Reader’s Edyn

I always felt like I could do something more than just read. Finally, I have found both a creative outlet and a chance to do something meaningful with my reading. This blog was created in appreciation of and tribute to all of the authors who have brought me joy through their books. These reviews are my way of giving back to authors and providing recognition for the hard work that each one completes every day!

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Review: TEMPTED BY THE PACK by Anne Marsh

       Title: Tempted By The Pack
                     (Blue Moon Brides, Book 1)

       Author: Anne Marsh

       Release Date: October 26, 2012

       Publisher: Self

       Category: Paranormal Erotic Romance (Contemporary)

       Type: Kindle/Audio

       Ms. Marsh’s Website



Once in a blue moon…

For Rafer Breaux, life in the Louisiana Bayou is harsh, violent—and deeply sensual. The Cajun werewolf lives for his Pack and he’ll do whatever it takes to keep his brothers safe. The longer a wolf lives without a mate, the harder it becomes for that wolf to shift back. To remember that he is a man—and not a monster. And those mates can only be found during a blue moon. When a blue moon finally rises, Rafer will need every weapon in his sensual arsenal to tempt one special woman into his arms and the heart of the Pack.

The Pack hunts for mates

Fighting to keep her family farm, Lark Andrews isn’t looking for love. Even if the very sexy Breaux brothers make her dream of hot bayou nights spent in their arms. When the blue moon leads Rafer to her door, however, Rafer has her rethinking her position on all work and no play. Now, the bayou nights are heating up as Rafer fights to convince her, one sensual touch at a time, to give love and passion a chance. But Rafer isn’t a one wolf deal. Is there room in Lark’s heart—and bed—for Rafer and his Pack?


       Her scent was delicious. That captivating fragrance had hidden beneath the tumultuous smells of the farmers’ market, so the wolf’s first breath carried only flowers and vegetables, the tangy bite of overripe produce and dirt. And then her.
      His attraction was immediate and powerful. She smelled more than good; she smelled right. He moved closer, following the trail she had unknowingly left him. She crouched over a bucket of frilly pink flowers, the tough stems falling away beneath her blade, wet and earthy. One quick slash, a deft twist of her wrist, and she handed the newly shorn flowers to a customer. Her hands riveted him even as her scent intoxicated him.
       He’d visited this farmers’ market many times before he’d grown weary of fighting his wolf and had concealed himself deep inside the bayou, where he could be both man and beast, safe from the enemies who hunted him. He’d never noticed this female on those visits. She was new. Wonderfully different, even though the market was the same sleepy slice of stands perched on the edge of the Louisiana bayou he remembered from his previous visits. The summer heat slowed her down, putting a sleepy glint in her eyes as she fanned herself, fighting the sensual prickle. Her skin glistened with a sheen of sweat despite the airy sundress she wore.
       He liked that sundress. The skirt was all colorful patches, the hem stopping mid-thigh and putting her long, long legs on display for him. She’d kicked off her shoes and twisted her honey-blonde hair up on top of her head. Tendrils escaped, however, curling insistently in the heat. The flower tucked in her hair was a surprise, a bold, deep pink hibiscus that drew his eyes away from the thin straps crisscrossing her bare back and shoulders. The dress cupped her breasts, molding her the way he wanted to shape her with his hands.
       She wasn’t wearing a bra, and she looked good enough to eat.
     His mouth watered from her delicious scent. He wanted to drag his tongue over all her curves and folds until he discovered if her taste matched that scent.
       An answering heat tore through his body, an unexpected arousal that lengthened his cock. Right now, he watched from the shadows, his wolf unseen, but staying there much longer was impossible. He was hunted, and the market had no room for the wild and the uncivilized—or for the dark animal side he kept trapped inside. When he inhaled, he knew who had recently had sex and which women were coming into their fertile times. Sex was a pulsing rhythm beneath the surface of their everyday transactions that none of them were aware of. But he was.
      He didn’t know her name—his wolf had no use for names—but her scent covered the market. While he’d been hidden deep in the bayou, she’d come here, often enough to mark this place as her own. She smelled of sunlight, of honey and sage. Good things, although her scent whispered of arousal too, and the strength of her needing made him wonder if she could possibly be the one. There were dark shadows under her eyes. A blue-moon brides always  dreamt, sexy, erotic dreams that would wake her early and leave her sleepless and aching for a lover’s touch. She was aroused now, but he didn’t know if she enjoyed that sensual state. Maybe she ignored that side of her nature like so many of the fully human did, denying her body had desires.
       He wasn’t human. And he needed.
     If she was his blue-moon bride, she could ease his loneliness. He’d never again have to worry that one night he’d fail to shift back from wolf to man. Tomorrow night, when the blue moon rose over the bayou, he’d know for certain if this woman was the one. For now, though, he stalked her from the shadows, watching her engage with the market’s customers, laughing.
Alive. Wonderfully human.
      She represented famille and a future as something more than an animal. If she wasn’t the one, if he failed to find his bride, he could den with a local wolf and produce pups. Whether or not that litter would be human, he didn’t know. It wouldn’t matter. That kind of pairing couldn’t save him from the animal madness slowly consuming him—and his Pack.
       Tomorrow night, when the blue moon rose, the wolf would hunt whomever the blue moon found—and that chosen mate would run.
       Let her be the one.

