Why you should treat yourself to a Shelly Laurenston para-normal novel – (beginning with the 1st in the series): Character Development: The author does such an unbelievable job of blending the animal behavior in so well with the human side thus creating characters that are so realistic for a paranormal story that it is so easy to suspend belief and actually see the characters in your mind. The wolf shifters behave like wolves, the feline shifters do not act like lap cats, and bears lumber. The attitudes of the animal side are so well incorporated in the characters to make them real to the reader and cause a laughing spell. The characters are so well portrayed that a mental picture is easily established for the reader. You come to know the characters and can’t help but be not only fascinated by them but also care about them.
Humor: The humor can be considered rude, crude, sarcastic and totally believable for the characters. It is so realistic that you can imagine yourself saying the same thing in the same situation. The interactions between the determined Alpha Males and the Strong Willed Females are some of the funniest moments in the novels that I have ever read. The attitudes of the animal side are so well incorporated in the characters to make them real to the reader and cause a laughing spell. (Warning, do not start reading any of these books in public if you don't want people staring at you when you start giggling uncontrollably. I am a grown woman - I never giggled - until I started reading this series.)
Alpha Males: Strong, caring, not perfect Alpha Males that when they set their minds to making a certain female his – has no problem being as sneaky as a feline, as determined as a wolf or as patience as a bear. Each novel involves a different Alpha who comes across that particular female that just happens to make him want to roar or howl to let everyone know that she is his and his only, if he can only get that suborn female to acknowledge it.
Strong Female Characters: In the animal world, the female of the breed is often more dangerous than the male and/or capable of taking care of themselves and not waiting to be "rescued". This means that the females in any of Laurenston’s novels are strong, sarcastic and are fighters whether shifter or human. They do not suffer fools or weaklings gladly or at all. It takes a strong Alpha male to even get their attention but he had better not try any sh*t on them or they’ll take his a** down a notch.
Originality and Creativity: Out of this world! The only way to describe it is to tell you what it is not: No fated mating – each couple has their own unique reason as why they find themselves attracted to each other – just as in the real world. None of the same plot line just with a different couple – each novel has a unique plot line – no repeats or rehash. No cardboard cutouts for characters. Every character has his or hers unique personality – again, just like in the real world. This still does not touch on how creative the writing is – there are just no words to really describe it.
World Building: Both the South and New York are used as backdrop for this series and the author successfully incorporates the regions with all their local uniqueness. I did live in New York but, I've lived in the South most of my life and while most parts are urban and not so "country", there is still to this day what one could call "redneck" communities that are as "unique" as Smithville or Smithtown. And YES - there are adults named Sissy and even some Bubbas (I don't like to admit it - but, yes I have known a few of them.)
Editing Problems: Simply put – there are none.
WARNINGS: The series must be read in order because the world building is continued from one novel into the next. Also, the previous characters are continued into the next novel as part of the world building which creates a unique world that you are able to visit whenever you get a chance to escape from this reality. If you like your romance to be sweet with the female protagonist waiting for her "Knight in shining armor" to save her - this novel is not for you. If you are offended by explicit sex scenes and profanity - again, this novel is not for you. If you want your hero or male protagonist to be the strong but sensitive type - this novel is not one you will enjoy. If you do not like or get sarcastic humor - then skip this series.
This is a very long review but please keep reading. If you look at all my reviews you will see that the first couple pages are all 5* reviews for Shelly Laurenston/ G A Aiken novels as well as a few other authors (after that you can see the good, bad and real ugly). That is because I have done the authors an injustice and am finally catching up on what I should have done a long time ago. I usually do not review all the books in a series unless or until they start to go downhill. I figure that once you are hooked on a series it does not matter what anyone says – you’ll make up your own mind to either stay or quit the series. I did not think that maybe my reviews might actually help on newer books in the series – attract attention from readers who were not even aware of the wonderful writings of the authors. That is why you will see this same review on most of the novels. I actually did an injustice to one of the few writers who actually help me get through this past year events because I just did not want to take the time to write a review.
Last summer, I had several life altering events that happened to me – not the good type either. The events, the constant problems that had to be resolved after, the decisions that had to be made were all devastating emotionally, physically and financially. (The old saying that trouble or bad things come in threes is a lie – it can be multiples of that.) It was a time when I wasn’t taking a day at a time – I was taking it minute by minute – just to get through the next decision – face the next problem. Late one night when once again sleep eluded me, I picked up my e-reader and scanned my books to see if I could distract myself with anything. My eyes fell on my section of Shelly Laurenston novels. I started with the 1st in the series – The Mane Event and for the 1st time during that period I could escape from all the pain, troubles and sorrows that I was experiencing. While I couldn’t laugh – they did make me smile and forget for just a little while everything else. While I have read other author’s novels over the past year, it has been Shelly Laurenston/G A Aiken’s series that I have read over and over again to escape to a more pleasant place – to smile again. And for that, Shelly Laurenston deserves a 5* review on every one of her books that I have practically memorized over the past year.