The story of Gunnar and Stella may start with a lot of angst and information, but once author Anastasia Maltezos hits her stride, it's a hard read to put down. Though the plot is fairly typical- tortured man, beautiful woman-, the story pulls you through quite a few twists and turns, from mystics to shifters and more, so that I was still pleasantly surprised by book end. The main characters were very emotive, which allows you to "see inside their head and heart" more than the typical romance, or especially, mystery story. The interesting transformation scenes for Stella were both pivotal and intriguing, and the love scenes were almost surreal in their descriptions, something I had not come across before in other paranormal fiction.
Where this riddle trips up, however, is in the range of Ms. Malezos's secondary characters and lighter-than-I-liked plot line. Though I did enjoy the main characters, from Stella's honest strength to Gunnar's protective streak (the strong, silent type is NEVER a bad thing), my interest was almost equally piqued about the fates of Stella's other, paranormally gifted sisters. They, along with a few other secondary characters, seem to be seen once and rarely heard from again. Though the book was probably not intended to have a stronger secondary plot line, it just seemed a bit as if the reader is (sometimes) gipped of getting to know even more intriguing personalities in a sense. This was a problem a more suspenseful, action-driven main plot would have been able to cover, but which, unfortunately, was not the temperature of this example. Overall, while I would have preferred to `fall in love' with the characters (versus simply 'like' them), for a shorter story, and after the first hump in the reading, I found "Lycan Mate" to be a fast-paced and interesting read. Hopefully we will get to see the future for our heroes, as well as the tales of sisters Elissa and Brenna, in future books by this new, yet talented authoress.
Gunnar Eriksson, a two-hundred-year-old werewolf, knows there’s no place in his life for love because everyone close to him is doomed. And then he meets Stella O’Sullivan, the one destined to be his, and battles with his instinctive need to claim her.
Stella is instantly attracted to the ruggedly handsome Gunnar Eriksson, but soon discovers he is a man with secrets, a man filled with pain, a man plagued with inner demons. And as her attraction for him mounts, so does her compassion and warmth. She discovers he is grieving for his dead son.
As their passion and attraction heightens, a sinister plot unfolds. An evil so malevolent, her life is in danger. And Gunnar must race against time to save Stella.