Category Archives: Weres

Unconditional by Lauren Dane

A dozen years ago Pacific pack enforcer Josh Neelan was turned and didn’t know how to cope so he left Roseburg and Michelle Slattery without a word. Before Josh left, Michelle planned to tell him how she felt and that she was a witch. Now a police officer with a personal stake in a missing person’s case, Michellle has to ask the pack to help track down the victim while resisting Josh’s charms.

Michelle refuses Josh’s offer to let the pack handle it but learns Mages are suspected of being behind a rash of kidnappings and deaths of witches and weres across the continent. With Michelle calm about the otherness of the wolf lifestyle, she and Josh found time to mate as the mystery of the kidnappings and murders deepened.

With the Cascadia pack ruling family mated off, this outing spins to its allies and connected pack, Pacifica by introducing a new threat. Leads Josh does well in the spotlight and his lady choice, Michelle is strong and independent without being irritating. Cameos from Cascadia Wolves and (presumably) De La Vega fan favorites and new characters fanned the all hands on deck urgency of the read.
Rating:4stars

Fated by Lauren Dane

Enforcer Megan Warden wants to be mated more than anything except maybe not being trapped in a car for hours on her way to a wedding with her mother and grandmother lamenting her lack of a mate. Layla’s anchor, Dr. Shane Rosario was raised human not wolf but made sure he came to the wedding to see Lay. When Shane and Megan’s eyes met, he’d never be happier to be a wolf.

With the war settled, danger non-existent and all the Warden siblings mated this emotional outing was good but this reader missed the danger, excitement and tension that had been the series norm. It was difficult for this reader to see strong, self-assured Megan askew, likable Shane brought huge human elements to the tale as he had no idea of pack-life or familial bonds.
Rating: 4stars

Wolf Unbound by Lauren Dane

With her anchor not an option and done mourning the mate she lost, Cascadia enforcer Tegan Warden’s ready to leave the protective shelter of her family and her pack. Tegan knows she needs someone specific for her sexual needs as she re-enters the dating world. Detective Ben Stoner’s not a wolf but she’s howled since their erotic encounter at Club DeSade where their needs were definitely met.

Over coffee, they realized they’d known of each other for two years but hadn’t met, Ben worked with her brothers and had been to the house and she was on Cade’s personal detail. Making a date, Ben rushed to make a meeting with Cade and Lex, and both immediately noticed Tegan’s scent on Ben. With an accidental mating by the end of their first date Ben and Tegan have the Warden’s up in arms.

While the primary thread was Tegan and Ben’s relationship and everything it entailed, all things Pellini, the threat, thugs, tricks, plots and plans owned the secondary thread. Before packs could spring their meticulous trap designed to completely ensnare and neutralize Pellini loosed a multi-pronged attack shaking Cascadia and the wolf community to its core, leading Cade to declare open war!
Rating:4stars

The Carver’s Problem by B.L. Brooklyn

 

***A complimentary copy of this read was furnished by the author in exchange for an unbiased review***
After ten years of captivity and constant torture, an almost feral Cort shows specks of civility thanks to his roommate, Theya. Trading surreptitious glances and accidental touches skirts the edges of their platonic relationship. Their domesticity is marred by fairies and carvers trying to arrest Theya and Jeri’s determination to force Cort into the pack Alpha role Jeri abandoned.

While Dar hosts a ‘come to Jesus’ meeting with Jeri, Trish and Mikhail make decisions about their relationship as our intrepid rebel species pack plan a rescue mission when Theya is captured causing Cort to surge toward his humanity. A glimpse in Fairyland and a visit to the traditional carver camp leads to someone valuable ending up with the rebels and insinuates battles to come.

Meanwhile pack member Mikhail’s familial issues are highlighted after he locates his missing younger brother, Soren. Rescued by alone in the world earth carver, Trish, Soren’s been living as her pet. Returning to pack land, Mikhail, Soren and Trish’s reception mirrors Dar and Beth’s giving this reader a sense of deja vu and a wonder on the quick resolution of some conflicts.