Dialogue Highlight:

       The man tying up at Lark’s dock was gorgeous. Broad-shouldered, Cajun and dark, he was a giant of a man. God, that was a Breaux for you. There was no missing the impressive erection he sported, either. Apparently she had the same effect on him he had on her. Wet heat blossomed between her legs. His eyes were fierce, an ice grey that melted as he examined her face. For a fleeting moment, he’d looked like a cold-blooded killer and a predator. Now he just looked hungry.
         For her.
       He wore a pair of faded jeans, but otherwise he was barefoot and bare-chested. He made absolutely no pretense at being civilized, and yet she couldn’t help herself. She breathed in the clean, male scent of him and wanted him on sight. He stood motionless at the end of her dock, where he had tied up his boat, frozen in an almost predatory stillness. As if he wouldn't move until she gave some unspoken signal.
        As if he believed she might be afraid of him.
        The only thing she feared for right now was her virtue.
      His bare chest had her heating right up, and when she dropped her gaze to the denim-covered thighs, she almost went up in flames. Dear God. They grew them hot in the bayou. The sweet flush of arousal sweeping through her was better than any date she’d had with her vibrator.
       A slow, masculine smile tugged at his lips, and he strolled towards her, six-plus feet of rugged Cajun man. Her mind promptly took a detour into fantasy land.
     And yet he seemed more familiar than her few long-distance glimpses of his family warranted. “Have we met?” she asked. 
         “Not yet.” That honeyed accent made listening to him pure pleasure.
       “Lark Andrew,” she said, holding out a hand. He wrapped her fingers in his, turning her palm up and stroking the lines there with his thumb.
        “Rafer Breaux.” His fingers tightened briefly on hers.
       “You come in from the bayou?” Sidetracked by her libido, her brain produced an inanity to help the conversation along. He didn’t look like he minded much, though.
       “Sure did.” His caramel drawl was sinful. “Do a little fishin’. A little huntin’.” He watched her, clearly waiting for her to say something.
       “What can I do for you today?” She took a step backward. Heat blasted off him. She turned and headed back up the dock, knowing instinctively that he’d follow. Sure enough, he was close on her heels.
       “I wan’—” His voice was hoarse, deep. Sexy as hell. Like he didn’t speak often and made it count when he did. “Flowers,” he finished, and for a moment she wondered if he’d intended to substitute another word. Another desire.
        And damned if that didn’t make her wetter.
     The walk to the greenhouse was too short. Her thighs clenched with need, her pussy drenched because he was right behind her. She had the strangest sensation of being stalked by a wild animal, but she didn’t feel threatened. The warm flush of desire was so unlike her. She wanted to wrestle him to the ground, mark him and claim him as hers.
        He didn’t speak again until they reached the first greenhouse. “You alone here?”
       She waved a hand at the other people working in the yard and fields. “Does it look like I’m alone?”
       “Family.” His hand shot out over her head, pushing open the door for her. She had to duck under that hard arm. “I’d heard Miss Dixie passed on.”
       The pain was still there, a softer stab now rather than a bright, hard hurt. She missed her grandmother. “You really don’t get out of the bayou much, do you?”
       He followed her down the greenhouse’s narrow aisle, and she should have been nervous, but wasn’t. He was large and too close, a predator on her heels. And that was ridiculous. He was just a man. An almost-neighbor who simply lived deeper inside the bayou than she did.
        “No,” he said quietly. “I don’ leave the bayou much anymore.”
        And yet he’d come to her for flowers. She stopped by a wooden table loaded with fragrant sweet pea. “What’s the occasion?”
       He looked at her but didn’t answer. Maybe it was one of those bayou things. She probably didn’t need to know, but, damn it, he intrigued her. She wanted to learn more about her bayou man.
       “What do you need the flowers for?” she asked again, finding the dark flush of color on his face strangely endearing. “An evening out?”
       “Somethin’ like that,” he agreed.
       He struck her as a man who knew precisely what he wanted, but maybe flowers weren’t his thing. Choosing for him wouldn’t be a problem. She reached for the scissors.
        “You’re going to get grower’s choice.”
        That slow smile was back in his eyes. “You can always choose for me, chère.” He propped a hip against her worktable and watched her cut, his eyes following her hands.
      She cut slowly, selecting her favorites. “This one has a pretty scent,” she suggested, handing him a slim spray of flowers. He took the stem from her, his fingers touching hers. Deliberately. The soft-rough brush of his calloused skin against hers kicked the heat in her belly—and lower—up a notch. She’d have to change her panties after he left. His eyes flared as if he knew. Which was impossible.
        “This one’s sweet,” he agreed, leaning forward and tucking the stem into the bouquet she was building. The sexy look of concentration on his face as he maneuvered the flower into place, big fingers stroking down the petals, almost overruled her sensible side. She didn’t know him. If Rafer Breaux rarely left the bayou, well, she never went in the bayou.
        He pulled his hands away, but not before she got a good look at the nicks and scars carving up his fingers. Knives, fishing lines… She didn’t know what would mark a man so deeply, but his hands were strong and capable, a road map of doing what had to be done and some primitive part of her responded. 


