As anyone who reviews books on a blog knows, you can get lots and lots of review requests. All too often, the requests I get are some form of form letter for a book that's not even remotely something I would be interested in. However occasionally, I get a request that gives me pause and has me stop and pay attention, actually doing more than hitting delete. This book is one such request and I am really glad that I did.
I wasn't sure what to expect from this book. I mean, bears, elves, dragons, together? It seemed an odd mix, but ultimately it worked for me. The prologue threw me a bit, but once the story got going, I was totally in it. I couldn't believe how fast I read this book. The story is fairly fast paced, and stays on point throughout. There weren't a lot of sub plots or side bars going on to distract from the original story being told. If you have ever read a book with so many subplots you can't keep track, you can appreciate the beauty of a simply told story. Especially one that doesn't make you feel like you need to get or create a dictionary to keep track of unknown words or phrases.
The characters were well thought out and had some interesting quirks. The relationships and interactions between the characters felt natural and believable. There were several awesome secondary characters that I can't wait to see more of. As this is the first book in the series, I don't know whether the follow up ones will continue to be centered around Lindy and Alex or start branching off onto the other characters. I would be happy either way.
This book is classified on the Soul Mate Publishing website as strictly Fantasy, but personally I can make a case for Paranormal Romance or even Urban Fantasy. It's a clean romance, absolutely PG clean. But that doesn't change the overall dynamic between the two main characters. They go from a strong dislike of each other through the gamut of emotions all the way to love and commitment. Sounds like a romance to me. Why Urban Fantasy? For me, it's because this is a story set in modern-ish times in the area of Pennsylvania on the campus of an institute of higher learning. There are shifters, elves, and other folks, including humans living in a large group (hence city or urban). It was never spelled out, but this felt like a slightly alternate world to our own.
Overall, this was an original story and a great introduction to a new world. One that I would really like to spend some more time in. I already have a hint of a feeling of who one of the bad guys is and want to be able to confirm or deny my suspicions. I gave this book 5 stars for a surprisingly good story.
Thanks to the author for the opportunity to read and review the book.