Genre: Paranormal Romance/Wolf-Shifter Romance
Number of pages: 418 print
Word Count: 103,000
Cover Artist: Elaina Lee
Caedmon Wolves, 1
Tamara would risk her life to gain freedom. She's finally built up the courage to escape from a world of abuse by the hands of man who promised her the world. One night she makes a break for it, but her plans backfire. She begins to believe that she was never meant to be happy. When all hope of freedom fades, she stumbles across a wolf that brings her to safety. She learns to trust the wolf, but has yet to trust the man.
Devin, potential future leader of the Caedmon Pack, returns to the foothills of his Virginia home after five long years as a lone wolf. Rivals within the circle challenge him and threaten to strip him of his true birthright. Being bound to lead the pack was not something Devin had planned for his life, but letting his people fall prey to turmoil under the rule of his cousin Darius is out of the question. The night of Devin's rise to Alpha leader is approaching. Despite opposition, he's gained an impressive following. That is until he brings a human among the pack.
Tamara can't deny the attraction she feels toward Devin. The Alpha leader-to-be simply cannot resist Tamara's lure. When they are together, their tribulations take the backburner. Their desire for one another grows as they consummate their passion in wolf's haven. Will Devin forfeit the most coveted position within the Caedmon Pack to bond with his chosen mate? Can Tamara trust Devin with her mind, heart, body, and soul or will the memories of her abuse dissuade her from being bound to the wolf?
Caedmon Wolves, 2
Selene is thrust into the aftermath of Caedmon pack rivalry when determination to help a friend leads her to the foothills of the Virginia mountains. She doesn't anticipate that her generosity would earn her a place behind bars and at the mercy of man who saves her from a sentence worse than death. Soon she discovers that Nick is far from ordinary. Under the façade of his commitment to protect her from evil hides a secret that shatters her faith in him.
Nick knew his life would be forever changed when Devin, the new Caedmon leader, honors him with the title of Second-in-Command. With this responsibility, he's introduced to a web of pack politics and threats. Darius, the banished wolf who lost the most coveted title within the pack, turns out to be a sore loser, and he demands either complete dominance or total destruction. Someone must stop him before he tears down the unity that has held the pack together for decades.
In the midst of it all, he meets a tempting brazen beauty. Selene is not just any woman, and the wolf inside reminds Nick of this fact every time she's in his presence. She awakens raging passion within him, and he desires her like no other. Nick's past misfortunes has taught him many things. For one...never trust a woman with his heart.
True love awaits in the path of danger, but will Selene and Nick let the chaos destroy their bond?
Caedmon Wolves, 3
Jayson Truman is captivated by his boss’s daughter. He finds himself fantasizing about the many ways he’d like to have his way with Arianna Klein. Despite Mr. Klein’s strong connections to the Caedmon community, he and Jayson have never seen eye to eye on any matter. Lusting after his daughter only adds fuel to the flames. Their long-standing business relationship begins to unravel. Secrets are exposed, and loyalty is tested. Jayson is warned to stay away from Arianna…
Cutting family ties seems like Arianna’s only recourse to regaining control of her life. Yet, steering clear of her father is easier said than done, especially when she holds the key to his business’s success…or failure. And as if her life weren't dictated enough by men with oversized egos, add Jayson to the equation and his many attempts to lay claim to her. If he thinks she’s going to swoon at his feet like a sex crazed maniac, he’s got another thing coming. But Arianna is not the only one with a key. Jayson may very well be the pawn she needs to get her out of the mess that her father has built.
Jayson will put his life on the line for Arianna, but will he gain her love and acceptance in return?
Caedmon Wolves Volume 1-3
3.5 stars overall
The three stories in this collection revolve around the Caedmon wolf shifter pack from Virginia. Each story can be read as a standalone, but characters from previous stories do crossover as the series progresses. Each book is a quick read, and both the writing and story lines improved in turn as I progressed through the series. There were some minor typos and grammatical issues but nothing that seriously detracted from reading and understanding the book.
