It feels like the Elder Races series has taken a detour from the Wyr in recent books, but Thea Harrison brings back her sexy shapeshifters with this latest novella. Our hero is Luis, a 20-something Wyr whose alternative shape is a large dog. Our heroine, Claudia, finds him in animal form on the side of the road, nearly dead. Someone had shot him, dragged him, and beaten him, but he still managed to cling to life. Claudia rescues him, bringing him to a local vet for healing.
Claudia is 40 years-old and retired Special Forces. She was just traveling through the small mining town where she found Luis. But she finds herself drawn to the battered Wyr and decides to stick around for his rehabilitation and to solve the mystery of who hurt him and why.
This novella had a different feel for me than the other books in the series. It's a good story, but the romance is slow in coming. Halfway through, Luis is still a dog and that makes it hard to find a love --or even a lust-- connection. Once we see him as a man, the sexual tension comes quickly. The age difference and Claudia's competence and maturity help give the story a fresh feel. But there's simply not enough page-time for me to really develop strong feelings for our couple. If anything, it feels like set-up for a love story (with one of Harrison's hot sex scenes thrown in.)
I liked it, but for me it ran more on action and adrenaline than heart. 3 1/2 stars.*ARC Provided by Samhain