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Sunday, August 23, 2015

Scent of a Scandal by Annie Nicholas ♥ Review & GIVEAWAY ♥ (Paranormal Romance)


Awe and Isnay have been secretly flirting, but they can’t be together because their wolf packs have been rivals for ages. Neither of their alphas will bless the union.

Is desire to follow pack law stronger than their desire for each other?

A Chronicles of Eorthe short story



A great addition to this series!

I have read the first book in this series, and I think Scent of a Scandal is a great addition!

I liked Awe and his dedication and commitment to Isnay. Even though they are forbidden to see each other, he feels that she is the only female who can tame his aggressive nature and pursues her.

Isnay has a strong sense of loyalty to her pack and family and is conflicted about Awe. I liked her indecisiveness because it made her more believable.

This book came with a bonus story at the end, kind of a background-story to Awe and Isnay. I recommend reading that before reading the main story itself.

I can't wait to read more books in this series!!!


Chapter One


The leather necklace held a turquoise pendant the same shade of Isnay’s eyes. Awe had bartered with some vampire traders for the gift. He bit his bottom lip as he rubbed the smooth stone with his thumb. Would she like it?

“Very pretty. Maybe you can borrow a dress from Leilani to match?” Vendu sat cross-legged next to Awe. The hunter’s sense of humor got him in more trouble than not.

“No.” Awe stuffed the necklace in his bag.

“You’re right. It would be too tight across the shoulders. Maybe Rain has something that will fit better?” Vendu spoke of the young omega male who had been caught wearing his sister’s clothes over the winter.

Awe shoved Vendu hard enough to lay the other hunter onto his back. “Shut it.” He didn’t have to explain himself to the other wolf shifter. Vendu was above him in pack hierarchy but not by much. He wouldn’t challenge Awe over something as minor as a push. If Vendu lost the fight, he’d have to submit to Awe, so he would pick his battles wisely.

The other hunter rolled on his back. “Fine.” He twisted onto his side, resting his head on his hand. “Who’s the female?”

Awe glanced around. The Apisi den was in a dead end ravine and only had two levels dug into the cliffs on each side. Individual caves were used as homes, mostly shared by families. The sandy main corridor was filled with the laughter of pups playing wolf and rabbit, the same game he and Vendu had grown up playing. Some of the mothers watched over the chaos, and all shifters had excellent hearing. He didn’t want them gossiping about him, or worse, a scandal.

Vendu followed his gaze. “Not someone mated?” His whispered sounded outraged.

Scowling, Awe restrained punching some sense into his friend. “No.” Like he would touch another hunter’s mate without fighting for that right. “Not here, Vendu. There are too many ears.” He rose to his feet grabbing his bag. His secret was worse, but no matter how he tried, he couldn’t stop seeing her. How could something be so wrong when every instinct in his body said it was right?

The other hunter jumped to follow. They could talk more freely in the forest.

“Awe!” A gruff voice bellowed from the common pack room.

Both he and Vendu flinched.

“What did you do?” asked his friend.

“Nothing I would admit to.” Awe hated the quiver in his answer but the alpha made all the hunters tremble when he used that tone of voice. Was it possible his alpha knew he’d ignore a direct order not to see Isnay again? The door to the pack room suddenly appeared much bigger and the distance impossible to traverse.

Vendu slapped him on the shoulder. “Good luck.” The coward jogged off, leaving him to face Sorin alone.

Crossing the main corridor, Awe entered the large cave that acted as a pack gathering room. Once there had been only a few threadbare rugs on the ground and a plain fire pit. Not long ago, the Apisi had been so poor they couldn’t afford any comforts.

Since Sorin had taken control of the pack and mated with Susan, things for the Apisi were progressing. Vampire traders came more frequently since Susan had created a new cure she called penicillin. She came from another world where humans existed instead of shifters, vampires, and the multitude of creatures populating Eorthe. With her came valuable knowledge.

