Coveted

( 29 )

Overview

“A smart, sexy, rip-roaring good time.”—New York Times bestselling author Angie Fox

“I’m obsessed with Shawntelle Madison’s fantastic urban fantasy debut, featuring hoarding werewolves, magic, and mayhem! More, please!”—Michelle Rowen, bestselling author of That Old Black Magic
 
SOMETIMES WHAT YOU COVET IS IMPOSSIBLE TO KEEP.
...

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Overview

“A smart, sexy, rip-roaring good time.”—New York Times bestselling author Angie Fox

“I’m obsessed with Shawntelle Madison’s fantastic urban fantasy debut, featuring hoarding werewolves, magic, and mayhem! More, please!”—Michelle Rowen, bestselling author of That Old Black Magic
 
SOMETIMES WHAT YOU COVET IS IMPOSSIBLE TO KEEP.
 
For werewolf Natalya Stravinsky, the supernatural is nothing extraordinary. What does seem strange is that she’s stuck in her hometown of South Toms River, New Jersey, the outcast of her pack, selling antiques to finicky magical creatures. Restless and recovering from her split with gorgeous ex-boyfriend, Thorn, Nat finds comfort in an unusual place: her obsessively collected stash of holiday trinkets. But complications pile up faster than her ornaments when Thorn returns home—and the two discover that the spark between them remains intense.
 
Before Nat can sort out their relationship, she must face a more immediate and dangerous problem. Her pack is under attack from the savage Long Island werewolves—and Nat is their first target in a turf war. Toss in a handsome wizard vying for her affection, a therapy group for the anxious and enchanted, and the South Toms River pack leader ready to throw her to the wolves, and it’s enough to give anybody a panic attack. With the stakes as high as the full moon, Nat must summon all of her strength to save her pack and, ultimately, herself.

“If you like your urban fantasy original, quirky, and offbeat, this is the series for you. Natalya is the craziest heroine since Carolyn Crane’s Justine Jones, and you will love her just as much.”—Ann Aguirre, bestselling author of Devil’s Punch

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780345529183
  • Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 4/24/2012
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Edition description: Original
  • Pages: 304
  • Sales rank: 703,137
  • Product dimensions: 4.10 (w) x 6.70 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author

Shawntelle Madison is a Web developer who loves to weave words as well as code. She’d never admit it, but if asked she’d say she covets and collects source code. After losing her first summer job detassling corn, Madison performed various jobs—from fast-food clerk to grunt programmer to university Webmaster. Writing eccentric characters is her most favorite job of them all. On any particular day when she’s not surgically attached to her computer, she can be found watching cheesy horror movies or the latest action-packed anime. She lives in Missouri with her husband and children.
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Read an Excerpt

Coveted


By Shawntelle Madison

Ballantine Books

Copyright © 2012 Shawntelle Madison
All right reserved.

ISBN: 9780345529183

Chapter 1

Werewolves in no shape or form should own a fast food restaurant. No pancakes, no frozen custard, and for goodness sake, my people needed to stop peddling pizza. In my opinion, any establishment where my food could potentially grow microscopic wildlife wasn’t my kind of place to eat. That pretty much left fire-­grilled food on the menu, and the only good thing any werewolf grilled well these days was a well-­done burger. And Archie’s sold the best double-­stacked burger on this side of the Toms River. If the animal walked and men speared it, then Archie burned it the best.

“Hey, Natalya, you’re here early,” said Jake, the cashier.

I averted my eyes after I placed my order. As usual, I was the lowest-­ranking werewolf in the whole joint. “We’re really busy now that the weather’s cooling off.”

Jake offered a friendly smile. “How’s Bill?”

“He’s fine. Still the grumpiest boss ever.”

I ended the conversation and hid out in my usual booth while my food cooked. As much as I loved Archie’s burgers, I preferred to keep to myself while I ate.

As I waited, travelers coming off the Garden State Parkway came by for chow. They weren’t like those tourists who walk around with fanny packs and cameras. Instead, they smelled of money—­the cash they were about to spend on other people’s old junk at one of the many flea markets that lined the Parkway.

Ten minutes later, Jake’s younger sister, Misty, brought out my food on a tray. My mouth watered at the sight of the double cheeseburger and fries. But that snotty werewolf didn’t even bother to acknowledge my presence. She simply dumped the food in front of me and strolled off. A single bright-­red gob of burger sauce landed on my pristine blouse.

My eyes wide, I gaped at the stain as my chest tightened with alarm. And I thought I was crazy. The way she flung food on my table each week, it was clear that she had no idea how every spill, glob, and splatter drastically increased my stress level. With a shaking hand, I frantically wiped the spot with a stain pen.

