published by Simon & Schuster (Pocket) in Decembe 2013
Down, BoyGenre: Paranormal romance
Anna Moder has just witnessed a shooting, seen her car pulverized, and rescued a wounded stranger only to discover he's really a werewolf. And by her recent standards, things are actually looking up. Lycanthropes don't faze Anna. Doctoring a wolf pack outside Grundy, Alaska, is the closest thing to home life she's known in years. But hitching a ride to Anchorage with long-absent pack member Caleb Graham that's a risk. Part of her itches to whack his nose with a newspaper. The rest is trying unsuccessfully to keep her own paws off every delicious inch of him.
The problem is, Caleb employs his lupine tracking abilities as a not quite-legal bounty hunter, and Anna is suspicious of both him and his profession. On the run from her past, with old problems closing in, she'd like to stay far, far away from anybody with connections to the law. Caleb, however, seems determined to keep her close. Are his intentions noble, or is he working a more predatory angle?
Anna's been dreaming of returning to a semi-normal life, but now she's experiencing a strange new urge... to join Caleb in running with the wolves.
Series: Naked Werewolf, Book #3
The Story: The blurb is actually quite accurate. Before Anna Moder had to go underground to escape her abusive and controlling husband, she was a doctor in Nashville. She escaped to Alaska and held menial jobs to stay under the radar. The only respite she had was the couple of years she spent in Grundy being the doctor to a werewolf pack before being on the move again.
After a 12-hour shift at the grocery store, the last thing Anna expected is to be the witness of a shooting. Even though she hasn't been practicing, the doctor in her cannot leave the victim behind. However, she did not expect him to be a werewolf and the only member of the Grundy pack that she has not met, Caleb Graham. To thank her, Caleb agrees to drive her to Anchorage... but with a few detours for his job as a bounty hunter.
Soon, Anna and Caleb find themselves in a comfortable relationship. However, Caleb has been keeping a secret from Anna... one that she might not forgive him when she finds out.
My Opinion: When an author has two series, do you ever wonder why one works for you and not the other? That's the case with me and Ms Harper's series, especially given that both are light paranormal. I'm a huge fan of her Jane Jameson series; however, the Naked Werewolf series hasn't work as well for me. Of course, it's hard to be sure since I've only read the first book, How to Flirt with a Naked Werewolf. That's why after enjoying her latest book, A Witch's Handbook of Kisses and Curves, so much, I decided to give How to Run with a Naked Werewolf a chance... Alas, it didn't change my mind.
I really, really wanted to enjoy How to Run with a Naked Werewolf, because I like Ms Harper's breezy writing style and sense of humor. Unfortunately, while those elements were present, the rest of the book fell flat for me. My main issue was pretty much the romance. I didn't feel the chemistry between Anna and Caleb. I think part of it was because Anna had so much baggage and there were too many secrets between them, but also because they settled in a relationship, a routine so fast. Almost the whole story, they were together, but we didn't get to witness many of their interactions. Some discussions, banters during their drive would have been fun and would have given us some insight. The fact that the whole book was told from Anna's POV did not help. In this case, I think it would have been interesting and helped the romance along if we've known what Caleb was thinking. I actually suspect the book would have been more engaging from his POV. He knew something that Anna didn't and I would have liked to know what Caleb saw in Anna - it would have had more impact than what we got... as Caleb was a hunky werewolf and that was pretty much it. Caleb's character felt very one-dimensional in comparison to Anna who had an interesting back story. As a whole though, the two of them were okay characters.
As for the storyline, well it was pretty much Anna and Caleb driving to Anchorage, catch some bad guys and fall in love. I think Ms Harper wanted to focus on the H/H; however, only having Anna's POV was a bit detrimental. As for the stops they did to catch the bad guys, it was a bit too episodic. I guess what I mean is that in the storyline wasn't balanced enough between the two. It didn't help that some elements were a bit too predictable. Seriously, why do exes always have to make an appearance? Especially when the H/H have been rid of them for years? I did enjoy the part of the story where Anna and Caleb were in Grundy with the pack though. That part was fun :) Finally, I think How to Run with a Naked Werewolf would have profited having good secondary characters to support Anna and Caleb.
My Grade: C-. Seems like I'll be sticking to Ms Harper's vampires and witches in the future ^_^;