Wolf shifter Mackenzie Davis has no interest in mating with another wolf. A horrific experience in her past has hardened her to this resolve. She loves her life as is, with the perfect job, the perfect friends, and the perfect boyfriend - a human one. Nevertheless, her mother implores her to attend this year’s Wolf Gathering. Reluctantly dragging her feet, she agrees to one day only.
Drake Spencer has come to the gathering from Texas with his family. He’s 28and believes his chances of finding a mate are slim to none, especially since he saw the woman he felt connected to leave with another man at the last gathering. But what if the woman who has consumed his dreams for the last two years is not actually mated?
When Mackenzie and Drake meet, sparks fly. Kenzie hopes to deny the claim on her. But can she? The call of mates is stronger than she expected. What will happen to her sense of self if she follows this man to Texas? Not to mention Drake. Can he live with the mental scars of her past?
©2013 Becca Jameson (P)2014 Taliesin Publishing
I am a audio book lover turned Audio Book Reviewer since Nov '14. Love it and now started my own review blog featuring all the reviews here!
Well let me start off by this is one audio that you shouldn’t listen in the car like I did. This is one hot werewolf love story. Becca Jameson’s short 3+ hour audio read by Meghan Kelly was a really well written short story about the werewolf clans selecting their soul mates.
Plot: So families with their teenage children go to the wolf gathering to have the male werewolf’s pick their female mates for life. Well for one girl, Mackenzie Davis, her mother drags her to this year’s gathering against her wishes for she has a human boyfriend. She does not want a wolf mate. Her boyfriend calls in that morning to cancel there get together that day. So Mackenzie (all call her Mac) agrees “Only one day mom!” Not ready to expose a hidden secret that she has held in from on previous wolf gathering. Her main reason for not wanting a wolf mate but, not willing to share with her mother about it. What Mac was not ready for was him!
Drake Shelton from Texas just like Mac he does not want a mate. He wants to be a certified bachelor. All he could think of is that girl that eluded him on the last Gathering as she was being taken out of the room by another. Little did he know that she did not succumb to the other wolf? Or his not so charms.
But, as he enters the room can it be true! He smells her scent. No can’t be she was taken or was she? Mac annoyed with the festivities leaves the room to be alone. She passes Drake and he could not let her get away this time. Calling her boyfriend she comes to learn what her sister has been saying for weeks. He tells her that he is gay. As Drake goes out to speak to her. Mac can feel the sparks begin to fly between them.
“This cannot be”, thinks Mac. She just found out her boyfriend is gay and how could she be attracted to a wolf! What happens next is something both of them well Mackenzie does not want to admit to. Drake is so pumped up by her that he is having a difficult time containing himself. But, he does.
After her moments with Drake, Mackenzie decides that she does not want go the next day to the gathering. She could not face Drake after the events of the day before. It just was not right she can’t be attracted to him. Little does she know that her sister the day before gave Drake their address and he shows up on her door step. He makes her a proposition that she reluctantly agrees to go back to Texas with him. She’ll prove that this is not a match for life.
Without giving up the rest of this listen/story. Does Mackenzie fall for Drake? Is she everything he ever dreamed of? What is Mackenzie’s secret that she finally shares with Drake? Something that she never even shared with anyone. Will this be a happily ever after? You will not be disappointed that is all I can say about this short read!
The Narrator: Another marvelous performance by Meghan Kelly. I have listen to her in other audio mediums and she more than hit the characters on the head here! Like I said this is not a book that you should listen to while driving. Meghan really cranked up the steam where the steam needed to be. She portrayed Mac’s feelings so well. She really has me a lifetime fan of her works!
The Cover: I do like the cover it shows just what kind of feelings end up between Mackenzie and Drake!
Note: The Book was provided for review by Meghan Kelly (narrator). All views are strictly mine and not in any way influenced by others. Thank you for your time reading my review. Comments are always welcome about my review of this book!
This novella is about Mackenzie (Kenzie) and Drake who meet each other at a werewolf shifter meeting where other shifters usually meet for both social and educational purposes. This meeting happens in Oklahoma in Kenzie’s metaphorical backyard, while Drake and his brothers drive in from Texas. At the meeting, they realize, much to Kenzie’s dismay, that they are destined mates. The attraction is very mutual. Despite lots of baggage, she agrees to go home with him, and with Drake’s patience and love, Kenzie gets over her hang-ups.
