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Can two snowbound lovers overcome an ancient Cherokee curse to find their destiny?
What's a woman to do if she's lost in a blizzard on an isolated mountain, faints when she thinks she see a bear, and then wakes up in the arms of a tall, dark, mysterious stranger? Give into temptation and seduce him, of course.
Mathias Tassel is everything Ellen Mallory ever dreamed of in a man--thoughtful, caring, gentle, and he has a great sense of humor. Added to all that, he's gorgeous. What woman wouldn't be tempted?
There's just this one tiny little thing; at the height of passion Ellen keeps imagining Matt turns into a bear. She can live with that. After all, she's been questioning her own sanity for a while now and sex with Matt is mind-blowing enough to tip her over the edge.
Their snowbound tryst comes to an end when Matt tries to explain who and what he is--an immortal shape-shifter who also has psychic powers. Ellen may be crazy, but she's not falling for that and sends him away.
But that isn't the only thing standing between the two lovers. There are other forces at work on Eternity Mountain, unknown factors which will reunite them, only to tear them apart again.
Can they survive the powers working against them and overcome an ancient Cherokee curse to find their destiny?
Matt held Ellen suspended over the tub, hesitating before he put her down, questioning his plan. Should he try this? Or would it be better to warm her gradually with his body heat? Hell, he didn’t know. He’d never had to bring a human back from the edge of hypothermia before and just because he thought the best way would be to submerge her into a tub of warm water, that didn’t mean a thing.
He thought of contacting Jon and asking him then shook his head. If Jon found out what had happened—what Matt had allowed to happen—to this woman, he’d probably morph into an eagle, fly all the way from Asheville in this awful snowstorm and peck Matt’s eyes out—or worse.
The woman snuggled into his chest, seeking his warmth, and he cradled her closer. Maybe sharing his body heat with her would be better and safer. With a sigh, he turned away from the tub and walked back into the living area of the cabin to lay her down on Jon’s sofa.
“Don’t go anywhere, city-girl.” Pulling the afghan from the back of the sofa, he tucked it around her then went in search of more blankets. In the bedroom he stripped the down comforter and a quilt from the bed then, noticing the cold fireplace, he dropped the items and took a few minutes to kindle a fire. He really didn’t want to bring her to the bed—way too much temptation—but if he closed the door, the small bedroom would warm up faster than the living room.
Resigned to his fate, he went back to get his charge and carried her to the bedroom. He laid her down, covered her with the heavy quilt and comforter then stripped off his clothes and climbed beneath the covers with her.
She turned in his arms and cuddled against him like a cub seeking its mother’s warmth. He wrapped his arms around her, settling her close to his side.
When she sighed, he moaned. Wouldn’t you know she was a perfect fit?
Christy Tillery French/Midwest Book Review
In early-day America, before Columbus and those that followed, Matt, Marc, Luke, and Jon Tassel are Cherokee cousins who have been blood brothers since the age of eight. As young warriors, they defy their clan’s rules, which results in the accidental death of one of their friends. Because of this, the Shamans place a curse on the four, confining them to the area around Eternity Mountain and commanding they protect the animals they each have been given the ability to morph into, as well as care for the environment. Matt, Marc and Luke choose to remain on Eternity Mountain, but Jon lives in Asheville, where he is a veterinarian. All men have telepathic and psychic abilities, and Jon is a healer.
In present day, Jon’s divorced assistant Ellen continues to be harassed by her ex-husband Charles Mallory. Noting Ellen’s stress, Jon sends her to his cabin on Eternity Mountain, hoping this respite from her ex-husband’s abuse will help her to relax. Jon telepathically requests his three brothers keep watch over Ellen during her stay there. Matt finds Ellen, lost and injured during a snowstorm, and carries her back to the cabin. His and Ellen’s mutual attraction cannot be denied and the two quickly fall into a heated romance, the likes of which neither has experienced before. Matt is shocked to realize he loves Ellen, more than he’s ever loved a woman, and wants her for his wife. The fact that he will outlive her keeps him from speaking these thoughts. Ellen, on the other hand, thinks of herself as unattractive and something of a nut case. She feels she does not deserve a man such as Matt and, although she knows she is in love with him, resigns herself to the fact that their relationship is, at most, temporary.
Unbeknownst to both, danger and death lie in their path, in the form of Ellen’s ex-husband, who severely injures Matt. Ellen prays to God, offering her life for Matt’s. When Matt recovers, Ellen leaves, resolving to keep her pact with God. But the fates intervene once more with a gift that can bring Ellen and Matt together and end his curse, if only Ellen will listen.
This sensual paranormal, the first in the Eternal Shadows series, will have fans clamoring for more. Matt, Marc, Luke and Jon are intriguing characters, and Hunter excels at developing a fascinating story wrapped around Cherokee history and legend. With superb visualizations, sizzling romance, gut-wrenching suspense, along with outstanding characterization, narrative and dialogue, this is one book that will attract many readers across all genres. Count this one a must-have, must-read. Highly recommended.
