Latin Moon, by Jeigh Lynn (***)
All in all, I enjoyed this werewolf romantica starring Latino-American heroes, and Jeigh Lynn slowly builds the foundation (rules) for her werewolf culture here in LATIN MOON (unlike Liz Andrews & Lena Matthews' SHADOW OF MOONLIGHT). Instead of making up fancy names to build the culture, Jeigh Lynn slowly reveals the crux of the werewolf culture via suspense and mystery. Family is clearly important to Jeigh Lynn and it shows in her story here with a Latino family (the Hernandez's) and their extended relations. The men are dark and handsome, the women petite and pretty and the sensuality oozes from the pages. There were some weird, jarring parts however (Alex's cousin Adrian giving Alex a massage? And Michael and Rand kneeling before Alex like some Godfather scene?) while the finale seemed to flounder around with so many characters involved. I don't mind a large cast, but when the story seems to throw names around just to account for them from a bookkeeping standpoint, I have to wonder whether the author is more interested in setting up sequels or telling this story. Still, it's one of the better werewolf erotica/romantic (whatever you want to call it) that I've come across.
After Dr. Alex Hernandez glimpses Jessica "Jess" Ingram at his little sister's dance recital, all that matters is meeting her, talking to her, claiming her. The 'pack alpha' (leader, dominant) for his group of werewolves consisting of various family, Alex formally meets Jess at the hospital later and the two immediately explore their attraction for one another. Uncommon nowadays, Jess is a virgin and since mating partly transforms Alex which could frighten Jess (nothing major, just an amber eye color to accompany a feral carnality), Alex convinces Jess to abstain until after marriage. Alex wants to slowly ease Jess with his true werewolf nature and so keeps that aspect secret from her. Meanwhile, anonymous phone calls warn Jess to stay away from Alex while attempted assaults and abductions on her person heightens the drama behind a threat to Alex's pack. When a pack member -- Rome -- goes missing, Jess and Alex must work with Alex's family to string together the pieces of the puzzle. Attempts on Jess's life and Rome's disappearance seem connected. The sensuous romance parallel this mystery plot as Jess shockingly comes to grips with Alex's true nature. Enjoyable, relatively substantive plotting and pacing, steamy, and romantic.
Wynd Temptress, by Kathryn Anne Dubois (**)
This is a futuristic paranormal and I thought the writing and settings in this were better than most from this genre. There's even some attempt at political maneuvering in the beginning with Alaska's resources. Still, I didn't find this story all that sensual, surprising since the beginning is written from the hero's perspective. Although Dubois injects love and romance, I found the ending flat and dry. It's the year 2150 where some people potentially have psychic power. When the League of of World Government Sectors subdues Jezermiah Cameron's evil great-grandfather years ago, the government establishes the Psychic Sensory Investigations Agency to ferret out psychics utilizing their talents to gain an unfair advantage. Jezermiah Cameron AKA Jesse Calhoun's evil great-grandfather was a level five psychic, and along with being a level five psychic herself, Jez controls the wind as well. The Psychic Investigations Agency brings Adam Wydner out of retirement to examine the new self-elected mayor of Chinook, Alaska, Jezermiah Cameron AKA Jesse Calhoun. A level five psychic himself, the agency wants Adam to determine if Jezermiah has inherited her evil great-grandfather's powerful psychic abilities and whether she isn't unfairly influencing people with her psychic abilities for (or against) an important new proposed pipeline through her city.
The premise has Adam abduct Jez, whisking her away to resort-like grounds where she has the freedom to go anywhere but endless surrounding fields offer no substantial escape. At the resort, Adam intends to conduct his investigation of her psychic talents and their influence in her mayoral position. But Jez quickly turns the table on Adam and ties him up instead! I always enjoy a fun turning-of-the-tables, and thankfully, Dubois obliges. Unfortunately, the sensuality failed to resonate although Adam and Jez's banter was fun at times. The ending was worse, with an overabundance of choking love sickness on Adam's part. Jez has two other sisters, Jez the wind to her sisters' fire and water. Their stories are explored elsewhere.