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||Feb, 2, 2011
Barnes & Noble.com
Running desperately from her past has driven Carly to her future, an alpha named Bastien with a penchant for howling at the moon.
Trying to escape from her personal hell leads Carly to Bastien. Taking on a job as housekeeper, things rapidly are not what they seem around Bastien’s homestead. With wild animals coming in from the woods and her vicious ex-husband circling the front gate, Carly is desperate to find security and a feeling of calm.
Bastien is an alpha wolf and knows her the moment he meets her on the most basic of levels. From scent to curves, Carly draws his attention and holds it when he should be concentrating on pack business.
Just as he’s starting to make his move, they are separated by a secret government lab dedicated to turning soldiers into shifters and Carly ends up in a cage, left wondering if he is the one man who thinks she is worth rescuing.
Carly sat on the edge of the bed, biting her nails. The butterflies in her stomach had gone wild some time ago. Apparently, they had thought to hell with flitting about lightly, this situation warranted a full out assault on her system.
Resting a hand on her abdomen, Carly took a deep breath. Releasing it slowly, she wondered if she would have the courage to do what she came here to do. She stood and, removing her bathrobe, threw it on the back of the chair by the window and hurried back to the bed. She launched herself onto the sapphire comforter just as she heard Bastien's footsteps in the hall.
Close to hyperventilating, Carly forced her breathing to slow, and drawing a deep breath into her lungs, she released it slowly then struck a seductive pose. "It's past the point of no return, now, you coward. So stop shaking," she said to herself as she watched Bastien's shadow from under the crack in the door.
The door opened slowly. At first, he was looking down at the floor, almost as if he was searching for something. Then he raised his head and their eyes met. He was obviously surprised to see her lying on his bed in nothing but a transparent white teddy. Though the sudden tightness in the front of his khaki slacks told her he was more than happy to see her there.
Carly's face heated as she watched his gaze travel from her face to the dusky tips of her nipples peeking through the white lace undergarment she bought on a whim the third week she'd worked for him.
His scorching gaze burned a trail down her torso to the dark red triangle at the apex of her thighs. She squirmed beneath his heated stare. She reveled in the abandoned way he reached down to fondle himself through his pants. Did he even realize he was doing that?
"What are you waiting for?" she asked, her voice husky.
He swallowed visibly. "I'm afraid you'll disappear if I move."
She raised her brows. "Why?"
"Because you're a vision, baby, a dream, and I'm afraid I'll wake up." He moved his head from side to side, his dark gaze never leaving her body.
"I'm not going anywhere," she said, lowering herself further onto the bed, dropping her voice to a seductive purr. "Unless you want me to leave." Her mouth formed a moue. "Don't you want me?"
He took a step closer, inhaling deeply, as if he loved her scent. "I want you more than anything, baby. You must know, if we do this thing, we will be mated for life. I can't, I won't accept anything less."
Carly brought her legs up. Tucking them beneath her, she pushed forward, crawling toward the foot of the bed. "I'm not going to beg you, Bastien. If you don't want me--"
She shrieked when he moved. One moment he was standing in the doorway, then a fraction of a second later, the door slammed shut and he stood next to the bed, looming over her, very slowly lowering his head.
Review of Bastien
“Bastien” is a slightly different- and much welcomed- take on the werewolf mythology that has some similarities to the Cascadia Werewolves series by Lauren Dane, though not nearly as alpha-centric. There was action at almost every turn, betrayal, romance, kindness and vengeance all in one dish, as well as an enticing lead towards the continuation of the series. Bastien is pretty much the perfect guy for Carly, our main heroine, who turns out to be over the ‘victim’ peg-hole by book end (good for her!). The erotic scenes are nice though ‘tame’, and always come secondary to the action and storyline. And though there isn’t much recall of once-used secondary characters, you do get the feeling that a few of them should (and hopefully, will) get their own stories told in future installments. I would also say that, whatever Mrs. Xander gets up to in her free time, she definitely knows a lot about covert ops, describing each break-in mission as if she herself had directed soldier strategies herself! Curiouser and curiouser…
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