Tamara is stuck in abusive relationship with a fiancé who is not just physically controlling but is also a criminal who has dragged her into helping him execute a museum theft. With the help of a woman’s abuse counselor named Selene, Tamara puts a plan into motion to expose Brad and his crew to the police during the robbery while using the distraction to make her escape from him and establish a new identity for herself. However, it doesn’t go quite as planned, causing her to jump out of a third floor window, injuring her ankle. She is startled to see a large brown and black wolf in front of her and is sure she is hallucinating when the wolf tells her to hold on before she passes out from the pain as it carries her to safety.
When Tamara awakens again, she is in Devin’s cabin where he is cooking for her in his human form. Devin has just returned to the area after spending the last 5 years in Montana, an outcast from his pack as the illegitimate first son of the former pack leader. Now that his father and his brother are both dead, the pack needs to choose a new Alpha and Devin has come home to ensure that the pack doesn’t fall to his deranged cousin Darius by default.
Tamara has no living family after the death of her parents, so she has no choice but to rely on Devin until her ankle heals and she is able to travel again. However given her recent history, learning to trust a man, and ultimately herself, again is no small feat. Regardless of her instinctual trust in him, old habits are hard to break, and she has to regain faith in her own judgment and decision making capabilities.
“He came behind her and gently pulled on her waist, tugging her into his chest. “What is my name, Tamara?” “Devin.” She was puzzled with this question. “There is no punishment for not doing something you don’t feel like doing. I will never give you orders,” he said, firmly. She closed her eyes, embarrassed at her actions. It was only a normal routine for her to cook, clean, and have everything in perfect order before he came home. He was never angry when these things happened. - Ambrielle Kirk Caedmon Wolves Volume One (Kindle Locations 731-735). Kindle Edition.
Devin is confused as to the reason that his wolf has taken such a strong interest in protecting her, but comes to realize that Tamara is his true mate even though she is human and not from the pack. He struggles with the decision to stake a leadership claim to the pack as Alpha given his history with them but makes his choice after interacting with her for a few days.
“You’ve made me realize how good it feels to help others. I helped you, and now I want to help my pack find a leader who will lead us into the next generation.”- Ambrielle Kirk Caedmon Wolves Volume One (Kindle Locations 761-762). Kindle Edition.
There is some violence in the book as the new hierarchy of the pack is established but it is minimal. We are introduced to Devin’s best friend Nick, his brother Dawson, and his cousin Darius; both Nick and Darius are central characters in book 2.
Although Devin had Alpha characteristics and was vying to be the new pack leader, he did not let those instincts take over in his interactions with Tamara and actually let her take control a few times. IMO, this was a good opening to the series and was more sweet than hot as it set the stage for the background and future of the pack.
Book 2- Wolf’s Promise (Nick and Selene’s story)
We meet both characters separately in Wolf’s Haven. Nick is now Second-in-Command of the Caedmon Pack, and Selene is searching for Tamara to ensure herself that her former client is truly OK after receiving just a brief phone call from her in book 1. A sequence of events lands both Nick and Selene as Darius’s prisoners.
Nick is out enjoying one last peaceful moment camping and mountain climbing on Caedmon land before his duties take over his life for the next few months when he is captured by wolves loyal to Darius who claim he is trespassing on Darius’s land. Selene is driving down a country road searching for the motel where she made a reservation to stay overnight when she runs into a tree attempting to avoid a collision with a wolf in the middle of the road.
She awakens as Darius’s captive, also accused of trespassing on his land and can’t understand why he refers to her as “just a human”. He has decided that since his mate cannot bear children, Selene will be the one to give him an heir instead. (Warning: there is an attempted rape scene that is minimally graphic in description but may upset readers sensitive to this topic.) Selene unsuccessfully attempts to kill him with a piece of broken glass and is thrown into the same dungeon cell that holds Nick.
He attempts to soothe her and gain her trust, sharing his food with her and talking to her through the night. When Darius’s men come back to take her to him again, Nick jumps in to protect her. Eventually they manage to escape but are chased down by the pack members; Nick is forced to shift in front of Selene in order to protect her again. Although she is terrified and confused by what she just witnessed, she trusts him enough to follow him to safety. When she tells him the reason she is in the area, he realizes that she is looking for Tamara and takes her to Devin’s home where they are reunited.
