“He’s not a wolf.”
Devastated by the death of his best friend, Zio is a soldier with one thing on his mind: revenge. Consumed by a conflict that’s raged as long as he’s been alive, he’s had little time or inclination to learn the legends of the shifter world he was raised in. And he certainly doesn’t have time to deal with a shifter of a different kind, even if it’s for the good of the war effort. For the good of his pack. The fact that he’s already crossed paths with the new face in his unit is almost irrelevant.
Do no harm. Give life not death: it’s the oath Devan was reborn to live by, so when he’s sent abroad to embed with a wolf pack as their resident healer, he doesn’t hesitate. In the supernatural world, some bonds are instant–soldiers become brothers, pack become family. But others run deeper and before long, Devan’s at the mercy of instincts he can’t control. Zio’s inner wolf is desperate to be with Devan, while Devan struggles to keep the pack safe. But as the war escalates, and new love is tainted by anguish and pain, the battles within might prove the toughest of them all.
“I won’t let him die.”
Length: 60,000 words approx.
Cover Design: Black Jazz Design
Shifters are not always my jam. BUT when it is written by Garrett Leigh, I’ll give it a go. And while shifters still aren’t my favorite, I did enjoy this story.
Wolf shifters are in a bit of a decades old civil war for land in England. Humans know of and tolerate shifters, but barely. During one fight, the healer of the pack defending their land is killed. An entirely differently clan of shifters (not wolves) lends the pack one of their healers. Things get sticky when the healer and the best friend of the slain healer hook up in a club before finding out who they are to each other.
Zio grew up in a pack at war. He has basically not known anything else. So Devan, the healer, is seen by him as an interloper. Besides the fact that he was taking his best friend’s place. Oh, and about that sexual chemistry…
In the middle of a war, battles raging daily, there are Zio and Devan fighting their attraction. Zio doesn’t even understand the mating thing because he was basically raised to be a soldier. Devan understands, though. He also understands the ramifications.
And they are sharing a tent. OF COURSE THEY ARE!
The other shifters we meet are a great play off of Zio and his perpetual bad mood. These guys are his friends, his brothers, his pack. They love each other no matter what. They apparently will hook up with each other just for funsies. Until one of them offers to hook up with Devan. Zio wasn’t too happy with that.
There are lots of supernatural elements (shifters-duh) but also magic of a sort. Zio can move the earth like tiny earthquakes. Another of his pack members can control water, others can mind read. And Devan uses a lot of magic to heal the shifters.
Remember though, they are at war. A lot of the book is spent on war things. Some of it is a little (a lot) brutal- just so you know. Definitely my least favorite parts.
The conclusion was both sad and happy. Lots of doors were open for more books- which I am looking forward to actually because I am going to hazard a guess that there will be a lot less, if any, war. Or maybe there will be.
3.5 Pieces of Eye Candy
Garrett Leigh is an award-winning British writer and book designer, currently working for Dreamspinner Press, Loose Id, Riptide Publishing, and Fox Love Press.
Garrett’s debut novel, Slide, won Best Bisexual Debut at the 2014 Rainbow Book Awards, and her polyamorous novel, Misfits was a finalist in the 2016 LAMBDA awards.
When not writing, Garrett can generally be found procrastinating on Twitter, cooking up a storm, or sitting on her behind doing as little as possible, all the while shouting at her menagerie of children and animals and attempting to tame her unruly and wonderful FOX.
Garrett is also an award winning cover artist, taking the silver medal at the Benjamin Franklin Book Awards in 2016. She designs for various publishing houses and independent authors at blackjazzdesign.com, and co-owns the specialist stock site moonstockphotography.com with renowned LGBTQA+ photographer Dan Burgess.