Review: Howling Heart by April Bostic

Riley and Paige met 13 years ago when they were young and Paige’s family was on vacation in Black River, Co. Now she’s inherited her father’s cabin there and she’s back to figure out what to do. She runs into Riley again and things take off.
There is such potential in this story and the series. However, it just didn’t happen for me. Some of the concepts April Botic brings into this shape shifting story are unique. First, they are not humans that transform into wolves, they are wolves that appearhuman. Second, the Beta of the pack is the Alpha’s son. It’s not the person who is best for that position. Third, how they became shape shifters and what allows them to shift was unique as well. There were some other unique items, but I’m going to focus on these three.
Other things about the Pack were similar to other shape shifting stories and it gave a level comfort with the story.
So, what didn’t work for me? Riley was the Beta because of his father. Not because he was best for the position. He would one day be Alpha, but I never got the alpha vibe off him. I felt more like he was a whiny 12 year old pouting because he didn’t get his way.
We also have the fact they are wolves who appear human. Which was pretty neat. However, in the course of the story, Riley asks Paige if she would mate with him in his wolf form. She’s human. Ewww…. I could not handle discussing that. It really bothered me. There is no sex between Riley and Paige when he’s in wolf form but they do discuss it! Also, she’ll give birth to wolf pups, not humans. Ewww….. No, it doesn’t happen in the story but they did discuss it.
Now the why and how they shift was very cool. I liked the story and thought it fit. However, when Riley got hurt I kind of felt like a reason was needed to make things fit together. It felt forced and not natural to the story.

I was really looking forward to this story and had high hopes for it. The concepts were unique and it has promise.
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