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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on July 16, 2011
Deceived by the Others is the 3rd book in Jess Haines' H&W Investigations series and after the terrific ride of Taken by the Others, I was excited to dig in and see how things would go on after the bang ending of Book #2.

Unfortunately Shia does what she does best: she avoids dealing with uncomfortable situations, so of course she hides from Royce (just a little warning for all of you Royce fans out there: Shia won't speak with Royce until about way after page 250). So sadly I didn't get in Deceived by the Others the big confrontational talk between Shia and Royce after the blood bonding and their dealing with of where they go from there, but I keep hope I'll get it in Book #4.

So to get back to Deceived by the Others: Shia is debating whether to take her relationship with Chaz to the next level and sign the contract binding herself to an Other. As an attempt to rekindle their relationship after Shia's bonding to Royce in Book #2 which took its toll on Chaz, Shia and Chaz are going for a short vacation in the mountains to spend a few days with the whole Sunstriker pack during full moon.

Before I started reading Deceived by the Others I have glimpsed plenty of outrage exclamations of fans and warnings that there will be some pretty shocking revelations, so I was on the lookout constantly for the big fallout. I have to say I wasn't that surprised because I haven't liked Chaz from the beginning. He seemed phony and superficial to me, his interactions with Shia didn't seem deep or intense, so I can't say I was stunned by what he did and his plan. I never cared for him, and I have to say I'm even a bit glad because this way Shia can finally forget about him and look on to new and greener pastures (*cough* Royce *cough*). ;-p

Though there was plenty of mystery and dubious events taking place, and even though Jess Haines managed to keep the nail-biting excitement and thrill up I somehow found the mystery plot of Deceived by the Others less formidable than in the previous two books. But then with the conclusion Jess Haines revealed that it was more of a prank, the humour of which I appreciated, but would have loved to have a more serious and bigger evil in the works too. I know, I'm greedy :-)

I think Jess Haines was very brave in undertaking to have most of Deceived by the Others without Royce appearing on the pages until about page 260, but of course the exciting character of him and especially his interaction and crack up dialogues with Shia were sorely missed. Though they clearly are the spice of this series and what makes it outstanding, Shia's humour and sarcasm on her own is still remarkable and just as funny as before:

Maybe I could crack the thing's skull before it tore out my insides. Right. And the tooth fairy would swing by to play backup for me next.

Coitus interruptus does not a happy camper make.

"You should be afraid," Gabe said his voice gone deeper, guttural with anger. [...] "You aren't one of us. Don't you know what we could do to you?"
"Try me, Fluffy. I've fought your kind before. You kids don't know who you're messing with."

Verdict: All in all Deceived by the Others was an exciting page turner peppered with the usual entertaining witty humour of Jess Haines' heroine. And if it didn't succeed Taken by the Others I might have rated it higher, but I just loved Book #2 so much that I was left a bit disappointed I had to miss out on the Shia & Royce goodness so much. But I really hope they'll get their time to shine in the next books and Jess Haines will reward us with plenty of yumminess :-)

Plot: 6/10
Characters: 8/10
Ending: 8/10
Writing: 9/10
Cover: 10/10 - finally! It was about time this series got a great cover and I love the cover of Deceived by the Others! Atmospheric yet colourful and finally Shia looks normal and not like some leather-clad hooker. yay!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on July 10, 2011
Shiarra Waynest and her partner Sara run a detective agency in a post 9/11 New York. When money troubles arise, they are forced to take on cases for the supernatural community of Others. Others and Shiarra do not mix well. They scare her. It is the main reason her ex Chaz is her ex. The first Other case Shiarra takes on, is doomed from the start. By the end of it, she is contractually bound to the sexy ancient vampire Alec Royce.

Now, Shiarra must keep her business in the black, while stuck between two warring vampires, a pouting werewolf, and The White Hats. The scary world of Others begins to surprise Shiarra when she realizes not everything is black and white. This new world of hers is mostly grey. The bad guys aren't so easy to figure out and neither is her love life.

Still, Shiarra is determined to prove to Chaz that she is serious about their relationship. She knows what she wants and it's him. She wants to meet the pack, get to know his family, and maybe sign a contract to cement their relationship legally. For all her good intentions, everything goes majorly wrong. She puts herself out there and gets burned. Severely. She refuses to hide though. Riding on a wave of rage and desperation, Shiarra sets out for blood. The choice for vengeance leaves Shiarra's future hanging in the balance and we can only wait, impatiently, to see how it plays out.

