I received this book for free from the Author in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.Sable by J.L. Bryan
Series: The Night Folk #1
Published by jlbryanbooks.com on May 19, 2022
Genres: Adult, Urban Fantasy, Paranormal
Buy on Amazon
I'm Alice, a werewolf slayer, though not really a great one yet.
Born with the wolf curse, I was trained by a secret ancient order to hunt the most dangerous lycanthropes, those who relish violence and murder. The order also provides the critical drug cocktail that keeps my inner beast under control...most of the time.
When my rebellious, impulsive nature leads me to botch an assignment, the order sends me into a kind of exile. My new assignment is to follow up on faint rumors of lycanthrope activity in small, fairly remote Rust Belt cities of Michigan. I'm supposed to set up quiet listening post to gathering information, though being quiet has never been one of my strong points.
Now I find myself isolated, establishing a new deep-cover identity, searching for a day job and a place to live in a new city. I struggle to build relationships with actual normal people who are neither shifters nor slayers. I feel like I've lost my home, like an unwanted wolf shunned from her pack, my trusted community lost along with their trust in me.
My new, almost normal adult life won't last, either. Beneath the illusion of a regular life that I try to create, my past is always stalking me, even as I stalk the local werewolves. Learning about my enemies, I learn about myself, and soon I'm torn in different directions by the different worlds in which I live, and by my heart, soul, and sense of duty, as I search for the right path in the shadowy world of the night folk.
My favorite paranormal writer, J.L. Bryan, has a new paranormal series. Sable is book one in the Night Folk series and this time he’s tackling the world of werewolves. You see right off the bat that Alice, born with the werewolf gene, has a very hard time dealing with her nature–especially after being cultivated in a secret order determined to wipe werewolves from the world.
I was really intrigued with the idea that a secret order of werewolf hunters would use actual werewolves to hunt down the murderous ones of their kind. Alice was found by the order when she was young and desperate for somewhere to belong. They’ve molded and directed the person she should become, but she has a hard time fighting the animal inside her. While there are anti-lycan pills that Alice is given by the order to keep her werewolf side in check, she finds that she sometimes needs that part of her in order to do her job more effectively.
That is until she does it too well–and too publicly–so the order sends her to an entirely different state where she has to put down roots and just sit back and see what kind of werewolf activity is in the area. This is the first time she’s been completely on her own and she has no one to rely on financially or even socially. She really struggles with how to find a job, a place to live, and how to make friends in this picturesque town in the upper Midwest. And as she stumbles upon the local werewolf community that openly welcomes her, she starts to question just what is so bad about that side of herself when this group is nothing she has experienced before.
I give Sable a five out of five. J.L. Bryan finds refreshing new takes on paranormal beings, and I thoroughly enjoyed his way of handling werewolves in the present day. Alice is a very likable but troubled main character, and watching her make her way out in the real world all alone was fantastic to see. Alice’s experience living like a regular human who’s never been anybody but their own person was an entertaining experience to read. Alice was a relatable character, and the new friends that she made were unique and well-developed. Add in J.L. Bryan’s infusion of humor, a little bit of snark, and a whole lot of internal conflict for Alice, and I was glued to my tablet as I devoured Alice’s beginnings. I’m very much looking forward to reading more in this series. I highly recommend this book and any of J.L. Bryan’s books for paranormal fiction lovers.
About J.L. Bryan
J. L. Bryan studied English literature at the University of Georgia and at Oxford, with a focus on the English Renaissance and the Romantic period. He also studied screenwriting at UCLA. He enjoys remixing elements of paranormal, supernatural, fantasy, horror and science fiction into new kinds of stories.
Connect with J.L. Bryan