5 stars

***Spoiler alert***

Dear Ms Sinclair – Please stop giving me book hangovers!
Another stellar book by Ms Sinclair. And a wonderful follow up to Hour of the Lion. It took a little longer for me to get involved in this book compared to the first in the series but, once I did, I was thoroughly invested.
I love that all 3 leading characters have such complex and complete backstories that really add some layers to their personalities and, where the boys are concerned, I felt that their histories gave them a hidden vulnerability that made them seem more human. It lessens their initial brutishness and softens them somewhat. I love that Shay and Zeb are both very different but complement each other so well – I really felt that they were true blood brothers and that connection leapt off the page. I also thought that all 3 got something from the other in the relationship – this is sometimes lacking in ménage stories.
I am not too sure that I like the previous sexual assault part of the story – while I get that the character needed some type of obstacle to overcome within the story I would have preferred something a little different. When she finally took down the hound it was a little fast and I feel that I would have felt more satisfaction if it was a little harder for her – like it was fully resolved and vengeance was had – perhaps if he had been in human form at the time so she could truly face her attacker at his end.
I love the drama with Hernes oath and then the pack alpha business. The female alpha was a total b**ch and I love that she was taken down. While I understand the pull of the alpha bond, and I do give the boys points for not mating with her , I would have liked to have seen more struggle to somehow dull the pull or push her away – the fact that Shay even momentarily allows her to rub all over him was a little vexing and if I was Bree I would have challenged from the get go. I love the challenge scene when it did finally arrive. How such bad Alphas could reign for so long is a mystery – surely if the pack was so badly led they would revolt?
While this book was a little slow to start I actually like that they didn’t just jump right into a physical relationship like so many of these kinds of books. I am usually always left thinking “that happened too fast, they only met a few days ago… geesh”. But this had a nice slow burn that grew and I felt that by the time they became physical there was already a nice emotional bond there to complement the mating.
The Elvis part of the story was great – I thought it was really funny and kind of sweet. I also really enjoyed seeing a little more of the other creatures like the fire salamanders.
I must say I am a little more partial to Zeb. No idea why. But I kind of like that he is so dark and broody and gives this aura of command that terrifies those around him. Kind of like a lone wolf that cannot be brought to heel by an Alpha. I do like that this part of his personality grew and shifted as Bree worked her way into his heart and his partnership with Shay became a true blood brother type bonding. It is a little strange to see him as a beta in the new pack structure though – he was such a force on his own.
I thought the ending was sweet – that Cosntir is sneaky. But I have one big fat question that goes unanswered…. It kind of feels like the author forgot about one part of the storyline half way through and it just never gets mentioned again…. The photo of the parents. Why is there no resolution there? I am hoping that the next book sees that get answered somehow – I thought perhaps she would go to the village of elders and someone there would recognise the people in the photo and she would get some kind of answer as to who they were and what happened to them, and her. Not having that issue resolved was disappointing.

Goodreads Synopsis:

After years in foster care, Breanne Gallagher has the stable life she’s always wanted, living with her foster-sister, working as a chef, enjoying her comfortable routines. Then one devastating night, a hellish creature invades her apartment and shatters her fragile existence. Shifting between monster and man, it slaughters her foster sister and assaults Bree. Alone, wounded, her beloved home tainted by gruesome memories, Bree flees to a tiny wilderness town, following her only clue to her past.

Shapeshifting warriors, Zeb and Shay move from one pack to another, hunting the hellhounds which prey on their kind. Assigned to Cold Creek, they take over management of a decrepit fishing lodge for their “human” cover. Their first renter is a pretty human female who trembles at the sight of them—yet stands her ground. Furious at the hurt they see in her eyes, the protective nomads are drawn into helping her. Although no shapeshifter is ever attracted to a human, her scent is oddly compelling, and her ferocious determination to conquer her fears ignites longings neither loner ever expected to face.

Bree is healing, learning to shoot the biggest pistol she can find, and overcoming her fears, especially of the two deadly, disconcertingly attractive hunters. Her life is getting back on track…until she tries to save a little girl from a hellhound and discovers everything she knows about herself is false.

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