And all this after I’d spent a half hour this morning meticulously pressing my clothes. With my light chestnut-­colored hair brushed to perfection and my low-­heeled shoes shined, I’d felt like I could survive the day in relative peace.

Well, as peacefully as a werewolf who obsessed over everything could. I didn’t advertise my condition, but if you saw a chick scrubbing her clothes with an industrial-­strength stain pen, you might assume she’s a bit of a clean freak. With an obsessive-­compulsive disorder, I took clean freak to the next level. But even with my condition, I lived what could be called a normal life.

Archie’s had been my lunch spot for the past few years. And no matter how bad the service was, or the conditions, I refused to eat lunch anywhere else.

My food was cold before I had a chance to take a bite. But it didn’t matter. I savored the burger anyway—­that is, until two familiar faces entered the restaurant.

Everyone in South Toms River knew Erica Holden and Becky Knoll. They didn’t work. Well, they worked at being rich, I guess. After college in New York, they came back into town to spend Erica’s rich daddy’s money.

“Jake!” Erica gushed. “You have the order ready?”

Jake’s hungry eyes took in Erica’s perfect blonde hair and cotton candy–­pink sweater. The garment stretched across her boobs and hung on for dear life.

“It’s coming up right now. Took us awhile to grill that many deluxe burgers.” He leaned forward. “Are you having a few guests over?”

Becky laughed and flipped her chocolate-­brown curls behind her ear. “Erica’s picking up Thorn’s favorite burgers. She’s so sweet.”

“Nice to hear the prodigal son’s returned home.”

They were ten feet away, but even from that distance I could sense the excitement sliding down Erica’s back. The name gave me the same honeyed feeling.

Thorn Grantham.

My heartbeat quickened and the burger nearly caught in my throat. I flared my nostrils and focused on Erica. Through the scent of fancy perfume and chemical-­strength deodorant, an underlying scent was there. Thorn was back. And Erica had likely tried to run her manicured fingernails all over him. Probably made a valiant attempt to rub herself against him too. Over the years, her stints at becoming Thorn’s groupie weren’t anything new to me.

I averted my eyes and finished my food. I had just seven minutes left in my lunch hour—­and no time to waste sitting there staring at Erica.

By the time I left for work, she was long gone. As I stalked out of Archie’s, I caught the scent of Misty’s satisfaction as she cleared my table. Even though she always mistreated me and never cleaned up after her customers, I’d still left her a full tip.

I worked at the Bend of the River Flea Market, or The Bends as the locals called it, which was three blocks away from Archie’s. I didn’t mind walking over every day. The fresh air was good for my soul.

And maybe I would even see Thorn on the way to work. I had a feeling, though, that he would be back at the Granthams’ log cabin off in the woods—­meeting with his father, the town’s abominable pack leader.

On the way back, a local organic farmer in overalls waved at me. “Have a good afternoon, Nat.”

“Same to you, Stanley.”

Every day after lunch he waved at me, and then, after I passed by, stared at my legs. I didn’t have any interest in sixty-­year-­old men—­especially ones with pencil-­skirt fetishes. But like the majority of humans in the world, he didn’t know that he was ogling a werewolf every day.

And perhaps he’d be even less inclined to act so friendly if he knew that werewolves weren’t the only strange thing lurking around here.

Eventually, I reached The Bends, a large, old building nestled between a parking lot and another flea market. But The Bends wasn’t just another flea market.

The Bends offered the best deals among the flea markets along the eastern seaboard. Bill was a great employer and all, but I was the brains of this operation. With a computerized inventory system and online store for our more expensive stock, we offered a level of service most flea markets—­supernatural or otherwise—­just couldn’t match.

Growing up as a natural-­born werewolf, I’d been exposed to the supernatural world from the crib onward. It ranged from witches visiting for grade school sleepovers to band practice with the fairy folk. After selling all the strange things we had in the store, I suspected that even stranger things than crooked witch wands and haunted capes lurked around New Jersey to buy. If you checked the right places and had the enchanted eyesight to find them you had a chance. Of course, that left humans out of the mix.

I entered through the back, an outdoor area covered with a long, steel awning. During warmer weather, we sold more of our wares on the rows of tables out here. I headed inside the shop and dropped off my purse in the business office. The office was closed off from the shopping floor by a large set of wooden doors. Two minutes later, I was back in the mix—­in the crowded main room, with a roomful of Saturday shoppers browsing the long aisles.

