Cover Image: Animals We Are

Animals We Are

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date:

Member Reviews

This book is a survival in the wilderness/finding yourself type of thriller. Sometimes a little slow for me dealing with Zoe’s inner hang ups. But the plot itself was good and interesting to see how strong a person can really be when they love someone.
Was this review helpful?
Valerie Brandy has written a solid plot with characters that you can relate to. What my biggest hangup was some of her attempts at a more poetic prose. I don't fell that is her real style and thus it felt a bit awkward at parts.
Was this review helpful?
First of all the cover just gripped me to request a copy and I'm glad I did. Who doesn't love a fast-paced thriller set in the wilderness? This is a nail-biting thriller that will keep you reading and wanting more.
Was this review helpful?
Zoe and her boyfriend go to Yosemite, the scenery is gorgeous, as are the author's depictions. But things go very wrong in a place where there is no help. 

Finding strength, drive and qualities that have served animals well is imperative for Zoe and she does so in amazing ways.

Some people figured out the bad guy, some did not, there certainly are clues.

Strong, dynamic heroine and story.
Was this review helpful?
Thanks to Netgalley for the ARC of this book. Was a nice thriller with a unique/different story line. Kept my interest.
Was this review helpful?
3.5 ⭐️ 
“Will the animal in you, bite the animal in me?”
This story follows Zoe and her boyfriend, Mike who both decide take a trip to to  Yosemite. One night during the trip Mike goes missing. Zoe is then forced to take matters into her hands to search for him. It is then that she becomes the wolf, that deep down we all have inside of us.

During my time reading this story, I realized how big of impact (or lack of) reading dialogue between characters play during my reading experience and entertainment. I enjoyed the first 40% of this book SO much, but up in until 60% I found myself skimming through the details. Now, don’t get me wrong, the details in this book- were amazing. Valerie Brandy is a highly talented writer. Her writing is beautiful and extremely atmospheric. I guess I just personally need dialect between characters in order to hold my attention. Also, that last chapter though....I’m interested to see what happens next. 

Thank you to Netgalley for providing me with a copy of this book for an exchange of an honest review.
Was this review helpful?
A strong entry in the thriller genre. Very engaging with characters that seem pretty real. This is a talented author. This has a creative, well executed plot. It's fun to see Zoe grow and how she tackles major physical and psychological challenges. Recommended.

Thank you very much for the review copy!!
Was this review helpful?
I had a hard time with this right from the get go, I didn't  really care much for Zoe the narrator and all the animal/monster comparisons she kept on about.  I felt  was hearing the same thing over and over again. Also by the 40% mark I hadn't really seen anything to make me buy the relationship between Zoe & Mike, so I was not very invested in that part of the story either. The setting was done very well and I liked some of the secondary characters.
Was this review helpful?
Even though I generally liked the writing, the culprit's identity was too obvious from the start. That detracted from the tension/mystery of the story. The mental and physical journey of the protagonist was still entertaining to read, even if the way she dealt with the villain felt like a cop-out.
Was this review helpful?
To describe this book as a survival story would be to trivialize it, as it's so much more than that! Zoe and boyfriend Mike travel to Yosemite for a backpacking trip and when tragedy ensues, Zoe finds herself battling not only the snow and nature's elements but also her inner demons as she struggles to stay alive. It's also a very metaphorical journey as Zoe sees herself as a lone wolf even though she's never had to "show her fangs." And so she is tested over and over, and as she comes to the realization that the Alpha Male Wolf theory is not true--in fact wolves "live in family units in which two equal partners raise children into maturity"--she re-examines her own life and her relationships. Part thriller, part romance, part mystery, this debut novel is a poignant examination of a woman taking charge of her life and love. I eagerly await the sequel to this!
Was this review helpful?
Thank you NetGalley and Little Leo Media for the eARC.
What a debut novel this is: well written, descriptive and tense all the way through.  It's also to have a follow-up, which is excellent news!
In Yosemite National Park, Zoe and Mike are on a week-long horse camping trip, when Mike disappears, presumed to have been kidnapped by his previous girlfriend.  What follows is a harrowing trek through a hostile, beautiful landscape that is the making of Zoe, physically and emotionally.  I particularly loved her meeting with the wolf family. 
Zoe's musings about what it's like to be a woman, to be seen, to learn to trust and be at one with the animal within herself, made me pause quite a bit and read the passages again.  Very insightful and thoughtful, this is a book to savor.  Looking forward to the next in the series!  Definitely recommended.
Was this review helpful?
Wow this was an interesting read. It was well thought out and written. I loved the journey that Zoe takes and her becoming whole. It’s a good story that keeps you guessing until the end. You don’t know who the bad guy is and even start to think it’s someone you know and like. The imagery is so detailed and the knowledge of Yosemite is definitely shown throughout. I love the oneness with nature and can’t wait to read more from this author. She did an amazing job for her first book. I highly recommend this book! I couldn’t put it down!! 
#AnimalsWeAre #NetGalley
Was this review helpful?
Animals We Are is a stunning debut. The mystery is easy enough to figure out, but who the villain is doesn’t matter as much as the journey to stop them. There’s no stalling and the writing really is fantastic, earthy and beasty, the animal analogies numerous and very imaginative. If you’ve seen the movie Ladyhawke, you might expect, while reading, the main character, Zoe, to transform into a hawk as she falls off the face of a mountain or into a big black wolf as she races against time and the elements to save her boyfriend. I highly recommend it and can’t wait to read more from this author. It’s rather unique.
Thanks to NetGalley and the author for the ARC in exchange for an honest review.
Was this review helpful?
This is a unique thriller.  You get what it is like being pursued through the wilderness by an unknown person, which keeps the suspense growing.  This has truly great character development in the lead female.  What I particularly enjoyed, was how she dealt with all aspects of her personality, and what caused them.  There is also acknowledgement of the Greater Being that exists in many different forms and guides our lives in so many ways.  I truly enjoyed the book and the breathtaking descriptions of the beautiful wildernessMrhea@comcast.net.
Was this review helpful?