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Shifter [Mass Market Paperback]

Angela Knight , Lora Leigh , Alyssa Day , Virginia Kantra
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Book Description

March 4 2008 Berkley Sensation

New York Times bestselling author Angela Knight, USA Today bestselling author Lora Leigh, and national bestselling authors Alyssa Day and Virginia Kantra?

Whether transforming under a blue moon or prowling the streets, the shifters come alive to fulfill the wildest of fantasies in this seductive anthology by four masters of paranormal romance.

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Product Description


"Angela Knight is a spectacular writer." -ROMANCE REVIEW "Lora Leigh takes [readers] on a sensual roller coaster." -LOVE ROMANCES "Alyssa Day roars onto the paranormal scene." -ROMANCE JUNKIES "Virginia Kantra is an up-and-coming star." -NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLING AUTHOR KAREN ROBARDS

About the Author

Angela Knight is the USA Today bestselling author of the Mageverse series and the Warlord series for Berkley Books. She has also written for Red Sage, Changeling Press, Loose Id and Ellora's Cave. Besides her novels, Angela's publishing career includes a stint as a comic book writer and ten years as a newspaper reporter. Several of her stories won South Carolina Press Association awards under her real name. Angela lives in South Carolina with her husband, Michael, a polygraph examiner and hostage negotiator for the county's Sheriff's Office.

Lora Leigh is known for her deliciously intense and satisfying erotic romance. Her characters come to her in her dreams, inspiring her with the possibilities of What If... Most days, Lora can be found in front of her computer weaving daydreams while sipping the ambrosia of the gods, also known as coffee. When not writing, thinking about writing, or plotting what to write, Lora, a Kentucky native, enjoys gardening, fishing, and hiking with her husband and children.

Alyssa Day is the pen name (and dark and tortured alter ego) of Alesia Holliday, winner of Romance Writers of America's prestigious RITA award for excellence in romance fiction. Alyssa is a graduate of The Ohio State University and summa cum laude graduate of Capital Law School. She lives with her family and children somewhere near the ocean (they move a lot!).

Bestselling author Virginia Kantra credits her love for strong heroes and courageous heroines to a childhood spent devouring fairy tales, her fondness for kickass women to her daughter, and her knowledge of guys to her husband and teenage sons. Virginia is the author of over a dozen books for Silhouette Intimate Moments, including her popular "Trouble in Eden" series. Her first single title romantic suspense, Close-Up, will be released by Berkley in July 2005. A five-time Romance Writers of America RITA Award finalist, Virginia is the winner of numerous writing awards, including the Golden Heart, Holt Medallion, Maggie Award of Excellence and two National Readers' Choice Awards

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Will keep you XXXtra hot on a cold, dark night! Nov. 7 2008
By GinRobi
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Four awesome novellas from awesome authors!

~ Mad Dog Love by Angela Knight ~

Princess Zarifa Lorezo is on the run, afraid for her life, afraid and knowing that her fiance and her uncle would do anything to keep her in their grasp, to rule the empire she will inherit. In disguise, she's looking for a bodyguard to keep her alive so that she can bring very important information to her half-brother, the rightful ruler of the Empire.

Enter Rance "Mad Dog" Conlan, a Freeworlds werewolf, has been betrayed, the traitor seeing fit that he become a slave. The collar that the slaver, Casus, had put around his neck has reprogrammed his nanobot system, and is now able to inflict pain on Rance whenever he sees fit. Casus has found a potential `buyer'... Zarifa.

Rance discovers who Zarifa really is and isn't happy, but she intrigues him. She's not at all like she's portrayed to be in video clips he's seen. Convinced she'd been controlled, he's vowed to keep her alive until she can turn the reins over to her brother.

**No matter if Knight is writing a novel or novella, she certainly knows how to grap and hold a reader's attention. The hero and heroine seem real enough for the reader to wish this was happening in real life. Quickly, Zarifa and Rance learn to trust each other, despite the shaky circumstances. With a twist in the plot near the end, Knight brings another great story to a close with a happy ending.

