Sunday, April 7, 2013

Review: Beast Behaving Badly

Reviewed by Jen
When I first started reading these books, people kept telling me, "Wait until you get to the bears." They were so right!  First Lock --and now Bo-- are easily my favorite heroes in the series.  Bo isn't just a bear, though. He is a bear-lion hybrid, or as Blayne likes to say, a bear-cat.  He's socially awkward and OCD, but he's compelling and he's just right for our Blaynie.

I am not usually a fan of scattered, free-spirited heroines, but it's hard not to like Blayne.  She is genuinely a good person and it shines through in all she does.  Unfortunately, that's not the best quality to have for success at shifter roller derby.  So she decides to toughen up, at least inside of the rink.  Who better to teach her how to be merciless than the star hockey player with a reputation for brutality??  With that in mind, she reaches out to Bo for training.

Bo is the polar opposite of the little wolf-dog.  (See how I did that? He's part polar bear.)  He's gruff; he has no friends; he's a neat freak and lives by a schedule.  But he is drawn to Blayne.  He loves her honesty; her refreshing lack of artifice.  And he takes on her training, falling for her along the way.

In the meantime, Blayne is a target for some humans who kidnap hybrids for fight games.  I'm not going to go too much into that except to say, it kept the action going and gave us an excuse to get more time with Dee and Ric.  It also gave us a segue into Bo's hometown, which is chock full of odd bears.  Bears who hate all wolves and dogs, yet still can't help making Blayne one of their own.

It was cool to see the formation of the real friendship between Blayne and Bold (a name which I loved) before we progressed into romance.  I believed in their friendship --that they really liked each other-- before they took it to the next level.  Both characters are quirky, but I am happy to see Laurenston getting away from the typical sassy, low-class, violent snarky types that saturated the previous books.  There are still plenty of laugh out loud moments.  The dialogue is fun and witty.  And the sex, when it finally comes around, is very satisfying.

I think this one ties with The Mane Squeeze as my favorite in the series... or maybe surpasses it just a bit.  Viva los osos! Bears, FTW.

Rating: B

P.S. I love the cover, but it most definitely does not portray the multi-racial background of our couple.

 Click to purchase: Amazon
Beast Behaving Badly
by Shelly Laurenston
Release Date: May 25, 2010
Publisher: Kensington

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At Saturday, April 6, 2013 at 9:17:00 AM CDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes! The bears are awesome and Bo takes the cake. It took me a while to like Blayne. She's just so...over the top but once she gets under your skin she stays there whether you want her to or not :-)

Nice review Jen!

Paranormal Haven

At Sunday, April 7, 2013 at 8:38:00 AM CDT , Blogger Jennifer @ The Book Nympho said...

Bears are my fave too!

At Sunday, April 7, 2013 at 2:58:00 PM CDT , Blogger Tracy said...

First of all, Laurentston/Aiken is my crack and has been for awhile, so welcome to the party, Jen. Second of all, you mentioned something that has bugged me for awhile about these books, something that I wish had been handled much differently. The covers. Laurenston's books are often biracial romances...even as they're also often bi-species romances, yet you never see that promoted by the cover art and its not much mentioned in reviews. Jessie Ann Ward and Blayne are both black. Gwen is half Asian. And there are more scattered throughout the series. I wish that was given the respect it deserves in the cover art, because Laurenston's been fighting the good fight against racial stereotypes in her fiction for years. Whether on purpose or accidentally.

At Sunday, April 7, 2013 at 3:44:00 PM CDT , Blogger Jen at Red Hot Books said...

Absolutely true. And Bo is half Asian, with white and brown hair... not hunka blonde Anglo dude.

At Monday, April 8, 2013 at 9:18:00 AM CDT , Blogger Jennifer @ The Book Nympho said...

I never realized that Jessie Ann was black. Are you sure? I thought she made multi colored hair and was fair skinned?

I know Blayne is.

At Monday, April 8, 2013 at 9:24:00 AM CDT , Blogger Jen at Red Hot Books said...

Yep. She was black.

At Monday, April 8, 2013 at 9:26:00 AM CDT , Blogger Jennifer @ The Book Nympho said...

This was bugging me so I went to her site to see if I could find an answer...

Under her FAQ tab.

Which of your books are IR or Multicultural?
My IRs are: Go Fetch!, Beast in Him, Beast Behaving Badly, Belong to the Night, About a Dragon, How to Drive a Dragon Crazy.

I guess I didn't catch that detail when I read the book a few years ago.


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