The hero Drake is the dream of a patient lover who lets Kenzie set the pace. At the beginning of the story, she is the frightened virgin with mental scars (hence, Tarnished). He teaches her all about her body and her desires in a way that doesn’t scare her. He is understanding and kind, a stark contrast to all other wolf males Kenzie has met. We also find out here and there that Drake and Kenzie are good matches for other reasons beyond their initial and immediate attraction.
While there are wolf shifters in this world, there is less focus on that for this story. It is the shallow dressing, and if you are a person who wants the heavy focus to be on werewolves, this will disappoint you. It could have been told as nearly any other small societal group meet-up and still come out the same way.
The narrator did an interesting thing with this story, and I am inclined to like the performance more than the material she is performing. There were 3 types of voices used above and beyond the character voices. She has a voice for narration, dialogue, and thoughts. This may not seem remarkable, but because the writing is often tumbling out like stream of consciousness, that kind of differentiation is a nice touch. I also like what she chose to do with Drake’s voice. He’s got an accent that sounds like a genuine Texas accent. While certainly are many of those, but the point is he sounds close to authentic.
For me personally, this was an okay story that I doubt will stay with me long. I just didn’t feel connected to the main couple, and I didn’t find Drake appealing. He said and did all the things a hero should, and he’s probably sincere. I just wasn’t buying what he was selling.
I expect the people who would enjoy this story are the ones who don’t mind a novella with a couple getting the HEA they want. It is for those who find romance and the healing power of love (and good sex!) appealing no matter how that story is told.
Disclaimer: I received an audio copy of this book from the narrator in exchange for an honest review.
I absolutely would recommend this audiobook to a friend who loved shifter novels. It is short, but the story was complete and kept my interest all the way through.
The first time Drake saw MacKenzie he was taken by her, but just as high as his heart lept, it plummeted.
The second time he saw her was also memorable. I love those first looks that grab the characters and hold them hostage for a few moments.
I really like the voice Meghan Kelly lent to MacKenzie's character. I could see the character clearer.
I wanted to listen to this book in one sitting and did so.
I really liked the couple and especially his tenderness and patience. Whe
When. He showed such patience and tenderness while teaching about physical pleasure. When she finally told him why she was so afraid of his reactionl?
For those readers who questioned her retaining this fear they have doubfully experienced anything siimilar. It may seem unreasonable to retain it at her age. If she didn't allow any other experience she had.the aut h or handled it wel.
This book touched me on a lot of levels, it was touching sexy & romantic. I hope the rest of the series keep us up on Mckenzie & Drake & the babies. Plus the ranch sounds like a great place for future stories
I love books! Big books, little books. Funny books, paranormal books! I really just want to live in a library!
I really loved it.
Drake. He was just too perfect! :)
No I had not listened to Meghan Kelly's before. I would look for her again. She really brought the characters out. Her voices made it easy to picture the characters in my mind as she read the story to us.
When Mackenzie FINALLY gave in to Drake and accepted being his mate. I felt so proud. I just got so into "Yes just say YES!. LOL I was really drawn into the story line.
The story starts off a 23 year old girl is uninterested in the once a year mating gathering. She finally gives in to go. She meets Mr. perfect. Good for us the listeners not good for her. She has been scared off of relationship and thinks all men are rapist pigs.
How ever lucky for us the author comes up with the most perfect man. (She needs to find one for more of us now! LOL) That I fell in love with his loving patience with Mackenzie is perfect. Even though this is a short story the author takes us to another world. Gets to the point and finished without leaving us hanging.
The narrator does a great job with the voices. She makes Mackenzie really come to life for us. (Thank you very much!)
It is an enjoyable story line. That the author did a great job getting it across in only a 3 hour audio.
Kenzie doesn't act like a 23 year old, so either make her younger or make her more emotionally mature. Rather slow start. For a Shifter tale there is such a tiny amount of shape-changing, so add more.
Yes. The sexy scenes were entertaining. Perhaps a longer novel would show her ability better.
Distinct characters, range of male & female characters, no hesitancy during the love scenes.
Nope. Well, not something I would be interested in watching. It would come off as too silly with the emotionally stunted characters.
Kenzie Davis, degreed and employed, isn’t interested in going to the local biennial wolf gathering. She’s been before and hasn’t had any success in finding a Shifter mate. Besides, she has a boyfriend (a human one) and a full life with human friends. But since she still lives at home at age 23, she feels obligated to give the gathering 1 day of her weekend. Drake Spencer is in a similar position. At age 28, he still lives on his parents ranch and he has several siblings that are going to the gathering. He’s been asked to help keep an eye on them.