~ A Jaguar's Kiss by Lora Leigh ~

Natalie Ricci is a human no-nonsense woman who stands up for herself and fights for what she wants. She desperately wanted the teaching position to the Breeds in Buffalo Gap, but what she wasn't counting on was this fierce wanting she feels for Saban Broussard.
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66 of 71 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 5 Klovers - Courtesy of CK2S Kwips & Kritiques Feb. 29 2008
By Jennifer A. Ray - Published on
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Berkley Sensation brings four talented authors together to create one erotic anthology infused with enough animal attraction to satisfy the most ardent lover of shape shifter romances! Shifter will simultaneously stir your most erotic fantasies while warming your heart with four stories of love and romance.

~Mad Dog Love by Angela Knight~

With not only her life, but the entire empire at stake, empress Zarifa Lorezo needs a bodyguard to ensure she reaches her destination safely. When she learns of a slaver in possession of a werewolf slave, she decides that "Mad Dog" is the man for the job.

Even wearing a slave-collar, Rance "Mad Dog" Conlan proves himself more than a match for the empress on the run...

Whether it is a full length novel or a novella length story, Angela Knight never fails to sweep you up in any tale she spins. She effortlessly creates edgy characters that enthrall the reader, making you wish this story were not a work of fiction, but real people fighting the good fight in our own world and leaving it a better place.

And so it is with her entry in the Shifter anthology, Mad Dog Love. In this short story, she brings together a hero and heroine of the highest caliber who, although they meet under decidedly shaky circumstances, quickly learn to trust one another as they see each other with more than their eyes, opening their hearts.

With a fantastic twist at the end that I admit to never anticipating, Ms. Knight deftly wraps up a gripping plot while leaving the reader fervently hoping for a continuation of this exciting universe with future stories. Mad Dog Love is a must-read for any reader who enjoys a red-hot interstellar romance!

~A Jaguar's Kiss by Lora Leigh~

Hired as the first teacher to the Breed children in Buffalo Gap, Natalie Ricci thought she was prepared for everything the job had in store for her. Nothing could have prepared her for Breed Enforcer Saban Broussard and his sexy Cajun accent. She was even less prepared for this thing they call the Mating Heat...

Saban is determined to win the woman he recognized at first sight as his mate. No one will come between them - not her overly aggressive ex-husband and not the evil scientists intent on capturing a Breed Mate for their nefarious studies...

It amazes me that after so many Breeds books, Lora Leigh is still able to find fresh angles for stories in one of my favorite book series. With A Jaguar's Kiss, she brings the story of a Breed male who finds his mate is a divorcee, with an ex-husband all too present - something guaranteed to drive his jaguar fury wild, but exacerbated even more when the man tries harder and harder to separate Saban from Natalie.

As a schoolteacher, Natalie brings a no-nonsense attitude to this story, and as a recent divorcee, she brings the pain of a woman struggling to exert her long-denied independence even as the Mating Heat drives her into Saban's life and into his arms.

Even with the frenetic pace driven by the Mating Heat and Saban's courtship of Natalie, Ms. Leigh manages to weave a very nice dose of intrigue throughout the story, effortlessly tidying up any loose ends by the end of this novella.

Whether you have previously read one of Lora Leigh's Breeds stories or not, A Jaguar's Kiss is sure to tantalize, thrill, and totally titillate.

Series Order (NY books only):
Megan's Mark (The Breeds, Book 1) (Berkley Sensation)
Harmony's Way (The Breeds, Book 2)
Tanner's Scheme (The Breeds, Book 3)
Dawn's Awakening (The Breeds, Book 4)

Connected Books:
Hot Spell (The Guardians, Book 1) (The Breed Next Door) (The Countess's Pleasure) (The Blood Kiss)(Falling For Anthony)
Beyond the Dark
Shifter (Berkley Sensation)

~Shifter's Lady by Alyssa Day~

First Maiden of the Nereids, Marie hasn't left Atlantis for any reason in four centuries, much less a vacation. With her brother's mating to a shifter in the land Above, it is time for her to make the journey to that world to meet her new sister and the panther pack they belong to.

