Hi there! Today I’m sharing a review and giveaway for a contemporary M/M shifter mystery/romance from V.L Locey. AN ERIE GARDEN PARTY is the third book in the Lake Erie shifters series and features copious cross-species lovin’, a bit of revenge, and some dead bodies… This novella releases 4/13.
Catch my review and enter to win a copy for yourself below.
About the book:
Spring has finally arrived along the shores of Lake Erie and no one is happier than skunk shifter, Templeton Reed. Now that the snows have melted, he can frolic and play on the grounds of Lupei Manor, the formidable home that he shares with his life partner, Mikel Lupei, the alpha of the Lake Erie pack. What a pity that his joy is short lived.
Not only does a stranger appear to shake things up in the manor, bodies begin showing up on the grounds as well! Could the newcomer to the pack be the one viciously killing innocent humans and shifters? Or is there a more nefarious force at work lurking just outside the boundaries of the ancient manse Templeton, Mikel, and their LGBT friends call home?
How about a little taste?
“Son of a human,” Mikel snarled. He stripped and shifted. I stood with his clothes over my arms, watching the wolf work the scent. He padded to the lake, snuffled the shore intently, and then slowly made his way back to the corpse. I turned my head to stare at Erie when he shoved his head under the bloody sheet to smell the body. The water seemed almost tranquil today. How I wished we were planning our spring fete instead of standing here beside a dead man. Mikel tapping my arm brought my attention from the Great Lake back to him. I handed him his pants.
“So, what can you tell us about this poor man’s fate?”
“He’s human.” Mikel zipped his trousers vehemently. “And he was killed by a large animal, either wolf or bruin. Whoever did this dragged him through the lake to mask the scent. I’ll have to gather the pack to scour the woods. Damnation.”
“Oh dear me,” I sighed. “I suppose the call must be made then.”
Mikel threw his head back and stared at the soft white clouds ambling past. “Yes. We have to notify the Elder counsel. That is standard operating procedure when a human is involved in mystical matters. Damnation!”
I reached out to pat his thick bicep. I wasn’t sure he wanted consolation but I offered it anyway. He placed his hand over mine.
“Let me know when they plan to arrive. I’ll take a long stroll through the woods.”
Mikel’s lip rolled as he turned to look down at me. “I hate that as well. You should be at my side. This mansion is as much your home as it is mine.”
“Yes, well, the times they aren’t a changing as rapidly as needed,” I smiled then snuggled into his wide chest. His arms cinched around me tightly, his smoky shirt smashed between us. My ear rested over his strong heart. “If one of the Elders saw me here it would raise questions. I know we have a lie all in place, but I for one do not wish to put that lie to the test. Better I enjoy the forest for an hour or so while they attend to this mess.”
“I love you beyond words, Templeton,” Mikel said into my black hair. “Someday, I swear, we shall not have to hide our love for each other.”
“From your mouth to the Elders’ ears,” I whispered, then tipped my head up for a kiss. We both needed one. Pity it couldn’t be a longer one, but it was tender.
This is the third book in a series, and I’d advise readers to begin in order for best enjoyment.
Templeton Reed is a skunk shifter in love with Mikel Lupei, the Alpha of the Lake Erie wolf pack. The feeling is very mutual, and they co-habitate in Mikel’s mansion on the banks of Lake Erie with a few misfit beings: A gay vampire and his thrall, a bisexual wolf and his best pal who happens to love a mer, and the house staff of half-Elves. Mikel, Templeton and Vincente (the vamp) are all agents of OTTER, an underground shifter organization that keeps its eyes on the supernaturals, making sure they’re staying undercover, I believe. This was likely explained in an earlier book in the series, and not really touched upon here until I was half finished with the book.
At the opening, Mikel’s cousin from the Puget Sound pack, Havel, arrives literally in tatters. He’s been kicked out of his pack by his father for behavior unbecoming, which we later learn has to do with Havel’s predilections for beautiful dresses. Coincident with Havel joining the group at Lupei Manor, a murdered human’s body washes ashore on their beach. It’s clear that the man’s life was taken by a beast, but the water has washed away the scents of the perpetrator.
The Elders must be called to investigate, and Templeton’s not above sticking his nose out to find the guilty party–mostly because Mikel’s too moon-crazed to give proper attention to the problem. When a second body comes ashore, however, and Havel seems to be squarely in the mix, Templeton’s really got his work cut out. Also, lots and lots of sex. Mikel’s response to the full moon is running with his pack and rutting with Templeton, with a few nap and food breaks in between.
This is a fun story, and I wished I’d read the previous books in the series so I could have enjoyed it more. I was able to catch up quickly, though there were moments of confusion for me that I know would not have existed if I’d read the first two books. That said, the mystery portion was interesting and Templeton has a great voice, so I did like the story. I am a fan of odd shifter types, and Templeton–as a skunk–was so fun. Poor man was often scared nearly-muskless, and yet his tenacity to discover the murderer, knowing how outmatched he was, was charming. He’s also brave when it comes to his personal relationships. Mikel and Templeton must keep their love affair secret, or risk retribution from the governing Elders. Yet, Templeton hates lying to his parents. Is there a coming out party planned? Maybe…
Interested? You can find AN ERIE GARDEN PARTY on Goodreads and pre-order it in advance of the April 13th release on Torquere Press and Amazon.
Click on this Rafflecopter giveaway link for your chance to win a copy of AN ERIE GARDEN PARTY.
Good luck and keep reading my friends!
About the Author:
V.L. Locey loves worn jeans, yoga, belly laughs, reading and writing lusty tales, Greek mythology, the New York Rangers, comic books, and coffee. (Not necessarily in that order.) She shares her life with her husband, her daughter, one dog, two cats, a flock of assorted domestic fowl, and three Jersey steers.
When not writing spicy romances, she enjoys spending her day with her menagerie in the rolling hills of Pennsylvania with a cup of fresh java in hand. You can find her on her website, blog, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Goodreads and tsú.