I would lick that man up one side and down the other.
Half-shifter and lead SPAC agent, Val Calhoun, has listened to women gush over the Don Juan of the precinct for the last four years. Yeah, Detective Britton Townsend is hot and has stunning blue eyes, but that foul mouth he saves only for her? What a waste of good looks. And no way does Val want that mouth anywhere near hers.
When the shifter community is threatened, Val is assigned to the case…and fails. So the High Council turns to the rogue shifter they’d sentenced to twenty years as a human – that same obnoxiously sexy Detective Townsend. And sends the two arch-enemies deep into the North Carolina Mountains – together, and alone.
Being stuck in a tiny honeymoon cabin with Miss Castration and only one bed is definitely not Britton’s idea of a good time. But the High Council doesn’t take no for an answer. After his shifter abilities are restored, Brit is once again susceptible to the dreaded, irreversible bonding instinct, the Drall. Thankfully, all he’s ever felt for Val is intense loathing, no reason to worry. Right? All he has to do is solve this case pronto, and he can go back to his footloose Casanova ways. That is, if they don’t kill each other first. Or worse… fall in love.
Well, this one was sure different. I enjoyed the unique shifter rules created in this universe that Ms. Niles has created. I liked the different word use for theology references, the hint at uncontrollable passions and a happy-ever-after hard fought and won. I even enjoyed the prickly relationship that Val and Britton initially engaged in.
This novel was full of surprises not the least of which is the real reason why Britt treated Val the way he did. The concept behind it was absolutely fascinating and I respect the twist Ms. Niles threw in when he was exposed to the drugs too many times. That was a nice bit of suspenseful and emotional writing that drew me in and kept me on the edge of my seat.
I thought the external conflict plausible and reprehensible. Takes all kinds to make a world and sometimes the worst villains, even those that claim noble intentions, make for effective skirmishes between characters, personalities and situations. I was quite worried the worst would happen.
I also liked the strength of Val’s feelings for Britton once they blossomed. She really is a heroine because of her actions, her decisions and the way she stood up for Britt and not only defended him like a good police partner should, but as a woman with deeply held beliefs and morals. I was proud of her.
Britton was quite heroic too. He had to make a hard decision and it just about killed him. I felt so bad for him and because the writing was done so well, my feelings were all twisted up in sadness for what Britt was going through. It wasn’t quite a tear jerker but close; it was close.
The one person I wanted to pound some sense into, and who frustrated me the greatest was that super starched up, arrogant, by the rules leader, Mr. “Law is the Law”, Harwood. Grrrrrr, he totally steamed me with his attitude. Ms. Niles created a great character that I would enjoy seeing cut down to size. Val had a better way, an effective way to get through to the stick in the mud leader of the High Council. I don’t think I could have held it together as well as she did.
The Awakening: Britton is a really well written story that kept my interest, engaged my emotions and delivered a passionate and sexy happy ever after conclusion. This is the third book in The Awakening series, and I never read the first two so I can confidently recommend this novel to new readers too as this is a solid standalone read. I enjoyed myself immensely and had a great time. The Awakening: Britton is a must read for paranormal romance readers who are looking for a great romance and a winning story with moments of sheer nail-biting emotional suspense. It’s a worthy read.