Review: Summer Moon by Jan DeLima

She won’t be ruled again……

Rosa Alban has been obedient her entire life. But when her alpha husband dies, she seizes the opportunity to flee the oppressive Guardians—the rulers of the secret shapeshifter world. Her flight instantly brands her as a pack traitor, and she has no choice but to seek protection from a neighboring tribe by marrying one of their sons.

Known as the Beast of Merin, Luc Black loyally plays the part of unwanted son and devoted brother. He realizes marrying Rosa will strengthen his tribe’s territory, but he has no intention of loving ever again. Still, he’s unprepared for the intense physical need the wild she-wolf awakens in him.

When the Guardians hone in on Rosa, Luc must fight to protect his new bride. And as war descends, the unlikely allies discover their destinies are irrevocably entwined……

This is my first read from Jan DeLima and I was thoroughly entertained throughout the whole book. I didn’t read the previous book so I did feel a little lost and took a bit to get my sea legs in the story but once I did, I wanted to know more about the characters and this mystically enchanted world.

Rosa thinks she is finally free of her late husband’s tyranny but a drunken prophecy from a seer hundreds of years ago threatens her new found freedom. She is the last unmated pure-blooded female shifter and is coveted above all others. The Council—a self-appointed governing body of Guardians—believes in preserving the purity of their shifter species and also believes the prophecy for getting Rosa pregnant and continuing on their magical lineage should be fulfilled at all costs.

In order to fight against the Council and defend her territory against their covetous eyes, Rosa seeks an alliance with a neighboring pack. When the same seer who spoke the ill-fated prophecy suggests a marriage, Rosa is hesitant. She’d already suffered through a loveless, unspeakably horror-filled marriage and has serious misgivings on entering a second one. But Rosa has more than just herself to think of. She has to protect the people of her territory so she does whatever she can to secure the alliance; she offers her hand in marriage to the pack leader’s younger brother, Luc.

Luc is a strong, highly feared warrior but is deeply scarred. He fell in love and married a human woman who died over sixty years earlier. He is still grieving for her and has no plans to replace her memory, but the offer to rule another land and to have a sexy woman warm his bed is too enticing to turn down. Not to mention Luc’s wolf is gnawing at his insides to get at its mate, Rosa’s wolf. Luc will stop at nothing to defend Rosa and his new territory to keep it and her out of the grasp of the Guardians and their savagely corrupt Council. But he is torn between betraying the memory of his beloved human wife and the undeniable mating call pulling him towards his new bride.

Time is of the essence as they prepare for war and the inevitability of the prophecy hanging over Rosa’s head. It seems everyone wants to get a babe on Rosa, especially Luc. He believes if they can conceive before the Summer Moon, the prophecy will be thwarted. That, however, will be impossible because Luc’s heart is still entangled with his late wife’s and it’s keeping him from fully mating with Rosa.

War is on the horizon and the stakes are high in this brilliantly complex world of danger and intrigue.

I was easily drawn into this complex world. I thought the characters were fascinating and the plot was brilliantly executed. I ended up with more questions than answers at the end of the book. It was an exciting adventure and now I feel I need to go back and read the first book to help catch some of the nuances I might have missed in this one.

Luc and Rosa were a good pairing and I really enjoyed their page time but I wish we would have found out what happened to them. I usually like more of a “conclusion” to a relationship but I do like that there is a mystery about the couple and I hope we see more of them in the next book.

This is an interesting world of wolf shifters but from what I could gather, some shifters have unusual powers that make them unique and dangerous. I was very thankful for the Glossary of Terms and Characters at the back of the book because without it I would have been pretty lost. With several secondary storylines to choose from, I’m intrigued as to where the author will guide us in the next installment of the series. My curiosity is definitely piqued!

I was gifted a paperback ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. All conclusions reached are my own.

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