Maria Vale’s writing is gorgeous; she tells the story of wolves in a way I’ve never read before; her voice feels unique.
But when I recommend her books to a new reader I also feel like I need to give some kind of warning. Like: these are romances with HEAs *but* not every problem is overcome thanks to love.
In these books Pack & its strict laws give the characters a home, a way of life, a family, *&* can’t be ignored even when love is found.
In The Legend of All Wolves series Vale also puts a spin on “shifter romance”: the characters who transform into wolves identify as wolves, not humans who occasionally change into wolf form. When they appear human-like, they say they’re “in skin.”
Season of the Wolf, the fourth book in the series, focuses on widow Alpha Evie who gives all of herself to Pack & continues to shield them from humans & “shifters.” In Vale’s world, shifters are different from wolves like Evie & instead of cherishing the environment want to destroy it.
Constantine is a shifter captive of sorts in the Pack. A former killer for his shifter boss, Constantine initially hates the forest that is life for Evie.
But Constantine & Evie are drawn to each other (though honestly, I had to rely on faith that there was actually a way forward for them b/c Pack & its ways are everything.)
Vale is a stylist. Her writing isn’t delicate to me: it’s earthy & forceful & feels evocative of an outside world I don’t have the opportunity or senses to experience like this.
In this character-driven book, so much of the plot is about the little gestures—the ones that reveal Constantine’s feelings for Evie; his growing attachment to Pack members & the forest; how Evie shows her feelings for Constantine in the end.
Sometimes I loved it; at others, I wanted more.
Thanks to the author for taking such care with her books & crafting pnrs that leave me with things to chew on. Also for making me smile with wry references to things humans do—we are so often silly.
CW: murder; abuse of children
4.5⭐️. Season of the Wolf is available now. Thanks to Sourcebooks Casablanca & Netgalley for my complimentary ARC. All opinions provided are my own.
Give me that HEA, please.
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