Reviewed by Sarina
SERIES: Urban Werewolves #1
AUTHOR: Leona Windwalker
PUBLISHER: Rune Tree Press
LENGTH: 187 pages
RELEASE DATE: July 8, 2016
Jared just wanted to celebrate his birthday and make new friends, but he quickly finds that clubbing can be dangerous. In fact, the whole world is a different place than he thought it was. Werewolves, vampires, and faeries turn out to be all too real. Front and center of it is is Steven Chang- alpha heir and all around good guy. He says Jared’s his mate. It’s all a bit much for Jared to process, but maybe it’ll all be okay as Steve says he’s willing to date first. For a while anyway. Jared just hopes it’s long enough to wrap his head around it all, hopefully without getting disappeared by the mysterious men in suits or anything weirder happening.
With so many paranormal books under my belt, its always a surprise and pleasure to find something I haven’t read before. In Jared the author gives us what I consider a more modern, integrated look at shifters and other paranormals while still remaining true to the overall shifter genre. Steve, one of the main characters, was born in the city and has learned to manage his senses and the needs of his wolf in such an environment. I really liked how the shifters adapted to not having a big country setting to run in whenever they wanted and the author’s solution also allowed for the fae characters to be something more than just a background mention. The vampires were also a nice addition and while they aren’t around as much, (like the fae) I’m looking forward to seeing more of them, as well as their differences to ‘regular’ vampires as the series continues.
The book itself is primarily story driven with the romance between Steve and Jared front and center but there is also quite a bit of other stuff going on revolving around an investigation, other couples coming together and more unanticipated occurrences than Jared knows how to handle. I don’t mind an easy instalove book but it was kind of refreshing to see Jared freaking out over the existence of shifters; it lead some realism to the character interactions because really, no one is so laid back as to not freak out when finding their entire world view was missing some pretty big components.
Now, there were some things I wasn’t expecting to find in this book so let me put down my warnings. First, there is a sexual assault in the first chapter of the book and some lesser scenes tying into it further into the story. If this is a trigger for you, you have been warned. Also, this story features surprise mpreg. While I wouldn’t warn for that normally, some people find it squick worthy and I wouldn’t want it to catch you by surprise. I don’t mind it and actually liked how the author both brought it about and handled the birth. Nothing is really ‘shown’ but it was a different concept than what I’ve seen before in other mpreg and I thought that was great.
While I did think a lot of things came together fairly quickly in the last half of the book, and I would’ve liked a little more suspense in dealing with the agents, I did really enjoy this one; the world building was interesting and I found the characters well developed. This was just a really good start to a new series. I’ve not read this author before but I’m looking forward to seeing more of her work in the future; if you enjoy paranormal stories you might want to give this one a try. 🙂