Book Review: Blackwood by Pia Foxhall

Saturday, November 24, 2018

Title: Blackwood
Author: Pia Foxhall
Series: Perth Shifters Book #1
Publication Date: 23rd November 2018

Synopsis: "In a world that is still getting used to shifters, where everyone thinks omegas are second class citizens, nature photographer and omega Braden Payne lets everyone think he's a beta. That way no one gives him a hard time and he doesn't have to live a repeat of his failed relationship. But when his car breaks down in the remote Blackwood forest in Western Australia, without the medication that lets him hide who he is, he's faced with what he fears most: an unmated alpha.

Government forest guardian and alpha Coll MacDubhar is tired of illegal loggers, foolish tourists and people who underestimate the wilds of Western Australia. He discovers Braden lost and in need of medical assistance in the forest he protects and knows something's not right.

But there's hidden depths to Braden that capture his interested, and no decent alpha would walk away when Braden's unwelcome past comes to visit."

My thoughts: I have read some of Pia's work before on AO3 and I absolutely adore their writing. They write such wonderful characters that draw you in and make you care so much - I relate so strongly to some of their characters that I find myself thinking of them for months afterwards. This is true for Blackwood, too.

Braden in particular is a character written in such a way that makes him feel so real. I found myself crying whilst reading this book - sometimes from bad things happening, but also from really cute moments. And yes, I am a crier, but not usually whilst reading books oddly enough. Pia's work just makes me feel so seen when I read it, and I think that, more than anything, shows what a fantastic writer they are. They take from life, flip it around, add some beautiful fantasy elements, and then put it down in the page for readers to read and adore (and maybe hug their book/e-reader. which I may or may not have done.).

In a way, whilst reading this, I actually felt kind of like I was living it. It was a real immersive experience and nothing really kicked me out of the story - something I have found with other books. Even when the intense scenes were happening, I felt my heart rate go up, and felt like I was actually there, witnessing the scene myself. I actually don't entirely understand how Pia can create this immersion, but I'm all for it. I think more people need to read it.

Just a note: there are trigger warnings in this book. Pia has a complete list that you can jump to from a link in the front of the ebook, but a couple to note are: PTSD, sexual abuse, physical abuse, scenes of violence. Please note that because, as a I said, it is an immersive experience.

{I received a review ecopy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review. Thank you so much!!!}

A favourite line from the book: 'He turned slowly as the thick karri forest around him fell silent, birdsong halting. Stared at a charcoal grey anvil of cumulonimbus in the distance.
It had seemed like a good idea at the time.'

You would like this book if: you like shifter fiction, m/m romance, and lovable characters; you enjoy wonderful descriptions of karri forest and lovely ex-lumberjacks from Scotland.

Tea to drink while reading this book: There is so much hot chocolate in this book that I would feel remiss to not recommend hot chocolate instead of tea.

Rating:  10/10

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