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What Portia's Reading

I Read, I write...I review.

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Sara Reinke
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Almost Paradise (Pine Hollow Wolves #1) - Caitlin Ricci Liam is running an errand for his Alpha when the scent of a man gets his attention. Even without his shifter senses, he can tell the other man is down on his luck. But, being a shifter he is keenly aware that the other man is just as attracted, if not a tad leery of Liam. But attraction isn’t enough to make Travis accept Liam’s invitation to lunch. Fortunately, Travis’s daughter, Hannah, has no reservation about getting to know Liam better.

I’m not sure how Almost Paradise is going to be received. I personally loved it. There was enough of a break from the same ole same ole paranormal shifter stories that flow through my inbox that I was hooked from the beginning. There’s enough back-story to hook me, but enough left unsaid for me to look forward to the next book. And as I know that Book 2 is about the Alpha, who came off like Don Corleone, I can’t wait to see how he redeems himself. Not to mention the Alpha’s sister, who is a rather scary woman.

Anyway, back to this book. We are introduced to Liam first and I wasn’t sure if I was even going to like him. I got that his position was similar to a traditional pack’s beta, but because of the dynamics, he came off as more of a mob errand boy. But, as he interacted with Travis and Hannah, he shifted, in my mind, from paid lacky to more like Tony Soprano. And not just his character, but all the shifters. They have a clannish elitism that just reminded me of New York mafia family. Which might not mean anything to you, but I’ve always found authoritative men with an air of mystery uber hot. The fact that he’s all about the pack and family only made him that much sexier.

And as much as I loved Liam, I loved Travis more. He’s been through hell, trying to retain custody of his daughter. Now that everything is pretty much settled, he’s broke and unemployed, yet trying to maintain some level of normalcy for his child. Sue me, but I’m a sucker for real daddies. And, as much as he wants Liam, he is no pushover. He makes Liam work for their mating bond, like a first-rate trial attorney.

I really applaud Ms. Ricci for creating a shifter world that is both interesting and different. I look forward to reading Samson’s story and getting to know Liam, Travis and Hannah more in the future. I’m recommending this title to readers who believe that men can handle a bit of courtship, patient shifters and far-sighted little girls.