With centuries of life, she has had her share of lovers, but none could have taught her quite what to expect from a man like Ethan, the Alpha of that very panther pack. She finds him alarmingly irresistible, a situation that Ethan is all too happy to use to his advantage.

Ethan swears his protection for the beautiful Atlantian, a feat which proves more and more challenging as the mysterious threat to his lands and the creatures within them grows daily.

I have to confess, although I have read the first book in Alyssa Day's Atlantis Rising series and have purchased all of the stories released so far, I am woefully behind in reading this spell-binding saga. Because of this, I was gratified to find that Shifter's Lady worked very well read out of series order, in addition to being perfectly poised as a standalone story guaranteed to entice readers new to Alyssa Day's work into buying the rest of the books in this saga.

Although centuries old, Marie is charmingly innocent, having lived the majority of those years as the First Maiden of the Nereids, a position that keeps many of the Atlantian men from regarding the lovely woman as more than a friend. It is that charm coupled with her beauty that instantly captivate Ethan.

Marie may have met men like Ethan before, but none who harbored the desire for her that Ethan does, much less who stirred the same yearnings within her. Although she never imagined herself with a warrior, it isn't long before she succumbs to Ethan's amorous advances.

The ending of Shifter's Lady is very interesting, wrapping up some of the storylines, yet leaving room for another tale starring this endearing couple. In the meantime, this fan will be moving the other books in this saga up in her TBR pile...

Series Order:
Warriors of Poseidon: Atlantis Rising (Book 1)
Warriors of Poseidon: Atlantis Awakening (Book 2)

Connected Books:
Wild Thing
Shifter (Berkley Sensation)

~Sea Crossing by Virginia Kantra~

After being ruined by a man and summarily dismissed from her teaching post at an all-girl's school, Emma March forges on with her life, entering herself into service in exchange for passage to Canada. Long before her boat reaches its destination, tragedy strikes, necessitating the abandonment of the now sinking ship. In the midst of the turmoil, Emma falls overboard.

Certain she is to meet her death, she is surprised to wake nude in the company of a virile stranger on a remote yet populated island. It seems that the chances of a ship arriving anytime soon are slim to none, but lucky for Emma, the odd residents of the island happen to be in need of a teacher...

Virginia Kantra was the only author in the Shifter anthology that was brand new to me, and I wasn't quite sure what to expect. We began the book with a futuristic science fiction romance, and Ms. Kantra closes the anthology with a paranormal historical romance, titled Sea Crossing. Incorporating the myth of the Selkie into a historical setting, it feels as if the author has transported us to another world. And I suppose the island of the Selkies could be considered just that, with their own ways of life, removed from the human world, although still tinged with bits of humanity through the children they've fostered with mortals.

As she struggles to find her place in a world that leaves unmarried women with few choices, Emma's dilemma is palpable. Her resolve to find a life where she can be of good use while still maintaining her morals is admirable. Of course, it is just those morals that keep her and the handsome Griff apart for so long. Well, those morals plus the secrets he is keeping from her...

It is easy to see why Emma is drawn to Griff, despite those pesky morals. Strong, mysterious, and caring - he is the epitome of everything she could want in a husband. For that matter, he is the epitome of what most women want in a husband.

In the end, all secrets are exposed, and watching as Emma comes to term with this strange new world she discovers is heart-warming. If Griff could fall any more in love with her, then he most certainly does in the end. And the very same could be said of Emma as she discovers the true depth of Griff's feelings for her and just what he is willing to do in order to be with her.

Series Order:
Shifter (Berkley Sensation)
Sea Witch (Children of the Sea)
Sea Fever
8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Blue Ribbons from Romance Junkies! March 4 2008
By Natalie S - Published on
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
Mad Dog Love by Angela Knight

Rance Conlon, also known as "Mad Dog" has been enslaved by a traitor. The nanobots inside of his body have been reprogrammed so that escape is not a possibility. Rance despairs of ever being free and so spends his time being as obstinate and vicious as possible. Informed of the fact that he is being put back on the slave block, Rance can only hope that his new master will not watch him vigilantly so that he can make his escape. He doesn't take into consideration that his new master could in fact be a new mistress thus provoking hidden instincts that he isn't ready to face.

