Monday, January 22, 2018

ARC Review: Baby, I'm Howling for You by Christine Warren

Series:     Alphaville #1
Pub Date:Jan 30, 2018
Publisher:St. Martin's Press
Length:320 pgs

It's been quite a while since I have read a werewolf book, and even longer since I have read Christine Warren. I can't say why other than I am behind on her series and I just haven't had time to catch up lately. Anywho, I really like the premise of this new series she has created in Alpha, Washington - a town full of misfit shifters who don't quite fit in elsewhere or with packs of their own kind.

Renny Landry has always heard about the almost mythical Alphaville, but she knows that making it to the town is her last chance to get away from the danger on her tail (literally). Being pursued by goons sent by an obsessed stalker coyote, Renny is both so close but also not quite close enough when she makes her last desperate attempt for freedom. But fate intervenes and sends Renny into the path of a reclusive alpha werewolf that could be her salvation, and much more. Renny was a pretty good heroine. She wasn't a runner, which was a plus. Sometimes I did feel like she was too nonchalant about her safety, but I understood her wanting to start a new life and not feel like she was running scared all the time.

Mick Fischer is a brooding and reclusive alpha werewolf who came to Alpha after the death of his first mate. He is grumpy and growly and not a people person - my favorite kind of hero! I liked that he was an author of graphic novels and wished we would have had a little more info about that aspect of his life. But Mick was distracted for the bulk of the novel by our heroine, and his attempts to keep her safe from a pack of wild coyotes. I like the care and possessiveness he exhibited toward our heroine, and was glad he got over his reluctance to mate fairly quickly. I would have liked to know how his second mating was possible, but my imagination supplied a reason for me so I suppose that's good enough. 

This story is of the fated mates trope, so you can expect things to move fast between our couple. Once that animal attraction kicks in, they have no choice but to follow their instincts. I like this fast-moving trope when we are in the paranormal/urban fantasy realm because I like to see the inner beast controlling things. The shapeshifters in this story seem to be more integrated with their beast so they have the drives, but they don't have the separate bestial personality that you see in some books. Their consciousness works the same whether they are in human or animal form.

So I was into the suspense and back story that we got with our heroine and her stalker. Based on the premise and the blurb, I thought this book would have more of a darker theme. However, this story is fairly light-hearted given the sadistic villain. So there was a mix of fun and fear for our heroine, with likable secondary characters who kept us entertained while the testosterone-filled alphas worked to track down the bad guys. I am looking forward time to spending time with some of these secondary characters in their own books, and I think they may even eclipse Renny and Mick for me with their big personalities. 

I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book that I received from the publisher, St. Martin's Press.

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