Reviewed by Tori
Favorite Quote: “I’m not saying you don’t have the God-given right to be neurotic, but must you exploit that privilege?”
Riley Porter, a raven shifter, has found a home for herself and more importantly for her kids with the Phoenix Wolf Pack. Though she knows not everyone is thrilled with her being there, she never expected to wake up in bed after an impromptu party and copious amounts of tequila with her most vocal dissenter…the very sexy Tao Lukas.
Tao doesn’t like change and nor many people. As the head enforcer for the Phoenix Pack, his job is to sniff out danger before it happens and his nose is saying Riley isn’t being completely honest about why she left her pack. But the sexual tension that has been building between them has become impossible to ignore and after Tao gets a taste of Riley, he admits his feelings for her are deeper than just a one time fling.
Riley agrees to give their attraction a chance and see where it leads, even inviting Tao to come with her to her uncles’ anniversary party. When Riley’s uncle is shot, her secrets begin to come to light, putting her and the pack in danger. As Tao works to discover who wants to harm Riley and the pack, he realizes that he will do whatever it takes to keep his family and his mate safe.
Though this is the 6th book in a well-established series, the storyline is inclusive enough to stand on its own. Enemies to lovers relationships are always fun to watch unfold and this couple certain provides plenty of entertainment-vocally and sexually. I’m glad Wright decided to go with Riley’s story next. I’ve been waiting to know more about her since first meeting her during Savage Urges. Riley is a raven shifter who left her flock for reasons and ends up in the Phoenix Pack by way of Makenna Wray. Strong, intelligent, loyal, and delightfully snarky, Riley fits in perfectly with this pack with her playful ways and deadly skills. Her two kids-Dexter and Savannah-are quite funny with their little quirks and habits.
Though I wasn’t too keen on Tao at first, he’s been rather quiet in the background, I soon realized he was a perfect match for Riley. A grumpy dominant through and through, he has a way of cutting through the artifice and telling you exactly how it feels. A bit rude and crude at times, he does what he wants when he wants with one hundred percent focus and precision. Riley infuriates him, annoys him, confounds him, and tempts him like no other. He gives her plenty of room to grow but refuses to allow her to shut him out like she does the others.
I love that Wright’s PNRs are so modern, sexy, and fun. There aren’t any of the strict and obviously misogynistic rules in here regarding females, different species fraternization, or mating that you find in some of the other shifter stories. The males and females are equals in every way and while the males may devolve into some alpha melodramatic moments when they find the one they want to be with, there are lines they know they can’t cross and still live to talk about it. The females in here aren’t pushovers and don’t put up with anyone’s crap.
“Hit me,” Tao repeated, sensing just how on edge she was. “You’re gonna snap if you don’t get it all out of you. Don’t worry; I can take a punch from an itty-bitty thing like-motherfucker!”
Two intriguing storylines intertwine with the romance, using Riley’s past and an external source to expand the character base and strengthen what is already in play arc wise. I was a little shocked at how easily Riley and Tao fall into a relationship after we are told of Tao’s antagonism towards Riley. Riley has some misgivings when they wake up in bed together but Tao basically just tells her to deal and she does. The fiery chemistry between them does help to create a more believable venture. Their attraction for one another is seen and felt in every scene they appear in; encouraged by some seriously steamy and bold love scenes. I love a couple who has fun in and out of bed and this couple definitely does. I’m hiding my quote under the NSFW tag because it’s really explicit. :)
“I’m thinking about f*cking your mouth, to be exact.”
“Of course you are,” she said drily. “You’re a boy. Boys are delusional.”
He smiled. “You’re not going to let me feel what it’s like to slide my cock in your mouth? That doesn’t seem fair. I go down on you all the time.”
“Oh, I won’t deny you eat p*ssy like a champ.”
He laughed. “Like a champ?”
“Totally. But you know, over seventy percent of erectile dysfunction cases are caused by having too many blow jobs.”
“They are not.”
“They could be.”
I did have some issues. The two plotlines were weak and not as developed as some seen in previous installments. There were just too many questions left unanswered and it was hard to get involved with either one as most of the investigations were done off screen. I wish we had been given a bit more information and about the Raven shifters. Wright stayed rather vague about them as a whole. There were also some sexual aspects that were not sexy. Scooping out cream is not a sexy phrase or act. If you can scoop anything out of your vagina, you need medical treatment. Also, anal sex without lube is not sexy. Telling someone they’ll enjoy it and not to worry, is not sexy or consent. I need to hear/read the words. Lastly, I’m tired of Greta. Her time spent as the series antagonist has gone from mildly amusing to irritating. I’m not a fan of letting elders verbally abuse the people around them.
The ending comes at us hard and fast as the pack is attacked on multiple fronts and Tao and Riley have to fight to the death to protect the pack and each other. All in all, Wright continues to entertain with this series and despite my issues, I’ll still recommend these as enjoyable fast reads with sexy and snarky heroes and heroines who kick ass and always willing to cross the line for those they love.