Years ago, a bond was forged when a little boy, plagued by dreams and visions he could not explain, became the Witch’s new apprentice healer.
Gerry, a rugged and headstrong hunter, is brought to the Witch for healing, and Ghost is forced to reveal the mark beneath his snowy hair that sets him apart from other men.
But Gerry does not reject Ghost as an outcast. He finds Ghost beguiling and mysterious and declares his intent to claim Ghost as his own. When Ghost is kidnapped by a rogue ranger, Gerry will need to hunt a lethal and unpredictable prey, and Ghost will need to use all his skill to survive until Gerry can find him.
I have to admit, this story took me a little while to get into.
Their culture was largely based on Alphas (no, not the growly, shifty kind) buying or finding younger "dependents", who would then act as their apprentices, pseudo-children, bed warmers, and/or simply servants.
Then I read how Gerry's Alpha was named "Mother". And he was a *dude*. Bring on the head scratching, right?
There were also witches, hunters, rangers, renegades and all sorts of oddly-named game animals, so yeah, catching up definitely took me a hot minute.
But when I was finally up to speed, this was a pretty entertaining, mildly-magical, fantasy story, which I pictured as being set in the Middle Ages. Ish.
I immediately liked every single character, other than Conn, Gerry's lazy, possessive, younger 'brother', of sorts. Except that Gerry and Con slept together in the past. Once again adding to my earlier confusion, but whatever. You do you, bro.
The odd thing was, though, I didn't really feel like I truly got to know either Ghost or Gerry that much better than any of the other main side characters, so a bit more history about both MC's or on-page deep conversation would've been greatly appreciated.
When Gerry's path first crossed with Ghost's, Ghost had never been with anyone before, so Gerry's attention and affection for Ghost felt a bit like a cross between first love and insta-love, not that I found that bothering me all that much. It was a shorter story, after all.
One of my favorite characters ended up being the Witch. Although she could be a bit of a bitch, she never failed to have Ghost's back and recognize his worth as both a witch and a kind, caring young man.
I only remember there being two sexy scenes, which were well done, but I did find that the one at the end of the story felt a bit unnecessary, bordering on gratuitous.
One thing that I would've liked in the story was more active magic being practiced on-page by the Witch and Ghost. Yet, even when Ghost's life was in danger as the story ends, nope, no magical blasts to get him safely back to his beloved Gerry.
Dude, you're a bad-ass witch, not a delicate damsel, so bust a magical cap in someone's ass already!
Overall, I'd rate this one at around 3.5 stars and I'll definitely be reading the second book in the series.
My ARC copy of this re-released 2014 story was provided by the publisher through NetGalley in exchange for a fair, unbiased review.
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