Karenna Colcroft has a new MM paranormal romance out, Real Werewolves Don’t Eat Meat book 1: Salad on the Side. And there’s a giveaway!
Since moving to Boston, Kyle Slidell has met only a few of his neighbors, including Tobias Rogan. Kyle is very interested in Tobias, and is ecstatic to learn that Tobias wants him, too.
But his neighbors have a secret: They’re a werewolf pack, and Tobias is their Alpha. When one of the wolves attacks Kyle, he learns the truth in a hurry–and in the most painful way. Now he’s a werewolf too, and as a vegan is at war with his wolf aspect, who craves meat.
With Tobias’s help and love, Kyle must adjust to his new life. But can he protect the pack and his lover from a werewolf seeking revenge against Tobias?
Warnings: References to sexual assault.
This is a rerelease.
Karenna is giving away a $20 Amazon gift card with this tour:
Direct Link: http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/b60e8d47238/?
Werewolves in Boston??
I’m reasonably certain I’m not the only author who has ever set werewolves in the middle of a major city. But it does seem a bit odd to think about creatures who need to run and hunt living amidst a crowded city, tall buildings, and very little green space.
In the universe I created for my Real Werewolves Don’t Eat Meat series, most werewolf packs’ territories are in suburban or rural areas, primarily rural. In this universe, werewolves are able to shift whenever they choose, and some of them use shifting and running as stress relief, so they need an area in which they can do so without worry about being seen by humans. That’s important since allowing humans to find out werewolves exist is punishable by death. (There are a few exceptions, but they require permission from an Alpha or regional leader.)
Many packs have territories that encompass a fairly large geographic area; for example, Massachusetts is basically divided into thirds—except for the tiny little piece of East Boston that belongs to the Boston North Pack, the pack that features in Real Werewolves Don’t Eat Meat.
My husband is a professional assistance boat captain, which basically amounts to a tow truck operator on a boat out on the water instead of in a truck on the road. The company’s base is on the East Boston waterfront. At the time I was developing Real Werewolves Don’t Eat Meat, I was doing paperwork and light bookkeeping for the company, and I often took the T (Boston-area public transportation, including subways) rather than driving.
That meant walking from the nearest T station, which was fine in the summer. Walking down Marginal Street, which runs along the waterfront, I noticed a trio of apartment buildings that stood around a small garden area. I have no idea who lives there in real life, but in my fictional world, that cluster of buildings became the home of the entire Boston North Pack—the smallest werewolf pack in the United States.
The reason Boston North’s territory is just those apartment buildings and a bit more of Marginal Street, including Piers Park and the shipyard where my husband’s company’s base is in real life, is a bit of a long story. Basically, several decades ago, Boston North was the only werewolf pack in Boston, and had a different name. Then a larger pack, not realizing a pack already existed in Boston, migrated from another part of New England after a war with another pack for their previous territory.
When the Alpha of the new pack, which became known as City Pack, realized a pack already existed, he didn’t want to deal with another war. So he met with the Alpha of Boston North, and the packs agreed to coexist. At the time of Salad on the Side, the first book of the series, Boston North is officially considered part of City Pack, and Boston North’s Alpha, Tobias, is not officially a full Alpha. But unofficially, even among the upper ranks of werewolf government, Boston North and Tobias are considered autonomous.
Full moon nights are the only time werewolves have no choice about shifting. It happens, and packs hunt together on those nights. Since Boston North and City Pack cooperate, the Boston North wolves hunt with the City wolves in City’s hunting grounds (located near, but not in, Worcester, Massachusetts).
Being werewolves in a major city does require some delicate balancing and discretion on the part of members of both packs. But if you’ve ever been to Boston, you haven’t seen any werewolves there, right?
No! Oh, God, anything but this!
That was the first conscious thought I’d had since the wolf had bitten down. I didn’t know what it meant at first.
Then I opened my eyes. Nothing looked right. Everything around me appeared flat and muted. I definitely wasn’t in the garden anymore, but since I couldn’t see things properly, I couldn’t tell where I was. Inside, somewhere. Not my apartment. I was lying on a floor; that much I could tell.
When I tried to stand, my legs didn’t want to cooperate. Then I caught a glimpse of my foot.
It was covered in fur.
Shit. Wolf bite. Wolves didn’t live in Boston.
Maybe werewolves did. Even though as far as I knew those didn’t exist.
I tried to see my body. Fur, check. Pretty off-white color, or at least I would have thought it was pretty if it didn’t cover me. Snout protruding out far enough to see, check. Four paws with claws sticking out from the end of each… finger? Toe? Didn’t know what to call them. Check, anyway.
