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Monday, May 12, 2008

Call of the Highland Moon by Kendra Leigh Castle



Call of the Highland Moon by Kendra Leigh Castle
Publisher: Sourcebooks
Genre: Contemporary, Paranormal
Length: Full
Heat Level: Spicy
Rating: 4.5 Books
Review by Poppy

A Scottish Highlands werewolf fleeing his destiny ...

Gideon MacInnes is a werewolf from the Scottish Highlands. He loves the haunting beauty of his home, but runs away to upstate New York, grappling with his destiny of being his clan's next alpha. As a snowstorm closes in, Gideon is attacked by rogue wolves working for an enemy he never imagined existed. He stumbles, wounded and bleeding, to collapse on the doorstep of Carly Silver's tiny romance bookstore-ironic, as she's never been very good at relationships with men.

A warmhearted woman, looking for a new pet ...

Thinking he's a dog, she takes him home, treats his injuries and wakes up to find a devastatingly handsome naked man in her bed.

Trapped together through the raging storm, Gideon discovers that he's found his mate and Carly has to choose between becoming a werewolf, charged with protecting humankind from the inhabitants of an evil otherworld, or giving up the one man she's ever truly loved ...

I’ve been reading quite a few werewolf books lately, so a book needs to be a little … different from the others in order to pull me in. “Call of the Highland Moon” certainly met that criteria. With a hefty dose of suspense, a touch of humor and pages chock full of well-written, three-dimensional characters, I enjoyed this story thoroughly from beginning to end.

The heroine is refreshing, in that she is happily single, not stunningly gorgeous or amazingly talented in any way. She runs a romantic fiction bookstore named Bodice Rippers and Baubles, yet finds it unlikely that she’ll ever have her own Happy Ever After.

When an enormous, and horrifically wounded "dog" shows up on her doorstep in the middle of a snowstorm, she takes him in and cares for him. Carly has a truly empathetic heart and I liked her right away. But, imagine her surprise the next morning when she finds—curled up on her bed—not the dog, but a naked man, with all the same wounds!

Gideon doesn’t understand why he was set upon by rogue werewolves, but knows his first order of business is to heal and return home to Scotland. Unfortunately, he’s trapped by the weather with a human woman he senses (much to his dismay) is his mate.

I was glad to see that, despite a very hearty attraction for each other, Carly and Gideon fight it. There was no leaping straight into bed for these two. Nope, they both had different and valid reasons for keeping their distance as much as possible. Don’t think that means this wasn’t a sexy read. It was. In fact, I strongly feel it was even hotter because of their denial of one another. The tension was palpable and hot.

Just about the time Carly begins to trust Gideon, a darker evil raises its head and threatens them both. And, suddenly they realize they’re caught in the midst of something even more frightening than either had ever dreamed could happen.

Gideon and Carly were so much fun to read about. This could have been a dark, scary book but for the humor the author has skillfully infused throughout. This isn’t a comedy, though. It has plenty of suspense and action to satisfy any romantic suspense reader. I loved the secondary characters in this, especially Celestine, though I will admit that the villains were a bit over-the-top in their evil tendencies. I prefer a villain who has at least some redeemable qualities or a softer side, instead of one who is utterly unlikable. Honestly, though, that was the only drawback to the story.

If you’re looking for an entertaining paranormal that covers the gamut of fun, adventures, heat and memorable characters, then I highly recommend you pick up a copy of “Call of the Highland Moon”. Even better? Based on the ending of this book, I have to assume there will be more books in the series, and I’m thrilled that I’ll be able to visit this group of characters again in the future. Hats off to Kendra Leigh Castle for her skillfully written novel.