My boss approached me from the loading dock. “Hey, Nat, about time you got back. The harpy who bought that Victorian vase on Thursday is back. She said the merchandise had flaws.”

To regular folks, Bill looked like a tall, thin man with wire-­framed glasses. To my eyes he resembled the cartoon character Dilbert—­but to my nose he reeked of magic with a bitter tang of iron.

He was a goblin, entrenched in a glamour—­an invisibility spell that hid his true appearance.

“Flaws? You’re kidding, right?”

He pushed his glasses up his nose. “She said something about scratches on the bottom.” He tilted his head to glance at the customer. “She’s upsetting the other patrons.”

Normally, I would have taken over for the other cashier so she could have lunch, but now that would have to wait. “I’ll handle it.” Like I always do.

As I walked over to the harpy, I first noticed another scent overpowering the haze of magic. The woman had doused herself in cheap vanilla perfume. Her flashy ensemble matched garish bright pink sandals with a beaded denim shirt and capri pants. Her platinum-­blonde hair was stark against her penciled eyebrows. I stifled a laugh as I wondered what wildlife dwelled within her teased mane.

My irate customer wasn’t an ordinary woman. Under the guise of a heavily makeup-­covered dame she lived day to day as a ghastly birdlike creature with sharp claws. She hid from human eyes using her magic. This whole encounter didn’t surprise me, though. Along with the unfortunate circumstance of having a human head on a bird’s body, the poor thing’s name derived from the Greek word for “snatching stuff.”

“Can I help you?” I asked.

“I bought this original 1889 Moser glass vase on Thursday.” She pushed the fragile vase into my hands. “I unwrapped it this morning to find my purchase scratched on the bottom. I paid a lot of money for that damn thing.”

“Scratched? That’s impossible. I wrapped this particular package before you picked it up.”

“Well, you don’t know how to handle expensive antiques, then.” She shifted and put her hands on her hips. I could almost imagine black feathers rustling.

With a huff, she searched for Bill. “I asked to talk to the manager.”

I leaned forward. “I’m more than qualified. First of all, you bought an 1885 vase. I had our specialist catalogue it. And second, I don’t mishandle the merchandise.” I checked, and sure enough the bottom was marred with scratches.

“Well, your staff is incompetent.”

“Incompetent? I handled and prepared your purchase—­” I was just about to really begin my rant when the door swung open and Thorn Grantham entered the store. For half a second, I paused. The mere thought of him being in the store knocked me off-­kilter.

At over six feet tall, he towered over the rest of our customers. His messy wheat-­colored hair appeared windblown. The man was as attractive as I remembered him. He didn’t look in my direction, but before he turned his back to me, I caught the glint of his amber-­colored irises. How many times had those eyes hypnotized me? My belly quivered slightly. From the back of the room at one of the computers, I continued to explain to the harpy how the staff, or should I say, how I meticulously catalogued everything on the computer.

Continues...

Excerpted from Coveted by Shawntelle Madison Copyright © 2012 by Shawntelle Madison. Excerpted by permission of Ballantine Books, a division of Random House, Inc.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 29 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(10)

4 Star

(11)

3 Star

(6)

2 Star

(2)

1 Star

(0)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 29 Customer Reviews
  • Posted May 8, 2012

    My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars COVETED is the first book in the Cove

    My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

    COVETED is the first book in the Coveted series by Shawntelle Madison. COVETED was provided to me by Random House Publishing Group for an honest review.

    Natalya is a lone wolf, ousted by her pack leader. Most pack members view Natalya as a liability that is a weak link for the pack. Natalya lives a solitary life with her only contact with the pack through her job and her family. Although the pack are aware of her mental illness, they are not aware of the extent it has gone. Contented to live on the fringes until the return of Natalya's ex-boyfriend. Natalya has decided that she needs to make a change to overcome the debilitating effects of her OCD. Her estranged pack is facing a possible overtaking and Natalya seems to be the target. With the help of friends old and new, she attempts to overcome her OCD and the threat of the infringing pack.

