Content Warnings: Violence, gore, PTSD, self-hate, and racism.
As the e-book version was recently on sale I went ahead and picked up my 2nd copy of this book so I could highlight favorite quotes and upload them to Goodreads. I wasn’t sure what I wanted to read I knew I wasn’t feeling contemporary, and as I’d just read a few fantasy novels, I felt like diving back into a paranormal romance was the perfect fit.
We flip between five different perspectives [Neha, Joe, Yulia, Danny, and Nate] though the main storyline follows what is happening to, and because of, Neha and Joe. I really would have loved to get more involving Yulia and Danny but maybe that’s something we get in book two. Hopefully, I’ll be reading book two soon, as I pre-ordered it and it’s been sitting on my shelf since its January release, and reading it will give me what I felt I missed in book one, like where Nate will fit in the grand scheme of things.
The thing I had forgotten from my first read was just how much hate, and guilt, Joe has. After everything he’s done, and seen, from his years in the military he carries so much guilt and feelings of being unworthy. When someone close to him, who he deems worthy and good, is murdered he doesn’t bat an eye at planning revenge. When Neha meets Joe in prison he has zero guilt for what he did in the name of his friend and has no plans of giving her any info that could make the jury sympathetic and lenient.
When a botched assassination attempt on Joe occurs, with Neha in the room they flee together. Joe tries to keep his walls up and find a way to keep Neha out of danger but Neha refuses to be left behind and refuses to let Joe continue thinking he isn’t worthy of happiness. Neha is determined to show Joe what she sees when she looks at him, which is someone who needs love and kindness…and her.
I loved how gritty, and honest, this book felt. Yes, there are shifters and sorcerers that aren’t something we encounter but the feelings and emotions explored in this book are very real to a lot of us. This book discusses so much about prejudice and racism and what it feels like to feel like you stick out, or don’t belong when all you want is to live your life.
A fantastic world that I look forward to exploring more when I crack open book two!
7/19/2021 [First Read Review]
When I was browsing through ARCs available on Netgalley I stumbled on “Pretty Little Lion” which is the second book to this series [set to release October 26th 2021] and knew I needed to pick up the first book. It’s always fun to find new authors in the para-romance genre…especially when they’re a WOC.
“Big Bad Wolf” has so much story packed into just 297 pages! With the story being less than 300 pages I was expecting it to only flip between the narratives of the 2 love interests but was pleasantly surprised by the 5 different narratives we go back and forth between. The selection of all 5 narratives didn’t make total sense to me but I think it’ll be one of those things, as the series unfolds, that will make more and more sense as the world expands.
I love how our main heroine is so strong and passionate. Neha, although nervous, never fails to follow her heart and speak up for herself. She’s such a strong individual who has been surrounded by and shaped by great people who have always encouraged her to reach for her dreams.
Now our main man Joe…although physically fit and strong is a broken man. Racked with guilt over the death of someone who looked up to him…he takes out all the men responsible for his friend’s murder. When Joe meets Neha he feels an instant connection and attraction…but he also feels completely undeserving of love or affection.
This book was such a rollercoaster, I can’t wait to see what the rest of the series holds! I look forward to checking out more of Suleikha’s work both supernatural and contemporary.