Queen Zarifa Lorezo is on the run. She has come into her inheritance and has been able to change her internal nanobots which hide her from the enemies wishing to control her. She is on a mission - a mission that could very well cause her death. She needs someone powerful enough to help her accomplish this undertaking. Someone strong and loyal. Someone just like the slave known as "Mad Dog". She fails to take into consideration that in gaining a slave she may also gain a lover she will not wish to lose - that is, if they are able to stay alive long enough.

A Jaguar's Kiss by Lora Leigh

Saban Broussard is a Cajun breed enforcer with the DNA of a black jaguar. Stealthy, steadfast and loyal, he has been given the mission to protect the new teacher hired by the pride leader to instruct the breed children of Sanctuary. Saban is nothing if not thorough and so relishes the task set before him. His tongue is swollen and his senses are on alert. Now he must convince his independent mate that life in his arms doesn't mean giving up her stability. It means a lifetime of being loved and cherished. And it starts with just one kiss.

Natalie Ricci has just been through a messy divorce in which her very existence and emotional independence were tested. She wants nothing more than to educate the breed children she has been trusted to teach. She doesn't want nor does she need her assigned protector. The fact that her bodyguard sets her body aflame and her mind reeling makes her nuts, but it is his kiss that she craves. Though she knows without a doubt that just one kiss from her jaguar will change her life forever, Natalie is ill prepared for the feelings that come forth - feelings of arousal and love she has spent months trying to ignore.

Shifter's Lady by Alyssa Day

Marie, the First Maiden of the Nereids, is traveling to visit her brother. Sensing that he needs her, she will not be deterred and thus is allowed to cross through a portal in order to get to the other side where her brother awaits her arrival. Their reunion is short lived, however, when Marie's brother is asked by the Atlantean god's high priest to help with the search for Justice. Though she is told to return to Atlantis for her safety, Marie refuses. Because of this, her brother finds her a protector - and he just happens to be the Alpha of the local were-panther pride and irresistible in Marie's eyes.

Ethan has become uneasy friends with the Atlantean who has made his home upon Ethan's land. Since the man has mated one of the women of Ethan's pride, decides to play nice. His emotions are tested when panthers from his pride are found murdered with no leads or witnesses as to who would commit such a brutal act. Since this investigation is taking up all of his time, Ethan is able to forget his failures. Failures that come to haunt him once his inability to resist Marie's charms become common knowledge. Tested by those who should be loyal, Ethan knows one thing - Marie is his. And what is his, he keeps.

Sea Crossing by Virginia Kantra

Griff is a selkie. Given the task of finding a teacher for the young children of his island home, he doesn't hesitate in his mission. Answerable only to the prince of the selkies, Griff tries his best to persuade the woman to want to stay on the island. His feelings for her have nothing to do with his wanting her to accept himself and his people. Or so he tells himself over and over. But when it all comes down to emotions and love, Griff knows that he will follow his lover wherever she wants to go.

Emma March has lost her job and her family with just one mistake of the heart. Trusting a man when she shouldn't have, she finds herself at the mercy of the sea when the ship she is traveling on slowly begins to sink. Doing her best to be brave, she thinks of others safety before her own and finds herself drowning. Or so she thought. Emma has been rescued by an enigmatic man that makes her yearn for the baser needs that she has in her body - needs that she doesn't want to acknowledge but finds herself exploring. When one of her students matures in ways unheard of by Emma, her life on the island changes in an instant and the end result might not be what she or Griff is expecting.

Each and every novella in this anthology captured my attention and held me spellbound in a world full of paranormal hotties and the women who loved them.

Angela Knight's, MAD DOG LOVE, grabbed me from the start with Rance pacing the cage like the wolf he is. I found his protection of Zarifa loyal and unfaltering, even when he discovers that the woman he thinks she is turns out to be an allusion. His yearning for freedom is unwavering and I found myself more than once torn between wanting him to be set free and wanting him to be tied to Zarifa for a lifetime.

