Alpha Showdown 2017 Finale: Mercy Thompson vs. Kate Daniels


VBC: Home of Alpha Showdown

Update: This was a close one, which is the best kind of finale. With 58 percent of the vote our 2017 Alpha Showdown Champion is Kate Daniels!

It’s finally time to decide who will be the Alpha Showdown 2017 Champion. Every year this is the favorite match, and I love seeing how many readers love these characters.

This time is extra special, though. For the first time in the seven years I’ve been hosting the Alpha Showdown, there are women in the finale. We’ve never had a female contender make it this far, and this year we have two.

A female alpha will win the Alpha Showdown this year.

Will it be Mercy Thompson or Kate Daniels? They both had to defeat significant others to make it here. They both are utterly badass and beloved.

Who gets crowned champion is up to VBC readers. So, let’s do this thing.

This round is open for 48 hours.

Fire Touched by Patricia Briggs // VBCMERCY THOMPSON

You know her from: The Mercy Thompson Series by Patricia Briggs
First appeared in: Moon Called (VBC ReviewAmazon)
Supernatural status: walker/coyote shifter, daughter of the trickster god Coyote

Championed by: Margaret from VBC

In Patricia Briggs’s latest Mercy Thompson novel, Fire Touched, Mercy describes herself as, as vulnerable as any human. My superpower consisted of transforming into a thirty-five pound coyote. Why do we think she deserves to be an Alpha Showdown champion then?

Right after she said that, Mercy went off to battle a troll. She rescued an injured woman and her baby, shot the troll in the eye, and stabbed it in its big, green troll junk. She defended her unconscious husband with nothing but a stick and a bottle of essential oil. Mercy’s faced vampires, river monsters, and Fairy Queens and come out on top.

Mercy has a unique relationship with magic. She can see ghosts, where most supernaturals in her world can’t. She can tap into pack magic, even though she’s not a werewolf. And she can wield weapons meant for only the Fae. Her god-forged walking stick always appears when she needs it. She’s kind of a special snowflake, but it also makes her unpredictable.

I would also argue that shapeshifting is not Mercy’s only superpower. She’s also incredibly stubborn. Mercy never gives up, even though she winds up nearly dead at the end of so many of her books. She doesn’t do what’s expected. I mean, she’s an auto mechanic. She defies authority, mostly the Marrok’s, by knowing the rules and finding the loopholes. So she’s not only smart, but sneaky. She has to be to survive in a world where everyone else is bigger and stronger. That’s why she also carries a gun.

Mercy’s got a werewolf pack at her back and allies in every corner of the supernatural world—vampires, witches, and Fae. She stands up against evil, even when it’s kicking her ass. So while she may be the underdog, don’t count Mercy out. This coyote’s still got plenty of tricks up her sleeve.


Magic Bites by Ilona AndrewsYou know her from: the Kate Daniels series by Ilona Andrews
First appeared in: Magic Bites (VBC review | Amazon)
Supernatural Status: It’s complicated.

Championed by: Margaret from VBC

It’s about time a woman won Alpha Showdown. I know I said that last year, but I’m going to keep saying it every year until it happens. And there is no one more qualified to take the title than Kate Daniels. I mean she’s a half-witch demigod, even though she doesn’t see herself that way. She’s just beginning to admit how powerful she truly is.

Yes, that’s Kate’s picture next to the Wikipedia entry for “badass.” (No I don’t know which of the 27 different cover models they used.) Just look at all the adversaries she’s defeated. Vampires, rakshasa, ancient gods, a bone dragon, a djinn. Sure, she gets beat up a lot. But that’s okay because even Kate’s blood is a weapon. She can turn it into blades to attack an opponent or form it into armor for defense.

Kate’s earned the respect of everyone in the supernatural community first by defeating 22 shifters to secure her place at Curran’s side and then by cleaning up all of their magical messes. She’s claimed the city of Atlanta as her territory and has powerful allies to help her defend it. The Pack, the Guild, the Witches and Volvs, the People, and even a few gods fight by her side.

Kate’s a perennial Showdown favorite. She even made the championship round last year. Her hubby’s already won the title—he took the crown in 2012—but why should Curran get all the glory? Kate’s the one who brings all of those groups together. She’s the one they all look to lead them into battle. She’s the ultimate alpha and she deserves to be recognized for it.


For the final round, we had to up the prize. Vote in this round of the Alpha Showdown, and you’ll be entered to win three urban fantasy books: Cormorant Run by Lilith Saintcrow (just released!), Borrowed Souls by Chelsea Mueller (signed copy!), and Staked by Kevin Hearne.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

174 Responses to “Alpha Showdown 2017 Finale: Mercy Thompson vs. Kate Daniels”

  1. sarafina says:

    I think it’s amazing 2 women are competing for the top spot. I voted for Kate, I think she has more intrinsic power. Mercy’s power comes from her allies, it seems to me. Also, Kate gets understandably outraged a lot.

  2. Amber says:


  3. Brittany Lenart says:


  4. Pam Blome says:

    Kate, but this is a cruel pairing since I love them both!!!

  5. CharisN says:


  6. Daniela says:


  7. SnoopyDoo says:

    I love both, but in the end I pick Kate

  8. Jamie S. says:

    Tough choice, but I’ve got to go with Kate.

  9. Jana Leah says:

    Have to go with Mercy.

  10. Flo says:

    Kate! Kate! Kate!

    I love Mercy, but in terms of “alpha”, I would certainly pick Kate. Mercy is a badass but there’s a humanity about her that can be a detriment. Kate has shown a ruthless side that is the mark of “alpha”. In other words, she makes the hard choices.

  11. Shannon says:


  12. Janie McGaugh says:

    I have to choose Kate for this one.

  13. Lillian says:

    Love them both I pick Mercy

  14. Christine says:

    What a nasty choice! I love them to pieces… but Mercy.

  15. Jenn says:


  16. Kim says:

    Mercedes Athena Thompson Hampton

  17. Amanda P says:


  18. Merissa says:

    Mercy all the way! I like Kate but Mercy is so much better!

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