Series: Shifters Unbound #7
Author: Jennifer Ashley
Blurb: To cement the leadership of his North Carolina Shiftertown, Bowman O’Donnell agreed to a “mating of convenience.” Two powerful wolf shifters, he and Kenzie keep the pack in order and are adored by all. Bowman would do anything to protect Kenzie, for in each other’s arms they’ve found far more than friendship. But as strong as their attachment is, they still haven’t formed the elusive mate bond—the almost magical joining of true mates.
Now with a monster ravaging the countryside and threatening the Shiftertown community, some in the pack fear that a pair without a true mate bond isn’t strong enough to lead. Bowman and Kenzie will have to rely on their instinctive trust in one another to save their Shifters—and the ensuing battle will either destroy them or give them the chance to seize the love they’ve always craved.
Thoughts: Mate Bond is a unique addition to this series, and a rather unique shifter romance in its own right. Bowman and Kenzie have a mating that, while it is a “mating of convenience” per se, is also one in which they have a powerful attraction and love for one another. They also have an amazing cub together. They balance each other out for the well-being of the pack. They seem to have the perfect life together. What they lack, however, is the mate bond – which might not be such a big deal, if not for the fact that it leaves their life together with one great big question mark over it. If they don’t form the bond with each other, then that leaves the possibility open for them to one day form the bond with someone else – even if it is not something they even want or are intentionally seeking. In the blink of an eye it could just form with someone – which casts quite a shadow over their relationship. I personally loved this storyline…it was interesting, and my heart ached for both Bowman and Kenzie and their plight. My only issue with it was I never really felt that it was fully explained why the bond between them was so elusive. Personally, my take on it was that fae magic was manipulated in some way to deliberately mess with them and their pack and to keep that bond from forming on purpose – but that’s just speculation on my part…J
Additionally, we have new “monsters” to contend with that provided for interesting action and suspense! All in all, I have to say that this was an amazing read and one of my absolute favorite books from this series so far – and one of my favorite reads this year! Loved it!