Title: Camp H.O.W.L. (Dreamspun Beyond, Book #7)
Author: Bru Baker
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: 11/1/2017
Genre(s): Paranormal Romance
Page Count: 238 pages
Reviewed by: NeRdyWYRM
Heat Level: 3 flames out of 5
Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5
Moonmates exist, but getting together is going to be a beast….
When Adrian Rothschild skipped his “werewolf puberty,” he assumed he was, somehow, human. But he was wrong, and he’s about to go through his Turn with a country between him and his Pack—scared, alone, and eight years late.
Dr. Tate Lewis’s werewolf supremacist father made his Turn miserable, and now Tate works for Camp H.O.W.L. to ease the transition for young werewolves. He isn’t expecting to offer guidance to a grown man—or find his moonmate in Adrian. Tate doesn’t even believe in the legendary bond; after all, his polygamist father claimed five. But it’s clear Adrian needs him, and if Tate can let his guard down, he might discover he needs Adrian too.
A moonmate is a wolf’s missing piece, and Tate is missing a lot of pieces. But is Adrian up to the challenge?
I’ve read hundreds of shifter romances and none of them had quite the same twists as this one. The world was interesting, the biological details were similar but different enough to be original, and the fated mates thing—while it exists here too—wasn’t necessarily a done deal and happened slightly differently for these particular shifters than the usual.
I also enjoyed the fact that both MCs were outliers in their own communities, each for different reasons, but still. It was refreshing to have the comfort of the familiar with the intrigue of something new. I enjoyed this story as it was a bit of a slow burn between the MCs, moonmates or not. They each had some baggage lurking around and some obstacles to overcome to make things work together, but nothing so extreme as to take away from the character or relationship building.
I had no complaints about POV switches, word usage, vague or euphemistic sex scenes, a lack of meaningful intimacy or any of the myriad other things that sometimes characterize shifter romances. I should have a hard time justifying anything less than a 4-star rating, but to be honest, though unique, I didn’t necessarily connect with the story in an evocative way. It was good, but not fantastic, well-written but not a particular stand-out, and even though I liked both MCs, I didn’t really get an abundance of feelz out of the thing.
It wasn’t boring, but it wasn’t especially fantastic either. Camp H.O.W.L. was well-executed and a nice departure from the norm. I just won’t be spinning cartwheels over it anytime soon. I recommend this read for folks who enjoy paranormal romance, are partial to shifters, and who are tired of the same ol’, same ol’.