Synopsis: When Violet London travels to the Canadian Yukon on a research grant, she can’t imagine greater excitement than the chance to study wolves firsthand. Yet more thrilling than any wolf is Luke Benoit, a handsome French Canadian Logger whose brute desire to dominate both tempts and frightens her. Unnerved by her craving to submit to primal passion, Violet is drawn to another man, Damon Holden. Damon is a gorgeous surgeon with everything a girl could want—money, education, and sophistication. Violet must choose between the man who saved her life during an attack by the very creatures she is sworn to protect and the man who offers her the comfort of financial security and solid social standing. Damon is the safe choice, or is he? (synopsis from “Claimed in Canada”)
NWW Review: The book is written in the first person which gives it a more personal touch. It feels almost like a diary, a record of Violet’s adventures in remote Canadian wilderness. And as much as the story grasps your attention almost immediately, I was put off reading it further almost immediately by the abundance of very detailed descriptions. For example: “I brush my long dark-brown hair until it shines […[ highlight my pale, green eyes”. Perhaps it is just my personal preference, but reading such meticulous accounts of ones grooming for a date feels fake and unnecessary. As Stephen King said “Description begins in the writer’s imagination, but should finish in the reader’s.” In other words, I prefer if the Author leaves certain things to my imagination, to allow me to bond with the story and its characters. I believe this is something I have praised in my review of ‘Releasing the Wolf’ by Dianna Hardy.
But after that first hurdle, I got very quickly engrossed in Violets exploration of her almost animalistic attraction to Luke, a local lumberjack. But their almost instantaneous attraction to each other is about to hit a rocky patch when Violet is invited for a blind date with her landlord’s nephew, Damon. Very quickly Violet finds herself in a triangle between the two men. I have enjoyed the Author’s portrayal of Luke and Damon – they are both equally attractive, each in his different way: Luke with his raw passion and a promise of hot, sweaty sex against a tree trunk, and Damon, well versed in the art of sophisticated seduction, with the allure of a well groomed, successful charmer from a big town. But the two men share a dark past and years of accusations for unanswered crimes. And this unknown past and the growing tension between the two alpha males fighting for Violet’s attentions, increases rapidly the temperature of the story.
In the end Violet follows her body’s cravings and embarks on a journey to submission with an almost scientific eagerness. Her mind refuses to surrender her control, yet her body craves the chance to experiment, knowing that when she goes back to her safe, academic life, she will nto have another opportunity to just ‘let go and feel’. Her initial wariness comes from the fear of being ridiculed and hurt in her most vulnerable moment. But Luke is an experienced Dom, and knows exactly how to ease her worries, how to lure Violet into his world, gaining her trust and allowing her to relax in a friendly and safe atmosphere. Their Dom/Sub relationship is very fragile, and from the start is reserved to the bedroom. Only then Violet allows herself to slowly surrender her control, safe in the knowledge that outside the bedroom she still gets to keep her independence and her sassiness. It is enjoyable to watch how she surrenders to bondage but doesn’t surrender her convictions or beliefs. She is still Violet. This experience is rewarding and allows her to relax knowing that her Dom will never hurt or embarrass her. Her submission to Luke makes her realise that he is the man she desires above all other. He is the man her body craves, the man she needs. What made me wonder, however, was how much of her attraction was due to the fact that Luke was the first man to introduce her to bondage, the first man to dominate her ? Would she experience a similar bond if Luke wasn’t a Dom? Would she be equally smitten? Or was it all just the novelty of submission and the freedom of letting go of her rigid control?
Overall I have enjoyed the book tremendously and I would recommend it to anyone looking for a good, romantic story with alpha males, sassy heroines, twists and turns, and a happy ending long time coming.
The book is available from the following retailers: Amazon US, Amazon UK and Smashwords. Stay tuned as very soon we will be reviewing ‘Naughty in Norway‘, another book by Christine Edwards inspired by the TV series ‘Vikings‘.