I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review.
This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
by Maria Vale
Released: March 26th 2019
Series: The Legend of All Wolves #3
Published by Sourcebooks Casablanca
“Maria Vale is a burst of fresh air in the paranormal romance genre…”
~ Under the Covers
I read this book over a month ago and it sheer laziness isn’t the only reason it has taken me until now to review it. I still feel like I am recovering. Forever Wolf is the final book in The Legend of All Wolves series (I think!) and not only this book, but this series, has left a huge impression on me. The whole series, but this book in particular, was an emotional ride. I finished this book shedding a lot of tears. And not because something bad happens – although it isn’t quite the HEA you are expecting – but out of pure emotion. I was just feeling so much and it had to escape somehow. I loved it. Any book that has me in that much turmoil is forever stuck on my best-of shelf.
Maria Vale is a burst of fresh air in the paranormal romance genre, she’s taken the concept of werewolves and shifters and turned it on its head to great effect. Her books are paranormal romances with the grit and rich world building of a good urban fantasy series. In fact, I thought this was an urban fantasy series until I saw the blurb for book 2 and realised it was a different couple. For that reason, this would be a great transition series for a reader who likes fantasy or urban fantasy and wants to try out some paranormal romance.
Varya is a character that when I started reading I wasn’t sure I would like and yet her story and her passed really moved me and she quickly transitioned to one of my favourite heroines. I know she won’t be a character that every reader will enjoy. She is fierce, scary and can seem callous. However, her love and loyalty to the pack are plain to see and her seeming lack of empathy is all a matter of perspective. She was a complex and interesting character that I found fascinating to read.
There was also an interesting gender role reversal in this book, Varya had many of the characteristics people love about a romance hero. She was an alpha, she was strong both physically and emotionally and she was tough. Replace that all with ‘he’ and I’m describing a typical romance hero. Alpha females are hugely under represented in romance so Varya was refreshing. The hero Eyulf, was different and would be described as beta. He was a survivor completely ignorant about his Wolf heritage Varya saves when he is injured. Watching Varya and Eyulf together was lovely, he evokes emotions in her that no one else can.
The love story in Forever Wolf isn’t what you would traditionally find in a paranormal romance. Which means that HEA wasn’t what you expect either. But for me, the conclusion of this book was beautiful. It made me cry. It still makes me cry. In fact, I may be shedding a tear right now thinking about it. It destroyed me in the best way.
Forever Wolf also brings the collision of the shifters and the Wolves to its conclusion. This was the only aspect of the story that felt a little bit anti-climatic. Although the tension between the two factions has been building throughout the series it seemed to be over very quickly. However, it was a very satisfying ending despite its speed.
I highly recommend this book and this series, it’s a great twist on the paranormal romance genre and has become one of my favourites. Maria Vale is an author to watch and I can’t wait to see what she does next.
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Annnnnd I will stop myself there, before I start waxing lyrical about my love of historical romance and fantasy as well; no one needs to know about my elf fantasies. As you can tell, I adore and day dream about most romance genres, and my three big loves are 1) reading about romance 2) writing about romance and 3) talking about romance with my gals. Which, is why I love Under the Covers so much, I get all my bookish needs satisfied and don’t get judged when I talk about my favourite characters like they are real people. Which they are right?