Author: Jordan L Hawk
Rating: 5 stars
Buy Links: Amazon
Type: Novel in a Series
Received from Publisher
Blurb: Horse shifter Nick has one rule: never trust a witch.
Nick has devoted his life to making his saloon a safe haven for the feral familiars of New York. So when a brutal killer slaughters a feral under his protection, Nick has no choice but to try and catch the murderer. Even if that means bonding with a handsome Irish witch.
Officer Jamie MacDougal came back from the war in Cuba missing part of a leg and most of his heart. After his former lover becomes one of the killer’s victims, Jamie will do anything to solve the case.
Nick comes to Jamie with a proposal: after making a temporary bond, they will work together to stop the murders. Once the killer is caught, they walk away and never see one another again.
It sounds simple enough. But the passion that flares between the two men won’t be so easily extinguished. And if Nick can’t learn to trust his witch, he stands to lose everything—including his life.
Review: I LOVE LOVE LOVED this! You’ll remember Nick the horse shifter from previous books. He’s the stray saving, witch hating brother of Rook from book 1. His love interest Jamie is new to the series however. Jamie is a witch with no familiar meaning he hasn’t reached his full potential. He’s had a hard time finding his way after losing a leg and his lover in the military. Jamie is in charge of picking up dead bodies which is how he gets involved in the series of murders of Strays. Jamie is surprised nobody seems to care about finding their killer. Nick cares so much he puts his extreme prejudice and hatred of witches to team up with Jamie as the newest duo to join the AP. It means bonding with a witch. Something he swore he’d never do. Jamie is a good guy but he’s still a witch and pretty much a stranger. Together they take on some very evil mean messing with some very old magic hexes.
This book was amazing on every level. The characters each had their own struggles and issues to work through. Nick and his prejudice against witches. He has an overwhelming need to protect the strays from everyone trying to harm them. Strays in this series are in constant danger and in at the mercy of others. Jamie was raised by his uncle who has always wanted Jamie to be a detective. Jamie owes him a lot but has to started to notice how there may be corruption going on in the police department. He’s limited on what he can do physically but he’s a good guy and determined to help Nick stop the killer. There’s a little more at play here but it’s a spoiler. OMG I was crazy frustrated about the power struggle between the human police and the magic police. So much injustice and intrigue!
The baddies in this one were super creepy. They’re not only wicked evil but very powerful. The spooky suspense aspect of this story made for a great read. The mystery was great. I was completely consumed by the story and the world building. Curled up in the dark chewing my nails off because with the turn of every page the suspense built. I liked the eerie vibe of this entire book.
The romance was also very good. Nick isn’t the most likable guy but Jamie handles him brilliantly. They actually compliment each other. They’re both kind of outcasts of a sort which makes their connection that much meaningful. Nick and Jamie also have a very strong attraction. This with the push of pull of Nick’s bouts of lashing out had me anticipating the moment they gave in to not only their lust but the feelings brewing between them. It was so so good!
I also loved all the cameos from other characters. We get lots of page time with them. Basically I loved everything about this book. It’s spooky and wonderfully written. It can be read as a stand alone but you’ll miss a little bit of backstory and world building from previous books. You’ll want to go back and read the others after this one anyway. I highly recommend reading this one. I already want to reread it. It’s that good!