    Overall I enjoyed the book and it was a quick read, but it wasn't very deep. I was expecting deep. I'm not sure why, but the description and cover seemed like the book would have a lot of meat to it. There was a lot going on and the premise of the story was good. I really liked the idea of an OCD werewolf. In most books they almost seem infallible. I also liked the idea that Natalya really isn't a kick ass heroine. She is a mentally ill individual dealing with the daily grind and all that it entails. I'm still kind-of unclear as to why she and Thorn are no longer together. The addition of Nick was a good move. Thorn didn't really seem to have a personality. He was just this mysterious guy watching and protecting from afar. We saw a lot about Nick and got a good picture of who he is and his relationship with Natalya. With all that being said, COVETED left me wanting more. I enjoyed the read overall.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 25, 2012

    5 Stars- Spellbinding Natalya Stravinsky is just your everyda


    5 Stars- Spellbinding

    Natalya Stravinsky is just your everyday, average hoarding werewolf with a major case of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. When the love of her life, Thorn, abandoned her five years ago, her world dissolved. Cast out of her pack, Natalya’s only true joy comes in the form of her many Christmas decorations. When Thorn returns to South River Toms to assume role as the pack’s alpha, Natalya must confront the pain of his abandonment, cast aside her pride and turn to him for aide as the Long Island pack threatens her very existence.

    Debut author Shawntelle Madison is truly gifted. Her dynamite debut kept me enthralled until I turned the final page. I could not put this book down. A riveting, fast-paced, action packed story with a heroine readers will adore. Ms. Madison’s characters are so full-bodied they leap off the page with their hilarious antics. But this story would not be what it is without the heroine. Natalya is such a compelling, dynamic character who touches your heart on so many levels. Ms. Madison finishes her tale with a gut-wrenching ending that left me breathless. This is one of 2012’s must have books to add to your keeper shelf. I can’t wait to read the next installment in Ms. Madison’s series and see what else this powerhouse author has in store for her readers.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 14, 2013

    This book was a really good read. I have never read a book where

    This book was a really good read. I have never read a book where the main character was OCD but was such a bad ass. Throw in sexy werewolves and other magical creatures and you have a wonderful start to a new series. I can't wait to see what the next book has in store for Nat and all the others.

    SOMETIMES WHAT YOU COVET IS IMPOSSIBLE TO KEEP.

    For werewolf Natalya Stravinsky, the supernatural is nothing extraordinary. What does seem strange is that she's stuck in her hometown of South Toms River, New Jersey, the outcast of her pack, selling antiques to finicky magical creatures. Restless and recovering from her split with gorgeous ex-boyfriend, Thorn, Nat finds comfort in an unusual place: her obsessively collected stash of holiday trinkets. But complications pile up faster than her ornaments when Thorn returns home--and the two discover that the spark between them remains intense.

    Before Nat can sort out their relationship, she must face a more immediate and dangerous problem. Her pack is under attack from the savage Long Island werewolves--and Nat is their first target in a turf war. Toss in a handsome wizard vying for her affection, a therapy group for the anxious and enchanted, and the South Toms River pack leader ready to throw her to the wolves, and it's enough to give anybody a panic attack. With the stakes as high as the full moon, Nat must summon all of her strength to save her pack and, ultimately, herself.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 4, 2012

    A werewolf with OCD that hoards Christmas ornaments?!?! Yep, you

    A werewolf with OCD that hoards Christmas ornaments?!?! Yep, you read that right. A new twist showing that even super natural creatures can be normal too. And there are plenty of supernatural creatures in this book. There is even a support group for supernaturals with mental disorders.
    I liked Natalya, but sometimes, I just wanted to shake her. She needs some confidence. Losing her boyfriend, sent her spiraling into her hoarding habit. Now, she has been pining for Thorn for five years. And now, that he is back, he is promised to another. That being said, I really enjoyed the book. You get to see a lot of the hierarchy of the werewolf clans. I liked the characters and the story line. Nick has me intrigued. I can't wait to find out more about him! I will be reading the second book, Kept, which is due out November 27,2012.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 21, 2013

    Coveted kept me mildly entertained but thoroughly underwhelmed.

    Coveted kept me mildly entertained but thoroughly underwhelmed. Natalya is a werewolf that for some reason has been kicked out of her pack, and mostly ignored by her family. She had a great job and a wonderful relationship with Thorn, the next in line to be pack leader. But for reasons that were never made clear, he ... left? And came back at some point, and they still want each other but can't be together because of politics? I never felt the tension during their scenes. I guess it has to do with the fact that I never got to see them together? That can't be all of it ... but maybe some of it. I don't know.

    What I thought was EXTREMELY well done was Natalya's mental illness. She is severe OCD and a hoarder of a specific kind of item. Fortunately I don't suffer from either of those, but the scenes where she is at her home, or when an attack is coming, my breath would become shallow and my heart rate would increase. I felt like I could at least empathize with her. I have a better idea of what people suffering from OCD & hoarding go through day after day. It isn't as easy as just stopping - they have to struggle every day, every moment.

