This is the first book by Martina McAtee that I’ve read and it is totally outside of my usual genres. I was just so drawn in by the unusual covers of her books. She won the 2016 Reader’s Favorite Gold Medal for her first book, Children Shouldn’t play with Dead Things. This book, Loving You with Teeth and Claws, is a prequel to the series. Martina McAttee’s books are Young Adult and Paranormal with a bit of Romance to keep things simmering. I loved this book and can’t wait to read Book 1, Children Shouldn’t Play with Dead Things.
This story starts with Neoma, a young girl who is being chased by Dylan (a wolf shifter). She hides from him but he can smell her. She is so scared of him but she can’t remember why exactly. She just knows that if he finds her, he will take her to the woman again and they will hurt her. She finds a place and tries to make herself very small. He finds her though, he always does, and in her frightened state she feels power coming up to her from the ground and then Dylan is dead. At least she thinks he is. She runs to the woods and runs into Wren. She was so relieved because Dylan had told her that Wren was dead and couldn’t save her.
Wren doesn’t know what has been going on but he knows something isn’t right. He left Neoma with his family to look out for her but they let someone hurt her. He took Neoma and ran. They had to get as far away from there as they could before his dad found out they were gone. They go to an old witch who tells him that someone has been hurting Neoma but he can’t see the scars because she has been glamoured. There were also many other spells on her, some blocking her memory. The witch showed Wren a glimpse of what Neoma really looked like and it was awful. He couldn’t believe someone would do such a think to such a sweet little girl. Then the witch suddenly told him the little girl has a passenger and is attacked by someone Wren can’t see. The witch told him to get out of there and go to a town that is hidden by magic to see his betrothed. He grabs Neoma and runs thinking maybe this person and her pack can help protect them from his father who desperately wants Neoma back. Wren doesn’t understand why his father wants Neoma so badly but he plans to do whatever it takes to protect her. Meanwhile, Alpha wolf, Isa McGowan, is trying to get four pre-teens out the door for school so she can get to work on time. She is only 22 but can’t live her life like she would like to. She has to care for these kids and run a restaurant to stay afloat. Her pack isn’t what it used to be but she is doing all she can. She also has no idea of the mess that is heading her way.