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Friday, July 15, 2011

Shifters’ Storm by Vonna Harper

Shifters’ Storm by Vonna Harper
Publisher: Samhain Publishing
Genre: Contemporary, Paranormal, Suspense/Mystery
Length: Full Length (176 Pages)
Other: M/F, M/F/M, Ménage
Rating: 4 Cherries
Reviewed by Clematis

She needs their courage—and their bodies. The feeling is mutual…

Law enforcement warnings be damned, nothing will stop Rane from returning to the Chinook Mountains to discover who murdered her mother, a fellow forest ranger. Except maybe the fact that her elk shifter lover, Songan, is in the middle of rut season.

The delay is just long enough for a newcomer from the far north, Ber, to enter the picture. A massive grizzly shifter with his own need—for Rane. His dark, brooding presence feeds dreams so erotic, she feels like she’s losing her mind. Yet keeping him at arm’s length isn’t an option. She needs his heightened senses, along with Songan’s, to follow the cold trail of her mother’s final hours.

With winter closing in, the threesome heads for the mountains, where, in a cramped cabin, their mutual lust explodes. But the mountains can't shield them from deadly danger.

Shifter's Storm is a moving, erotic and evocative love story set against the incredible beauty of the Chinook Mountains in winter.

This is the tale of an elk shifter who spends more time as an elk than a man, and his struggle to communicate his feelings to the human woman he loves. A grizzly shifter from Alaska, looking for a new home for himself and his sleuth, sees in the woman hope for the continued survival of his breed. And a woman who was left shattered by the unresolved issues between herself and her mother, and returns to the mountains determined to solve her murder. She will bind herself to both men and they in turn to her, as the hunt for answers. The hunt turns deadly and the three lovers turn into the hunted.

This was the first time I've read one of Vonna Harper’s stories, and I was duly impressed. I really appreciated the way she fleshed out her characters and gave me insight in each of the trio. It made the male shifters, especially, far more interesting than the genre regularly portrays. Rather than ‘super-beings’ they were creatures, powerful and intelligent, caught between two worlds and not always sure of their survival in either. They struggled with instinct, while fighting to preserve that which made them both human as well.

Artfully told, it made for a more realistic feel to the fantasy and made their coming together about more than sex. I would have liked to see that scene further developed, especially as it was so critical to forming the bond between them all. Also, I’m just greedy. I’d invested time and emotion in the characters and simply wanted more. Considering the danger to them at the time, it did seem a little strange to have chosen then to ‘down-trou’ as it were. Yet, on the other hand, perhaps that is when the mating instinct is at its strongest-when the possibility of imminent death is near.

This was a wonderful story, with all the elements in place to develop further into a series. I’ve no idea of the author’s intentions, but in my most humble opinion, this setter and idea were far too sublime not to expand and explore possible relationships from the resulting ‘clan’. Highly recommended!

1 comment:

Vonna Harper said...

Shifters Storm is my baby so of course I was delighted by the review. Thank you for seeing SS as I did, more than a story about sex. Yes, it's that but I tried for complex characters with real problems. Good to see I succeeded at least in part.
Vonna, feeling all warm and fuzzy.