    All in all - I don't have a whole lot to say, good or bad, about Coveted. It was ok. I didn't hate it, I didn't love it. I will give the next book, Kept, a shot, because sometimes it is me that isn't connecting with a book, and the second book really hooks me. I will let you know!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 5, 2013

    Differwnt but enjoyable.

    Took a few for me to get into it. THEN I looked at the clock and 2 hours had gone by. Try this book if you want something a little different.

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  • Posted August 17, 2013

    This was a very enjoyable book. I love Nat's quirky personality.

    This was a very enjoyable book. I love Nat's quirky personality. I really enjoyed this book and I can't wait to read the next

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  • Posted July 31, 2013

    more from this reviewer

    I received this from Random House Publishing for my honest revie

    I received this from Random House Publishing for my honest review.

    Nat is a hoarder or as she would like to call herself a "Collector". She's had a problem with it for years and she finally started to get better when she met Thorn. When he left so did her will and she slowly started to fall apart. And b/c of her OCD tendencies she is a weak link in the pack. She decides to just leave the pack and be on her own.

    A year later she still isn’t any better and her whole house is full of Christmas ordainment's. She gets word that Thorn is back in town and she is thrilled but sad. Things go from bad to worse when members of her pack begin to turn up dead. And for reasons she doesn’t know, they want her dead as well.

    Will Thorn be the one to save her or will it be her sexy wizard hoarder?

    Nat is all by herself and her time is running out. It's kill or be killed.

    I’m going to start this review a little differently than I do other reviews. I’m going to start with what I didn’t like or what annoyed me. Ok, so in the beginning I could tell that Nat and Thorn were in love….or so I thought until HE LEFT HER!!!!! If he really loved her he wouldn’t have left her. Obviously, she wasn’t worth staying for. And it really irks my nerves when he finally comes back she still wants him. Come on!!!!! He left you and you still want him. Not in my world. Another thing that I didn’t like was how she didn’t stand up for herself. I wanted her to be strong like a wolf should be, not be submissive. I guess it goes with her personality. Now that I said that let’s get to the things that I did enjoy about this book.

    I pretty much loved this book. Nothing really blew me out of the water, but I loved it. What made it interesting was Nat’s hoarder tendencies. How she would talk about her Christmas Ordainment's and want to get more. Oh, and she liked everything to be clean as well. It made her seem more real. I applauded her when she finally went back to therapy. After all that things start to heat up. Wolves start turning up dead and everyone thinks nothing of it until it happens again. No one is safe. And who is doing the killings? Nat probably wouldn’t have gotten through all of this if she didn’t have her friend there with her. I mean her whole pack thinks she is not worth protecting. So it’s just her and her friend. When she finally meets the wizard, well that was some fun. He knows how to have a good time and no I’m not talking about party’s .LOL We finally get to see a different part of Nat, a stronger side. She can be herself around him b/c he does the same things she does…without the magic. I really really hope in the next one she gets her mind off Thorn b/c if is sooo not worth the effort she puts in.


    This book goes to show that even the weakest in the pack can do some damage.


    Nat- She really confused me. Here I thought she was going to be a strong character and when Thorn comes back to town, he is all she can think about. Which makes me HIGHLY ANGRY because HE LEFT HER!!!!!!!!!! I know she has problems with hoarding and cleanliness, but does she need to add swooning after jerks too? I really hope in the next one she gets over him.


    Thorn- Ok so you can tell that I think he is a jerk and he is. He comes back to town like nothing is wrong, like he just didn’t leave Nat all those years ago without telling her. He makes me SICK. I’m sorry he does. Some of you might like him, but I don’t. He is to full of himself. He knows what he does to Nat and yet he still messing with her. What kind of guy does that?


    Abby- I loved her!! She was sooo funny and was eating all the time. I hope to see more of her in the next book. Maybe she will knock some sense into Nat.


    Nick- EEP I love him!!!! Hahahahaha Yeah I know I say that about at least one guy in a book, but come on he is a wizard……who has a hoarding problem as well. :D It makes him more real and not fake. (COUGH THORN COUGH) He is totally bada** except the one part where Nat has to carry him LOL but he redeems himself later in the book.


    Cover: I really don’t know about the cover. I like it, but I don’t like it because I’m pretty sure that is Thorn on the front. And of course Nat is staring him down. YUCK Other than that I love it.

    4 STARS!!!!!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 9, 2012

    ?

    I think it was supposed to be funny but instead i found it to be just really sad, even uncomfortable. I didnt enjoy this book.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 30, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Coveted begins by jumping into the heart of Natalya Stravinsky.

