Title: Jackalopes & Woofen-Poofs (Offbeat Crimes: Book Five)
Author: Angel Martinez
Publisher: Pride Publishing
Length: 225 Pages
Category: Paranormal, Comedy
At a Glance: Jackalopes & Woofen-Poofs is a rollicking good romance that once again left me smiling and wanting to reread it over and over again!
Reviewed By: Sammy
Blurb: All Animal Control Officer Jason Shen ever wanted was a quiet life of rescuing lost kittens and helping animals in need. Having a paranormal cop boyfriend guarantees an end to the quiet part. What at first seems a random encounter with jackalopes in the park might be more than chance and when State Paranormal sends a handsome, charming vampire to consult with the Seventy-Seventh, he finds his relationship with Alex on shaky ground.
Officer Alex Wolf hoped his humaning skills were improving but now he can’t unravel the strange politics at State Paranormal or why Jason’s family seems to hate him. There’s no time to puzzle things out either. Bizarre animals are loose in the city, Jason’s acting strange, and is the vampire captain from State flirting with him? Wolf’s going to have to keep his head in the game if he’s going to have any chance of putting the pieces together and keeping the city safe from the strange critters terrorizing its streets.
Review: I have embarrassingly gushed about the Offbeat Crimes series before. Repeatedly, as I recall. It can’t be helped, though, for when an author continues to produce humorous, fantastic paranormal stories such as the latest, Jackalopes & Woofen-Poofs, then the gushing must commence. Those unfamiliar with this series will make little sense of this review, so I suggest picking it up and starting from the beginning with Lime Gelatin and Other Monsters so that you can fully appreciate this incredible cast of characters who seem to somehow live harmoniously in the strange 77th paranormal precinct.
Picking up where the last installment left off, this story explores Wolf and Jason’s new relationship, and defines how just the smallest doubts can create havoc when coupled with a lack of communication and really hostile parents. It all makes for some serious problems for two men who truly do love each other. Jason has a very close-minded family; they are rather cruel to him due to the fact that he hasn’t, in their opinion, done something important with his life. Having siblings who are surgeons and doctors, Jason being in animal control makes for uncomfortable family dinners where he feels judged for being less than successful. But, it’s the fact that he’s gay that really angers his family, and since Wolf is all about pack and slowly integrating into Jason’s family, the meeting of boyfriend and parents was bound to go badly. And it does.
However, that is not the only worry for this duo, for now a professional muckety-muck has been sent from Harrisburg to run the current investigation into the rampage of hoax creations that have been attacking people all over town. Such creatures as jackalopes and drop bears are mythical fantasies, but someone is creating real, live versions that are less than friendly, and Alex Wolf always seems to be present when they appear. The man, or, in this case, vampire sent from Harrisburg to investigate is both annoyingly condescending and handsome. He has also taken a liking to Wolf, much to Jason’s despair. Some meanly uttered sentiments by Jason’s parents that Alex will one day discover just how disappointing Jason is, and will go seeking another superior being to date, doesn’t help poor Jason’s flagging self-esteem.
Ceramic creatures come to life that are vicious and deadly; a vampire determined to have Alex Wolf as his own despite knowing that same kindhearted wolf already has a boyfriend, and a family hell-bent on breaking Jason’s heart and self-esteem, are a real recipe for disaster. But the 77th is a strong mix of misfit paranormals who have more smarts than they are given credit for, and they also have loyalty and courage in spades. If anyone can get to the bottom of who or what is creating these deadly mythical creatures, they can.
I wanted to take Alex Wolf home, along with his kitten, Audacity, and keep him forever. His inability to always read human motives and emotions comes to the forefront in this novel, and his heart, which he always wears on his sleeve, is nearly broken in the process. But it’s poor Jason, who is confronted, over and over, with the nagging feeling that he will always be sub-par when it comes to being Alex’s equal, that really plucks at your emotions. How many of us have had to deal with judgmental relatives who chip away at our confidence? Poor Jason loves Alex, but between a snippy, gorgeous superior officer confusing Alex with his flirting and less and less time spent together, it’s not easy being in a relationship for either man. Alex and Jason are truly lovely together, and once again author Angel Martinez manages to create a romance replete with humor, compassion and just the right amount of sexual tension. I love this group of wacky creations, and their adventures in crime solving are never run of the mill or boring. The stories are entertaining and just so unique with plotlines that never fail to amuse or captivate the imagination.
Jackalopes & Woofen-Poofs is a rollicking good romance that once again left me smiling and wanting to reread it over and over again!
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