Title: Werewolves & Dragons, Book 1: Axel’s Pup
Author: Kim Dare
Publisher: Kim Dare
Characters: Axel, Bayden
Sub-Genre: Alternate world, Paranormal
As the landlord of The Dragon’s Lair and leader of The Black Dragons Motorcycle Club, Axel Carmichael has seen it all and done it all. He’s a respected and experienced dom. Nothing shocks him anymore, and nobody catches him off guard.
When Bayden rides up to The Dragon’s Lair on a bike worth more than most men earn in a year, and immediately demonstrates that he has far more attitude than sense, it’s easy for Axel to write him off as a silly little rich boy who’s about to get himself killed.
But, there’s more to Bayden than meets the eye. He’s no silly little boy, rich or otherwise, and werewolves aren’t easy to kill.
“Axel’s Pup” is beautiful. There’s no other word that better describes it. Set in a complex alternate contemporary world where shifters are known, and treated like far too many minorities have in the past, it is a story of how a human Dom and a wolf shifter grow as they learn more about each other. Having read a fair few of Ms Dare’s earlier stories, all I can say is that while they were enjoyable, “Axel’s Pup” is amazing. It takes the gift she has always had for creating enjoyable stories about show positive relationships between strong men who happen to be Doms and subs and extends it that extra jump to create a story that is both heartwarming and heart rending at the same time.
I love Ms Dare’s shifters. They aren’t human, they don’t think like humans, and after what humans did to their race, they don’t trust humans in the slightest. Bayden and Axel’s story brought tears to my eyes on several occasions, and the history between shifters and humans (and the way each species knew a different story about what happened in their grandparent’s generation) was well thought out and had current-day consequences. And I loved that every single sex scene (penetrative or not) showed a necessary step in the relationship between Bayden and Axel.
Bayden stole my heart, but even more than that, Axel’s determination, patience, and willingness to alter his actions towards Bayden based on the fact Bayden wasn’t human while still treating him as he would any human sub won my respect.
I would recommend this story for anyone who enjoys stories of personal growth and discovery, regardless of whether you enjoy stories about shifters, alternate worlds, bikers, minorities, and BDSM or not. The BDSM element is written in such a way that I think even those who don’t usually enjoy anything but a tiny amount of kink will love it, and the fact the story is about shifters is only a part of the whole, rather than the main focus as it can be in other paranormal stories. If you enjoyed “Duck!” and “Magpie”, you’ll love this story. Give “Axel’s Pup” a try—you won’t be disappointed.
Reviewed By: Alison