Series That Bite - The Romance Zone
Shifters, Vamps and Monsters in Romance
I grew up in Montana, surrounded by the wilds of the Rocky Mountains and prairies. There are still wild animals out here—dangerous predators that view you and me as tender morsels. Kinda like one of those M&Ms dudes with the little short legs. Yummy and easy to catch.
Here in the west we have mountain lions, bears and wolves, all gorgeous. Beautiful fur, graceful movement (okay, bears lumber a bit, but still) and mesmerizing gazes that say very clearly I Am the Boss. The big shiny teeth and claws just reinforce.
In fact, if you come out west, you are more likely to meet a grizzly or wolf than any time in the last fifty years, so if you go hiking, pack that bear spray and a pistol and pay attention to warning signs on trail heads. We love our predators, but we kinda like to send visitors home without teeth marks, so be safe.
You may see coyotes and foxes too. Less dangerous, still awesome.
Now, take a romance writer, and transform these top-of-the-line predators into shifters and you get a hot alpha who rules two worlds. When their worlds collide with the normal world, smokin' romance ensues. Some laden with angst and dark wounds, some full of laid back, sexy humor. Here are some new shifters hot off the press.
Wolf Nip by Vivian Arend.
Cat got your tongue? Tessa Williams wants to turn a landlocked paddle wheeler in Haines, Alaska into an eco-tour B&B. She's a cat shifter, with charm as long as her tail, so no problemo, right? Wrong. Owner Mark Weaver is a wolf shifter. He doesn't want to sell, but he does want Tessa. Hmm, what's a girl to do? Fight like cats and dogs, of course. Granite Lake Wolves, Bk 6, Samhain
Running Free by Jorrie Spencer
She's the one wolf who can tame his feral spirit. Zach is a horse shifter. Awesome-sauce! Is there any girl who hasn't dreamed of riding a horse of her own? But horses and wolves just do not mix. So how did this stud end up protecting a wolf pup, and falling hard for Sally, the wolf shifter who's been assigned by her pack to look after the pup. And why does Zach feel he knows her?
Ride 'em, cowgirl. Northern Shifters, Samhain
Mark of the Bear by NJ Walters Bears, oh, yeah.
When the devil wants a deal, there’s no bowing out gracefully. Hollywood scream queen Kellsie Morris' big role has just come through—the story of an immortal, shape-shifting warrior trapped in a carnival run by the Devil’s minions. But when she climbs aboard an amazingly realistic carousel bear on set, she finds herself astride a real warrior. Marko has waited an eternity to free his goddess and his fellow warriors from an ancient curse. But once he lays eyes on this modern beauty, he has a new purpose—to protect her. Hades’ Carnival, Bk 2,Samhain
And now, on to some heroes who bite … in a different way. And you're somewhat less likely to meet the real thing. Kinda sad, huh?
Provoked by Rebecca Zanetti Vampires … alphas with big teeth and stamina.
A time for war, a time for love … Kane Kayrs and his vampire brothers are in a war with the demons. So, of course they need a demon spotter. But when Kane tracks down Amber Freebird, what he finds is a blonde, vegan pacifist. Raised as a free spirit, Amber has no intention of teaming up with a sexy-as-sin vampire who's all about control. But she may be the only hope of finding his brother, and there’s no way he’s going to let her go—even if it means mating her to gain her cooperation.
Dark Protectors, Bk 5, Brava
Dracula Unleashed by Linda Mercury
The Dracula of legend is really a … mom? Valerie Tate's current incarnation is the last thing she expected: mother of a precocious half-angel, half-vampire, and wife to two men. Some moms relax with a glass of wine. Valerie prefers a refreshing blood & coke. How else can she deal with her toddler's psychic powers & knife throwing? Thank goodness for John Jante, guide to Fallen Angels, and Lance Soleil, Angel of the Lost. Without them, her primal urge for violence and power would overtake her. Yet Valerie's peace will be short-lived as she finds herself at the forefront of an epic battle between good and evil--and facing a choice no woman in any realm should have to make. . .
Bloodwings, Bk 3, ekensington.
And on to other things that go bump in the night! Dunno about you, but I used to have a guilty secret. Every Saturday morning, I was the first one to hit the sofa to watch Gargoyles, the cartoon. My boys had to move over for Mom.Since then I've found I wasn't the only Mom on the couch with the kids. I suspect this next author was there, too.
Gargoyle by Shelley Martin Hard as stone, hmmm …
Elizabeta's secrets will kill her, unless the devotion of a gargoyle saves her.
In 1891, seventeen year old Elizabeta assumes the identity of her dead twin brother. To avoid her murderous uncle, she attends her brother’s school on an island forbidden to women. Her only solace is sculpting a gorgeous, deadly gargoyle. Then one night she awakens him. Fiercely loyal, Aelius will protect her—for a kiss. But if she gives it to him, what else will he demand? Published by author.
Now me, I have some fun and fabulous shifters coming soon, of the furred and clawed kind. Sign up for my newsletter to find out when. But so far, readers' favorite of my shifters has been a big guy with teeth, claws and wings. Yup, a dragon.
Prince of Dragons by Cathryn Cade
His beast will have her beauty—on his terms.
Sirena Blaze leaves smiling males across the galaxy. One look at Commander Stone, and she’s ready. Slyde wants the famous beauty, but the powerful warrior is hiding secrets. He is a half-dragon shifter, thought to be a myth. He’s real, and so is his code—he can mate only once, for life. (Yup, he's a virgin. Oh Mama, was his seduction fun to write. The big guy went down hard.) When saboteurs loose a pair of deadly serpents on board theOrion, he makes a wager. If she finds them first, she can have him. But if he wins, she must agree to be his alone—for life. And did he mention she'll be a princess to his prince, royalty on their planet? Orion Series, Bk 3, Samhain
What about you, readers? Have a favorite shifter series to tell us about? I'd love to know.
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Columnist: Cathryn Cade writes red hot romance for Samhain Publishing. Her erotic paranormal romances will take you from Hawaii to galaxies far away, with heroes who are more than men, and heroines who are woman enough for any adventure. She loves to hear from readers, and can be found on Facebook, Twitter and email. Stop by her website at http://www.cathryncade.com for these links, and to see her complete book list, read excerpts and fabulous reviews, and sign up for her newsletter.