Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Not So Crazy For You

Expected Publication: November 27th, 2012
Wild About You (Love At Stake # 13)
By: Kerrelyn Sparks
Avon Books
ISBN-13: 9780062107718

The thirteenth book in the Love at Stake series features Howard Barr, the were-bear!
Handsome Howard…Hunky Howard… Hot Howard…

It’s not every day that Elsa Bjornberg feels fragile, not when she hosts a home renovation show where she can effortlessly demolish a kitchen. But from the moment she meets Howard Barr, this bear of a man makes her feel like a woman. And the way he looks at her, as if she was a pot of honey he’d like to lick…

Howard is not like most men. For one thing, he’s a shapeshifter. And he always thought his celebrity crush would never amount to anything more than drooling at Elsa on the TV. When his meddling vampire employer gets involved, the star is suddenly within his grasp—and within a hair of her life. For an ancient curse forbids their newfound love, and Howard is suddenly torn between his desire for her and his desire to keep her alive.

   Howard Barr is leading a fairly solitary life, but even he gets lonely watching all his friends marry off and have kids.  Right now he's focused on revenge for Rhett Bleddyn for killing his first love and getting him banished from his home for two decades.  He won't stop until Rhett's career, place as werewolf packmaster and underhanded embezzlement are stopped once and for all.  Meanwhile, Elsa Bjornberg has come to the Dragon Nest Academy where he is a security guard to do renovations on the building next door.  Sparks fly from the very first touch and their family histories may just be inextricably linked.  But can they manage to fight an ancient curse that threatens to keep them apart?  This book was one that I was really excited to read.  I loved Howard in the other books and the series has managed to keep momentum pretty well up until now.  I was majorly disappointed.  I like fluff as much as the next person, but this book felt like it had no plot and zero real romance.  Howard and Elsa are both focused on each other's looks above all else and she is absolutely unable to see past the fact that he's a were-bear, which is not synonymous with MONSTER.  I felt really frustrated at how weak-minded Elsa was and how easily she let others talk her into questioning the fact that Howard was harmless and a good guy.  The epiphany she has to that effect felt seriously fake and forced.  Also, Howard's desperation to be with Elsa and then pushing her away for her protection (at the very end of the book almost), as a basic afterthought was dumb.  I liked the parts with Tino and Shanna was amusing, if annoying.  Her Aunts were insufferable and the way they change their minds at the end with no convincing was very weak.  But Howard and Elsa's "romance" did absolutely nothing for me.  So utterly contrived and without any appeal for me.  I hope the next one is better. 
VERDICT:  2.5/5  Stars

*I received an Advanced Reading E-book Copy from the publisher, via Edelweiss.  No money or favors were exchanged for this review. This book's expected publication date is November 27th, 2012.*

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