Giveaway and Book Review of I Kissed a Dog
The Werewolves of the West Series Book One
Sponsored by Bewitching Book Tours
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I Kissed a Dog
The Werewolves of the West Series Book One
Carol Van Atta
Genre: Paranormal Romance/Urban Fantasy
Publisher: Cambridge Press US under the umbrella of Charles River Press (CRP)
Number of pages: 446
Cover Artist: Ann Falcone
Chloe Carpenter isn't like other women. She can communicate with animals. A gift she unwrapped following one of her frequent dances with death.
In her otherwise wacky life, she's finally found a semblance of sanity working at the Plum Beach Wildlife Park, where her unique talents can make life or death differences for the animals in her care. That semblance is shattered when a new veterinarian roars into the park in his spiffed up sports car and sets his golden gaze on her. If she had her way, he'd roar right back out.
Problem: He's her new coworker and he's saved her life twice - in the past twenty-four hours.
Zane Marshall, Enforcer for the Pacific Pack of purebred werewolves, has a job to do - figure out who or what is mutilating the young men of Plum Beach.
With orders to find the woman who talks to animals, he accepts a position working alongside the fiery Chloe Carpenter, a female who ignites his interest far more than he ever expected. Remarkably, she's the one elusive female with potential to bring meaning and passion to his empty existence.
Problem: She despises him.
Together, they're forced to unravel a mystery of supernatural proportions, a murderous mystery with eternal implications for everyone. In the process, they discover opposites really do attract.
Major Problem: Zane is pledged to another woman, and she'll do anything to keep him from Chloe.
About the Author:
Like most authors, Carol Van Atta is no stranger to the written word. She penned a short novel at age 12 (somewhat frightening illustrations included, and lots of bunnies were involved), and had a creative writing piece published in her high school newspaper (about David Bowie's Diamond Dogs LP). Yes, she's an ex-80's chick.
Devouring books from numerous genres, Carol developed a deep thirst/hunger for more reading material, and could almost always be found with her nose in a book.
She has contributed to several popular inspirational anthologies and devotional books, and lives in the rainy wetland of Oregon with a terrifying teen (another in college) and a small zoo of animals. She is taking an undetermined hiatus away from inspirational writing to delve into her darker side. (Though you can check out her latest spiritual suspense novel, Soul Defenders). It is rumored that this genre-jumping occurred after Carol discovered too suspicious red marks on her neck, and experienced an unquenchable urge to howl at the moon.
“Calm down, Missy.” Zane hovered over the female Zebra. His current caring demeanor belied his feral nature as a werewolf.
Standing just inside the door, I could sense Missy’s terror. She saw Zane as a hunter not a healer. I wondered if he was even a real veterinarian.
“Are you planning to help or just watch me struggle?’ Zane asked, eyebrows raised.
“Oh, I don’t know. She thinks you’re going to eat her for breakfast.”
“You think you’re so cute, don’t you? Do you have any idea what you’ve got us into?” He moved away from the squirming filly to face me.
“Me?” How in the world could he blame me for his brutal rampage? And why did I still find him so darn delectable? My so-called disgust had vanished, replaced by an unacceptable craving to feel his mouth on mine. I forced myself to think of the bloody men in the field. That did the trick. My loathing returned.
“Yes! You! When I said ‘stay in the bar,’ did that not mean stay in the bar?” He stepped closer, glaring down at me, his eyes wild with fury and something I couldn’t discern.
Backing up, I found myself pressed against the wall. Icy fear froze my mouth, keeping me from spouting off.
“What have you done to me, Chloe Carpenter?” Taking another step, he reduced the distance between us. I could smell his musky cologne and feel his body heat.
“You’re scaring me,” I peeped.
“It’s about time something scared you.”
Without warning, he reached around the back of my head with one vast hand, drawing my mouth to his.
His lips pressed against mine; I melted — my knees all rubbery. Sensing my dilemma, his other hand slid around my waist pulling me closer.
To my dismay, he was hard — everywhere.
A little moan escaped from the back of my throat as I parted my lips, allowing him to explore my mouth. Sighing with pleasure, my hands moved of their own accord, finding their way around his neck and into the thickness of his dark waves. His hair was as I’d imagined, soft yet dense.
A delicious wildness hummed between us, I was reeling from its intensity.
Missy’s distinct braying-bark tore through my mind, reminding me I was locking lips with a vicious, inhuman beast, all while the zebra looked on, fearing not only for her own safety, but also, from the images she was firing my way, for mine.
“The zebra needs you,” I whispered.
“From what I can tell, you need me more.” Zane smirked.
“O-o-o-o-o … you.” The words wouldn’t form.
So much for self-control.
Deciding to hammer my raging hormones into submission, I approached Missy with caution. I could see the pain and terror in her eyes. Apprehensive, she snorted as Zane moved closer.
“You’re scaring her. How can you be a vet when the animals see you as a predator?”
“I’m great with lions, tigers, and bears, oh my.”
For a moment I just stared — a werewolf joking about the Wizard of Oz. Could things get any stranger?
I should have known better than even to think the question.
Just for Fun and Just Because: Both Chloe and Zane work with animals at a wildlife park in the fictional town of Plum Beach, Oregon. Plum Beach is actually a substitution for the real coastal town on the Oregon Coast: Bandon. Bandon is home to the West Coast Game Park Safari, which was the model for the Plum Beach Wildlife Park. If you’re ever in the neighborhood, you’ll want to visit. You can actually pet baby animals … like lions, tigers, and bears, oh my! The photo below is from one of my trips to the wildlife park. That is my hand on the lion cub.
So, if you were to pick the weirdest person/paranorm for a vet, what would it be? Personally I would pick a werewolf… or a vampire, but only if they ate animal blood exclusively and you rarely find that. But that’s the genius of this book, the vet and romantic foil is a werewolf. And our heroine talks or communicates with animals… and guess what? Generally speaking, they don’t like having a Were as a vet.
Fabulous concept. I love the tension between Zane and Chloe. Such a great romance novel. And the mystery is so fun. Although sometimes I just wanted to take them aside and say.. “Seriously, you need to just accept that you like each other. It would solve so many problems.” Although it creates problems of its own. ;)
I give this book 4 out of 5 clouds.
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