Rating: 2.5 stars out of 5
As the story opens, Wyatt Redding is thrown to the wolves—literally. In this world, humans avoid the wolves during the three days of every full moon. The wolves are superior to the humans in both strength and cunning, and humans who venture too close to the woods during the full moon have been known to disappear forever. It’s worse for those who don’t disappear—once it’s known they have been used by the wolves for sex, they’re shunned and abused by other humans—physically as well as verbally.
When Wyatt’s greedy brother, Andrew, leaves him bound and gagged at the edge of the woods, Wyatt decides that he’ll try to make the best of the three days by surviving and winning a mark that symbolizes protection by the pack. He wants to get back alive—especially because his brother is trying to get his hands on Wyatt’s money, money he earned by working hard and rising to the top of his field.
Knowing his choices are very limited, he decides he’ll do whatever he needs to do to live, even if that means submitting to the wolves sexually. But from the moment the first wolf comes upon him, he realizes that there really was no choice at all.
Wyatt is subjected to physical and sexual abuse throughout the story, and there’s both dubious and non-consent and outright rape. This is definitely not a story for those who may be triggered by violence.
I appreciate the author’s attempt to create a new world, and a different twist on wolf shifter stories, but I don’t think enough time was spent on creating the world and establishing a relationship between two MCs. Cole, the Alpha of the pack, eventually becomes the wolf that Wyatt is bound to, but although there is some primitive sense of attachment, it never approaches a romance. If anything, their “bond” with each other is due to the fact that Wyatt’s system absorbed some of the wolf’s blood, strengthening him and making his attraction to the wolf stronger. The major problem for me was that I didn’t understand any of dynamics of this world until the very end of the story when Cole discusses their relationship to humans with one of the pack elders. I would have liked this information and more about their world earlier in the book. Since the book was not long, there wasn’t much time to establish the setting, but there was certainly enough time to devote to an extraordinary amount of sex—all of it violent. The author should have given more time to the world-building within the pages written, or else expanded the story to establish the framework of the wolf-human dynamic first.
Overall, the story was okay—but nothing out of the ordinary. I wouldn’t recommend it to anyone other than those who like very dark stories with a lot of sex and those that really don’t fit the usual definition of a romance.
Cover Art by Lou Harper depicts two men and a wolf. To be honest, having read the book, I think the cover is too light and colorful. I would have expected this cover to have been dark, with blood, blindfolds, a bound man, dark woods, etc. in the background. That would have been more representative of the nature of the book.
book, 80 pages
Published January 19th 2015 by Riptide Publishing (first published January 17th 2015)