Title: Rediscovering Himself (Wolves of Stone Ridge: Book Forty)
Author: Charlie Richards
Publisher: eXtasy Books
Length: 108 Pages
At a Glance: This one didn’t really work for me—one of the weaker books in this series.
Reviewed By: Sadonna
Blurb: Out of the Cage: Freedom takes all forms, including how to learn to live with yourself…and your limitations.
Drako Rundin had a rude awakening to the paranormal world—holy crap, vampires and shifters are real! Still, he thinks it’s pretty cool. After so much time thinking he’s weird for being a gay, video-game-loving geek, he finds he’s not the only oddball. Accepting his new friends’ offer to go to Denver, helping the pair move an ostrich farm in the process, he meets so many more people who are different.
Kwanza doesn’t know how long he’s been in captivity. He just knows he’s grateful to the group of friendly paranormals who rescued him. While he remembers shifting to human form—decades ago—he struggles to actually do it. The other shifters are patient and accommodating, giving him wide open spaces in which to live.
When Kwanza meets Drako, he recognizes the plump, cute human as his mate. While he succeeds in shifting, he can’t seem to hold it for long. With Drako’s help, can he relearn how to be human all over again?
Review: While this is book number forty in this series, it can be read as a standalone; although, reading The Hated Finn will set more context for this story.
In this installment, Drako (who we meet in The Hated Finn) has moved to Colorado with Finn and Victor. Finn has relocated his ostrich farm after the events of the previous book, where he learns that his farm has been supplying the evil scientists who are capturing, experimenting on and exploiting shifters. When the new arrivals visit alpha Declan’s home, they meet Kwanza, a shifter who was rescued, about being held captive for over sixty years. He has yet to shift, but when he recognized Drako as his mate, he finally shifts for the first time in decades.
Drako has certainly gotten the baptism by fire with paranormals since his experiences with Victor and Finn threw him into the mix. He really doesn’t quite understand mates, and he has significant self-esteem issues. Kwanza couldn’t care less about Drako’s appearance, and is just grateful that he has found his mate. He has trouble holding this human form, though, and he also isn’t a native English speaker, so he has some help in their early communication.
While they are getting to know each other, there are some negative encounters with some past enemies. When Drako and Kwanza are separated, they both are determined to return to each other and complete their bond. Both of them are able to keep their heads together thanks to the help of the pack and their friends.
I have to say that this one didn’t really work for me, and that this is one of the weaker installments in the series. I didn’t connect with either of the main characters. We don’t get to know enough about them to become invested. Even though we met Drako in the previous book, it’s like he’s still not anyone we know well. And consequently, he’s someone we can’t care that much about. We know even less about Kwanza, and he doesn’t have enough meaningful dialogue for us to feel like we understand him. I was way more interested in the few pages of Jared, Raul and the rest of the shifters than the main characters. Hopefully the next book will be more in keeping with this series.
You can buy Rediscovering Himself here: