Sometimes you just have to let go of reality and revel in the cheese factor. If you can roll with a bit of flowery language, insta-love, and emotionally curable impotence, this is actually a pretty enjoyable book. Wulfe Untamed is the eighth and final chapter of Pamela Palmer’s Feral Warriors series, and it features the scarred, tortured wolf shifter named, er, Wulfe. He’s been mooning over a human named Natalie for a few books now, but he doesn’t even consider the possibility that she could ever be his. After all, she has a fiancé. He considers himself hideous. And the broken mating bond from his late wife has left him without sexual desire. [Read more…]
As the newest member of the Feral Warriors, Fox is still trying to learn his place in the elite brotherhood. It’s a task made even more difficult by the fact that he came into his animal at the same time a group of tainted animal spirits found their hosts.
He’s barely instilled in Feral House when one of the tainted Ferals kidnaps Kara the Radiant, mate to the Feral leader and source of their power. Now Fox and his new brothers must join forces with members of the sensual and powerful Ilinas to rescue Kara and bring her back home.
It becomes immediately clear that Melisande, second in command of the Ilinas, is meant to be Fox’s mate. That doesn’t really go over big with either one of them. Fox is a playboy with no desire to settle down. He thinks he can scratch his itch with Melisande and be done with it. Melisande’s issues, however, are far more complicated. She is the victim of horrific abuse that she has never gotten over. She has cut herself off from tender feelings to become a merciless killer for her people. And she fears that if she lets any emotions in, she will shatter.
For longtime fans of the series, the book shows Melisande in a very new light. She has done some coldhearted things in her past, but now we see why. It may not be enough to make everyone warm to her, but suffice it to say, she has been through a lot. Fox is pretty much your standard heartbreaker. He is gorgeous and he knows it. He loves playing the field and lives up to his reputation… until he realizes there has been a woman out there for him all along.
I like the world-building in this series for the most part, though it can get a little cheesy at times with the animal names and nicknames. I like that Pamela Palmer isn’t afraid to get dark with it (though fortunately not as dark as in her Vamp City books.) In that vein, the way that Fox deals with Melisande’s history of abuse went a long way to improving his character in my opinion. Though with the gray cloud of her past hanging over them, I didn’t find the sex, well, all that sexy.
She does a good job on setting up a story for the side character Grizz. Though it’s a Wulfe story I really want. Overall, I found the book pretty good, but I didn’t emotionally invest enough for it to be great.
*ARC Provided by Avon
A Love Untamedby Pamela PalmerRelease Date: December 26, 2012Publisher: Avon
I should tell you this right off the bat: I found this book disturbing. I did not like the hero. I did not want him to end up with the heroine. I did not like the world in which it was set. And I almost did not finish it. The writing was good. The author definitely drew me in and made me feel things. They were just things I’d rather not feel when I’m reading a book.
The heroine is Quinn. For a while now, she has been plagued with visions of a shimmer in the atmosphere and glimpses of a dark world that mirrors her own. Through a series of events, she and her brother Zack are pulled into that alternate world and what they find there is horrifying. It’s a city designed to be a vampire haven. The vamps run the show, keeping humans as slaves. Quinn and Zack are separated almost immediately and Quinn spends the rest of the book fixated on how she will rescue her brother.
The vampire who captures Quinn is Arturo. His vampire species feeds on emotion as well as blood. Arturo’s delicacy is fear, though others feed on pain or other emotions. Right away, Arturo realizes there is something different about Quinn. She is immune to his mind control, which makes her interesting. We learn Arturo is planning to make her into one of his blood and sex slaves, using her once every four days to slake his desires. Obviously, Quinn’s not on board with the plan –and frankly, this was point I started to worry about whether I could get behind Arturo as a hero. (After all, he’ll be using his other slaves for the same purposes on the other days of the week.)