Lora Leigh's, A JAGUAR'S KISS, is absolutely outstanding. As a huge fan of Lora Leigh's Breeds, I placed this amazing author on my auto-buy list years ago - and I'm happy to say this novella is more than worthy to stand beside the other books from this series. Jaguar breed Saban Broussard is sin personified with a Cajun accent and a penchant for whispering sweet nothings in the ear of his beloved. His passion for his mate has no boundaries, even when he is being tested. Incidentally, while Saban likes to cherish his mate, Natalie likes to challenge hers. Fiercely independent but secretly needy, she wants Saban to want her because of love, not need her because of genetics. Ms. Leigh more than proves to Natalie that Saban is the perfect mate and breed for her.

Alyssa Day's contribution to the anthology - SHIFTER'S LADY, takes readers back to the world she introduced with her Warriors of Poseidon series. While Marie is accustomed to being a cherished member of Atlantis, she is no wilting flower. Her character is strong and determined as well as gentle and kind. Her love for Ethan is evident in every encounter and I couldn't help laughing more than once at her emotional ties to rain. Ethan is pack Alpha and one of the toughest male characters I have read about in a long time. Loyal to a dead mate even though he didn't care for her, Ethan continually surprised me. I thoroughly enjoyed sitting back and grinning when his panther side comes to the forefront and demands Marie.

SEA CROSSING by Virginia Kantra took me to a world I seldom read about but think I may have to investigate further. I really enjoyed how she makes her selkies realistic and how she portrays the dynamics of the selkie hierarchy. I found Griff to be blatantly sexy but somewhat shy. Emma March is a worthy heroine to his hero for sheer guts alone. Stranded on an island, unknown by the inhabitants, and without any family around her, she has made the best of her situation. She is courageous and I don't blame Griff one bit for his feelings for her.

Thank goodness I don't have to pick a favorite from this four novella anthology because I would be hard pressed to do so. Know that each and every story will capture your attention, engage your mind, make your palms sweat and your cheeks blush. The conglomeration of authors is the perfect recipe for this enticing and well written anthology.
11 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Mmm, Mmm, Good! March 25 2008
By Digigirl - Published on
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Shifter is a collection of short stories by four of the hottest current paranormal authors. It includes four stories, all with a theme of shape-shifting:

- Mad Dog Love by Angela Knight
- A Jaguar's Kiss by Lora Leigh
- Shifter's Lady by Alyssa Day
- Sea Crossing by Virginia Kantra

As with all such collections, I liked some stories more than others, but I'm happy to report that in this particular collection all four stories were very strong and while I may have my favorite, I really enjoyed them all. One aspect I found unique about this collection is that most of the stories were told more from the hero's point of view than from the heroine's, where most romance books are the opposite, which I found refreshing and absorbing. Here are my reviews of each, for your enjoyment.

Mad Dog Love by Angela Knight

This story is full-on science fiction, set in a distant futuristic alternate world. Pretty much everybody uses "nanobots" to help them out, and of course, the richer you are, the better your nanobots. Although the author never really delves into a technical description of the nanobots, my perception was that they are microscopic little computer systems that are injected into people to enhance their abilities, skills and sometimes, physical attributes.

Mad Dog is a Werewolf - or would that be "nano-Wolf"? His nano system allows him to transform into a much larger, werewolf-like creature with enhanced senses, strength and fighting abilities. A quick reference is made to the origin of this system - he comes from a very challenging planet where such abilities are needed to survive. Alas, Mad Dog was captured by slavers and his nano system is being controlled by someone else. Despite constant torture, Mad Dog remains defiant and determined to escape.

Enter our heroine - an Empress in disguise with a souped up military nanosystem who wants to buy a bodyguard. Adventure - and a steamy romance - ensues.

This author does a very good job of giving the basics needed to visualize and grasp the setting and situation she has created, without bogging down in the technical details as is the downfall of many science fiction stories. Instead, you are caught up by the story and intrigued by the well developed characters. Both the hero and heroine are distinctive and interesting and one can certainly understand why they would be attracted to each other. The story is engaging, and wraps up admirably in the short space provided by this venue.