Now thick carpets covered the dirt floor and plush cushions surrounded the more elegant fire pit. The alphas had gifted the omegas with paints to decorate the cave walls in a riot of colors and also bought instruments to fill the den with music. At the moment, an older couple played flutes in a duet. The song slow but piercing with joy. Things were better, enough that Awe wanted to convince Isnay to leave her pack and be his mate. She could possibly be happy here. Maybe.

He approached his alphas, his gaze to the ground in submission.

Susan patted the cushion in front of them. “Sit.” Her twin pups slept in a basket next to them, curled together in their furry feral form. They were cute at this age, until their teeth came in then they would being chewing on everything. Including ankles.

Awe did as he was told. That was what hunters did – provide for the pack, protect the pack, and obey their alphas. He set his bag, containing the gift for Isnay, next to the cushion and he ignored his guilt. That last oath had some gray lines and he might have crossed one a little too far.

Today was laundry day for the Ohneka pack. Isnay would be by the river that separated their lands with other omegas from her pack, doing the wash. Their packs had disliked each for as long as he’d lived. Well, everyone disliked his pack. Except Isnay. She didn’t seem to mind. He wanted to give her the necklace and if he didn’t hurry she be gone for another six days. She couldn’t wait for him. The hunters of her pack guarded their precious omegas. They’d usher her home once her chores were done.

Sorin cleared his throat. Even sitting, the alpha still loomed over him. “We have a task for you.”

“Today?” Awe’s heart sank. He’d have to wait for the next time the Ohneka did laundry to give Isnay her gift.

Sorin’s brow furrowed. “Of course today. You’re the only hunter off duty.”

Next to him, Susan sighed and set her small hand on Sorin’s thigh. “Did you have other plans?”

Awe shook his head. If he voiced a denial, they would smell his lie. It was difficult to have an affair without lying, but not impossible. He’d learned his lesson. A few moons ago, he’d asked Sorin if a cross-pack mating were possible for him and Isnay. His alpha had outright refused and banned him from seeking her attention. The Apisi had plenty of unmated females from which Awe could choose.

“You’ve heard the story of where I came from?” She continued petting her mate. Awe watched as Sorin visibly relaxed and ignored his own pang of envy. He too searched for a mate who could ease the ever-growing violence in his soul.

“Yes.” Who hadn’t? She’d fallen from a blue light in the sky from another world.

“I’ve been tracking the portal – the blue light – across shifter lands. We need to make sure no one else falls through from either side.”

“What can I do?” What did this have to do with him? He guarded Susan while she was pregnant as she trekked all over temple lands with Peder, figuring out how to track the portal. Awe didn’t know anything of math or science. He was of no use to her.

Sorin sat straighter. “According to Susan’s calculations, it’s going to open on Ohneka lands this afternoon.”

“Dark moon.” Awe rubbed his face. What if another human fell out? What if Isnay wandered in? “We have to warn them.”

His alphas shook their heads in unison. “They wouldn’t understand. Braek will think this is some sort of attack. We need to keep this quiet.”

Susan handed Awe a stone with a message skin tied to it. “We want you to search for the portal. I can give you an idea of where but not an exact location. Make sure no one stumbles in and toss this message to my people through the light.”

Awe weighed the heavy stone in his palm. “I thought Peder had already done this.”

“Yes, but I want to make sure my message is clear. It’s imperative they not send anymore humans through the portal or they’ll get infected like me.” She could never return to her home. His mother had been one of the first to die of the illness that had struck the Apisi before Susan’s arrival. Many more would have followed if Susan hadn’t sacrificed everything to save his pack. He’d do anything she asked.






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Annie Nicholas writes paranormal romance with a twist. She has courted vampires, hunted with shifters, and slain a dragon’s ego all with the might of her pen. Riding the wind of her imagination, she travels beyond the restraints of reality and shares them with anyone wanting to read her stories.

Mother, daughter, and wife are some of the other hats she wears while hiking through the hills and dales of her adopted state of Vermont.

Annie writes for Samhain Publishing, Carina Press, and Lyrical Press.

        

Win a copy of Scent of a Scandal gifted via Amazon.com!



@AnnieNicholas http://goo.gl/Z9uiBj pic.twitter.com/99MVlnuaR8

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