At least my head moved the way I wanted it to. I glanced around, trying to gain some sense of place. This time, I spotted two humans crouching nearby. One of them was Tobias. Even as a wolf, I recognized the regret and sadness in his expression.
Tobias was there, and that meant he knew what had happened to me. My brain refused to go any farther than that.
The other human… After a second, I recognized her too. The hair color gave it away, perfectly matching the color of the fur on the wolf that bit me.
Fucking Melia. She eyed me with a contemptuous smirk which vanished quickly when Tobias glanced at her over his shoulder. He turned back to me, and Melia glowered. “He should be dead.”
“Fortunately for you, he isn’t,” Tobias snapped. “I thought you’d learned better control than this, Melia. Clearly I overestimated you.”
Melia bowed her head. “I’ll do better in the future. He could have died.”
As a wolf, tone of voice wasn’t quite as obvious to me as it was when I was human. But something in the way Melia spoke caught my attention. She meant what she’d said. I should have been dead, because that had been her intention. Maybe I was wrong, but the fury and contempt in her eyes confirmed it.
I snarled and tried to stand, but I couldn’t quite figure out how to get those four legs under me. Tobias raised his hands and took a couple steps toward me. “Kyle, easy,” he said softly. “We aren’t going to hurt you.”
“I didn’t mean for this to happen,” Melia said. “Tobias, I didn’t mean—”
“Shut up, Melia,” Tobias ordered without taking his eyes off me. “You’re here to see the results of your poor control, not to make apologies. I don’t think Kyle will accept your apology easily.”
I managed to move my head in something resembling a nod. Fuck if I’d ever forgive the bitch! It hadn’t been my fault I’d wandered into the path of a frigging werewolf. Like I’d even known there would be a wolf in the garden. It wasn’t the sort of thing people usually considered when going out to pick strawberries. “Oh, I’d better be careful; there might be a werewolf out there.” Right. Not outside horror movies.
Hopefully they’d figure out soon how to change me back so I could get things ready for my dinner with Tobias the next night. I’d be sorely pissed if that had to be put on hold.
The next night. Except I didn’t think it was “next” anymore. I had no clue how long I’d been unconscious. The sunlight streaming through the window beside me pretty clearly told me that it wasn’t night any longer. But if it wasn’t night, why was I still a wolf? Didn’t werewolves only shift when it was dark?
I blinked at Tobias and he caught the question. “It’s your first shift, Kyle. You changed while you were out cold and it’s going to take your body and mind a little while to coordinate so you’ll go back to human. That’s how it works for all of us our first time. And we can shift whenever we want.”
All of us. Now I couldn’t prevent myself from grasping the truth. The truth Tobias and Mrs. Frelich had been so damned determined to keep from me. Tobias was one of the wolves. And he’d probably made sure none of the other neighbors would ever see anything he didn’t want them to. Tobias, the man I lusted after, was a fucking werewolf. I didn’t even know what to think about that.
“You have to eat something, Kyle,” Tobias said. He crouched low to look me in the eye. “You’ve been unconscious for three days, since Melia attacked you. You don’t know how sorry I am about this. I wanted to protect you from it.”
Even in my current form, my heart and a couple other things responded to his words. He did care about me. Maybe at our dinner he would have admitted all this to me. Though I certainly understood why he’d been reluctant. Without seeing it for myself, I probably wouldn’t have believed him.
He might have told me the truth, though, and if I’d believed him, if I hadn’t thrown him out, who knew where things might have ended up? I knew where I would have wanted them to end, whether Tobias was a werewolf or not.
~ * ~ Annie‘s Review ~ * ~
Salad on the Side is the first book in a recently rereleased series. I found the world the author creates interesting, particularly the premise of a vegan werewolf.
Karenna Colcroft lives just north of Boston, Massachusetts, and has been in love with the city since childhood, though she has yet to encounter any werewolves, vampires, or other paranormal beings in her travels. At least none that she knows of. Though since in her non-writing life, under another name, she offers services as a channel and energy healing practitioner, it could be said that she herself is a paranormal being. The jury’s still out on that.
Karenna is a polyamorous, nonbinary human who splits time between the home she shares with her husband and the one she shares with her committed partner. She also has two adult children and a bonus son, three grandchildren, and two and a half cats. (Half in terms of time the cat lives with her, not in terms of the cat itself…)
Author Website: http://www.karennacolcroft.com
Author Facebook (Personal): http://www.facebook.com/riverlightbearer
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Author Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Karenna-Colcroft/e/B0031HAOUK