I don't know if this was a one-time use setting or if we'll be seeing more of this environment in future books - but I hope so. I thought it was a fresh and creative take on the use of nano technology and shape shifting. The story itself was in turns intriguing, adventurous and steamy - all contributing to a solid, satisfying read.

A Jaguar's Kiss by Lora Leigh

This is one of the many Breed stories by this author. I've read a few others so far - a couple of novels and at least one other short story - and I thought this was one of the best ones yet! Lora Leigh is a master at creating sensual tension and heat and this story doesn't disappoint.

The hero, Saban, is a Breed. Genetically engineered with the enhanced senses, and some other traits, of a jaguar. On top of that he's a Cajun with a sexy name - he is sizzlin'!

His prey - er, heroine - is Natalie, the first non-Breed approved to be a teacher to the Breed children. Saban has been assigned to escort her to her new position and ensure her security. One whiff is all it takes for Saban to know she's his destined mate.

Saban is a perfect Alpha male hero - gorgeous, studly, and dominant, yet he struggles to control his desires in order to win his mate's love. He suffers in torment for months while he tries to win her over with traditional wooing. Natalie is resistant, due to her recent divorce from an overly controlling man. Poor Saban, he's got his work cut out for him.

Ms. Leigh did an excellent job combining her trademark white-hot sexual scenes with a sweet and tender love story. And let's not forget the intrigue. All within a short story! Wow. If you've enjoyed previous Breed stories - or if you haven't gotten to them yet - I highly recommend this one. It's one of the best in the series and a great stand alone story, to boot.

Shifter's Lady by Alyssa Day

This is another short story connected to a larger series - The Warriors of Poseidon series. The author doesn't take a lot of time to explain the main premise of the series, but I don't think this would detract from this story, even if you haven't read the other books.

Marie is the First Lady of Nereids in Atlantis. As such, she's pretty well tied to her job. But with her brother having finally found his lady love, she's decided it's time to get away. She's going to go visit her new sister in law (who happens to be a shifter) and get a little vacation at the same time. Little does she know what awaits her in the Land Above!

Ethan is the Alpha of the pack that Marie's new sister belongs to. She's had lovers, but they'd always been the gentle, scholarly type. She's not quite sure how to deal with this strong, sexy Alpha male who's not shy about letting her know he's interested.

Our lovers barely get to say hello before danger threatens and Ethan is forced to deal with it in order to protect his panthers as well as his new love interest.

This story is told from a different direction than most of the Warriors of Poseidon stories. We've met Marie before as a minor character, but suddenly she's front and center and we are reminded that everyone has their own story. The author packs a lot of story into a short few pages, but still manages to keep it cohesive, interesting and sexy. She wraps things up satisfactorily, while leaving options for more stories and even hinting at some developments in the main series. I would venture to say we will be seeing Ethan and Marie again.

Although I think the reader will enjoy this story more if they've read the others in the series, first, it's not absolutely required. Shifter's Lady is a welcome addition to this collection.

Sea Crossing by Virginia Kantra

I believe this is the first story I've read by this author and it was enough to make me go out and look for more. Sea Crossing is a little different than the other three stories in this collection because it has an historical setting instead of contemporary or futuristic.

Emma is a school teacher - or rather, she was, until she was "ruined" by an unscrupulous man who played her for a fool. Now she's got nothing to look forward to but an unknown future in another country, as she indentures herself for a year of labor in exchange for passage to Canada.

Fortunately for her (although she doesn't realize it), her ship sinks during a storm at sea! Miraculously, Emma wakes up warm and dry (and naked) in a strange man's bed. Understandably wary, Emma quickly discovers that Griff is a simple, but honorable, man who does his best to make her feel comfortable. It turns out that the island where she awoke is in need of a teacher - how convenient! She just doesn't know yet that the students - and the other residents - are mythical shape changing Selkies.

