Ten years have passed since the war that destroyed the Sazi Council and inflicted a horrible "cure" on thousands of Sazi, robbing them of their ability to shapeshift.
Luna Lake, isolated in Washington State, started as a refugee camp for Sazi orphans. Now it's a small town and those refugees are young adults, chafing at the limits set by their still-fearful guardians.
There's reason to fear: Sazi children are being kidnapped. Claire, a red wolf shifter, is sent to investigate. Held prisoner by the Snakes during childhood, Claire is distrusted by those who call Luna Lake home.
Before the war, Alek was part of a wolf pack in Chicago. In Luna Lake he was adopted by a parliament of Owls, defying Sazi tradition. The kidnappings are a painful reminder that his little sister disappeared a decade ago.
When Claire and Alek meet, sparks fly—but the desperate race to find the missing children forces them to set aside their mutual attraction and focus on the future of their people.
What I liked: First off I have to say that the Sazi series was and is one of my all time favorite series. As a matter of fact when reducing my book collection, the series is one I kept and I've re-read it so many times some of the books are falling apart. I really need to get them in e-book form.
Forbidden starts with immediate action and really doesn't stop. Since I was familiar with the Sazi world, I wasn't lost at all and I think a new reader might need to have just a bit of patience OR start with the original series (nudge, nudge). The whole premise with the Sazi is to stay hidden so they take care of all their own problems. However, the "cure" devastated their numbers and now they are a bit overworked.
Claire, the heroine of Forbidden, is a new Wolven agent (this is the law enforcement agency for the Sazi) and normally wouldn't have been sent on such an assignment so early in her career and especially alone. However, Sazi children that survived the cure are being kidnapped and Claire is sent into the former refuge to find out why, and who and stop the kidnappings.
Alek has been in Luna Lake (the former refuge) since the cure/plague decimated his pack in Chicago. What's more, he was adopted by the Owls and not wolves. Basically, due to the plague, different clans had to step up and protect children of different clans to keep them safe.
Ms Clamp really steps up with the continuation of the Sazi. Her characters are interesting and appealing. Of course, there are always the few you just want to smack for being so stupid but otherwise, I enjoyed all the characters. Since the characters are so well done, it's hard to think any of them might not be all they seem. This is where Ms Clamp shines. I had absolutely no idea of any of the bad guys or why. But the story didn't bog down, it flowed and kept my interest and had me rooting for all the characters.
What I didn't like: I read a copy provided to me by Ms Clamp before ARCs were available so I can't really comment on the editing, etc. I know the only thing that frustrated me with my copy was, I couldn't (or didn't know how) to take notes. It was a bit funny actually because I had to resort to pen and paper, the horror!
The whole idea of the Sazi is completely different from any other Urban Fantasy I've read. It's completely believable, to me and I bought into it for the long haul. I'm very hopeful that more of the characters from the previous series will make it into this series. I'm that invested in them as characters and as part of the story!
I can't express how much I recommend you read A Tale of the Sazi series first. You won't be sorry, but entertained for hours!!