Monday, April 16, 2012

Werewolves and Magic

Werewolf In Seattle
Vicki Lewis Thompson
Signet, Apr 3 2012, $7.99
ISBN: 9780451237323

In Scotland, Trevelyan Alpha pack leader Colin McDowell is disheartened to learn his Aunt Geraldine died in the States as he was fond of her. However, he also learns he inherited her estate in the San Juan Islands off Washington State. He prefers to stay home, but will travel to the American Pacific Northwest to take care of legal matters.

Colin meets Geraldine’s secretary Luna Reynaud, who the late woman hired as a secretary shortly before she died. Luna explains her proposed plan to convert the estate into a resort, which Colin thinks has merit. Additionally he is attracted to her as she is to him; but she is a half-breed tainted with some human DNA and he knows Alpha pack leaders don’t mate with hybrids.

The third Wild About You werewolf romance (see A Werewolf in Manhattan and Werewolf In The North Woods) is a fun frolic starring two likable protagonists. The witty storyline mostly focuses on the lead couple’s relationship as Colin must overcome his species prejudice that human blood taints his soul mate. Harriet Klausner

Savage Awakening
J.D. Tyler
Signet, Apr 3 2012, $7.99
ISBN: 9780451236449

Following an attack in Afghanistan changed them and after leaving the Navy, these shape-shifting former SEALs formed the Alpha Pack; their mission to battle the most dangerous deviants in the world (see Primal law). During their current assignment, the enemy captures member Aric Savage.

More dead than alive, he learns his pack mate Micah Chase is also a prisoner. Their Alpha Team never leaves anyone behind so they begin a rescue mission that Micah’s LAPD Psy Dreamwalker Rowan plans to join. She wants her brother home safe, but while on the quest, she and Aric realize that they are mates. However, Rowan is not ready for this relationship so Aric goes slow while his wolf goes crazy. All changes when she finds out his life is threatened.

Savage Awakening is a totally enthralling Alpha Pack romantic suspense urban fantasy in which the wolf knows who he wants to bite as the means to make her his mate, but she is not ready for such a biting commitment. Sub-genre fans will enjoy the action-packed storyline while appreciating the bonding between the cop and the savage soldier. Harriet Klausner

Magic Unchained
Jessica Andersen
Signet, Apr 3 2012, $7.99
ISBN: 9780451236425

Once a party animal adrenaline junkie, Sven the coyote mage Nightkeeper tracker has only one “friend” his coyote familiar Mac. As a teenager, her father bound Cara Liu to Sven as his winikin. She ended that unwanted relationship though she fell in love with Sven, who she knows always walks alone.

Under four months to go, Cara returns to lead the winikin as the Doomsday Clock is counting down. She knows how difficult her assignment is as the group is divided between the old and new. Additionally the fears and unpredictability of the end of days has devastated the bond between the winikin and Nightkeepers. Cara and Sven begin a tryst that could end the alliance between their respective groups. Worse they fail to realize the current threat comes from a betrayal within the ranks.

Magic Unchained is a great Nightkeepers urban fantasy (see Storm Kissed, Demonkeepers and Blood Spells) as time has nearly run out, yet the power struggle continues. The fast-paced storyline grips readers from the moment Cara comes to New Mexico and never slows down as the loner and the leader know they belong together while on the underground side of the barrier demons prepare for the inevitable. This series remains one of the sub-genre’s best. Harriet Klausner

Nick Harkaway
Knopf, Mar 20 2012, $26.95
ISBN: 9780307595959

His father was infamous felon Mathew “Tommy Gun” Spork; his grandfather repaired clocks. Joe Spork admires his dad but fixes antique clocks. His current client, Edie Banister is a gentle elderly woman. When he repairs her clock, Joe inadvertently activates a Post WWII early Cold War era doomsday clock as Edie is a retired secret agent.

Joe becomes the target of the British government, John Ruskin’s warrior-monks and a psychopath Asian dictator with robotic bees. On his side he has geriatric Edie, Frankie and most important his receptionist Polly. Though he prefers flight, he knows there is no place to hide. Thus he must fight in order to survive. Joe assists Edie complete her 1950s mission.

This is an engaging steampunk thriller in three parts as Joe becomes embroiled in the doomsday clock countdown, followed by a side trip (by the audience) into Edie’s past (that never fully meshes with the rest), and brought back together by the fight or flight finish. Fast-paced but over the top of Big Ben, fans who appreciate something different will want to read Angelmaker. Harriet Klausner

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