Bound by Blood is the third book in the Crescent City Wolf Pack series by Carrie Pulkinen. It could be read as a standalone, but seriously, do yourself a real favour and read the other two books, because they are spectacular! You really won’t regret it!
As I’ve said with each of the previous two books, I am completely in LOVE with this series, I have devoured each one in a matter of hours- glued to the pages from beginning till end- torn, in that I really had to know what happened, but at the same time not wanting the book(s) to end. I really couldn’t choose a favourite from the three (so far) because they are all brilliant in their own right- each one having its own identity and ‘flavour’, but also, because they all blend together to paint a much bigger (overall) picture, while complimenting the other books in the series at the same time.
This (and the series) is a great paranormal romance- with shifters/werewolves, witches, the supernatural, mystery, suspense, danger, action, murder, drama, secrets, shocking discoveries, and emotion. As with the first two books- the story unfolds against the vibrant and mystical backdrop of New Orleans.
Alexis Gentry is a rogue werewolf, a drifter, who has had such a hard life that her experiences have left her with trust issues and caused her to build a protective barrier around herself, one she won’t let anyone through- not even her little sister who she’s finally reunited with after 20 years. She is skittish, stubborn, and quite mysterious. She hasn’t had much luck when it’s come to relationships, as she always seems to pick men who’ve only brought her trouble and grief. So, she’s sworn off men and relationships. But, after meeting her sister’s work partner, she can’t stop thinking about him, and he brings out a sense of longing in her that has her questioning everything she thought she wanted. When her latest job goes sour, she quickly realises that she’s gotten in way over her head, and can’t seem to see a way out of her dangerous predicament- not without taking some drastic, desperate action- which results with her in hospital, needing to lay low for a while.
Bryce Samuels has just gotten a promotion to Sergeant and put in the position as a negotiator- which is something he’s aspired to ever since joining the Force- saving lives is all he’s ever wanted to do. He’s really good at his job and has a natural instinct that gives him a bit of an edge over some of the other officers. He’s definitely not the settling down type, earning a reputation as an arrogant flirt who doesn’t do relationships. But in fact, there’s a lot more to him, which we discover as the story progresses. Bryce was captivated by Alexis from the moment he set eyes on her and would love to get to know her better. But he soon discovers that she quite the flighty one. When his latest case brings him to the hospital to check on the welfare of his neighbour, Bryce find Alexis has been admitted in a pretty battered state. Concern for her wellbeing has him offering her a safe place to stay until she gets back on her feet. Alexis is quite suspicious of his motives, no one does something for nothing- there is always a price to pay. Isn’t there? But things aren’t adding up, which raises Bryce’s suspicions and has him questioning everything, and puts his detective skills to the test.
What happened to put Alexis in hospital? Will she take Bryce up on his offer? What happens when danger catches up with Alexis and places them both in peril? Can Alexis learn to trust? What happens when Bryce learns the truth? Alexis was so used to taking off when things get complicated, spending her whole life running- will she finally decide to stick around, put down some roots and take a chance on love? Bryce lives his life to the letter of the law, upholding the law with every fibre of his being- what will he do if a few laws need to be broken in order to protect the one/s he cares about?
I must admit that I really didn’t know if I would really like Alexis as she seemed quite mysterious and somewhat aloof in the previous two books. But, the more I learned about her, and what she’d been through to make her who she is, made me really feel for her and understand her so much better. She did grow on me and by the end of the book I was definitely #teamAlexis. She did frustrate me at times, especially with her lack of communication, and the tendency to let her pride/ego rule. Bryce had already won me over in previous books- even though we knew very little about him, I liked him anyway. Getting to know him so completely in this book, just cemented my feelings.
As with the previous book, I spent the majority of this one on the edge of my seat, wondering how things would play out! LOVE. LOVE. LOVE!
James’ story is next…. Can’t wait!
Thank you, Ms. Pulkinen!
Reviewed by @angelahayes