Review: Bite Me by Shelly Laurenston

April 1, 2014

Bite Me

Author: Shelly Laurenston
Series: The Pride Series
Publisher: Kensington Books
ISBN: 978-0758265241
Date Released: March 25, 2014
Format Reviewed: epub
Source: Purchased
Length: Novel (385 pages in epub format)
Genre: Science Fiction & Fantasy, Romance, Paranormal Romance

Rating: ★★★★☆ 

Online blurb:
Livy Kowalski has no time for idiots. When you shapeshift into a honey badger, getting through life’s irritants is a finely honed skill. Until she gets stuck housing her nutso cousin and dealing with her dad’s untimely and unexplained demise.

That’s where Vic Barinov comes in–or his house does. Vic can’t step outside without coming back to find Livy devouring his honey stash and getting the TV remote sticky. It gets his animal instincts all riled up. But he’ll have to woo her at high speed: all hell is breaking loose, and Livy is leading the charge. . .

(from the website)

My opinion:
Olivia “Livy” Kowalski is a honey badger who comes from a long line of felons, thieves and forgers on both sides but who has bucked the “family business” to work as an award-winning photographer — at least for the most part. Her choice of art over art theft has long been a source of tension between her and her family but Livy has never been a badger to follow anyone’s rules.

Victor “Vic” Barinov is a hybrid tiger/bear shifter who is sick of being mistaken for a hockey player when he’s really a freelance tracker. His background in the military, then the CIA has instilled in him a love of order and rules but all that seems to go out the window when it comes to Livy.

Despite their vastly different natures, Vic really seems to “get” Livy. He doesn’t mind finding her in his house, tucked cozily away in his kitchen cabinet or under his bed. He doesn’t even mind her constantly devouring his honey stash. Heck, he even gave her a key but that doesn’t seem to stop her from excavating holes in his house’s walls to get in!

Livy can’t help her nature – honey badgers may be extremely hard to kill and enjoy poisonous snakes as a delicacy but she needs the comfort of a good snug burrow and some honey – a LOT of honey. The art that has consumed her life has lost its luster and she’s not sure what to do with an art show looming and absolutely nothing to display in it. Heck, she’s even taken a job as a wedding photographer, that’s how far she’s fallen.

Then when doing a favor for Vic, Livy discovers that her father did not die in a car accident but had fallen to a far different fate. This puts Liv, her friends and her entire horde of Kowalski-Yang honey badgers on a path to revenge. And no one wants to be in the way of a honey badger clan out for vengeance.

Shelly Laurenston’s shifter books always have me laughing. I love the crazy mix of exotic shifters and hybrids and the snarky personalities they exhibit. I got quite a few good laughs in this book, like when I tried to imagine a honey badger in armor. I still think having a honey badger shifter at all is pretty hilarious and the whole “Honey Badger don’t give a shit” meme comes shining through in this book.

That said, I did think this book was lighter on the romance and heavier on the mission to wreck vengeance than many other stories in this series. It made the pace a bit uneven overall but not so much that it really interfered with the enjoyment of the story. This book also had more guest appearances by other characters in the series and didn’t provide a lot of back-story on them so if this is your first book in this series, you may be a bit confused by who is who and what shifter or hybrid they are.

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