For this reader’s taste this outing had a case of sophomore slump. Lacking was a sense of urgency tying the installments and seamless transitions between two sets of major characters smoothing the flow. However, easily accessible characters, rapid pacing and the battles quickly exposed blatant bigotry and power mongers along with their insidious betrayals as a bit more this corrupt world is revealed.
Rating: 3.5stars

Wolves Triad by Lauren Dane

Youngest Warden sibling, Tracy, is over her mom bringing wolves over as potential mates. Eager to stem that tide, Tracy agrees to help with Cascadia’s part in the mediation set near Pacifica pack territory. While guy watching with her sister and sister-in-law, Tracy’s taken with the Pacifica second, Nick as well as the mediator, Gabe. Both males scent Tracy as a potential mate.

A rare tri-mate bond is formed when Nick and Tracy mate and Gabe acts as her anchor, making the trio mates. Tracy isn’t welcomed into Pacifica pack leading to confrontations with her new alphas and aggravated when the tri-mate bond is recognized. Pellini’s insidious claws have reached the National leadership pack giving remote packs few alternatives.

This messy outing didn’t hold together very well for my taste, the pieces were present but abruptly sacrificed to accommodate the next sex scene. The contrast of Nick, Gabe and Tracy’s styles and personalities was a great touch. This reader’s favorites updated the overall arc of Pellini, the ‘wolf mafia’ and the formula, also the conflict with the Pacifica alphas spiced up their characters.
Rating: 3.5stars

The Carver’s Magic by B.L. Brooklyn

***A complimentary copy of this read was furnished by the author in exchange for an unbiased review***
The supernatural community wasn’t very fond of the unique powerful, multi-blooded Carvers, but they’d defeated them once, changing their fates and would do it again. Carvers were forced to give up their children to be raised by humans until they were 18 in hopes that delay in learning their magic would keep them from realizing the full potential of their power.

When young Carvers Shane and Beth were taken to spend time with their biological families neither were receptive to hearing that they were the future of Carver domination and should seek out their carver mates and join the fight. Having learned bits of magic on their own, Beth and Shane decided on tamping down their powers and masquerading as human in the world they knew.

Bartender Shane looked forward to seeing a shy, tiny, dainty, human every Friday at the Amber Line but not her take no prisoners sister, Beth. Uncomfortable that Cory’s drawn the attention of a swaggering wolf and Beth has drawn his ire. With a clientele of fairies, werewolves, witches, vampire and a smattering of humans, Shane’s even less pleased when the sisters become his new workmates.

Beth is annoyed at having to bartend weekends at the Amber Line to protect Cory, Beth had pledged her heart to high school crush, werewolf Dar, while he healed from an accident. Afterward, Dar acted like Beth didn’t exist and the years hadn’t brought change. Dar still acted like Beth didn’t exist even while forcing the wolf’s attention from Cory and ignoring her.

Their human boss and customers are oblivious to the supernatural influx during sisters first weekend. Dar upsets Beth’s equilibrium by coming both nights, Cory’s infatuation with Shane may be coming to an end as she’s assigned to work the closed door vampire area and Shane’s off-kilter after seeing the fae police, his father’s emissary, an obsessed werewolf and learns Beth’s a carver too.

Readers will find an intriguing tale of supernaturals positioning for a species war, where enemies stand shoulder to shoulder, secrets and deception reign and no one can stand on the sidelines. The characters and the well paced story are easy to invest in and the multi-layered, exciting world had this reader saluting this author’s heady debut.
Rating: 4.5stars

Pack Enforcer by Lauren Dane

Though florist Nina Reyes was living life on the straight and narrow these days, when her brother came to her in fear for his life, she couldn’t say no. Looking at Nina, Cascadia enforcer Lex Warden saw what he was expected to see when he went to her house looking for her brother. With a criminal past and the desire to protect her brother the last thing she would do was tell the sexy wolf anything.

Sneaking out to help her brother, he and Nina are caught by Rogues but she’s saved by Lex and his brother, Cascadia alpha, Cade. With her brother dead and her home destroyed, Nina goes for the protection Lex offers though they’re both doing their best to ignore the attraction between them but it’s not working.

