Dear Ms. Hunter:
I had high hopes for this book because it was a shifter book. I love shifter books! Alas…about only one thing actually happens on page for this couple and that is sex. It’s an erotic romance with emphasis on the erotic.
Whatever plot existed (and there was one) was given only a slight nod. Actually, let’s just call it a tip of the brim of the hat. What’s sort of tragic about that is the story had a decent set up and there was so much there to mine from Arden’s creation, her role in society to Wolfe Trevlian and how he’d become an outcast amongst his own wolfie people.
Then there were the climactic scenes (and I’m not talking about the sex scenes) that resulted in Wolfe doing something that he hadn’t imagined possible at the start of the book yet we don’t see even one sentence of that on the page. We are told about it after the fact. Everything but the sex scenes are summarized in one or two sentences after the fact which was frustrating. I kept putting the book down and then returning to it in hopes that I’d be given more information, narrative, anything.
Arden Moran is a dhamphir and she is seeking out the death a major power in the vampire world because he was the one responsible for her best friend’s death. For the last several years, she’s been killing Thymeria, a form of vampire intent on controlling all other vampires. When Wolfe and Arden meet it is because he has been hired to stop her and protect the local leader of the Thymeria. The connection between Arden and her deceased BFF was thin (they’d actually been separated for several years it appears from narration in the prologue) but I was willing to overlook that. An ass kicking heroine like Arden matched up with an alpha wolf who had Pack problems was enough to encourage me to read forward.
Wolfe comes to the late realization that Arden is his mate and therefore the drive to chase her and claim her overwhelms all else. He’s in a state that can only be appeased by Arden. Again, I’m completely on board with this but as Wolfe begins to think about the mating process, I became a little weirded out.
“The claiming instinct was taking over, an allure so powerful it would worm its way into her very soul. His pheromones would guide her,creating an inner voice that instructed her to entice him to mate.”
Um…that doesn’t sound like love from her own free will at all. Some part of his body enters hers and hypnotizes her into becoming the perfect mate for that guy? That’s uncomfortable and sounds a lot like brainwashing. Given that Arden was such an independent character, the idea that her own will was subsumed by his pheromones was also kind of sad making.
There was also this line which may have just been awkward wording more than anything else, but it raised my feminist hackles:
“He peered around the small space, taking everything in, and frowned as he studied the room. There was no bathtub, fluffy towels, or candles. There weren’t any flowers or decorations on the wall. Nothing indicated a woman lived in the residence.”
Well, Arden lived there and she’s a woman so obviously there was evidence of a woman everywhere. This paragraph could have so easily been saved by showing Wolfe as the neanderthal so it read that in his caveman like mind, he associated all of the aforementioned things with femininity. Alas…
Even though it is short, it took me three days to finish it. Ultimately, if a reader is looking for sex scenes interspersed with a little dialogue and a little plot, then this is the book for her/him. I give it a C- because the sex scenes were decent and those aren’t always easy as evidenced by all the bad sex scenes I’ve had the misfortune of reading.