These eight paranormal romance short stories will take you for a walk on the wild side of love.
From baby sea monsters bringing couples together, to river spirits falling in love with mortals, to demons and witches fighting evil together, to mismatched shifters struggling to figure out how to love each other, Born to Love Wild dishes up sweet and heat in equal measures. Come for the magic—stay for the happily-ever-after.
Featuring: USA Today Bestselling Author Traci Douglass, Andie Biagini, J. Bigelow, M.T. DeSantis, Read Gallo, Sheri Queen, Pepper McGraw, and Cara McKinnon.
USA Today Bestselling Author Traci Douglass – "Blood Strong: A Blood Ravagers Novella" One guardian demon in love. One witch with a secret crush. One evil threatening their newfound connection.
M.T. DeSantis – “Forever Love” The midsummer fae dance promises beauty and magic beyond wildest dreams. For Karli, it is a final attempt to find true love. For Ellowyn, it is a painful reminder. But past and future don’t matter to forever…
Reid Gallo – “Night of the Flying Saltines” When a river falls in love with an ordinary person, will New York City survive?
Pepper McGraw – “Full Moon Shenanigans” The full moon’s coming and it’s time to embrace the wildness within.
J. Bigelow – “Focal Point” Sometimes a wizard from Sweden needs help from a medium from Michigan.
Sheri Queen – “The Robinson Agency” Some are born with the gift to see into the future. Others create their own destiny.
Andie Biagini – “Water Temperature” An engineering student and a cryptozoologist. One of them can talk to sea monsters, but it’s not who you think.
Cara McKinnon – “A Change of Heart” She’s a hybrid shifter who’s not supposed to exist. He’s a wolf who was born to protect her. But her secrets force him to choose: his mate, or his pack loyalty?
Traci is a USA Today Bestselling romance author with an MFA in Writing Popular Fiction from Seton Hill University. She writes sometimes funny, always emotional stories about strong, quirky, wounded characters overcoming adversity to find their forever person. She believes Love is Love and hopes to accomplish brave, beautiful things with her one wild and precious life.
Represented by Jill Marsal at Marsal Lyon Literary Agency, LLC
Disclaimer: I received an electronic advanced reader copy of this anthology in exchange for an honest review; I consider the editor and some of the contributors friends.
Normally I keep my short story reviews, well, short, and only call out two books when I review anthologies (favorite story and story I'd like to see expanded into a novel). Since this time the editor tossed me an advanced copy of this collection, and I know Stars & Stone Books puts out quality material, I knew this volume deserved better!
This is a solid collection where even the least interesting story to me, based purely on personal opinion, was still very well written. Multiple aspects of the paranormal romance regulars are sure to appeal to all fans of the genre, and I especially appreciate the diverse cast that made up so many aspects of the romantic relationships.
"A Change of Heart" by Cara McKinnon | This story takes the insta-love trope and makes it WORK, through world-building that is solid but not overpowering for the length of the story. Nathan and Zoe come from different lives, but from the first moment, all I wanted to do was cheer for them. This novella would definitely work as a full novel, and I'd love to read more of their further adventures together. 4.5 stars
"Water Temperature" by Andie Biagini | Unexpected characters with unexpected mythology. Short and sweet, and I appreciate that both of the characters are human without the story losing the flavor that makes up paranormal romance. 4 stars
"The Flying Saltines" by Read Gallo | But not every paranormal romance is a fairy tale, and this story hits you in the face with that knowledge right away, sucking you into the main character's life and holding you hostage (willingly) so that you want more. It's a bit disjointed, so was hard to follow the timeline, but it turns out that was the whole amazing point. I thoroughly enjoyed the romance-infused ridiculousness. 4.5 stars
"Focal Point" by J. Bigelow | This might be blasphemy, but I think I might have liked this story without the romantic element between two of the characters. Since the characters were already known to each other, there wasn't a lot of build-up of romantic tension. I'd rather have spent more time on the battle than on a different sort of climax. 3 stars
"Full Moon Shenanigans" by Pepper McGraw | While I didn't immediately gel with the characters of this story, the conflict intrigued me right away. Tantalizing glimpses of this world definitely showed me that I wanted more. Bonus points added for non-traditional heroines and flipping the script on an expected trope. 3.5 stars
"Forever Love" by M.T. DeSantis | The narrative language used in this story was deliciously evocative of the fae atmosphere and worked to great effect. The premise of this story was also lovely, but a bit too steeped with angst. 3.5 stars
"The Robinson Agency" by Sheri Queen | Frequent repetition of detail caused this story to drag a bit, but all of the characters were three-dimensional and entertaining. The inciting incident took the plot in a direction I absolutely didn't expect, and the romantic elements were a satisfying secondary conflict. 3.5 stars
"Blood Strong" by Traci Douglass | This is obviously a well-established world, but readers are able to slide in seamlessly. I love when stories reveal that "monsters" have normal problems too, like politics and moving heavy furniture. I especially love when very male heroes are also allowed to be something other than ridiculous alpha males. I do wish this relationship hadn't come with the "destined mate" trope, because I feel like it would have been equally as solid without it. 4 stars
Check https://thebaronessofbooks.weebly.com/ on July 27th to see my stop on the Born to Love Wild Blog Tour, featuring an exclusive Q&A with the authors about their characters! RTC on the 27th as well.