For a short book, it did take quite a bit of time to get around to the mating part, which if I am to be honest, was my reason for listening to this book. Set in modern-day Oklahoma and Texas, our main characters have the every day concerns – pay the bills, cook dinner, keep your Shifter relatives happy by participating in cultural events. So the story started off pretty domesticated. I think that is why it took me a while to get into the book – it was pretty ho-hum at the start. Once the Davises go off the gathering and we see some of the Shifter culture, it picks up.
Our main love interest seemed younger than her age. Kenzie argues with her sisters (some silliness over cereal kicks off the story) and I never really felt that she was indeed a 23 year old that was gainfully employed. Meanwhile, Drake is 28 and I can believe that he is, indeed, a very hormonal 28 year old man. They both live at home with parents, so this also gave the relationship a teenage feel to it. Drake does have his own house on the family farm, like 50 yards from his parents house.
I was a little confused about the rules concerning mating in general and finding a mate for life. Becca Jameson does have several other werewolf novels (different series) so perhaps these rules are better delineated in those novels. As best as I can tell, the males are allowed to mate around while the females have one shot to give themselves to a male for life. Obviously, I think that is a little lopsided and doesn’t give the ladies much experience in the mating game before they are, in essence, married for life.
So let’s talk about the sex because that is really why we are all here. Sparks fly between our two lovebirds and there is some pretty blunt flirting before things get serious. That is one of the things I liked about Drake – he was upfront with his desires but also kept his hands to himself until Kenzie showed interest. In this blossoming relationship, Drake has a lot of positive experience in mating, while Kenzie has almost zero experience and what little she does have is negative. So Drake has to figure out what has tarnished her idea of mating while also not rushing her. Once they connect fully, the sex is worthy. In fact, it was worthy enough for my man to step into the room for a listen and a laundry folding session. Yes, listening to erotica has gotten my man to help with the laundry. ;)
Over all, while I found some of the story mechanisms a bit rushed and uninventive, I did enjoy Drake’s character, Kenzie’s secrets, and their mating.
Narration: Meghan Kelly did a good job with the narration. She had distinct voices for all the characters, men and women. She had the added challenge of family members, so she had to have similar, yet distinct, voices for siblings. She pulled that off quite well. She managed a sexy male voice for Drake and showed no hesitancy during the love scenes.
This was a good read, it just took too long revealing details. There was a drag to the story after the initial hook-up.
I liked Kenzie, I just could not connect with her, She was too trapped in the past, which was very vague until the end. I hate it when characters talk about a traumatic event that shaped them, but take forever to elaborate. She also tends to wallow and get angsty. Ugh!! Save me from eh angst!
Drake is yummy and uber patient with his mate. Seriously with hormones riding him he is willing to let her call the shots. Still he has the Alpha feel.
The narrative is mixed between the two, letting you into those deepest thoughts. Not such a great thing for her, but so sweet for him!
I listened to the audiobook narrated by Meghan Kelly, who is always wonderful. She has a great way of making Kenzie's angst bearable. Her pace is fantastic and helps move the story over the slower parts.I really liked her energy throughout the read. I love her tone, it fits the characters perfectly.
Overall, I enjoyed the book, it was just slow and drawn out. I would be interested to see what happens with supporting characters from this book. Siblings deserve HEA too!
Disclosure - I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts, opinions and ratings are my own.
Not really the genre I'm generally into but it was good.
Great job on identifiable voices/
for erotica ... in the top 5. Can't wait to find book 2!!
laugh or cry? not the reactions that this book cause ;-)
I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review.
"What is love?"
I liked the way that the narrator brought each character to life and made the fear real.
This is a different take on perceptions of love. Normally the character shies away from relationships of some sort because of something that happened to them, this is different and we keep wondering why, just like the fabulous and patient Drake Spencer.
Wow, if there was another man like Drake out there, I'd hope he was meant for me. He has resigned himself to the fact that his mate has met someone else and that he will never be mated with her.
Mackenzie Davis is presented with tenderness and her fear of mating with a Shifter is real and we feel sympathetic from beginning till end. Her tentative willingness to trust Drake helps the storyline develop in a realistic way. I like the ending, it speaks of love and patience and hope.
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