*Warnings – These novellas are meant for an audience of 18+ due to sexual content. These reviews may also contain spoilers for the series
It’s weird that I have three e-readers (including my iPad), but so few ebooks! I decided, of course, to try and change that dilemma by going to browse Amazon’s selection of digital books; what I found was Stephani Hecht’s Lost Shifter Series. Now, my original thought was, ‘it’s just another werewolf story!’ But after reading the description I was intrigued. A story that involved shifters other than wolves? I guess I’m willing to give that a go. I ended up being pleasantly surprised for the most part.
PrimalPassions (Book One), A Feral Christmas (Book Two), and Savage Awakenings (Book Three)
By: Stephani Hecht
Published by eXtasy Books
This is a prime example of ‘don’t judge a book by its cover,’ which of course I do all the time. It is no secret among my friends that I am very attracted to stunning covers, and this one is just kind of blah. I was lucky that both the price (99 cents, baby!) and the summary got me hooked enough to give this series a try. The Lost Shifter series focuses on people with the ability to shift into animals, though they aren’t just wolves. They’re are several different species of shifters from large cats (cheetahs, jaguars, panthers, etc.) to birds (hawks, eagles, crows, etc.), and more. It was nice to get outside the regular werewolf.
Anyway, the main story revolves around a feline coalition that had several of its young catnapped roughly twenty-years ago and they have made it their mission to find every last one of the lost shifters. This first, as well the next two I am going to review, novella focuses on the attempt of the coalition leader, and two of his siblings, in finding his four of his stolen brothers. They have clues of where one of the brothers may be, so they send out when of their best agents to investigate. Low and be hold, the agent finds one of the missing brothers, Jacyn, and he, like the other missing shifters, has no idea what he truly is. The story follows the romance Jacyn develops with his savior and protector, Logan, and how both must face their separate insecurities in order to make things work. It also doesn’t work in their advantage that Jacyn has acquired a new, and rather overprotective, family.
The next book in the series, A Feral Christmas, picks up where the last one left off (and the cover has improved). With the information that Jacyn provided at the end of the first novella the cat coalition finally feels as if they are on the right track to finding the rest of their missing shifter – they just have to find the right hawk first. Catch is, this hawk shifter has been missing for almost as long as the shifters they are looking for! Mitchell, the coalition leader and Jacyn’s eldest brother, decides to send out his litter-mate (twin), Brent, to track down the elusive bird, Daniel. Though Brent runs into an unexpected (which was really very expected) problem on his hunt: he falls in love with his target. The same target that was the leader of the Hawk Clan when they teamed up with the Ravens (their ultimate enemy) and stole a bunch of their kids (or should I call them kittens?).
As Brent struggles not only with his feelings, but with being in his litter-mate’s shadow; Daniel is suffering from enormous amount of guilt from the events of twentyish years ago. This pairing definitely has its differences from the first book’s! The relationship is still very sweet, but the sex is rougher and the age difference larger (though it should be noted shifters age a lot slower than normal humans), and, like the last book it is an instant attraction. This book, also, feels less heavy than the last because the two mainly because the two shifters know what they are and what they are dealing with.
Savage Awakenings, the third book in this series of novellas, I enjoyed the least. I had a hard time with identifiying both Keegan, one of the missing brothers, and Carson, also known as Rat. Keegan has a photographic memory and a hard life where people, including his family, constantly thought he was going insane due to his memories of being amongst the shifters before he was kidnapped. One day a shifter comes to bring him back, but they are attacked by ravens and his would be protector is taken captive, luckily for Keegan he left a way to get into contact with others. Carson, a cheetah shifter that has problems holding his shift (which is a disgrace among shifters), out in search of the coalition’s leader’s brother when he gets a distress call from him .
I just couldn’t feel the connection between these two. Keegan, a straight-laced twenty year-old with a sharp tongue, and Carson, an insecure goth, computer-wiz. There sex life is certainly more intense than the other two pairings and seems to verge on pain-play with the way Keegan loves to be handled and told what to do in bed. I just had a hard time getting into that. It didn’t help that I found Keegan to be more annoying than the endearing he was intended to be. Overall, this was a decent edition to the series and introduced, though briefly, one half of my favorite pairing.
Honestly, if you are expected something unimaginably great from this series it is most likely that you will end up walking away disappointed. This is actually who I imagined Twilight would be in standards of writing and addictiveness (so addictive!) from what others have told me. Yes, I have yet to read Twilight! However, if you are looking for quick, and generally hot, supernatural romances with shifters that aren’t solely wolves then I would strongly recommend giving the first book ago (it’s only 99 cents!).