shifting Pride:
Like a magnet luring iron shavings, the book tempted me with its mysteries.
Ending up in an asylum didn't sound any more appealing than shifting species.
(This is my all time fave!) He brought it out of me. It being instant rage.
Xavian drove like an expert stunt driver high on meth and Red Bull.
Another honk from the horn enticed me to open my eyes. It was better to see death coming.
The accusation shattered the air, and shards of it sliced into my soul.
The audience ate conflict like it was a heaping bowl of Haagen Dazs's Dulce de Leche ice cream.
As Xavian said, I'd developed the ability to be my own furnace, and for once I didn't mind the cold.
Posted February 14, 2013
I am still on a book hangover after two days of finishing this amazing book. I totally recommend this. It is a YA (young adult) story about shape shifters, but it was so much better than just that. The whole plot line and story carried me through all the way with no dull parts, keeping me wanting more with every chapter. OH, and I love that the author was unique about her characters who shifted. I haven't read about these shifters before and it was so loved after reading so many werewolf stories (which this is not). I can't wait to read more =)Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted January 24, 2013
This was a pretty fun YA read. The mystery throughout the beginning was kind of creepy and unnerving in some ways, and would be tough to take for a sixteen year old still struggling without her father. The mystery felt a little drawn out when parts of it were a little predictable, but it didn’t detract from the story.
It took me a bit to get a read on Xavian, but never really felt he’d be a bad guy, so I occasionally wanted to knock a little sense into Nickie for being so harsh and overreacting with him so much. Then again, it was kind of funny to see her so flustered around him. When some of the little changes start happening, it’s nice to see that it affected her in everyday things and people took notice. I also appreciated that the names were a little different than I’m used to seeing. Sometimes it’s the small things that stand out.
The ending felt like kind of a blur – it happened pretty quickly – and I feel like I now have more questions than I did before, particularly when it comes to how things were handled after the final conflict. There were some dark moments, mainly when Nickie is captured and Derek wants to force her to be his mate…at sixteen. Thankfully there’s nothing graphic. The only remotely graphic scenes are the fight scenes. I love that we see plenty of the characters in cat form, and that’s how most of the fighting occurs.
Overall it was a good, well balanced story. The chemistry between Nickie and Xavian is strong, the mystery is cryptic, and the action is exciting.
Posted December 31, 2012
I loved this book, and I was sad when I read the last words. Diamond has created such an interesting world, complete with complex pack politics and an engaging mystery, and nestled it so neatly within our own. I feel like I could walk out my door and find a new shifter friend, or enemy. What I appreciated most about Shifting Pride is the care Diamond takes in interspersing shifter info and lore into the story, be it with a book Nickie finds or folklore other shifters share with her. Diamond is very thorough in her world-building and it definitely adds to the overall realism of this shifter tale.
Diamond does a fantastic job keeping the pace snappy. She gives us just enough information without overloading the reader or making her plot predictable. With each new revelation, I was anxious to see how she manipulated the information and was not disappointed. I kept hanging on to each word, each sentence, each paragraph, each page, hoping right along with Nickie that she would soon be reunited with her dad.
Shifting Pride is a must-read for anyone who enjoys an engaging story. Even if one strips away the shifter element, we’re still left with a great book about a daughter who will stop at nothing to bring her missing father home.
Posted December 19, 2012
Laura pens "Shifting Pride" in a well developed plot that will keep you turning the pages with her characters that are interesting and likeable. Surprisingly there was no cliffhanger even though there is a sequel to this book, "New Pride", which I can't wait to read. Highly recommended for all (YA and not so YA) who love werecats, mystery, adventure and suspense thrown in to a nice love story.
This review is based on a complimentary copy from the author which was provided for an honest review.
Posted December 17, 2012
I absolutely loved Shifting Pride. From reading the book description I knew I was going to like it from the start.
Nickie’s father had gone missing a year ago and although people thought he was dead she knew he was alive and wanted to get proof so people would believe her.
Xavian moved into the neighbourhood and he was always there when something happened, when Nickie was threatened in some way. Pretty much like an annoying Guardian Angel (in Nickie’s eyes).
Nickie started getting cravings for tuna, now this would not be strange except she hated tuna. Still she thought it was something to do with grieving for her father (who loved tuna) and that was why she was wanting it.
I loved Nickie and Xavian’s relationship, she couldn’t work him out but there was something about him. He would do anything to protect her and once Nickie fell in love with him, she too would do anything to save him.
The book was full of werecats, adventure, mystery, suspense and a fantastic love story. It was brilliant.
Posted December 16, 2012
This book was a pleasant change of pace for me. I love cats and so far have loved any werecat shifter book I have picked up. This particular story took me about eight hours to read. In the beginning you may be a little confused, but the main character Nickie is very confused. You get pieces of the puzzle fast enough to realize that Nickie is not ordinary and perhaps the people she surrounds herself with are not normal either. Her dad is missing, a new boy moves to the neighborhood whom is driving her crazy mentally and physically, her mom seems to willing to accept that her dad is probably dead, and to top it off, she's getting weird notes in different hand writings tell her conflicting things while always trying to convince her that she might be a werecat. How odd is that?
Well I absolutely loved the story. There were several twists that kept me wondering what would happen next. The biggest surprise came at the end. It's not a cliffhanger so don't think that is the surprise, but I was left with one big question that I hope means there will be a second book. I can tell you that there is a prequel to Shifting Pride called New Pride. As soon as I find time to read it, I plan to.
Read more reviews at Identity Discovery Blog.
Posted December 12, 2012
Even though this book is Young Adult, I really enjoyed reading it. I'm 32 and I didn't feel like I was reading something written for a younger audience. I was immediately pulled into the story from the first chapter...and it's just keeps getting more exciting with each chapter. A book is really good when I feel anxious reading it because it means I'm totally enthralled and anxious to see the outcome. I personally love stories about mythical and mystical creatures...so shape shifting panthers were awesome! This book was especially great reading for me because Nicki, the main character, has a thought process like mine...so reading her narrative really flowed with my brain. Needless to say...I really enjoy Laura's writing style.
I love that Laura uses her background as an influence for her books because I 100% agree that young adults are at more of a crossroad than any other time in their life. Great fiction can be a crucial and empowering thing in a young person's life....I can remember every book I read during that time in my life that had a profound impact on my psyche...in a positive way. This is one of those books that I would have loved when I was at that crossroad in my life.
Posted December 11, 2012
I couldn't put this down. Right from page one, I was hooked by the characters and the storyline. Nickie is on a mission to find her father, even though no one but her believes he is still alive. What she discovered about herself, her father and her new found gorgeous friend, kept me glued to the page so much so, I read it all in one sitting. Laura Diamond is a real find and I shall look forward to catching up and reading more of her super stories.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.