At first I wasn't sure if this story was going to work for me; the tone and pacing are so very different from the other stories in the book. But as I read on, the story, the characters, the setting, all began to grow on me. Griff is warm and caring despite his reserved and sometimes gruff manner and the author skillfully portrays him as a strong, virile and attractive man without the usual descriptions. By the time you get to the end, you'll be wishing you could find a Griff of your own.

This may have been the first Virginia Kantra story I've read, but I think it won't be the last. Sea Crossing was a surprising and pleasurable finale to a very good book.

Overall, this was a very good anthology that introduced me to some new characters and authors and reacquainted me with some familiar ones. I enjoyed every story, but I think my favorite was A Jaguar's Kiss (or maybe Sea Crossing...) - it's hard to pick!
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Hot anthology with great authors! March 31 2008
By Sonja Foust - Published on
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
Hot little anthology with lots of sexy stories from four great authors. My favorites were Virginia Kantra's selkie story (the only historical in the anthology-- pretty cool!) and Angela Knight's sexy futuristic. Fun stories!
6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 4.5 stars - No disappointments here, 4 fabulous sexy shifter tales make this anthology a very satisfying read March 15 2008
By melindeeloo - Published on
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Shifters succeeds where many paranormal romance anthologies fail, here we get a quartet of oh so sexy shifters in four stories that not only are well matched in their sensuality level, but also are very satisfyingly fleshed out romantic tales that work well in the novella format.

"Mad Dog" - Angela Knight does an excellent job of bringing together two powerful and intelligent leads in her futuristic tale of a disguised Empress Zafira who purchases a enslaved virile wolf shifting warrior Rance to serve as body guard as Zafira flees the regent that held her captive for years. Zafira can truly empathize with Rance's frustration at his loss of freedom since she herself has lived as a virtual slave in her palace, literally controlled by the regent out to steal her throne. While slave warrior Rance gives Empress Zafira the edge she needs to help her save herself and her empire from the regent's evil plans, Zafira is clearly a force to be reckoned with. I love that both Rance and Zafira recognize that they have more than just heat to offer each other and that it is Rance's trust in Zafira's capability during the final confrontation that allows her to set them both free.

I haven't read Lora Leigh's full length Breeds novels, but "Jaguar's Kiss" far exceeds her previous short "The Breed Next Door" from the anthologyHot Spell. I really enjoyed this one. While Leigh's previous tale had a great setup, it fell apart once the mating heat took over. That's not the case here. Jaguar Breed Saban with his Cajun accent is totally dominant even as he tries to deny his nature and charm instead of claim Natalie using techniques he's learned from dating books. But Natalie senses the animal behind the teasing and banter and is wary of Saban's controlling nature having recently started to enjoy her independence from her control-freak ex. I thought that it was great that even though Saban attempts to push Natalie into accepting that she's his mate by initiating the hormone driven mating kiss, Natalie fights back and doesn't allow Saban to dominate her even though the bond is near undeniable.

In "Shifter's Lady" Alyssa Day combines a shifter's mate bond and the Atlantean's soul meld and the result is one incredibly sizzling attraction. Here Day hooks up Ethan the Jaguar shifter alpha we met in "Wild Hearts in Altantis" ( Wild Thing) and Atlantean healer Marie from the last book Warriors of Poseidon: Atlantis Awakening (Book 2) to give us a nice little fill in to Day's Warrior's of Poseidon series.

Finally, the last story by Virginia Kantra "Sea Crossing" was a much stronger contribution than her previous Fae inspired efforts in anthologies Over the Moon and Man of My Dreams. I loved watching gorgeous Selkie Griff help 'ruined' school teacher Emma to overcome the fallout from her very unpleasant `first time' with passion and tenderness, even as Emma melts Griff's gruff practicality and inspires in him a desire for a permanent bond that is unusual for a Selkie.

All in all this is a fun collection of shifter romances from ladies that really know how to write the steamy stuff but who still manage a decent story at the same time. The icing on the cake here is that we not only get four terrific alpha males but the women that are destined to be their mates are more than strong enough to hold their own when these macho guys' animal sides come out to stake a claim.
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