A Paul B Review: Setting His Owl A-Twitter (Wolves of Stone Ridge #33) by Charlie Richards

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Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars

Setting His Owl A TwitterRocky Nelson is a bouncer at a bar about an hour from Stone Ridge.  For the past few weeks, a young man has been hanging around the bar.  Each night, the young man would ask Rocky to dance.  However, he refuses each time.  It would break two rules.  First, he never dances at the club where he works.  Second, he does not get involved with party boys.  As he has seen this guy every shift he has worked the past few weeks, the guy must qualify, right?

Hector is one of the bird shifters that was rescued a couple of months ago in Europe.  The self made flock was then moved to Stone Ridge under the protection of the wolf pack that rescued them.  While travelling to Stone Ridge, the flock stop sat a club to release tension of being held captive for a number of years.  There, Hector meets his mate in a bouncer named Rocky.  However, every time he asks Rocky to dance, his mate turns him down.  The rest of the flock convinces Hector to let the mate pull work and not to give up hope.

When a co-worker tells Rocky that he thinks Rocky has misread the cute guy hanging around the bar, Rocky rethinks his position.  The next time Hector comes up to ask him to dance, he once again refuses but then asks Hector out for a bite to eat.  While he finds it strange that Hector does not have a cell phone, he chalks it up to one of the gay’s idiosyncrasies.  Then he thinks that he himself has a past that will have an impact on any future relationship with Hector.  Will each man accept the past the each brings to the relationship?

This story continues to explore the members of the flock that was rescued by the Stone Ridge pack.  I have a feeling that the focus on the series will be centered around these bird shifters as most of the wolf shifters in the pack have been mated.  The innocence of Hector almost requires a strong man both physically and mentally to protect him and he finds this in Rocky.  Rocky has been burned by a past relationship, which fuels his mistrust of club people for dates.  The story is solid, which I expect from Ms. Richards.  I look forward to see which of our birds is next to be mated.

Cover art.  Strong cover, gorgeous photograph of owl and man.

Sales Links:  eXtasy BooksAmazon

Book Details:

ebook, 106 pages
Published January 15th 2016 by Extasy Books
ISBN139781487406097
Edition LanguageEnglish

Series:  Wolves of Stone Ridge

Goodreads link:

https://www.goodreads.com/series/63445-wolves-of-stone-ridge

A MelanieM Review: The Last Wolf (Sapphire Ranch Wolves #1) by Sue Brown

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The Last Wolf 400x600Rating: 4 stars out of 5

Professor Joseph Lowther Jr. returned home to the Sapphire Ranch when his father became gravely ill. His dad is now hospitalized and its up to Joe Jr. to run the ranch he left years ago.

When Joe hears a commotion out near the barn, he shoots a wolf he thinks is attacking their sheep.  But to his astonishment the wounded wolf turns into a young man, a wolf shifter in need of help and refuge.

Callum Pope just might be the last of his pack.  On the run from hunters who specialize in hunting, killing, and the destruction of all shifter wolf packs, he was on the run until he landed on the Sapphire Ranch and was shot.  That may have been the best thing to ever happen to Callum.  Joe offers him safety, friendship, and perhaps even sanctuary from those hunting him.

For Joe, his view of the universe has been shattered.  But in its place just might be something he never expected….a strong connection to Callum Pope, a bond that grows deeper by the day.  Now all Joe has to do is keep Callum alive long enough to figure out what it all means to himself and to Callum.

When a story manages to combine author Sue Brown and wolf shifters, I know I am in for a treat.  That the story is the first in a new series just makes this all the sweeter.  The Last Wolf by Sue Brown sets the stage for the series and the stories to come.  In that respect,  it tended to try to do too much in this first novel.  But the sweetness of Callum, the likability of Joe Lowther and his father, and  the undeniable terror of hunters bent on exterminating an entire race combine to make this story one to read.

I loved the premise of the series.  Its heartrending in its small details, and shocking in scope.  Hunters out to exterminate an entire race of beings on a world wide scale. That the hunters target all ages and genders, from babies to the infirm just intensifies our fear and horror.  They are killing machines who seem unstoppable.  When you put that type of villain up against a vulnerable young main character who has already lost so much, then your empathy is easily engaged and your connection to this shifter and Joe snaps into place.

The relationships make this story shine.  From the father/son bond between Joe Jr. and Joe Sr., this is a family you adore immediately.  Then there is the growing bond between Joe Jr. and Callum, which is swift but understandable given the circumstances.  I loved that one too.  As the story continues, more people and different types of bonds and deep relationships come into play.  Brown is also setting up some of the potential couples for the stories to come.  One is particular has me “growling” in anticipation.  The author has always been able to make her people and their relationships believable (even if one is a supernatural being), and she continues that  here.

There are some shaky moments in the narrative where the author clearly is trying to get in all the elements she needs for the rest of the series, even if they are only hints and glimpses of things to come.  So at times it can feel rushed or scattered.  But the story and characters are strong enough to pull you into their journey to safety, sanctuary, and love.

What makes a pack?  I think Sue Brown is delivering that answer in her Sapphire Ranch series.  It has a wonderful concept, terrific characters, evil hunters, and the type of elements that  will keep the reader returning to see what the author has in store for us next.  While the ending is not exactly a cliffhanger, Sue Brown leaves us with enough questions that the next installment will be eagerly awaited.   What is in store for the Lowthers, Callum Pope and the Sapphire Ranch?  I have no idea but  can’t wait to find out.

If you love shifters, add this to your TBR list today.  If you adore Sue Brown, this story and series are probably already there.  Now the anticipation begins for the next story.  I will be waiting to see where Sue Brown takes her characters next.  I hope you will be along for that journey!

Cover art by Meredith Russell.  Love that cover.  Great job.

Sales Links:   Love Lane Press          All Romance eBooks (ARe)     Amazon     The Last Wolf

Book Details:

162 pages
Published September 5th 2014 by Love Lane Books Limited (first published September 4th 2014)
edition languageEnglish
seriesSapphire Ranch Wolves #1

Review of Peace in the Valley by Jana Denardo

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Rating: 4.5 stars

DSP Evergreen Cover for 2012John and Anthony have a tough time making time for each other, especially at this time of the year.  Not only do both men work in emergency services, John as a EMT and Anthony as a nurse, but they also are members of the local Search and Rescue outfit.  But their roles in Search and Rescue make them one unique couple with John as the S&R handler for his “dog” Sir Barksalot who just happens to be Anthony, a wolf shifter. The holidays always bring crazy demands on their time, from people lost on the slopes to a full ER.  But they have been lovers for a long time and know how special it is to make time for each other in their special valley.

I loved this short story written for Dreamspinner’s Evergreen Advent Month.  Jana Denardo captures beautifully the portrait of a couple who have been together long enough that they mesh in that special way only committed partners do.  That one partner happens to be a wolf shifter and Native American adds spice to the relationship but never takes the focus off the love John and Anthony have for each other.  There are some very cute scenes in which  John interacts with his rescue “dog” during training and Anthony’s comments about his love for liver treats.  We also get to see them as an established couple at Christmastime with John’s large Italian family who clearly see Anthony as they would any of their children’s spouses, a very nice touch.

Peace in the Valley gives us tender moments in the lives of John and Anthony, the drama of a rescue and some hot sex too, all nicely wrapped up in 39 pages.  Another don’t miss for the holiday season.  Lovely.