There are times he is less of a turn-off than others. That is to say, he is sexy and seductive and he doesn’t seek to hurt his slaves. But if that’s the best thing you can say about your hero, there’s a problem. I can just imagine the internal monologue: He’s not as bad as the other vamps. You know, like that Christoff guy who puts a spiked sleeve on his dick before he rapes his slaves. The guy who gets off on their pain while he, er, gets off. Yeah, Arturo would never do that. Quinn should totally fall in love with him. Um. No.
Arturo wants her to be his property. That never changes at any time. His allegiance is –and will always be– to his sire, Christoff (see spiked dick sleeve story above.) And he is willing to put Quinn in that monster’s hands. He is willing to lie to her, to betray her. But he won’t rape her. Wow. There’s a ringing endorsement. He doesn’t beat her, but he’ll stand by while others do. He is simply less horrible than the other horrible characters. That is just not a good enough reason for her to have any tender feelings for him, nor any loyalty, and certainly not any sexual interest.
The entire vamp culture was for me, in a word, irredeemable. And just when I thought there was a shred of something decent in Arturo at the very end… there wasn’t. He wants Quinn. He doesn’t love her. He doesn’t put her before the monsters all around him. He unabashedly does what serves himself and his master. I am baffled how anyone could root for a relationship to develop between him and Quinn in this book or any other to come.
The constant abuse of the humans in this world included rape, beatings, forced feedings, burning, draining, slave auctions and gladiator games. And it’s completely unapologetic. I just… didn’t enjoy it. But if you like the idea of a dark world like this one, the book may suit you better.Rating: D
*ARC Provided by Avon
A Blood Seductionby Pamela PalmerRelease Date: May 29, 2012Publisher: Avon
Ecstasy Untamed is book six in Pamela Palmer’s Feral Warrior series. But if you haven’t read the first five, don’t let that stop you from giving this book a try. I haven’t read the other books either. And while it was obvious the series has a history, I never felt lost and the world building was easy to understand in the context of the story.
A quick set up: There is a race of immortals called Therians. Long ago, each had the power to shift into animals. But a big bad thing happened and then only about two dozen of the Therians retained the power. Each carried the spirit of one animal. Then, another big bad thing happened, trapping the animal spirits of all but nine of the remaining shifters. Those men, the Ferals, protect the other Therians and fight the bad guy Mages who want to release bad-guy Daemons on the world. Anytime a Feral is killed, his animal searches for a strong Therian to replace him and that man is drawn to the other warriors to join their group. Still with me?
Hawke is one of the Ferals and as the book begins, he is recovering from an attack that left him in conflict with his animal. He is trying to repair the damage, but it’s not working out. In the meantime, Maxim appears at the house with his would-be mate, Faith. Maxim has the marks of a Feral, and the men believe he is there to replace their lost brother, the Fox. It turns out, he carries one of those animals lost years ago. Quickly, Feral House begins filling with men carrying the other missing animals.
Hawke is drawn to Faith. She had only known Maxim a day before she followed him to Feral House, but she felt drawn to him… certain she belonged to him. It’s a feeling that’s difficult to hold onto as Maxim reveals himself to be an enormous asshat and she begins to fall for Hawke. If you’re worried this might be an infidelity story, don’t be. Maxim is a bad, bad dude. And it’s obvious Hawke and Faith are meant to be together. The only question is how they’re going to get there.
There’s a lot going on in the book. The love story is good and so is the sex. There is plenty of action and plot development, but it’s easy to keep up with. There is also a bit of darkness –which surprised me a bit. But all the twists and turns kept things interesting. We’ve got a set-up for two different couples in future books. I am definitely interested in what’s going to happen with Wulfe. I want to go back and check out the backlist to learn more about him, if for no other reason. He smacks of a delicious tortured hero.
I enjoyed it. 4 stars.
*ARC Provided by NetGalley
Ecstasy Untamedby Pamela PalmerRelease Date: October 25, 2011Publisher: Avon