The Howling Heart by April Bostic
Publisher: Eternal Press
Publication Date: August 1, 2013
Paige Donovan is an ambitious college graduate who aspires to reach the top of the corporate ladder. She’s climbing fast when given the promotion of a lifetime at a prestigious fashion magazine in New York City. Her bright future comes to an unexpected halt after news of her father’s death. She inherits his old cabin in the Colorado Rockies, and just when she thinks her luck couldn’t get any worse, she has a car accident in the mountains and awakens in the small, remote community of Black River.
Soon, she’s engulfed in the mystical world of Varulv—wolves descended from 13th century Scandinavia and blessed by Norse gods with the ability to appear human. Paige is desperate to return home, but never expects to fall for her rescuer, Riley Gray, a charming young werewolf from England who offers her an alternate future with his pack.
Now, she must choose between the career she’s always wanted and the love she’s always dreamed.
The Howling Heart is a sweet paranormal romance about the depth of love between two individuals from vastly different social worlds who must overcome almost impossible obstacles to find their way to each other. Along the way, this young couple will have to risk everything that’s familiar and safe to them to find happiness, and a pervading question throughout the book is how much Paige is willing to sacrifice for a man who loves her so deeply, it’s almost heartbreaking at times.
I would place this book in the new adult paranormal romance genre, and it’s one that adults of all ages who like the supernatural might enjoy, but because of the sexual situations, I wouldn’t recommend it for younger readers. I enjoyed the inclusion of Norse mythology connected to the origin of the Varulv wolves that live in secret all over the world. The story is set in the remote area of Black River, Colorado, where Riley Gray’s pack has settled, living quietly apart from humans. Bostic does a great job in describing and explaining this male-dominated, patriarchal group of super wolves who abide by their own laws. In fact, humans have never been allowed into their world until Paige Donovan arrives in town.
Riley and Paige already have a connection, a bond that’s formed between them, even though Paige isn’t aware of it when she arrives back in Black River to stay in her father’s cabin where she spent one wonderful summer as a child. Paige is a recent college graduate and her career is just beginning to blossom at a prestigious fashion magazine until she learns of her father’s death. She takes a brief leave of absence to revisit the cabin so she can decide what to do with it. She becomes terrified when she discovers evidence a wolf has been lingering in her cabin and decides to cut her trip short. However, unfortunate circumstances prevent her departure and she ends up staying with Riley and his family instead. Overall, Paige is a likeable character, but she always seemed to be one step behind in making connections that seem so obvious.
Paige’s fear of wolves is the first of many obstacles Riley must face as he tries to win Paige’s heart.
He knows she is the woman he’s been waiting for all of his life and wants to claim her, but pack law prevents wolves from telling humans about their existence. Paige becomes almost hysterical at the thought of wolves being in the vicinity, and Riley’s father, the alpha of the pack, has forbidden Riley from trying to explain the situation to her. However, Riley is determined not to let Paige leave.
Paige is just getting over a heartbreak of her own and has no intentions of falling in love with Riley, but he is sweet, patient, and relentless in his pursuit of her. Whereas Riley seems to have a case of “insta-love,” Paige initially only has “insta-lust,” but her resolve to leave weakens as she spends more time with the beautiful white wolf who is quick to profess his love and adoration for her. Riley is a charming hero, who is strong and confident and not overly “alpha” when he’s with Paige. I also like that he is so easily able to express his emotions and feelings around Paige instead of holding everything in.
Pack law plays an important role in the story and is a catalyst for much of the external conflict that ensues. The arrival of an unwelcome Varulv wolf also adds another level of unexpected drama and danger to the plot and shows that if finding love is hard, holding onto it is even more difficult.
Overall, this a feel-good paranormal romance about a couple’s struggle to overcome overwhelming odds to keep them apart and left me with a big smile at the end. I would like to see Riley’s sister, Quinn, have her own story. She is a strong, supportive character and deserves a chance for happiness.
I received a copy of this book from the author for an honest review
Music to Complement the Book
As I read the book, these two songs kept popping into my mind and I think both tie in nicely with the story line. Once you meet Riley, I think you’ll understand why the Bryan Adams” song sounds like his personal anthem as he pursues Paige.
Foreigner: “Waiting for a Girl Like You” –
Bryan Adams “(Everything I Do) I Do It For You”
April Bostic is a New Jersey-based, Adult Romance author who enjoys unleashing her creativity and letting her imagination run wild. Her love of romance books inspired her to become not just a reader, but also a writer. In December 2008, she self-published her first novel, a contemporary romance with a supernatural twist entitled “A Rose to the Fallen”.
Her first short story, “Right Here, Right Now”, released in January 2012, is an erotic romance with a dash of S&M. The following year, she released two more short stories: a romantic urban fantasy inspired by the Greek myth of Eros and Psyche entitled “Eros, My Love”, and a sexy romantic comedy entitled “Love Addiction”.
After five years, she released her second novel, “The Howling Heart” in August 2013, a paranormal romance that delves into the mystical world of werewolves and Norse gods. To end her busiest year in publishing, April will release her fourth and final short story in December, a historical vampire romance entitled “A Dark Scandal”.
Author contact links:
Amazon: The Howling Heart
April Is giving away a $20 Amazon or B&N gift card, and
an eBook copy of The Howling Heart to one lucky winner.
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