Reviewed by PizzyGirl
SERIES: Shifter U #2, Dreamspun Beyond #13
AUTHOR: J. Leigh Bailey
PUBLISHER: Dreamspinner Press
LENGTH: 223 pages
RELEASE DATE: February 6, 2018
A Shifter U Tale
A legendary love.
Ornithology professor Simon Coleman’s reputation is at risk, and the only way to save his name is to prove thunderbirds are more than creatures of Native American myth. Grad student and part-time barista Ford Whitney has a lot on his plate, but it’s also his duty to make sure the resident bird nerd doesn’t discover shape-shifters—like himself—live on campus.
When a series of incidents related to Simon’s search put him in harm’s way, Ford’s instincts kick in, and they become closer than is strictly proper for student and teacher. Ford is forced to reveal his secrets to Simon, and their relationship is put to the test—Simon must choose between salvaging his reputation and protecting the man who protected him….
I am loving this series. It is not high literature but man it was fun and it was exactly what I wanted when I needed it.
There are going to be people who disagree with me but I think this story was extremely well written. The plot tied into the characters which were both complemented by the writing style and overall tone of the story.
I easily connected with both Ford and Simon and never once questioned their developing mating. I felt their personalities were well developed and easy to understand. They were perfectly matched yet so different. I especially loved that no matter what was happening around them, their personalities bled through. Especially Simon. Seeing his geek come out in highly sexual and highly stressful situations kept things light and humorous and just perfect for me.
The plot was way over the top dramatic but it followed the ARC established in the first book and worked perfectly with the relationship development and fit the characters and the universe. I loved the lore and mythology and the way these crazies were so crazy the plot just worked well.
I also loved that within the over the top plot was an over the top mating that was strong and fast and yet so imperfect. I felt the heat between these men and felt the natural progression when they first kissed and never questioned the permanence of things. I also totally understood the issues these men had. Normally I HATE plot devices where one MC believes the lies of a stranger over their love interest, but in this story it worked well. Ford and Simon barely knew each other and Ford was so mysterious that I would have made the same leaps in logic as Simon did. I thought it was a good use of a device I normally can’t tolerate.
Finally, I want to mention that I LOVED the ending. Oh yes, it was totally predictable and expected but it still brought tears of joy to my eyes and I loved every minute of my reading experience.
This series is on my list to continue to the end. It is sometimes cheesy and always interesting and fun and everything I want in a Dreamspun Beyond romance.