The initial story in the Eternal Shadows series strikingly intertwines a Native American myth with a modern-day dilemma, resulting in a most rewarding story. With her thorough historical research evident all through the book, Caitlyn Hunter has crafted a touchingly spellbinding love story with convincing paranormal elements.
Many centuries ago, Mathias Tassel and his three blood brother cousins disregarded the laws of their Cherokee heritage and were punished by the Shamans of their tribe. A curse was put upon each of them, causing them to be able to shift into the form of a beast. These four would also have to stay close to Eternity Mountain, where they could watch over their people while keeping the surrounding area plus the animals safe. With their telepathic abilities, the men communicate with each other but Matt has little interaction with any other humans. The one time he did let himself become close to other people, their deaths caused him too much heartache to ever risk caring about someone again.
With her life still in emotional turmoil since divorcing her repeatedly spiteful husband, the boss of Ellen Mallory believes she needs to unwind at his cabin located on Eternity Mountain. He sends word of her coming to his blood brother, Matt, so he can look after her while she stays in the isolated cabin. Unfortunately, a snowstorm arrives and Ellen becomes lost while walking in the nearby woods. When she is rescued by Matt, desire overpowers them and they give in to the fiery passions. Ellen feels at ease with her rescuer, except for the short time when she had to mistakenly think he turned into a bear. Although they both feel a potent attraction for the other, they soon discover not only the curse will be deeply affecting their futures.
Caitlyn Hunter has a poetic writing voice, and her talent for expressing scenes in a romantic way is exceedingly evident in SNOW SHADOWS. Whether describing a pristine snowy mountain or revealing how a character really feels, the moment is depicted with colorful narrative. The history behind the legend which this book uses for its basis is cleverly combined with a contemporary tale to create a heartwarming romance. Readers will become enthralled as every enlightening scene reveals more and more insightful information. Watching Matt and Ellen come to terms with not only what they are feeling but also what is physically occurring to them is sometimes poignant but always compelling. This couple is charmingly appealing from the instant they are met, and their compassionate natures only intensified my own connection to them. The intimacy between these two is particularly heartfelt, and their true emotions are clearly shown through their actions. The secondary characters are either delightfully interesting, like Matt’s three blood brothers, or ruthlessly dangerous like the villain in the story. I definitely cannot wait to read about these other extraordinary men whose own stories are begging to be told. With graphic images, engaging characters and the perfect blending of humor and suspense, SNOW SHADOWS is a memorable story of fated love.
Xeranthemum/Long and Short Romance Reviews
Snow Shadows has a heady mix of romance, the paranormal, Native American folklore and a wonderful cast of characters which drew me in and kept me.
Ms. Hunter wasted no time in introducing me to Matt, a tormented hero who carries the world on his shoulders. He is the oldest of a quartet of young men who accepted their punishment many years ago for breaking tribal customs. It’s a harsh punishment because Matt has more than only the breaking of their laws on his mind. He lives with the knowledge of the true scope of his misdeeds and the fact that his brothers were punished alongside him. So I meet him at a point in his life where he is resigned and indeed protective of his state of being. His isolation is thwarted by a dispirited Ellen.
Ellen was sent by her boss to a place where she could catch her breath and recover her emotional footing. She’s hurting and afraid because the nightmare part of her life she fears is far from over. I meet her on the day she discovers a surprise when out for a misguided walk in the woods and the momentum picks up from there. I’m sure you can figure out who she meets and the sparks to start the fire between them flare into life. What fun.
Matt has special abilities inherent in his curse that not only allow him to serve out his sentence but have the side benefit of being able to connect with Ellen in a way that brought many smiles throughout this whole story. My favorite special ability is which animal he shifts into. I’m partial to teddy bears but an angered or protective Matt is a sight to behold. Kept me turning the pages.
I know I mentioned earlier that Ellen has some healing to do, but she carries even more baggage that truly affects any relationship she has. It’s a credit to the strength written into Ellen’s character that she is able to extend trust to a man she hardly knows and the pacing and timeframe for doing so is believable. She’s a tortured heroine to Matt’s tortured hero.
Thank goodness for Matt’s brothers; Mark, Luke and Jon. I really enjoyed their verbal sparring and any guy who has the opinion of Dr. Phil that these guys do is more than okay in my book. I did a mental ‘high-five’ when I read that part and laughed out loud. There were so many fun and witty comments between them, it made the story come to life and ensured that I will be very interested in the next segment of the Eternal Shadows series.
The best part is the HEA. The scenes leading up to the ultimate profession of love is laden with suspense, heartfelt emotion, joy and laughter, and embraces all the loving and passion that had started on that mountain. Snow Shadows is the start of the Eternal Shadows series and is one worth keeping a space on your bookshelf for.
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