“Frippers” is a portmanteau coined by my husband Jim for “fur rippers” which is an adaptation of “bodice rippers.” Yes, I have been having fun lately with Patricia Briggs and her “Alpha and Omega Series” about love and romance among the werewolves.
This series centers around the sexy, strong (but gentle, of course) alpha wolf, Charles, who deeply loves his omega wolf mate, Anna, and wants to tear apart anyone who even looks at her crossways. This would not be difficult for Charles, who also happens to be the chief enforcer for his “da”, the “Marrok”, or head of all the werewolves in North America.
An alpha wolf is a dominant wolf in a pack, and very prone to violence. An omega wolf, much rarer, is a “zen” alpha wolf – one who “has all the protective instincts of an Alpha and none of the violent tendences.” Omegas confer peace and serenity onto other wolves, and thus are very valuable, especially in those critical beginning days of managing the change from human to werewolf. Charles, a werewolf for centuries, is immediately drawn to Anna, a werewolf for only three years. Anna has no problem standing up to this enforcer wolf who makes all the other alphas quake, and she and Charles have great chemistry. I especially love when she controls the wolf in him by tapping him on the snout.
Various problems and adventures ensue, what with rogue wolves, evil witches and vampires, and the like, but the big draw of these books is the relationship between Anna and Charles.
Discussion: What’s so appealing about bodice and fur rippers? I’ve prattled on about this before: the appeal of the strong bad boy who can make a female weak in the knees but yet it is she who tames him, for he adores her. Women are socialized to want this in so many ways! And frippers have an advantage over rippers: when the hero isn’t being a sexy handsome great big guy, he is an attractive great big doggy, whose fur you can run your hands through and against whom you can cuddle up and sleep.
Evaluation: I had a great time with these books. They are totally M&M books: no nutritional value and probably deleterious to the maintenance of your mental acuity, but they are so good you can’t stop indulging.
Publication Notes: On the Prowl is in a collection of novellas published by Berkley Books, 2007. Cry Wolf and Hunting Ground are published by Ace Books, part of the Berkley Publishing Group, an imprint of Penguin Group (USA), Inc., in 2008 and 2009 respectively.