My rating: 4 of 5 stars
So, I’m going through a “shifter” phase right now. It hasn’t generally been my cup of tea in the past, but I do enjoy an alpha hero. I discovered Celtic Moon and shared the link with Jaime. I was all, “I think I could really dig this.” And to be honest, it wasn’t exactly the wolf the pulled me in. It was the premise of a hero and heroine who have a past.
Like father, like son…
Sophie Thibodeau has been on the run from the father of her son for more than fifteen years. Now her son, Joshua, is changing, and her greatest fears are about to be realized. He’s going to end up being just like his father—a man who can change into a wolf.
Dylan Black has been hunting for Sophie since the night she ran from him—an obsession he cannot afford in the midst of an impending war. Dylan controls Rhuddin Village, an isolated town in Maine where he lives with an ancient Celtic tribe. One of the few of his clan who can still shift into a wolf, he must protect his people from the Guardians, vicious warriors who seek to destroy them.
When Sophie and Dylan come together for the sake of their son, their reunion reignites the fierce passion they once shared. For the first time in years, Dylan’s lost family is within his grasp. But will he lose them all over again? Are Joshua and Sophie strong enough to fight alongside Dylan in battle? Nothing less than the fate of his tribe depends on it…
I liked the idea of an older heroine – one who has an already-established relationship with the hero. And beyond that, you get the added layer of family. They have a child. This isn’t something you read a lot in romance, and certainly not something I’ve read in PNR.
Lucas is the Alpha of his pack. And much like you’d expect, he has all those alpha tendencies that make your girlie bits tingle. He’s assertive, dominant, and of course my favorite thing ever in a hero…he’s broken on some level. And we soon learn that it’s because the woman to whom he’s mated ran away from him while she was pregnant with his child. And she does this right after he shifted in front of her the first time, exposing who he was to her.
What a bitch, right?
Except she’s not.
We learn that Sophie ran, not because she didn’t love him, but because she thought she was protecting herself and her child after Lucas threatened her with keeping her from her baby if she left. And here’s the thing about Sophie… I adored her. I adored everything about her. When we meet her, she’s doing the one thing that’s she’s probably the most scared of in the world – calling Lucas – because her son is showing signs of changing. She’s a lot of things, but most importantly, she’s an amazing mother who will stop at nothing to protect and do the right thing for her son. Even if it causes her pain and suffering.
We also learn that Sophie is basically a bad-ass bitch who is more than capable of taking care of herself. And while we are learning all these things, so is Lucas. Their reunion is emotional, tense and awkward at times, but also powerful. You can feel their connection. Not just for Sophie and Lucas, but also for Lucas and Joshua, their son. There were several scenes in which I actually teared up. The father/son bond is apparent. And Sophie can’t deny it.
We also get to see the rediscovery of Sophie and Lucas. We get to feel all the emotions as they each separately learn that their mate isn’t who they thought they were. We find out that other forces had worked together to separate them and keep them apart. And you feel for both sides. Not one of them was more right or more wrong. And Jesus, the sexual tension. It was delicious.
There are a lot of secondary stories in this book, and Jan DeLima does an excellent job of developing characters that will play a bigger role as the series continues. She builds the anticipation of the love story, while at the same time, making the reader invested in these other characters.
I’m fascinated by a few of them already. Elen (Lucas’ sister) and Cormack (the brother of Sophie’s past rival and Lucas’ ex-lover) are two of my favorites. Elen can’t shift into wolf form. Instead she serves as a healer of sorts for their village. And Cormack is trapped in wolf form, unable to shift into his human self, but his emotions are real and his connection with Elen is evident. This is a story I want to read.
This book is so well-written. And a wonderful debut for a new author. Her descriptions are vivid, stunning. I felt like I was actually there while I was reading. And honestly, I couldn’t put the book down once I’d started. If you’re a fan of shifters or PNR in general, you need to read this book. I’m a total fan and will be here waiting for the next installment.
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