Sunday, March 10, 2013

Review: The Mane Event

Reviewed by Jen
I've been hearing rave reviews about this series for awhile, so I figured I would finally give it a try.  And it was exactly the two things people told me it was: funny and sexy.  This "book 1" in the Pride series is actually comprised of two novellas based on men of the Llewellyn lion shifter Pride.

"Christmas Pride" focuses on Mace, the prodigal son of the Pride.  He has returned home after more than a dozen years in the Navy and he wants to reconnect with the woman he fell in love with as a teen.  Dez is now a cop and a divorcee, but she is also everything he remembered and more.  A murder of a male pride member helps bring her back into his life. He takes full advantage of the opportunity and makes a full court press to make her his own.

I had a couple of issues, most notably the structure of the pride.  Men are sort of shipped in to breed with various females.  It squicked me out a little. I also didn't like that the female shifters (with the exception of Sissy) were all portrayed as cut-throat bitches.  These things didn't ruin the story, but they did give me pause.

I definitely laughed out loud more than once, with both the physical comedy and the dialogue.

"Mace, he's a problem. The man has a sheet longer than your dick."
"Wow. That's huge."
Dez sighed. "Would you focus?"

(*snort*) I liked that the heroine was curvy... maybe even a big girl.  Though we did spend a lot of time focusing on the size of her boobs.  --The sex was hot too.

I wouldn't call it deep or anything, but it was fun and entertaining.

"Shaw's Tail" centers on Shaw, a former Breeding Male of the Llewellyn Pride. He was badly beaten in the first story and as this one begins, wolf-shifter Ronnie Lee is tasked with taking care of him during his recuperation. Apparently, the healing fever also induces some amorous behavior, because Shaw can't keep his paws off her.  Ronnie is a free-spirit, though, and has no interest in pursuing a relationship... even when Shaw has recovered and still comes after her.  The sex is great between them, but he won't be satisfied until he can convince her to give him her heart.

The sexy times were back in full force and so were the laughs.

"Rhonda Lee ever tell you how she and Sissy Mae made money while traveling the world?"
"No. How did she--"
"Hookin," Ronnie Lee tossed in desperately. "I was a prostitute. A damn good one too."
"Stop lyin, Rhonda Lee," her mother called from the kitchen. "I doubt you were good at all."

But like the first story, there wasn't much in the way of an emotional connection here.  These two were sexually attracted to each other, had fun together, and were "in love" in couple of days.  It wasn't bad, but it was definitely light reading.  Also, the whole Southern drawl, backwoods Tennessee thing got a little old for me.  As a Southern girl, I'm not a huge fan of the stereotype.

Overall, the book was an ok read, but I can't say I loved it.  I'll probably give book two a try, but I am not in a big hurry.

Rating: C+

Click to purchase: Amazon
The Mane Event
by Shelly Laurenston
Release Date: October 1, 2007
Publisher: Brava

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At Sunday, March 10, 2013 at 11:03:00 AM CDT , Blogger Rebe said...

This is my least favorite of all the Pride books - they get SO much better. In fact, I think I started with The Mane Attraction and then went back and read these. I'm not sure if I would have continued reading the series if I started with this one.

At Sunday, March 10, 2013 at 11:11:00 AM CDT , Blogger JenM said...

I adore Shelly's books, but the thing about them is that they are almost parodies and have to be read as such. Her characters are completely over-the-top and will say and do totally outrageous things. The books aren't meant to be straight, serious PNR. If you do read another one, try reading it as a farce, and if you still don't connect with it, then she probably isn't for you. I find that farce is so individual. Lots of books that others find really funny don't work for me and vice-versa.

At Sunday, March 10, 2013 at 11:14:00 AM CDT , Blogger JenM said...

I would also agree with Rebe. The first book in this series is definitely the weakest. I had already read her Magnus Pack series and was hooked on her dragon series (under GA Aiken), so I was already familiar with her style when I started the Pride series. When I need a reliable laugh out loud book, she's often the author I turn to, but I don't usually reread this one.

At Sunday, March 10, 2013 at 7:20:00 PM CDT , Blogger Jen at Red Hot Books said...

Thanks for the insight. I won't give up on them yet.

At Sunday, March 10, 2013 at 7:22:00 PM CDT , Blogger Jen at Red Hot Books said...

Thanks Jen. I do think they are funny, but I miss having an emotional connection to the characters. I don't think I'll shelve the series, but I think I'll need to space the books out and return to them when I need a light read.

At Monday, March 11, 2013 at 3:43:00 PM CDT , Blogger Marq said...

I originally DNFd this book when I read it last year. A month ago, I decided to read the Magnus Pack series (which I loved) and figured I'd give Mane Event another chance. Even though it's not my favorite of the series, I'm glad I decided to read it again. The second story was my favorite.

Have you read her Magnus Pack series? It's kind of a prequel to the Pride series. I had to get used to the over-the-top humor and actions of the characters and reading Magnus Pack helped me do that.

At Monday, March 25, 2013 at 7:13:00 PM CDT , Blogger Unknown said...

I'm so glad to have read your review. I was hearing all this wonderful buzz about this being a fun, shifter romance series, so I figured I would start at book 1. And I didn't love it. I found the dialogue annoying and juvenile so I didn't proceed with the series. But maybe will give it another chance.


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