The Shifter is an immortal creature bound by an ancient spell to protect the kings of Samorna. When the realm is peaceful, she retreats to the Mistwod.
But when she is needed she always comes.
Isabel remembers nothing. Nothing before the prince rode into her forest to take her back to the castle. Nothing about who she is supposed to be, or the powers she is supposed to have.
Prince Rokan needs Isabel to be his Shifter. He needs her ability to shift to animal form, to wind, to mist. He needs her lethal speed and superhuman strength. And he needs her loyalty—because without it, she may be his greatest threat.
Isabel knows that her prince is lying to her, but she can't help wanting to protect him from the dangers and intrigues of the court . . . until a deadly truth shatters the bond between them.
Now Isabel faces a choice that threatens her loyalty, her heart . . . and everything she thought she knew. Quoted from Goodreads
If I had to describe this book in one word, it would be subtle. Yes, subtle. Pretty much the opposite of what I'm being now. This book is full of intrigue, mystery, romance, and conspiracy. It's a great adventure, but there is a subtleness to it that is lacking in so many books, and I adored that.
Isabel is an excellent character. She's mysterious (even to herself), wild, and delightfully other. Isabel is the Shifter, a creature from the forest with fantastic abilities. The only problem is she doesn't remember them, or really anything before Prince Rokan took her from the forest. Because of this, she is a bit hard to connect with at first, but as the story progressed I grew to like her more and more.
The best part of the story is the mystery surrounding Isabel's past. Why is she "human" now? Why can't she fully access her abilities? What is the past Rokan is hiding from her? Basically this book is full of twists and turns I never saw coming, yet each one was forshadowed and utterly believable.
No review of this book would be complete without discussing Clarisse. She was amazing--evil one minute, then you find out that she's not, and then she is again. She was absolutely excellent. I rather hated her though most of the book, but in the end I liked her quite a lot. Now it may be the kind of like I have for Paris from Gilmore Girls or Umbrage from Harry Potter, but still, she is a really fun character.
Now for the ending. I won't give anything away, but wow. It was absolutely perfect. It wasn't just the big reveal itself, but it was everything else surrounding it and how Isabel handled and delt with the fallout. Really it was absolutely, completely perfect. Plus this book is a stand alone, as far as I know. There are other stories by the author set in this world, but they aren't much connected to this one, so no horrible cliff hanger and waiting for years for the final book to come out.
I love Flashback Fridays because they're a fun way for me to review books I've read a long time ago and remind myself why they were so great. This book is a lovely 4 stars. I thoroughly enjoyed it while I read it, and will absolutely read again in the future.