25 April 2015

Figure of Speech (Halle Shifters #4) by Dana Marie Bell

 When two hearts speak as one, no words are needed.

Chloe Williams has waited four long years for her mate to acknowledge her. Time and again he has turned her away for being too young, even when she was hospitalized, recovering from a beating that left lingering after effects. Now that he’s been turned into a Wolf, his mating instincts are kicking in big time. Chloe has to decide if it’s worth risking her heart yet again.

Ten years older than Chloe and dealing with issues she knows nothing about, veterinarian James Woods is about ready to howl in frustration. He’s been drawn to Chloe since she was a radiant nineteen-year-old college student, but the age difference held him back from making a move on her. Now his Wolf wants what’s his, and Jim is finally in a place where he can claim her.

Between meddling mothers, Hunter brothers, and a mystery that threatens to end Chloe’s life, they might find an opportunity to tell each other just how they feel. Or find themselves separated by more than just misunderstood words.

Warning: This book contains explicit sex, graphic language, and two people who finally get their damn act together.
Having read part of Ms. Bell’s Gray Court series, I was excited to get the chance to read Figure of Speech. As I was familiar with her writing style, I expected that even though this is the fourth book in the Halle Shifters series I would be able to read it as a standalone. I am happy to report that I was correct. The downside to this is that I now have five books in her Halle Pumas series and three books in her Halle Shifters series to add to my never-ending to-be-read list. Why? Because even though I read and enjoyed Figure of Speech on its own merit, I want to know the stories behind the other coupled mates that are a part of Chloe’s life and I think it will enhance my enjoyment of this book even further as it would give me the opportunity to meet Chloe before her attack to see just why her affections “scared” Jim so much.

The author does a great job of imparting information via conversations and inner monologues regarding the events that pertain to Jim and Chloe from the previous books. To be honest, as much as I look forward to getting to know pre-attack Chloe, I think I would have freaked out had I read the attack and how dire her situation was first. And knowing it now goes a LONG way in explaining the hostility that Jim feels from Chloe’s family. I was relieved when he was able to “reconcile” with her family and I would have oh so loved to be a fly on the wall when Chloe’s family confronted Jim’s mother about the “misinformation” about Chloe’s condition. As painful as Chloe’s attack and injuries were, I think the author did an excellent job of presenting her condition and handled her aphasia in a sensitive yet realistic nature. Truth be told, I found myself quickly adjusting to her misspeaks and occasionally snorting at the way some of her statements came out – not at Chloe’s disability, but at the humorous nature of resulting phrases and sentences. Red Butt anyone?

With the events of the past four years, it would be inconceivable that their mating would go smoothly now that Jim is finally ready to accept that he and Chloe are mates despite the age difference. And it does not. Yet the obstacles they face are merely that – temporary obstacles that they overcome in order to cement their relationship. I liked the chemistry between Jim and Chloe as it was a nice mix of animal sensuality and loving protectiveness. The spirit animal aspect of the storyline was quite intriguing and added to my need to read the previous books so I can find out what information, if any, has already been shared. As a fan of paranormal romances, the new facts that Barney and the other Hunters learn just screams PROPHESY to me and I am hooked. I thoroughly enjoyed Figure of Speech and now just have to find the time in my schedule to go back and read books one through three before the next installment is released.


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