Nick believes that Selene is his true mate but is afraid to follow through on it since the last person he mistakenly believed to be his mate betrayed him badly a few years ago. There is also a past connection between Nick and Darius that is hinted at throughout the story that is related and finally revealed in the last few chapters.
This book contained more violence than the first but graphic descriptions were kept to a minimum for the majority of the time. Character-wise, Nick came across as much more dominant than Devin did in his story, and the heat factor was ratcheted up a few notches between Nick and Selene. Overall, book 2 felt more complete than book 1 and was a more enjoyable read in my opinion.
Book 3- Wolf’s Touch (Jayson and Arianna’s story)
Jayson and Arianna grew up together as the children of business partners and became best friends. They also recognized each other as true mates years ago, but she is so hung up on having the ability and right to make her own choices after living under the controlling thumb of her father for so long that she rejects him at every given opportunity.
Even though she continues to run from him, Jayson is determined not to give up on her. However Arianna has just discovered that her father signed a blood contract at her birth promising her to the son of another family that is well known for its criminal dealings and that stands against the Caedmon pack. When she refuses to go through with it, she tries to run from her father and Ivan, the man she is expected to mate. Ivan sends his men after her, but Jayson manages to whisk her away on his bike in a high speed chase through the city.
Arianna’s father made me want to reach into my Kindle and slap him repeatedly; Arianna is an only child, but after her mom died in childbirth attempting to bring her brother into the world, her father turned into a gigantic a**hole and cares only about making money. For example, he constantly reminds her that he paid for her to go to college and she owes him for that; there is no loving emotion shown from this man to his child.
When Jayson goes to him to attempt to buyout the contract that binds Arianna to Ivan, Mr. Klein is again blatantly rude to him and tries to warn him away from Arianna as he has done for years but eventually agrees to try to negotiate a buyout. Unaware of Jayson’s efforts, Arianna tries to negotiate with her father to end the contract as well, only to have him set her up to be kidnapped by Ivan’s men as he watches passively while they take her away to save his own sorry life and reputation.
Things come to a head when Jayson catches wind of these events, and he busts into the party being held to announce Ivan and Arianna’s engagement accompanied by Devin and several other members of the Caedmon pack.
“This ends tonight. I’m here to claim my mate.” “You have no right to her. She was promised to me.” “You’re wrong, Ivan.” Devin came to stand by Jayson’s side. “There is an agreement on the table, but any of us can challenge you for Arianna at any time.”- Ambrielle Kirk, Caedmon Wolves Volume One (Kindle Locations 4753-4755). Kindle Edition.
Ivan is backed into a corner and accepts the fight where the prize is the enforcement or cancellation of the contract, and ultimately, Arianna herself.
Jayson is basically sex on legs from the outset, and IMO this story is the hottest of the three in the collection. He is young, gorgeous, rides a motorcycle and loves to party. Arianna loves him, but she is so focused on being able to control her own life that she can’t see past it. She also feels guilty to an extent that she is not the male child her father wanted and tries to gain his love by even going so far as to try to go through with the contract to save his business. By the climactic scene between Jayson and Ivan at the dinner party, she finally starts to act for herself but not before it is almost too late.
Multi-published author Ambrielle Kirk writes erotic, paranormal romance, and urban fantasy. Ambrielle lives in Atlanta, GA where she works in the accounting and finance industry. She holds a Master's Degree in Accounting. Since graduation she's worked in the public and private accounting sectors. She is the wife of a loving husband, and the mother of a beautiful girl. She works and writes full-time. A bestselling author in several sub-genres at ARe and Amazon, she has also earned a 2012 Swirl Award in the paranormal category. She's a member of RWA, FF&P special interest chapter of RWA, and co-founder and treasurer of Cultural, Interracial, and Multicultural special interest chapter of RWA. Ambrielle Kirk is also an admin at the blog, IRMC Books.
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