    Coveted begins by jumping into the heart of Natalya Stravinsky. From broken promises to an in depth look at her strictly structured life Shawntelle Madison builds Nat's character and her unconventional lifestyle from page one. Nat collects holiday ornaments and etcetera that take over her home and solidifies her status as a low-ranking wolf. I thought it was going to be off-putting to read about a heroine who doesn't appear to be much of a heroine, but Madison gave Nat such a big personality that it was hard not to enjoy her story!

    While I did enjoy reading the story, I didn't feel that it made too big of an impression on me. Madison constructed a world with strenuous relations between supernatural species that was familiar but also unique. What's holding me back from being undoubtedly in love with the novel is the pacing. I love that it was witty and serious in a complimentary manner, but the unfolding of events seemed slow, as though it was taking its sweet time to be revealed. It was great for laying out the gravity of Nat's situation, but I would have liked for the story to just get to the point as soon as possible. Madison's writing style as a whole is noteworthy, though. She made me feel for Nat in every situation throughout the novel. Nat was so aware of herself, even though she had a condition that pretty much controlled her life. She made strides to better her relationship with her family and learned to let others in. Madison gives enough to keep me interested in the way Nat's life will unfold in he future.

    Coveted is only the beginning for Nat and I feel there's so much more to see from her. Kept, the next installment of the series, will be the perfect sequel to show the inner strength Nat has found deep within herself. She's definitely a character and one I'd love to see more of!

    *eGalley provided via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review*

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  • Posted November 24, 2012

    Reading Between The Wines So let me just start off this review

    Reading Between The Wines

    So let me just start off this review by saying that Shawntelle Madison does not write your typical romance. I mean, there are certain check list features present in the story. Love triangle between the heroine and two possible hunk of burning loves? Check. Lots of angst. Check. Heroines got 99 problems, and another b*tch IS one? Check. What's notably absent for those of you who would find this particular feature a must have? Lots of smokin' hot love scenes. I'm going to go out on a limb here though and say, the missing hypothetical love scenes aren't needed. Madison did such a great job of keeping up with events and bombarding the reader with the protagonists emotions that I felt like it totally made up for the lack of mattress dancing. Not to mention that, while the heroine pines away for her former flame that abandoned her, who is a hunky werewolf that's now promised to another woman, I was actually cheering for the neurotic wizard she meets in her therapy group by the end of the book. This book is a fabulous example of how a love triangle should be written.

    The other thing I totally loved about this book? The heroine Natalya, cause she's one crazy chick! Let's here it for an author who can totally write about a nutty ass character who's got some serious problems! My hubby says I like them so much cause I am one - but we're going to ignore him while he sleeps on the couch. I completely LOVE when an author writes that kind of character and does it well. Natalya has got a crap ton of anxiety issues coupled with obsessive compulsive disorder and hoarding tendencies. I could totally picture her hundreds of boxes of Christmas ornaments as she moved through her house. These issues stem from not just her genetic make-up (Natalya's great grandma had similar issues), but also from the abandonment of the love of her life, and her family turning their backs on her when she needed them the most.

    This book has a lot going on, but it's all easy to follow, and I thought extremely enjoyable to read with all of Natalya's quirky issues. Besides, how many books will you get to read in your lifetime that feature a therapy group for supernatural beings with serious issues like Natalya's? I give this book a solid four wine glass toast as I frantically push buttons to pull up the sequel Kept. Enjoy you nutty readers! I know I did.

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  • Posted November 23, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    A promising series! You hear about people that have OCD, but th

    A promising series!

