Of Wolves and Men
Paperback: 212 pages
Publish Date: April 5, 2011
From the author's website:
'Cowboy' Charlie Mosby worked on a horse ranch in Heber, Utah. He loved his work, the owners of the ranch, and his co-workers; wranglers who helped tourists with guided horse tours and trail riding all year round.
But after a chance meeting with a handsome gay man who had helped Charlie change a flat tire on Interstate 80 a month ago, Charlie was beginning to wonder about his sexuality. And if that wasn't confusing enough, strange things were happening on the ranch. Satanic worship? A strange cult ritual? Whatever it was, it wasn't good for the owners or the horses on it.
One night Charlie stumbles upon Roman Burk in the woods, naked, bleeding and shivering in the cold. What Charlie never imagined was who -or what- Roman was. Even though the handsome stranger seemed to vanish at times and reappear as if by magic, Charlie was infatuated by this man. Roman was fearful of revealing his secret. Most of all to a cowboy who was spending more time hunting him, than loving him.
In this shape-shifting story of sexual bonding and discovery, can both Charlie and Roman find what they're looking for? It's a question of honor; one that has been up for debate since the first time man set his eyes on this formidable predator. It's about the mutual respect of Wolves and Men.
Charlie Mosby is a cowboy; he manages a ranch and has been doing it for several years. He's friendly with the other employees and lives on the property. The owners treat him like a son. He enjoys taking tourists on nature tours on the property. He's always thought of himself as straight, until last year when he got a flat tire and a stranger stopped to help him change it...and then gave him the best head of his life. Now he can't stop thinking about that stranger.
While Charlie's out fixing a fence with another worker, they come upon a mutilated deer carcass. The next night as he's headed out to watch for trouble near the site of the killing, he runs across a shivering, naked man he later learns is named Roman. He brings him home and they have sex, but Charlie thinks it's a dream. Charlie finds him again the next day, and Roman attacks him - they have sex on the trail, after which Roman jumps up and runs away. Around the time he's trying to figure out what's going on with Roman, he's noticing a large black bird and a wolf keep keep appearing around the ranch, especially near his cabin. Eventually he realizes they're both Roman - he shifts uncontrollably into a bird or a wolf. Roman doesn't understand why he's been cursed, or by who, but he knows Charlie can somehow help him find the answers he seeks.
I could not get into this book.
The characters were inconsistent: Charlie seems to be a normal hard-working guy, but as soon as he gets around Roman he's horny and irresponsible; his co-worker Butch seems to be a nice guy then turns into a jealous, unpleasant character. Roman is, in turns, needy and aggressive.
The sex was flat: it was a lot of "let's hurry up and get off before Roman changes into a wolf/bird" or they'd crash into each other and go for it wherever they happened to be at the time. At the beginning of the book, Charlie brings Roman home and they have sex, even though Charlie was supposed to be taking his turn watching the area where they found the deer; and no one noticed he didn't work his shift.
The mystery portion of the story made no sense: why would this mysterious sect curse Roman into a bird and a wolf and cause him to be constantly horny? Why does Roman think Charlie can cure him? We never got an answer to those questions, and a new mystery surrounding Charlie sprouted up at the end of the book that remained unanswered.
It also bothered me that even though they both mentioned on separate occasions that they should be using condoms, they never did.
Book received from publicist in exchange for an honest review.