Yeah. The word you were looking for was “oooonph…” with a slight forward motion and a curl of the shoulders. Or at least that is my reaction to this cover.
Miss Allee has been blessed by the Entity I think of as The Cover Goddess. TCG (as she is known to her friends) has clearly found approval with whatever Allee is sacrificing in her name, as the dudes on the covers of her novellas, known as “The Files of the Otherworlder Enforcement Agency” keep getting hotter. A cover doesn’t make a book better, but if I get a gorgeous Lycan in a leatherjacket on the cover with my three bucks, I’m not gonna kick him out of the Kindle. Metaphorically.
I am no fan of writing summaries, so here is the blurb for the book.
Detective Astrid Holmes is a sensitive, a human capable of feeling the energy of otherworlders. When she is dispatched to the horrific murder scene of a local vampire, she expects it to be just another day on the job. But when evidence is stolen on her watch, she is removed—not only from the investigation, but from her job as a member of the Chicago police department’s paranormal unit.
Astrid’s only hope of reinstatement lies with her ex co-worker and almost-lover, Lycan Mason Sanderson. But convincing the OWEA agent to let her assist with the investigation isn’t nearly as difficult as staying alive when the murderer realizes that Astrid may hold the key to unlocking his identity.
Fighting to take down a killer could have deadly consequences for Astrid and Mason, but working together puts their already fragile relationship in jeopardy.
What the blurb rather overstates is the almost-lover part. In truth, Astrid and Mason have shared one passionate, knee-knocking, panty-twisting kiss at a party. And that was it. Not only did the guy not call her, but she didn’t even get dinner. And now, here he shows up, a member of the Otherworlder Enforcement Agency, looking all hot and… and lycan-y… and doing his sexy-man thing, and hardly looks at her. And he’s probably going to take over the case. I’d be pissed. I wouldn’t want to work with him. Astrid certainly doesn’t want to get caught up in Mr. Smoochie-without-even-dinner again, right? She’s a smart girl. She figures it will work out for the best. She’s more a fan of desk work and a little energy-sensing, once the danger at the crime scene is over. She likes her job, but she’s not like the female main characters of the other two books. She prefers to leave the field work to the go-getters.
Now. What kind of story is this going to be, then, you wonder? Urban Fantasies don’t work when the mc stays at a desk. Enter our inciting incident. A bit of evidence goes missing and Astrid is put on temporary suspension. Her only hope to clear her name and protect her career means getting back in on the investigation. She tells Mason she might be able to identify the killer from the energy signature left on the coin. Mason is the hot dude on the cover. Did I mention he’s a Lycan? A big sexy Lycan?
Mason’s got family issues. That’s a problem for a Lycan, as the pack is more than just family to a werewolf. He hints that he can’t be with anyone. And he has an irritating habit, for someone who can’t be with anyone, of kissing a girl when she least expects it. Astrid has some serious mommy issues. There’s something in her past that she doesn’t like to talk about, but she can’t keep it out of her internal monologue. She also can’t swear without hearing her mom in her head. She’s isn’t crazy about the field, but she’s worked too hard, and now her reputation and career hang in the balance. She has the gumption to follow Mason, our sexy were-beast, into the field to investigate. Sexual tension and good police procedural ensue.
This is the 3rd in the Other World Enforcement Agency books, and I think the writing and the plotting just keep getting tighter. Novella length, I read this in two days and was engaged the whole way through. You don’t have to read the other books before reading this one, but I think you’ll want to. This seamlessly mixes in magic and myth and good old police procedural. I’m looking forward to more of these.
If you want to read more, here are the links to the other books on Goodreads. If we become friends…you can see my reviews. Or you can look up my reviews.