5bat! Review: Under Her Skin, by Margo Bond Collins

July 21, 2016 Review 1

5bat! Review: Under Her Skin, by Margo Bond CollinsUnder Her Skin by Margo Bond Collins
on June 3rd, 2016
Genres: Fantasy, Suspense, Urban Fantasy
Format: Paperback
Pages: 270
Source: Author
Sexual Content: Explicit sex scenes
Reviewed by: Kim
5 Stars

Lindi Parker works hard at being human, not an easy task for a weresnake. She has no desire to search for others like her—until a new case changes everything. When Lindi learns that she she's not the only shapeshifter in the world, she realizes she might be next on a killer's list.

In order to save herself and the abused children she works with, she will have to team up with Dr. Kade Nevala, a member of the shifter tribe responsible for eradicating weresnakes—and the most attractive man Lindi's ever met. Even more terrifying, she’ll need to embrace her serpent side, a choice that has enormous consequences for Lindi, and for everyone around her.

With a violent killer on the loose who targets young shifter girls, Lindi Parker has to accept help from all sides, even if that means sharing her deepest secret with the very shifters who are tasked with killing her kind. Lindi is a truly different heroine, one who battles her cold, scaly side with the human side her adoptive parents have taught her to emulate; it’s a daily battle between nature and nurture, and it’s a battle she can’t afford to lose even for a second.

Were-snakes are a rare breed in shapeshifter fiction, and UNDER HER SKIN takes advantage of that to make their powers truly unique, even within the world of the book. Were-snakes, or lamia, are so feared because they are incredibly powerful, able to shift in ways no other type of shifter can. That, combined with their cold-blooded violence and their difficulty living in groups, has contributed to being hunted nearly to extinction by the other shapeshifters, especially the were-mongeese.

That’s right, this book has were-mongeese too, as if were-snakes were not awesome enough. Love it! Dr. Kade is part of the Council, is a trusted member of the shifter community, and his romance with Lindi is smoking hot. They aren’t always on the same page, but with conflicts of interest and more and more young shifters being taken from their homes, they work together through it. As he shows her more and more what she has been missing by growing up without a shifter family, they get closer and it is great to see their relationship develop.

These are homespun kind of shapeshifters. Their Council meets in a regular  houses, and their leader is a retired school teacher/were-badger. They have a team of protectors who police and guard the shapeshifters, but most of the clans protect their own.

Lindi never had a clan, and being around so many shapeshifters is difficult and strange for her. She’s never been able to share her shifter side with anyone but her adoptive mother and father (who luckily is a herpetologist who knew how to care for her when she was in snake form). There is a touching scene where Lindi curls up in a tank with an albino boa called Suzy, which shows how lonely - but not unhappy -  her life has been up to now.

I truly hope this is the beginning of a series. There are so many interesting things that happen by the end of the book that it’s left me wanting more. I didn’t feel like there were loose ends that weren’t resolved, but there was so much more for Lindi to learn about her new world, and so much more good she could do, both as a shifter and a children’s counsellor, that I want more.

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One Response to “5bat! Review: Under Her Skin, by Margo Bond Collins”

  1. JenM

    I really like this author’s work. Definitely weresnakes are pretty unique in UF, especially as a heroine rather than a villain.