The shape shifters from Gemini Island’s Ursa Resort have been through hell. In the battle with their enemy the Alpha Brethren, they suffered losses and are still dealing with the emotional aftermath. No one in this heroic group has emerged unscathed.
When mountain lion shifter Connor Church lost his best friend, he made a vow to protect his widow and small children. Of everyone on Gemini Island, he knows best how badly the young family has suffered.
Unfortunately, Elaine Gleason hasn’t made it easy for Connor. Drowning in grief, she moved her family far away. When a medical emergency forces them to return, she is confronted by unexpected feelings for Connor, a man who has always been one of her closest friends. Her emotions send her into a tailspin when it becomes clear Connor feels the same way. They fight the attraction, tortured by their loyalty to Elaine’s dead mate.
When a remorseless organ trafficker develops an obsession for Elaine, Connor’s protective instincts emerge and he realizes his feelings run much deeper than friendship. The friends at the Ursa must do battle once more. But even if they win, can Elaine ever move past her grief and start a new life with Connor?
Oh. My. Goodness.
I always love Rosanna Leo’s books, but even so, Predator’s Salvation stands out as a truly remarkable achievement in romance. Heroine Elaine has lost her husband, Lloyd, and is struggling with her feelings of profound loss and her growing love for his best friend, Connor. This would be a tricky situation in real life, and even harder to swing in romance. Lloyd wasn’t just a friend, an abusive husband, or anything that would be easy to lose — he was Elaine’s mate, her soulmate in a very real sense, and his loss is literally killing her. Can she ever recover? Should she?
Fortunately for Elaine and her (adorable bear shifter!) children, Connor (THE perfect man, fact) is more than willing to help her in any way she needs, and they process their grief over Lloyd’s passing together. Their attraction to each other feels disloyal to Lloyd’s memory, but it’s there and it feels like a miracle after everything they’ve been through. The emotion in this book is so real and totally affecting, it feels like more than fiction — you’re really living it with the characters and rooting for them every step of the way. I cried a grand total of THREE times, and I haven’t cried because of another book in 18 years.
That’s not to say it’s miserable — it isn’t! It’s sad, hopeful, and so beautiful, I know I will go back and read this again and again.
Now that the Gemini Island Shifters have defeated August Crane’s cult and local drug dealers, what’s left to fight? I’m glad you asked! The villain in this book is a spectacularly creepy serial killer and organ trafficker who makes Hannibal Lector look like he lacks ambition.
I also enjoyed the romantic subplot about waitress and deer shifter Marcelle — no spoilers, but you get two love stories for the price of one. ; )
Part romance, part crime thriller, Predator’s Salvation is a uniquely wonderful treat I am positive I will remember for a long, long time. I cannot recommend it enough. Read it!
Guest review contributed by Jessica Cale. Jessica is a historical romance author and journalist based in North Carolina. Originally from Minnesota, she lived in Wales for several years where she earned a BA in History and an MFA in Creative Writing while climbing castles and photographing mines for history magazines. You can visit her at www.authorjessicacale.com .