Jess Haines takes supernatural storytelling to the next level. Her writing is fast-paced and witty. The stories are action-packed and oh so sexy. Book by book, Haines manages to outdo herself. She makes us laugh, cry, and want to toss the book across the room in frustration. It is that ability, the ability to weave such an intense emotional connection, that sets her apart as an author. I look forward to reading the next H&W novel because I know it will not disappoint.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on July 21, 2011
My top "Uh Oh!" and "Oh No!" moments:
1. This book is a huge set up for the next book in the series. You know the only saving grace was that Shia did experience some emotional growth and she did wind up falling out of love with the wrong guy.
2. I distinctly got the feel that this was an "un-PR-romance" and you can guess what all that entails.
3. WAY TOO DESCRIPTIVE in describing the camp cabins and grounds she spent 75% of the book in. I get it... it's green, brown, and wet. Next description please!
4. "Others" as in anything supernatural should be cool, but I so do not want to be a part of the werewolf motorcycle gang (o.k.a. the Sunstrikers). OK - they didn't ride motorcycles, but they acted like shady criminals the whole time (reference TV show "Gangland".)
5. At least Jess Haines is an equal opportunity discriminator - last book anti-fang, this one is anti-paw. I guess the first book is anti-wand.
6. FYI: Should read the first 2 before this one.
7. Pace and action is nonexistent until you reach about 75% into it, so don't expect much until then.
8. Sigh, 2 kidnappings. That is trite, considering book 2 plot lines. Rewind, play, rewind, play...

Overall... disappointing. I'll read book 4, but if that book doesn't have a solid plot line or mystery or gigantic emotional growth or action (of any kind) I may have to pass on this series.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon July 5, 2011
I talk to my books. More accurately, I talk to the characters in the books I read. I yell at them when they do stupid things and cheer for them when they do awesome things. Well I practically went hoarse reading DECEIVED BY THE OTHERS. This is one fantastically messed up book! And I mean that in the best way possible.

If you haven't started reading the H&W Investigations series yet, you're missing out on one of the best and brightest urban fantasy has to offer. You want werewolves? Shia is dating the Alpha of the third largest pack in New York. Prefer vampires? You will love Alec Royce, the most powerful vampire in the city with looks that kill and an agenda that only he knows. Magic more your thing? Wait until you meet The Circle, witches and mages with enchanted objects not to be believed. Navigating this world of Others is Shia, a levelheaded P.I. without a lick of magic but enough guts and street smarts to make up for it. She has ties to every paranormal group in the city--and a few anti-paranormal groups too--whether she wants to or not. Trust me, you'll never have more fun than with these characters.

The majority of DECEIVED BY THE OTHERS takes place outside of the city on werewolf retreat which unfortunately means that most of the stellar cast from this series is absent for the first couple hundred pages. I completely understand the need for this given some of the HUGE plot developments that take place in this book, but I can't help but miss some of the interaction between Shia, Sara, Arnold, and most of all Royce. As if anticipating backlash from fans, the last 150 pages reunites everyone and delivers some of the most memorable Shia/Royce scenes ever.

Plenty of urban fantasy authors do dark and disturbing. Jess Haines does urban fantasy that is smart and sexy with characters the span the spectrum from super scary to playfully snarky, and dangerously seductive. And the best thing about the H&W Investigations series is that I'm left with my mouth hanging open in shock by the end of each book, and I may have actually dislocated my jaw at the way DECEIVED BY THE OTHERS ended. Shia is physically and emotionally torn apart in this book. Some characters reveal their true colors in ways that stunned and incensed me while others stepped up in ways I never thought possible. It's like I'm meeting some of these characters for the first time and I can't wait to see what they do next in JUSTICE FOR THE OTHERS.

Sexual Content:
A scene of semi graphic sensuality. References to sex.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on July 5, 2011
In this third installment of Haines' H&W Investigations series, readers are introduced to some of the more private, inner-workings of the were pack and their traditions. In an effort to introduce Shiarra to his pack, and to see how she deals with a whole gaggle of shifted Weres during a full moon, Chaz takes Shia on a mini vacation way up in the Catskill Mountains. Hunter, New York is home to the Pine Cone Lodge, a shifter friendly (and shifter run) vacation spot, perfect for this late fall getaway...Mind you, Shia may not think of the Pine Cone Lodge as perfection by the end of the weekend!

As if the whole idea of hanging out with a bunch of shifted Weres wasn't stressful enough, it takes no time at all for Shiarra to find out that not everyone in the Sunstrikers pack is excited for her to be there. From catty female pack mates to snarky punks bent on becoming alpha, there is no shortage of tension amongst the ranks. But, regardless of how scared poopless she really is, Shia takes whatever they can dish out with a bravery and determination that would make any sane person shake their head in awe and admiration.

