I saw the blurb on this one and it promised something a bit unique when it came to shifter romance so I picked it up. I happily started reading and liking what I saw, but started to get the suspicion that I was not reading a story originally written in English or at the least by someone for whom English was not their first language. And I was right. I thought it was just one more layer of coolness that I was reading about Parisian characters and the story was written by a true Parisian and translated very well I thought.
The story begins with Lou and her friend Camille working on a mission to discover the disturbance amongst their people. Lou and Camille are not fully human. They are from a secretive race living amongst and alongside, but very different and apart. They are daierwolves meaning they can change into any animal that is equal to their body mass, they are stronger, they have heightened senses, they are more intelligent, they can speak telepathically and are part of a collective conscience. Each daierwolf favors a certain animal and that is their strongest form when they fully or partially shift. Lou is a panther. Camille has worked his wiles to get Lou noticed by the secret service and she is hired to help coordinate and investigate unusual and unsolved cases the humans come across. This is right where her people need her to see if the human investigators can shed light on what is causing troublesome ripples amongst the daierwolf community of Paris. Lou learns quickly not to underestimate the humans or to think that some aren’t as intelligent as her kind especially when she discovers that they have brought down a rabid, turned werewolf all on their own and have captured another daierwolf that the humans suspect of being part of a killing spree.
Lou has to tread carefully as she leads the humans through their investigation so that the right secrets are kept, but enough is told so the humans aren’t completely blind to the danger of what they’re dealing with. Things get complicated fast and she soon becomes the target of a cunning killer. Then there is the handsome human captain and he’s her boss that she can’t seem to stop thinking about and wanting to be with and protect when he is out on his missions.
As I said, this world of daierwolves really got my attention at first, but then I continued to like it for the characters, the exciting plot and even the romance. This was a first effort by the author, but it was a very solid one and I anticipate her getting better and better.
Lou was a fun character and I loved it when she started really interacting with the people at her new job. She’s never been around humans this closely so she comes into things with assumptions or she’s confused by their responses or actions. This is also her first encounter with attraction too. And it wasn’t just Lou, I loved all the characters from her well meaning and ‘force of nature’ mother, her mischievous best friend Camille, the quirky research and investigative team in her department and of course, Joshua. I was really glad that Lou and the others shifted often and didn’t just stay in their human forms making the paranormal aspect very present in the story.
I wanted to give special notice to the nicely done translation work by Patrick Brown. I loved how there was a balance in his work in that there is still a strong flavor of French in the English translation so that the rhythm of the thoughts and speech were still French even if the words are English.
So all in all, I had a good time. I would definitely read more in the series. Paranormal romance lovers should give this a try especially if they enjoy romantic suspense too.
My thanks to Net Galley for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for an honest review.