    You hear about people that have OCD, but this book smacked me in the face with reality. I’ve thought multiple times that I have a small form of OCD, and I might, but Natalya has a whole other level and it is crazy. Throw in the fact that she is werewolf and her pack sees her as weak and BAM I’m done like Christmas dinner. In the beginning I felt like her OCD took the front seat to her life, but as I kept reading I realized that that was the point. It was over taking her life, and it wasn’t until a couple of chapters in that you learn more about Nat and start to see her wanting to change. I wasn’t 100% sold on Nat at first because she is very submissive and does not stick up for herself, but that is something that comes as a side-effect to her condition, thankfully it does start to change when she realizes the things that are important in her life. And she tries to change for her own good. She goes on an extremely awkward date, invites an old friends into her home, and gets completely confused by her ex-boyfriend. That’s ok cause he confuses the heck out of me too. Many times while I read this novel I questioned whether or not Thorn actually liked her or if he was just conflicted because of his responsibility to the pack. Oh, Thorn…you’re pretty hot. I can tell. Oh, and then she starts to get funny feelings from Nick (another supernatural creature who is very persistent-me likey). I feel a love triangle come on. So, that being said the characters were awesome and interesting, but the writing was very awkward and hard to follow in this novel. That is the only thing that made me give it a four out of five. For one, I felt like things didn’t really get explained very well. Some things did, but unless I’ve missed something I felt like it as never really explained why Thorn left five years ago and never came back. I also found her relationship with Aggie to be confusing at first. She seemed cold to her at the same time she said she as thankful that Aggie was at her door, and I also felt like it was never really explained how her and Aggie lost touch (I’m assuming it was because Nat moved from New York). Then there is the transformation. I got very very confused about when people were in wolf form or not, and near the end of the novel it stated that only older powerful Werewolves could stop the transformation in the middle of the change, so sometimes when she was talking about her claw, pouncing, sniffing, and nipping at people’s heels then stated that the same person talked or was in human form I had to re-read a page or two to make sure I hadn’t missed something. Otherwise, if it wasn’t for the confusing non-explanations and writing style I really enjoy this novel.
    Good:
    Nat—She really grew on me and I’m proud of her. A fictional character…I know, I know.
    Thorn—He’s interesting and I want to know more
    Nick—I like Nick. He makes me smile and I think he might be good for Nat.
    Aggie—She’s funny.
    The Cover—I know, I know a weird thing to like, but to be honest that is exactly how I picture them! Sometimes you read a book and you realized that the cover characters were not exactly how you pictured them…well, I had no complaints this time. That is Nat, and that is Thorn to me.
    Bad:
    Thorn—I’m confused of his intentions. I don’t know if maybe that is what Shawntelle Madison wanted, but she got it.
    The writing—A lot of things we not explained, or explained correctly (although I hear the reason behind Thorn leaving is in her Novella, I may have to check it out). And many times I was confused about what exactly was going on.
    Overall (Writing style, story line, and general):
    Overall the book was enjoyable. It felt like a mixture of Sookie Stackhouse (the brother, and multiple different Sups after her), Alpha & Omega (a scared and damaged female wolf), and Mercy Thompson series (an independent and lone wolf). Its definitely a good story and one I plan on continuing with (in fact I’ve requested an ARC of Kept), but I hope the explanations and writing gets better in the second book because it sort of did drive me a little crazy.

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  • Posted November 16, 2012

    Before I read Coveted I read the free novella called Collected.

    Before I read Coveted I read the free novella called Collected. I am glad I did because it gave me better idea of who the characters were and what to expect from them. What it didn’t prepare me for was the lack of a plot.

    About 75% of the book was just about getting to know Nat and the world she lives in. Natalya Stravinsky is a New Jersey werewolf whose family has deep Russian roots. Nat apparently takes after her great-grandmother; they both suffer(ed) from a hoarding (collecting) problem. She also has OCD and has been kicked out of her pack because of all her problems. She is a very difficult character to like. In fact I don’t even know what her ex boyfriend Thorn even sees in her.

    That is another problem I had – the lack of romance. There was no spark between her and Thorn or even Nat and Nick. Thorn is a bit of a flat character, he just didn’t have much depth or personality. Nick had a bit more to him and was a little more interesting.

    Overall the story was just ok. It wasn’t an easy read but I stuck with it and I am glad I did. There was a bit of a surprise at the end that I wish had been a hinted at earlier in the story. It was a decent ending and I do look forward to seeing how the next book is compared to this one.

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  • Posted November 10, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Coveted (Book 1 of the Coveted series) by Shawntelle Madison My

    Coveted (Book 1 of the Coveted series) by Shawntelle Madison

    My Thoughts:
    This is the first series that I have read with this kind of continuous story line. I really like it.
    I love that this story has some quirks that a lot of the books I have read don’t. Natalya has a thing for holiday trinkets and tough relationships, be it family or otherwise.
    Thorn and Natalya used to be a couple, but Thorn left 5 years ago and now has returned. Thorn is to be the next pack leader and in a tough spot.
    Nick is like Natalya in a lot of ways, but keeps his distance.
    At this point I am irritated with Thorn, but I understand what he has to contend with.
    Nick and Natalya just met, but I think they would make a good pair too.
    I guess time will tell.