I so totally DID NOT see that coming! ...

Ok. So in my review of Taken By The Others , (which can be found here), I made it no secret that I have a total girly crush on Alec Royce, but I never really mentioned what I thought of Chaz...It's official! Chaz is a terd of epic proportions! As this is an early review, I'll keep the details to a minimum, but let's just say that Haines does one heck of a job foreshadowing in the previous two books of the series. In both Haunted By The Others and Taken By The Others , I always felt there was something slimy about Chaz. Granted, readers are told up-front how he lied to Shia about what he truly was; revealing well into their relationship (a physical one at that) about his true self. But still, readers are treated to Shiarra's willingness to forgive Chaz for his transgressions and asked to move beyond this rather major issue. However, all through out both HBTO & TBTO , I continued to feel that there was something "off" with this relationship. While neither story really delves too deep into their reconciliation, whenever the reader was led to focus on this relationship, there was an ever present feeling of mistrust and even mild disgust for Chaz.

As with the previous two books, Haines presents readers with a wild, tension filled adventure from start to finish. With solid foundations already established in the previous two books, Haines carries on the adventures of Shiarra Waynest with vividly described settings, a perfectly balanced cast of characters, and one heck of a kick azz protagonist whose believable personality and willingness to admit fear will have readers identifying with her and feeling as if they are experiencing this adventure right along side Shia.

In closing, Jess Haines finally gives us "pro Alec Royce" types a sneak peak of what is to come...can we say squeeeeeeeeeee! Me thinks Shia is in for some pretty exciting new adventures and I am definitely signed on for the ride!

Kudos to you, Jess! Your H&W Investigations series has a permanent place on my shelf and I am certain Deceived By The Others will be at the top of many "favorites" lists for 2011!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon July 6, 2011
Deceived by the Others begins as a more laid back book. Shia and Chaz, along with his pack, go away for some R&R. Shia must decide whether she'll be fully committed to Chaz. But then drama ensues when she and Chaz are targeted by some jealous werewolves who have it out for Chaz. The pack isn't all that welcoming where Shia is concerned and some major shocks occur in this book that will have many readers divided. Jess does something with Chaz that will have you screaming and wanting to tear him into little pieces much like Shia wants to do when she catches him red handed in his betrayal. And, it's quite a doozy. This shocking turn in the Shia and Chaz relationship takes some major balls on Jess's part because it's just not done. It really ramps up the action and drama and will have you anxious for the next book. Deceived by the Others starts out pretty slow and because of it I grew concerned on whether or not I'd continue on. But then Jess does that OMGWTF move I'd have never seen coming. And because of how Shia reacts and the way things are left, it's a great cliffhanger.

The aftermath of what Shia witnesses will anger readers but make them want to read book #4. Someone Shia trusts is a [...] big time and I hope they get theirs in the end.

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on January 26, 2012
This is the third book in this series and the worst. 80% of the book is a weekend camping trip. It drags on with fluff and filler. There is so many descriptions of the resort that adds nothing to the plot. This book only sets up the next book. You can skip this book completely. All the book reveals are these three things,

Chaz is a cheater and the Sunstrikers are not what Shia thought.
Shia gets scratched by a werewolf and "maybe" infected. We don't find out in this book.
Shia and Sarah go to Royce's house to hide.

That is all that is revealed after you read through the endless descriptions of the resort in the Catskills. Royce doesn't appear in the book until the end and there is little interaction. Arnold is a phone call, that is it. We do get meet the Sunstrikers for the weekend. Their behavior is so JR high all I could do was roll my eyes. Skip this one.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on September 29, 2014
When I first dived into this book, my initial thought was `oh great, another heroine takes a vacay story.' This type of plot line seems to be a requirement in every Urban Fantasy series, and yet rarely turns out well. That is, until Jess Haines got a hold of it, and used it to transform the H&W INVESTIGATIONS universe from pretty good to fan-freaking-tastic! This was no holds barred my favourite installment yet with oodles of intrigue, betrayal, and mettle. You're probably thinking that the werewolves had something to do with my 5-star rating, what with me being obsessed with them and all, but that actually couldn't be further from the truth in this particular instance. Weird, I know, however Chaz has rubbed me the wrong way since day one, and in DECEIVED BY THE OTHERS he finally showed his cards.

