Author Note: This book contains m/m sexual content and is intended for readers of legal in the country in which they reside.
Shadows: When Beasts Bite is the second book in the Shadows series.
Shadows: Soul Stealer is book #1
Shadows: Barely Restrained is book #3
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Another enjoyable installment in the Shadows series. In When Beasts Bite, we learn more about the mysterious garouls, Nick and Jordy, and what was behind the anger we saw from Jordy in Soul Stealer. In Ms. Cothern’s supernatural world, garouls are what most of us refer to as shifters – which I figured out once Jordy shifted into his panther form and Nick became a wolf. Where Ms. Cothern’s garouls differ from most shifter books I’ve read is that they can become stuck in their animal form if they spend more than 24 hours in that state; while it’s not unheard of for shifters to go “feral,” embrace their inner animal, or whatever particular term is used to indicate that the individual is no longer able to return to their human form, 24 hours is the shortest period of time for permanency to set in that I’ve ever encountered, but it certainly ratcheted up the suspense factor of the book. But I’m getting ahead of myself here. Nick and Jordy are best friends and have been pretty much since the moment they met five years earlier. I found Nick’s telling of their meeting rather interesting and would have loved to have heard the entire story of the events of that night. Because of their bond, we learn that they engage in ménages on a regular basis (2 or 3 times a week), but that there was never any sexual contact between them … until their last encounter three months ago. While we don’t get to sit in for that particular encounter (or any of their ménages = sad, sad me), the guys discuss it a couple of times once Nick realizes that it is at the heart of why Jordy began distancing himself from Nick. As the book is told from both characters’ points of view, it was easy to feel Jordy’s frustration as he struggled to come to terms with what it was about that encounter that was bothering him and Nick’s feeling of loss as his friend asked for space while he tried to figure it out. The book really got interesting when Jordy took his need for space literally and headed out to his cabin in the middle of nowhere (i.e., a national park in Florida). Apparently it’s true even for garouls that distance makes the heart grow fonder and Jordy invites Nick out to the cabin so they can hash things out once and for all. When the men realize that they are not gay in the traditional sense but they are certainly gay for each other, the situation come to a head (pun intended) and things get hot and steamy real quick. Ultimately it is the bond of intimacy they forge that becomes Jordy’s only chance for survival when the outside suspense element is introduced. Ms. Cothern has crafted a novella that strikes the right balance of paranormal, suspense, and romance elements with hot M/M action in When Beasts Bite. Yet again, she has left me anticipating the next novel in the Shadow series, Barely Restrained, where the even more elusive Roni’s secrets will be revealed. I received a complimentary copy of the book in exchange for an honest review. Reviewed by Angela at Crystal's Many Reviewers!