Nina breaks through the computer her brother had hidden and uncovers theft and a plot against humans and werewolves which concerns both Cade and Lex since it means they’ve been betrayed. As they try to find the person responsible for the deaths and the information, Nina convinces the brothers to use her street rat savvy to help them. The plan works like a charm until she slaps the Third.

While this reader started the series at novel 6, I was intrigued with this world and wanted to read from the beginning as the Wardens, first family of the Cascadia pack find their mates. The foundation tale is a fast paced and clear explanation of the major arc, pack and family dynamics plus the fairly good and sexy romance of two control freaks, snarky, abrasive Nina and laid-back, powerful, overprotective Lex.
Rating:4stars

Reluctant Mate by Lauren Dane

Successful Financial Planner Layla Warden’s determined to live life her way, good times with none of that mate stuff despite the pack and her influential, loving and boisterous family. Visiting his cousin, tattooed artist Sid Rosario, wanted more than dinner when he saw the red-headed beauty seated too far away for his taste. Layla and Sid both knew how the evening would end when he sat at her table.

Their eventful one night stand took a detour when the pair they discovered they were mates. Sid was happy with the hand Fate had dealt and try as she might, it wasn’t something Layla could ignore or walk away from. The scorching heat of tri-bond this series introduces was extremely erotically sensuous. Enjoyable but extremely short, this reader wanted much more.
Rating:4.25stars

Alpha’s Challenge by Lauren Dane

***A complimentary copy of this read was furnished by Carina Press through NetGalley in exchange for an unbiased review***

Dr. Grace Pellini is living in constant fear. She can’t trust her co-workers, her family or the rest of her pack, she can’t let herself be discovered neither can she hide, hinder the project or stay much longer. Her brother, Warren, is close to perfecting a bio-weapon dangerous to humans and shifters, he’s also suspicious of her and has begun to ship samples away so she can’t follow his progress.

Cascadia wolf alpha Cade Warren is resigned to waiting until after the war to search for his mate. In the meantime it’s good for him to be seen in Chicago especially with an insider willing to give info about the new bio-weapon. When Grace walked into the meeting, every wolf knew there was now a female alpha in Cascadia. Warren was furious when he found out and demanded Grace’s return.

Cade refuses Warren’s request and continues his work with the regional Alpha’s on their war efforts while Grace earns her way into the pack and continues her work on combating Warren’s weapon. Annoyed that his sister would dare to mate his enemy, Warren increases attacks on both populations and when that doesn’t work according to plan, he makes a challenge that can’t be ignored.

This quick, fun read was easy to get into, though this was a new to me series, there was no problem following the stories (and I’ve already got the others on my reader). There was much appeal for my taste in this outing, shifters, a bit of romance, good sex and a strong enough conflict to intrigue me to dig into TBR-land for more of this series.
Rating:4.25stars

Etched In Bone by Anne Bishop

Recovering from Namid’s teeth and claws retaliation, invited and welcome elements descend on Lakeside Courtyard as well as the unwelcome and uninvited, all striving to find a new normal. Among those is Montgomery’s malevolent, manipulative, conniving criminal brother, Cyrus. His arrival is chosen to be the measured answer to the Elders all important question, ‘How much human will we keep?”

Properly despicable villain Cyrus’ presence disrupts the courtyard’s serenity, his poisonous schemes and mischief aggravate familial strife, causing a ripple effect of hard choices, aggression and the need to discipline and reject him. With their soft underbelly exposed to the enemy and a mandate from the elders, the harmonious community is forced to consider how much human they would tolerate.

Payback from the Others escalate as Cyrus’ schemes become increasingly desperate in his determination to have things his way at any cost. Each gard working to their own strength was vividly portrayed as Cyrus refused the Other’s form of rehabilitation and went much too far inciting their predatory instincts. As the cost is weighed of their experiment even the Elders realize they have much to learn.

For my taste, the majority of this busy read was ‘soft’ and ‘filler-ish’, settling characters and wrapping threads but a thrilling, nail-biting conclusion was the payoff. Lovable Skippy was heroic as he awkwardly learned, Meg and Simon moved closer to an approved mating and the strong secondary characters waved goodbye in excellent cameos while the outing left plenty of questions for an exciting finale.
Rating: 4.75stars

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