Title: Pride and Joey
Author: Devon Rhodes
Publisher: Pride Publishing
Release Date: September 13, 2016
Genre(s): Paranormal Romance
Page Count: 64
Reviewed by: Ariel
Heat Level: 3 flames out of 5
Rating: 3 stars out of 5
Vance has grown up the odd one out in a macho and very insular pride of lion shifters. Differences like enjoying the cool fall weather are bad enough – his pridemates would kill him if they learned he was gay. Still, his pride is all he knows. He’s never even met a shifter of another type… until he discovers an unconscious cougar male in his lair.
Joey is on the run and wants to keep Vance at arm’s length, especially since someone very close to the lion is at the root of all his troubles. But there is something irresistible about Vance, something that has Joey wanting more than he has ever dared to dream.
When their lives are threatened, Joey must choose whether to sacrifice himself, or try to live and keep Vance close… for the very short remainder of his life.
I love big cat weres. So, a story about a majestic lion and a beautiful cougar got me excited. You don’t see a lot of shifter stories about big cats.
This story is about the budding relationship of Joey and Vance. Joey is running from bad guys and stumbles upon Vance’s lair. Vance comes to his lair and discovers Joey sleeping in his bed. It’s love at first sight for them. Vance instantly gets all protective of Joey which is so sweet. Vance’s cousin Brady comes along to visit and those three hatch out a plan to discover who’s behind the kidnapping of Joey and how to get Joey’s stuff he left behind. This leads into a surprise ending and an actual mystery which was unexpected.
A wonderful surprise – There is a mystery. Who is really behind the kidnapping? Was it a random kidnapping or was Joey picked out purposely? What was the reason? When you get to the end of the story everything is explained and it’s surprising. The ending has a HEA which I appreciated.
When Vance and Joey look at each other, get out your sunglasses, because you can see the sparks. Joey looks at Vance with hesitation and when Vance catches him looking Joey looks down and all you can say is aww. When Vance looks at Joey there’s fire in his eyes and he just wants to take him right there. Joey trusts Vance, but he doesn’t know why. I believe the Fates brought them together and it was instant trust and love because their souls were tied together.
The story is told from both points of view. I really love that. You get the viewpoint of both Joey and Vance for each situation. Chapter one starts with Joey’s POV and chapter 2 starts with Vance’s POV and it alternates from there.
The story moves along quite well for a short story. Nothing is too dragged out so you’re like tapping your foot and it doesn’t rush along where you’re wondering what just happened. So for a short story, the pacing was perfect.
My only criticism of the story is in the very beginning. It mentions that Joey’s clubbing pants were very loose on him. I wish this had been explained because there was an explanation. Towards the end of the story we find out that Joey has a condition. I wish that would have been mentioned earlier in the story instead of at the end. This left me with a big “What?”. Like this came out of left field. Luckily, though, his condition has no bearing on the story whatsoever. He doesn’t act weak or anything. So, if you’re a person who will not read a story that has a character with a disease in it this story is safe.
Overall, I I liked this story. The relationship is beautiful and loving, the story is short and entertaining, and the characters were wonderfully written. If you love a big cat story you will like the story. I do recommend it.