This novel was more complex than the two previous ones in that there were multiple plot threads, and the overall mystery wasn't as clear cut. Chaz and Shia's relationship was at the fore, but there was also dissension within the Sunstriker ranks, and a pack of misfit weres out for revenge. The latter introduced three new supes to the paranormal smorgasbord along with equally wacky characters to match their unusual animals while the former helped put things like shifter hierarchy, and right of ascension into perspective. The second half of this story was brilliantly paced, and succeeded in really grabbing my attention, although I can't say why without giving anything away, and this particular story is best experienced blind in order for the FEELS to have their full effect.

Waynest has come a long way since HUNTED BY THE OTHERS both as a character, and as a hunter, but in this installment she was something else! I loved how well she handled everything the pack threw at her from power struggles, to hurtful insults, to rumours. At one point she does have a massive meltdown, although in this particular instance I think that it was justified, and the scorned girlfriend in me couldn't resist egging her on. I also liked how Shia explored all of her options when confronted with a particularly troublesome problem; however her final decision surprised me even though it was ultimately super badass. Thankfully, I already have STALKING THE OTHERS on my eReader because after that ending I need to read it RIGHT NOW!

I missed Shia's entourage in this installment; Sara, Arnold, and Royce do make appearances, but their contributions were small. Alec's actions dumbfounded me, I mean he IS a vampire after all, and granted he probably does have ulterior motives, yet for the time being I'm firmly on his team. I really hope that the whole Dillon thing doesn't come to pass because even though I fully expect this series to go that route eventually, I think it's a little premature. We learn some shocking truths about Chaz--I just knew that he was too good to be true--and the riddle surrounding Waynest's mysterious cabbie is finally solved, oh and his name is Mario!

DECEIVED BY THE OTHERS was superbly written with action out the wazoo; I can't recommend it enough!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on May 13, 2013
Gah! I don't even know where to begin with this review.

This book picks up with Shia going on a wilderness retreat with Chaz and his pack. I was sad to discover this meant we would not be seeing Alec or any of the usual characters for at least 50% of the book. I sorely missed them, but I had to admit that Chaz and the werewolves were growing on me.

Damn. The author did a really good job putting me in Shia's position. I was totally sucked in by the mystery and was looking in the completely wrong direction when everything blew up. This book did something that hasn't been done to me, probably since the great Bill/Eric/Sookie drama of the Sookie Stackhouse series -- made me FURIOUS. I mean, I had to stop and put the book down because I was so mad. I wasn't mad like Karen Marie Moning's Fever series made me, which was about the cliffhangers and the endless waiting for the next book. I was mad because I was totally in tune with Shia. She was mad and I felt every second of it. Reading those chapters was hard, but so gritty and real. I wanted to punch things. I wanted to be in her shoes, but at the same time was happy I wasn't.

The end of the book was kind of a cliffhanger, but since I'm going to obviously start the next book right away, I don't have to suffer too much. I want more Alec. I really hope that Alec and Shia become closer in this next installment. Shia deserves some happy in her life, and I am totally team Alec in that I think he can give it to her.

So why 4 stars? I guess any book that can get under my skin like this one did deserves more than my typical 3 stars for books that are okay. I just hope this doesn't become a habit with this series. There's only so much torture a girl can take.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on March 27, 2013
*Spoiler Free
It is very hard nowadays to create something original and worthy of following through book after book, when it comes to Urban Fantasy. I mean, there are SO MANY Urban Fantasy series out there that for one to shine more than the others it doesn't only have to be different but also offer such compelling characters and world that you won't care that it all has been done before.
Jess Haines has been able to do it all. I mean, she hasn't invented the UF wheel by any means, but with Deceived by the Others she has gone through a path with her characters that I wasn't expecting at all, as an avid and sometimes jaded reader, I can definitely appreciate that.
I for one, thoroughly enjoyed both Hunted by The Others and Taken by the Others, but even though both books were quite awesome to read they had yet to cement strong feeling about this series and characters.
However, Deceived by the Others hits it out of the park for me, by not being drowned in clichés and proving that Jess Haines is not afraid of how her readers might feel and is brave enough to pursue a path with her characters that some might consider insane.
I, for one, am glad she went where she did with this book and I can only remember one author making me feel this way and it was Jeri Smith-Ready with the third in her WVMP Radio Series, Bring on The Night. For me, an author that is not afraid to take the almost unpaved path has balls and I admire her/him with all my heart.
The H&W Investigations series was already one I quite enjoyed, but with Deceived by the Others, Jess Haines has guaranteed her spot in my yearly book budget as well as in my heart.
If you are as much as an Urban Fantasy fan as I am, I absolutely recommend this series to you. If you have already read the first two book, you CANNOT miss this one, it's brilliant.

Originally Posted at Welcome to Larissa's Bookish Life [...]
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