Hate me or mate me? Secrets, lies, passion, and murder.
Years of hard work landed Emma Hiller the position of Sheriff in her small hometown of Riverwood. Devoting her life to her career has left Emma with an ex-husband and no social life, which suits her fine. Life is simple enough until earthquakes, break-ins, and a murder lead to a towering brute of a fed showing up and leaving her speechless. He's sexy as sin, and if that wasn't bad enough, he's also trying to take over her case!
Stranger-than-usual circumstances lead grizzly enforcer Liam Blake to a small town to find answers. Lying to the local authorities and getting the job done proves difficult when Liam is forced to partner with the most beautiful woman he's ever seen. How can he work beside her when his inner bear screams to claim her as his mate?
He's beg-for-more hot in the bedroom, err broom closet, but...
Smalltown Sheriff Emma Hiller needs more from her partner, let alone boyfriend. Starting with the truth. While she tries to figure out exactly what she's feeling for the huge man that's practically a stranger, trouble in Riverwood goes from bad to worse. With the town's body count on the rise, how can Emma focus on her feelings for Liam, and be sure that their relationship won't fail before it has a chance to blossom?
After living a life of secrets, rough-around-the-edges grizzly enforcer Liam Blake knows he's found his mate. But finding her is one thing, and protecting her is another. How can Liam keep the woman he loves safe when new threats surface, and every answer uncovered leads to another question?
Loving her came as naturally as breathing, as essential to my life as the heart beating within my chest. She accepted my claim, bore my mark. But the greatest challenge to our happiness, to our survival, was yet to come.
One disaster after the next has left smalltown sheriff Emma Hiller in a stressful position. When the existence of shifters is exposed, tension between the two species grows larger than the small police force can handle. With dark forces closing in, Emma struggles to maintain peace between the humans she's sworn to protect and the shifter man she loves above all else.
After a lifetime of combat and solitude, grizzly shifter Liam Blake is ready to share every part of himself with another. But before he can, he must fight for his mate and the happiness that they deserve.
When I first read book 1 of this box set and reviewed it for Knockin’ Books, I mentioned that I didn’t fully understand the attraction to bear shifters. I still don’t totally get it, but what I can tell you for sure is that this is a well-written series with a kick-ass heroine and a sexy hero (when he’s in human form, at least. As a bear? Well, I still find bears to be lumbering and slobbering and not at all sexy) that’s highly deserving of a little attention in the heavily bear-populated world of paranormal romance.
Like book 1, the other 2 books in the series are a great blend of mystery, suspense, sexy times and sweet romance. Sure, all the writing mechanics are solid (no typos, no glaring editing errors, no weird dialogue), but that’s not what makes this series so great. What I love best about this series is Emma and Liam’s devotion to one another. There’s no “I need to push her away for her own good” or “I need to fight my attraction to him” angst between these two. They know what they want, and that’s each other. They’re willing to do whatever it takes—together—to save the town and work toward their happily ever after.
And Emma is certainly no damsel in distress. She’s smart and capable and definitely not in need of a “big strong man” to sort out her life for her. She’s a heroine that readers can proudly identify with.
All in all, this is a fun paranormal romance series that I highly recommend. Word of warning: I’d go ahead and download the box set, rather than just reading book 1. You’ll be left with questions if you purchase that way.
Does this book contribute to or help crush the romance stigma?
As with all paranormal romance, it treads dangerously close to the “unrealistic” part of the myth, but it’s solidly written enough to avoid being labeled a contributor to the romance stigma, in my opinion.
Other reading suggestions
I’d check out the author’s backlist, first. Then, if you still need more and are looking for a sexy bear shifter story, I’d try Selena Kitt’s Bear Necessities. For something on the funnier, lighter side of shifter romance, I’d try Molly Harper’s How to Flirt with a Naked Werewolf.