I read romance novels of all kinds: Historical, erotic, contemporary, paranormal, fantasy, chick lit, sci fi, medical, thriller/suspense/mystery, medical, LGBT, cowboy (because WHY NOT, RIGHT?). Short ones. Long ones. Medium ones. I like romance novels. I wouldn't say I'm a particularly romantic person, but I love happy-ever-after moments. It's a feelgood thing, I suppose. And I have a particular fondness for paranormal romances. Shifter romances, specifically. And by 'shifter' I mean shapeshifters. Mostly werewolves, or werecats (don't ask, just go with me, here). They usually involve werewolf/human, werewolf/werewolf, werecat/human or werecat/werecat (and sometimes different species of werecat ending up together - don't look at me, it's a legitimate thing in paranormal romance). Just lately, though, I've come across shifter pairings that make up their own wtfery category. Don't get me wrong. I'm not saying they're horrible. I still read them! But I had that moment, however brief, where I went "QUE?!" with all of the titles listed below. BECAUSE THE PAIRINGS OMG. Don't take my word for it, read the rest of the post and you'll see what I mean.
Have you come across any strange shifter pairings you'd like to tell us about? (Or recommend).
1. Hedging his bets by Celia Kyle and Mina Carter
Honey loves running her bar and grill, catering to humans and shifters alike. But there are two things that dim her love of the place: cocky assholes who think they own the world, and cocky assholes who think they can flex their muscles and wreck her bar when throwing a temper tantrum. Unfortunately, the drop-dead gorgeous, hotter than hot, shifter man she secretly loves is both. Blake wants the curvaceous, gorgeous Honey in his bed. Now. He’s lusted (but not loved, let’s get that straight) after the luscious woman for months. True, he looks like a bad-boy biker mixed with a player and, yeah, he’s broken a few things in her bar… But only because the guys were hitting on his girl. With no hope of winning her over in sight, he does what any red-blooded werehedgehog would do in his position. He lies.
NOT held by Auckland Libraries. Available as an eBook from Amazon.com. The hero is a werehedgehog. A FREAKIN' WEREHEDGEHOG! I came across this book by happy accident when looking for something-or-other online (as you do - or maybe just as I do) and was all la-la-la-la-la-la-la *click* Wait, what? *scrolls back* He's a WEREHEDGEHOG? Because that's how I roll. Once I became aware of this title (I bought a copy from Amazon), it made me curious about what other kind of odd pairings (or maybe not 'odd' so much as 'out of the ordinary' - werewolves being the ordinary bahahaha) there might be. Et voila! This post was born.
2. Accidentally on porpoise ; Porpoiseful intent / Tymber Dalton
Two books in one. Accidentally on porpoise: Sean didn't expect to run into Mr. Right in his boat. Although when Emery claims to be a dolphin, Sean wonders how hard he got hit. Emery finds Sean hunkier than the piece of tail he's been chasing. Unfortunately, there are some willing to hurt Sean if Emery won't let him go. Porpoiseful intent: What do you get when you mix a hurricane, a houseful of dolphin shifters a pair of oblivious human parents, a vengeful ex-lover, and an alligator shifter with a warped sense of humor? Sean and Emery are about to find out when vengeance returns...?
NO WAY. Ohemgee. A dolphin - they're DOLPHINS. That's a new one on me.
3. Doe and the wolf / Eve Langlais
What happens when a predator falls for his prey? Bounty hunting is the perfect job for a maverick wolf; flexible hours, decent pay, the thrill of the chase. But Everett never counted on a doe stopping him in his furry tracks. Dawn was a prisoner of Mastermind and ended up experimented on, against her wishes. On the run from Furry United Coalition agents, she ends up in the arms-and bed-of a lupine bounty hunter. Instinct tells her to run when she gets a chance because everyone knows not to trust the big, bad wolf, but her heart begs her to stay. When the result of genetics gone wrong rears its mutated head and threatens both of their lives, will they manage to survive and discover if a wolf deserves a happily ever after? Looking for help in recovering a fugitive? The Lone Wolf Agency can help you. We specialize in huffing and puffing criminals back where they belong, behind bars. Also: Lion and the falcon, and try the eBook anthology that includes Bunny and the bear, Swan and the bear, and Croc and the fox by Langlais.
Okay, so at the risk of sounding dumb...wouldn't he want to eat her as a snack??
4. Beast behaving badly / Shelly Laurenston
Ten years after Blayne Thorpe first encountered Bo Novikov, she still can't get the smoothtalking shifter out of her head. Now he's shadowing her in New York - all seven-plus feet of him - determined to protect her from stalkers who want to use her in shifter dogfights. Even if he has to drag her off to an isolated Maine town where the only neighbours are other bears almost as crazy as he is. Let sleeping dogs lie. Bo knows it's good advice, but he can't leave Blayne be. She may insist Bo's nothing but a pain in her delectable behind, but polar bears have patience in spades. Soon she'll realize how good they can be together. And when she does, animal instinct tells him it'll be worth the wait.
I heart Laurenston's Pride series and, out of all of the male shifters, Bo Novikov is one of my favourite characters, but I'll never get over the fact that he's half polar bear/half lion. Which, not coincidentally, makes me all WTF?? And then I try to avoid the mental imagery in my head because yikes.
5. A tiger's claim : with a special novella: Winter eve / Lia Davis
A tiger's claims: As the Alpha's only daughter Shayna Andrews has always been treated like a rare gem, protected like royalty, and she's suffocating. Her longing to be independent has driven her to sneak out one evening after dinner. After relishing in being able to run free without an escort, she finds herself face-to-face with the enemy, miles from home, and nearly loses her life until a lone wolf comes to her aid. Travis Hunter's main objective is to destroy the Onyx Pack--a group of drug using, murdering rogue shifters. His seek-and-destroy plans are put on hold when he rescues a female from a brutal attack. The beautifully exotic tiger shifter, Shayna, stirs a passion he thought died with his long-lost mate. When Shay's first heat cycle slams into her, Travis has no choice but to submit to her needs--and his own. But there is always a price to sleeping with the Pack princess. Not only will they have to face her Pack, Shay and Travis will have to deal with a mating that is beyond a single night and could have consequences more than either of them had thought. And when Travis finds out Shay wears the enemy's brand, things will go from bad to worse. Warning: One alpha female who doesn't take no for an answer, a wolf with more on the line than just his heart, and a combustible attraction that's sure to cause more than one sweaty night.
A tiger and a wolf. QUE? And yet I know I'll read it, still.