Cardeno C.; Mary Calmes
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Dreamspinner Press
Release Date
April 2014
LGBTQ, Vamps & Shifters Romance

Vy Aleknos is the leader of a hawk shifter flock. Openly gay since he was a teen, Vy is proud and self-assured on the outside, while secretly worrying he'll be forced to spend his life alone because two males can't be mates. When bear shifter Robert Cimino appears in Vy's small town, Vy realizes his concerns were unfounded — he has a male mate, and a sexy, dominant one to boot.

Robert is a bear shifter who refuses to shift. Immediately attracted to Vy, he deviates from his normal pattern and seeks more than a one off with the powerful, bristly hawk. But Robert's affections are rooted in his human form, and when Vy discovers Robert doesn't recognize him as his mate, he pulls away. If Robert wants to stay with Vy, he must convince a man deeply ruled by his animal instincts to give their relationship as humans a chance.

Book Review by Carly (Carly's Book Reviews) (reviewer)
Jun 16, 2014   [ OFFICIAL REVIEW ]
217 people found the following review helpful
Bird meets bear, bird falls in love, bear doesn't know what to think any more!

Vy is the young and powerful leader of his ket, a group of hawk shifters long established in his community. Robert is a nomadic bear shifter who is just passing through.

When Vy feels the pull of his mate nearby, he doesn't know what to do. He had dreaded this moment. As an openly gay man, how could he deny the pull his hawk feels toward the mate destined to complement him in every way, when his heart yearns for a man to love?

Unable to resist any longer, he is shocked and delighted to see the tall and handsome MAN standing before him. The sexy interlude that follows is more fulfilling that Vy ever dreamed could be possible. Just as his dreams seem to be coming true, Vy is shocked to realize that Robert doesn't realize they are mates!

A gentle giant, Robert has always been conscious of the effect his size has on others; it doesn't help matters that his bear form is even larger! He learned at a young age to suppress his animal half and hasn't shifted in years; his deepest fear is harming another being and it's safer to remain human. Never allowing himself to grow attached, his strict personal policy of one-night-stands is sorely challenged by the delicate bird with a will of steel. The attraction he feels towards Vy makes Robert's heart yearn to wrap his arms around Vy and never let go, but his mind is screaming a warning to run before they both get hurt.

When rogue members of the neighboring wolf pack threaten Vy's ket, Robert's protective instincts flare. Even though he refuses to believe that Vy is his fated mate, he is willing to do whatever it takes to protect the man who has become more important to him than life itself. After all, he IS still a bear; but being the biggest doesn't always make you the strongest, and the threat of losing control is ever present.

The amazing world created by co-authors Cardeno C. and Mary Calmes is a well-written paranormal romance interspersed with adventure and drama. CONTROL offers readers an intricately developed storyline with engaging characters and vivid word pictures. The unique combination of writing styles each author brings to the table only enhances the reading experience. Although there were times when the push and pull of emotion and sensuality felt a bit rocky, this is their first compilation, and a few bumps in the storytelling road are to be expected.

I would recommend this story to any reader who enjoys paranormal stories with complex characters, sensuality and adventure. I hope to see more books from this dynamic writing duo in the future.
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