Title: Chasing His Cottontail (Hoppity Shifter, #1)
Author: A.R. Barley
Publisher: MLR Press
Release Date: May 17, 2017
Genre(s): Paranormal, Shifter
Page Count: 111
Reviewed by: Kristin
Heat Level: 3 flames out of 5
Rating: 4 stars out of 5
Peter’s been half in love with Luke Holland for as long as he can remember, but his best friend’s very human brother has always been off limits, but when werewolves come to town this bunny shifter is going to have to decide whether he’s ready to fight for what he’s always wanted.
Luke Holland is tall, dark, and human. He’s also off limits for daisy obsessed bunny shifter, Peter. But when werewolves start hunting Peter in the woods around New Hope he’s going to need Luke’s help to fight the intruders. Of course, when Luke discovers the truth about Peter he’s never going to stop chasing his cottontail.
I’ll admit, I had to read a shifter book that wasn’t about a predator: wolves, coyotes, lynx, cats, bears, cougars, you’ve probably read as many as I have. But, seriously…a BUNNY shifter! Not a wererabbit, as Peter is very quick to point out. How cool is that!!
This was a fun read. It starts off with Peter eating daisies and worrying about his hips, that worry becomes a true fear when he realizes the werewolves are in town and are looking for him. A whiskers escape leaves him stranded in a basement, where much to his indignation, he make his way to Luke’s care and house. Peter’s been friends with Luke’s brother for years, but the quiet flame he’s been harboring for Luke is about to become so much more.
Peter as a rabbit is a hoot. Some of the rabbit’s personality comes through in the man, his shyness, nervousness, skittishness, and, yes, a rabbit’s defensiveness. Rabbits can be quite vicious – and Peter, when provoked by the wolves, stepped up to the plate to defend what was his.
I also thought this was one of the better discussions of shifters and male pregnancy. I’m still not a fan of m-preg trope, but I thought the author handled it quite adroitly in the context of the storyline and character development. For those of you who are in the same camp as I, rest assured, there is only discussion. I won’t say more, otherwise I’ll start to get into spoiler land.
My one other complaint with the story was a scene where Peter was crawling into Luke’s lap to have bunny snuggles as a full grown man. Unfortunately, this came across overly girly and felt a bit out of place with the character building that had come previously. I’m not sure what the fascination is with sitting in a lap is, but *most* guys will tell you it’s not very comfortable having a full grown person squishing their bits and pieces. Just sayin…
My quirks aside, I was delighted with the story. We have a bunny, big bad wolves, a tich of romantic angst to balance out the sweetness. I thought the m-preg was well presented and explained (a rarity), and I loved the humor, emotions, and longing interwoven throughout.