This is a fun and sexy start to a new series that I will be keeping my eye on!
Stephanie Tyler is not a new author, but she is new to me. After reading Dire Needs, with all its sexual tension and fantasy werewolf politics, I am interested to check out her other work! Now, let's get real here, the writing in this book is not exactly high brow. This is classic paranormal romance with typical characters and predictable events. However, it entertained the hell out of me so I certainly can't complain!
Gwen is a human with a death sentence. She only has a few months left before her body succumbs to her illness, and she has decided to visit a dangerous bar and pick up the first hunk she can find. Unbeknownst to her, Gwen has entered a werewolf hangout and is being eyed by some hungry, horny wolves. Enter Rifter, a Dire Wolf who has just spotted Gwen and is instantly attracted to her. Rifter, all around badass hunk, doesn't understand why he is so drawn to Gwen, a human. Yes, we have insta-love here in the most corny sense of the term. But, for some strange reason, it works for Rifter and Gwen. Both Rifter and Gwen are pretty common character types for PNR, but as soon as they end up in her bedroom together and we discover more about Gwen I liked her much better as the leading lady. When we get to hear more of Rifter's thoughts than just "Horny. Need woman. Wolf wants to run. Etc." he becomes more likable and completely alphalicious. Rifter and Gwen's story is filled with attraction and lust and several wonderfully delicious bedroom scenes.
Rifter, is begrudgingly leading his band of brother Dire Wolves, which are a group of six: Rifter, Vice, Stray, Harm, Jinx, and Rogue. They are bigger and stronger than their cousins, the typical werewolf. The Dire Wolves are special wolves that were created and are governed by a council that makes major life decisions for the Wolves. There are not many of them left due to an almost-extinction thousands of years ago - an extinction attempt made by the council that governs them.
Though this book focuses on Rifter and Gwen's story, we get to read from other characters POV occasionally, including Vice, my favorite of the small Dire Wolf pack. He is one serious bad boy and I can't wait to read his book whenever we get it! I enjoyed the POV changes more than I usually do in PNR, but I must say the lack of transitions confused me at times. By this I mean that often Tyler would transition from one setting or time to another without the transition words necessary to help the reader understand the change.
My overall opinion of this series starter is that it is a bit of a guilty pleasure. I will most definitely read the next in the series, which will focus on Stray. Stephanie Tyler was one half of the writing pair behind the pseudonym Sydney Croft (erotica). The other half was Larissa Ione, who pens the Demonica series. Why mention this? Because Tyler mentions Eidolen and the demon-run hospital from Ione's Demonica series a few times in Dire Needs and I found this to be quite clever!
Recommended for fans of: werewolves, Black Dagger Brotherhood, paranormal romance, Sydney Croft, and the Demonica series.