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  • Posted November 8, 2012

    This story takes an interesting look - the likes I've never read

    This story takes an interesting look - the likes I've never read - into supernatural characters with neurological/behavioral/psychological/whatever you want to call it problems. The main character is completely OCD (or should I say CDO because that's the alphabetical order) and has an absolute obsession with collecting...wait for it.... waaaaiittt for it... Christmas Ornaments... Blew my mind... I was definitely NOT expecting that but I have to admit, it was an entertaining read and written in a way where you "got it" - you understood what made her tick the way she did. Natalya "Nat" is a great character if you enjoy character leads with "issues." Shawntelle doesn't write in a way that Nat's problem is annoying...you come to terms with her problems because you're reading through her eyes... I didn't think I'd enjoy that at first. The whole "obsession with Christmas ornaments" thing really threw me off but the way the story is told, you don't focus on how strange that is. You focus more on what else is wrong in Nat's life - why she is the way she is.

    Each character stands out in the story - from the grumpy Bill to the white wizard Nick who quickly became my favorite character. Every page I turned I was hoping for another glimpse of Nick.

    The very first pages of the book absolutely had me caught in its web.... I mean... Chocolate Syrup... Yes please... So right at the beginning I was intrigued by the story. I was hoping for a little bit more of the "juicy" romance aspect but that never came - the only bite being right there in the beginning of the story.


    Overall, I really did enjoy this read even though the directions taken in the plot weren't those that I would've suspected... maybe that's a good thing? I was surprised to say the least. As a "romance," this doesn't rank high on my list BUT as a "paranormal/fantasy" read, this is one that I highly suggests to readers. You end up encountering more supernatural creatures in this book that several others I've read. There's everything from wizards, weres, succubus, to mermaids...

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  • Posted October 8, 2012

    Amazing Debut

    I’ve been looking for a new urban fantasy to fall in love with; something with a kick ass heroine and an interesting world…and if the heroine happened to have issues (ala Justine in the Disillusionists Trilogy or Chess in the Downside Ghosts series) then even better. When this book was recommended to me by my friend Cinnamon I had a feeling it was going to be exactly what I was looking for. And it was.

    I fell in love with Natalya immediately. She is everything I want in my uf protagonists. She’s vulnerable, yet kick ass, she’s got issues, but when push comes to shove she can overcome them…sort of. On top of a great leading lady, there are hot men (yummy Thorn and delicious Nick), hilarious secondary characters and an intriguing world that expands beyond the werewolf pack.

    I look forward to delving deeper into Natalya’s world, learning more about her and her eccentricities and her friends and family. I also can’t wait to see how things develop between her and her love interests. While I’m totally team Thorn, I don’t know if there is anyway to get that relationship back given everything that is against them. In the meantime, Nick might be a fun distraction. Thank goodness I have the next book ready and waiting to be read courtesy of Netgalley.

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  • Posted August 28, 2012

    Well Written

    Shawntelle Madison did an excellent job with Coveted book 1 in the Coveted series. Shawntelle Madison focuses mainly on werewolves, but throws some other mythical creatures. Coveted gives readers the inside look on the workings of the pack when in both wolf and human forms. Shawntelle Madison has given Natalya Stravinsky a quiet personality and an OCD order that causes problems for her in both her worlds. Reading Coveted I found myself absorbed in the story and wanting more. I cannot wait to read Kept book 2 in the Coveted series by Shawntelle Madison.

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  • Posted July 21, 2012

    I'm not sure where to start... I adored this book. This was an

    I'm not sure where to start... I adored this book. This was an incredibly riveting read. My soft spot for all things werewolf aside, this was a must read.

    The main character was so flawed and believable, you couldn't help but love her. She is a mess, but trying to turn her life around. Her illness has caused her to lose her place in the pack and now she is treated like an outsider, a weak link.

    The supporting characters were well written and creative. There were wizards, necromancers, zombies, succubi, goblins, warlocks and muses just to name a few of the many characters. Of course, there were lots of werewolves as well.

    Gosh, the plot was also good. I was guessing until the very end, but enjoyed the entire story. I wasn't so fond of the doomed romance with bad boy Thorn, but it worked. Thorn is yummy.

    This was a fast paced read that I highly recommend for any adult paranormal fantasy lover. Due to sexual situations and adult themes, it is not suitable for young adults. The sequel Kept, will be out soon and I for one can't wait. I give this fascinating read five glittery stars:)

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  • Posted May 17, 2012

    Really enjoyed this book! If you like urban fantasy, you will en

    Really enjoyed this book! If you like urban fantasy, you will enjoy this book. I thought the world was very well developed, the main character likeable and understandable, and the plot kept me reading to the end. My own complaint is that the character of Thorn was flat and his motivations unclear. But I can't wait to read the next installment!!!

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  • Posted May 6, 2012

    This book is incredible. I never expected to feel such empathy

    This book is incredible. I never expected to feel such empathy for a hoarding, OCD werewolf.

    I'll be rereading this book many times in the future. Loved it.

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