Um … WOW! I have no other word to describe this book. This was my first Anne Marsh book and now I am wondering what the heck took me so long to read her work. Holy WOW!  I was sucked in from the very beginning and found myself sinking deeper and deeper into the world of the Breaux pack. Ms. Marsh has a talent for giving the reader exactly what he or she wants and still leaving you clamoring for more. All I want to know is how quickly I can start the next book in the series. If you have yet to experience Ms. Marsh, you are only hurting yourself. Seriously!

TEMPTED BY THE PACK introduces us to the Breaux pack; 6 wolf shifting brothers that live deep in the bayou, away from the population that could ultimately be detrimental to their survival. The wolves are not as strong in number as they used to be, credited mainly to the vampires that hunt them. What is more is that the blue moon is upon them. At least one of the brothers needs to find a mate, his blue moon bride, if there is any hope of the pack reproducing future generations.  But this special woman can only be found and claimed on this rare night; a night that allows her the opportunity to embrace the pack or reject them.

Although we find out about all of the brothers, this story is primarily Rafer’s. He knows who the bride is and prays that she will accept him as her mate. But the bride of this blue moon is human and unaccustomed to the traditions of the wolf packs; hell, doesn’t even believe in shifters until she witnesses the brothers in shift. Rafer is chosen as the mate, but not completely accepted. If their pack line is to continue, Rafer must be accepted in everything; body, mind, and soul. So he sets his mind to convince his mate of her place within the pack and their need for her presence. Problem is her unwillingness to leave her old life behind to begin a new one that she has only just discovered. Rafer is then faced with the ultimate challenge: to unite his mate and pack and find a way to intertwine their lives; or walk away from his brothers because of his inability to leave her.

Lark leads a simple life on her flower farm. Abandoned by her mother at a young age, she is brought up by her grandmother and left the farm upon her passing. She has worked hard and done everything within her capability to support the farm, but the bank will be taking her only home away from her in just a few short days. Top that with this pack of wolf shifters who now claim her as their blue moon bride and she is about at her coping limit. But she feels the connection and knows that there is some truth in the wolves’ revelation. However, asking her to leave the only life she has ever known is too much. She will go down with a fight or die trying. Besides, she is not entirely clear on exactly what Rafer means with all of this mate talk. Sure, she’s up for some forbidden nights with the dark and sexy male, but a lifetime? When she is struck with the realization of the truth of Rafer’s words, she faces a difficult decision. Does she want to accept Rafer? And beyond that, does she want to accept his family, or break them apart in a selfish bid to keep Rafer to herself? The future of the pack hangs on her shoulders alone.

I cannot tell you how much I enjoyed getting to know these characters. My time was extremely well spent. Ms. Marsh does a fabulous job of conveying the importance of family in this pack as well as the strong connection that each has; a bond that links them all together on multiple levels. The instant chemistry between Lark and Rafer is nothing short of undeniable. The sex allows the reader to delve into the forbidden, eliciting blushes and provoking a naughty curiosity to read more. I especially enjoyed how each of the brothers was introduced while Ms. Marsh simultaneously allows a balance between information presented and withheld. We find out more about Luc and Dag than the others, but still see the deep connection that extends to the other brothers despite the lesser information. Also interesting is Luc’s plotline. Provided a small glimpse into his own blue moon bride hunt, I can’t wait to see how the rest of his story unfolds.

I enjoyed watching Lark struggle with her undeniable feeling within and the war she wages in her mind of what is realistic and how much she should subscribe to. In a way, her character ultimately has to find a way to grow that allows her to maintain her own values while embracing those of the wolf pack. And Rafer … well, he exudes sex: dark, broody, and rough, yet accommodating and gentle almost to a fault. His willingness to bring Lark into the pack in her own time becomes as necessary to him as breath is to life. He quickly transitions to the Alpha that will rule her, but under that tough exterior, Rafer’s heart will be commanded by Lark.

This story is crazy stimulating. Anyone who reads it is guaranteed to be satisfied. If a reader enjoys shifters, hot sex, and the loyalty of pack that transcends a basic understanding of family, then this story is a must read. There is a bit of ménage, so be warned. And who wouldn’t want to read a story with the best line I have encountered in a long time? 

“You want to play Little Red Ridin’ Hood, I’m plenty happy to eat you up.”

Fabulous, no? Additionally, Ms. Marsh teases with a snippet from the next book in the series at the end. What’s more is that she doesn’t give names of the characters so the reader is left to guess who the next book is about. If you have read Ms. Marsh then I really shouldn’t have anything to say to convince you to read this book. If you haven’t, you really need to do yourself a favor and give it a try. It is a fast read and completely engrossing. In no time flat, you will likely follow my footsteps and become an instant fan of this talented author.

 (eBook copy provided by author/tour company in exchange for an honest review.)

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