Title: How to Howl at the Moon
Author: Eli Easton
Length: Novel (200 pages)
Publisher: Pinkerton Road (February 28, 2015)
Heat Level: Moderate
Heart Rating: ♥♥♥♥♥4.5 Hearts
Blurb: Sheriff Lance Beaufort is not going to let trouble into his town, no sir. Tucked away in the California Mountains, Mad Creek has secrets to keep, like the fact that half the town consists of ‘quickened’—dogs who have the ability to become human. Descended on both sides from Border Collies, Lance is as alert a guardian as they come.
Tim Weston is looking for a safe haven. After learning that his boss patented all of Tim’s work on vegetable hybrids in his own name, Tim quit his old job. A client offers him use of her cabin in Mad Creek, and Tim sees a chance for a new start. But the shy gardener has a way of fumbling and sounding like a liar around strangers, particularly gorgeous alpha men like Sheriff Beaufort.
Lance’s hackles are definitely raised by the lanky young stranger. He’s concerned about marijuana growers moving into Mad Creek, and he’s not satisfied with the guy’s story. Lance decides a bit of undercover work is called for. When Tim hits a beautiful black collie with his car and adopts the dog, its love at first sight for both Tim and Lance’s inner dog.
Pretending to be a pet is about to get Sheriff Beaufort in very hot water.
Review: This book was so hilarious, exactly what I’ve come to expect from Eli Easton. But at the same time, she managed to come up with a new concept for shifters, the quickened, and I’m so excited about it.
The quickened are half human and half dog and they come in all breeds, shapes, and sizes. Each quickened exhibits the characteristics of the canine breed that’s part of their DNA, and Eli was so accurate with those characteristics and behaviors, and managed to make it amusing and endearing.
Regular canines can become quickened when the bond they form with their human owner is extremely strong. A loving, friendly relationship with their human gives them the spark they need to be able to shift into humans. This was a very interesting and unique concept.
“Sheriff Blowhard” aka “Sheriff McHotty” aka Sheriff Lance Beaufort is a fourth generation quickened descended on both sides from border collies. He’s very protective and alert and the suspicious behavior of the newly arrived in town Tim Weston, sets off all his alarms.
The interactions between Lance’s dog form, named Chance, and Tim had me smiling happily. But the constant banter between Tim and Lance had me giggling hysterically. Tim gets so flustered around Lance and he tends to ramble…a lot. I found his stuttering and verbal diarrhea endearing and adorable.
The secondary characters were diverse, unique, and interesting. I especially loved when Tim was rambling on about Fred Beagle from the post office; Fred Beagle liked to talk and yip and yap about random things all the time. This tickled my funny boned tremendously because that’s such a specific Beagle behavior. I have a beagle myself and I can totally see her reflected in Fred Beagle.
I also loved Lance’s meddling mother and her constant tries to get Lance to be more relaxed and open with other members of their pack; she never failed to tell Lance exactly what she thought of him “I swear, we should never have let you play with sticks when you were an adolescent. Obviously one got lodged up your behind. Try to socialize, Lance. You might actually enjoy it.”
One of my favorite secondary characters was Roman, a quickened with military background. He’s dark and brooding, but he needs to feel helpful and trusted. I really hope Eli will write a book for Roman and the young SWAT officer he saved.
This book was sweet and funny, a nice light read; definitely recommended.
* I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review through https://mmgoodbookreviews.wordpress.com *