Monday, March 21, 2016

Blue Moon Rising by Bailey Bradford

Love can conquer all, if he’ll only believe…

Roman Jonas has spent years recovering from a violent assault when he was just a teenager. He’s worked hard, and finally found his place in the world. Now, if he can only get his coyote to agree. As a medicine man for his pack, he isn’t able to shift. It’s frustrating to say the least, but not as frustrating—or confusing—as the feelings he has for former Ranger Abraham Evans.

Abraham lost the ability to do his job effectively when he was shot. His right arm and hand are close to useless, and he’s had a hell of a time not dying over the past month. Sometimes it seems like it’d be so much easier to just give up, but a certain hazel-eyed man has captured his heart, and it won’t stop beating.

When Abraham is discharged from the hospital, he moves to Del Rey to be closer to Roman, and because he has no one else in his life who truly cares about him.

Slowly, he and Roman begin a tentative friendship that turns into something more enduring than they’ve ever dreamed of, but enemies from the past threaten everything and everyone Roman and Abraham love.

Reader Advisory: This book contains reference to past sexual assault.

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Book 3
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Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

I really appreciate how Bradford writes the books in many of her series in such a way that if you haven’t read the previous book or it’s been a while since you read it, she gives you enough background detail to keep you on track with the characters of interest without boring you to death with a recitation of the series’ history. So even though I haven’t read book one and it’s been months since I read book two, I was able to pick up Blue Moon Rising without feeling too lost – having the desire to go back and read the previous installments is another matter entirely, because yeah, I now want to do that.

Abraham is a soon-to-be-retired Texas Ranger, thanks to an injury he received in the line of duty while protecting Roman and several other shifters (even if he didn’t know they were shifters at the time). He feels a strong pull for the young man who was victimized several years ago and then again recently. Because of their age difference and Roman’s past, Abraham tries to ignore his feelings. But Abraham isn’t the only one denying his attraction, and Roman’s hesitation is even more understandable considering what he suffered at the hands of his attackers and because his confidence remains shattered as he continues to be unable to shift, unlike most of the rest of the pack. Adding a human lover to his life is a complication he doesn’t need, no matter how safe Abraham makes him feel. Yet Roman cannot stay away from Abraham – at least not on the astral plane – and after repeated visits and the discovery of something unexpected, Roman finally works up the nerve to approach Abraham. Watching Roman attempt to overcome his past and his shyness while Abraham does everything in his power not to do anything threatening or take advantage of Roman’s vulnerability proves to be sweet and entertaining. But once Roman is able to convince Abraham that he is ready to move beyond his past trauma and wants them to be together, things heat up quite nicely as the men set out to learn whether or not they have a future with one another.

Blue Moon Rising does a nice job of balancing the romance between two injured men, with quite a bit of action and suspense. While we watch Roman’s confidence grow in himself as a shaman and as a man, Abraham’s recovery from his injuries as he tries to find his new purpose in life, and the two men begin to build a relationship, enemies from their and the pack’s past return seeking vengeance. The Vonheimers target Abraham multiple times over the course of the novel until everything comes to a head with a shootout that may or may not be the end of their troubles. I loved the blue moon ceremony at the end of the book. Granted it was hot as heck when Roman’s mating instincts took over, but it was also great to see him finally able to shift because I knew that was the final barrier for him to overcome his reservations about being the pack’s shaman. Finding out there’s another bear shifter in the mix was cool, too. Blue Moon Rising was another enjoyable addition to the Coyote’s Call series and I look forward to reading whatever Bradford releases next.

A native Texan, Bailey spends her days spinning stories around in her head, which has contributed to more than one incident of tripping over her own feet. Evenings are reserved for pounding away at the keyboard, as are early morning hours. Sleep? Doesn't happen much. Writing is too much fun, and there are too many characters bouncing about, tapping on Bailey's brain demanding to be let out.

Caffeine and chocolate are permanent fixtures in Bailey's office and are never far from hand at any given time. Removing either of those necessities from Bailey's presence can result in what is known as A Very, Very Scary Bailey and is not advised under any circumstances.

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Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of Blue Moon Rising (Coyote’s Call #3) by Bailey Bradford to read and review.

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