by Gwenan Hains
Sixteen years ago, Kira Chiklak’s mother promised her a miracle on Christmas morning. Instead, she woke to the news her brother was gone forever. The Alaskan pilot’s dreams have always told her the future but have never revealed the secrets of her past.
Now Kira’s dreams are warning her another child in Amarok is in danger of meeting the same fate as her brother. As Kira races to save Annie Michaels’ life she comes to believe her past and Annie’s future are inextricably linked.
The last thing Hunter Jackson expects to do during Spring Break is unravel a mystery. When Kira asks for his assistance, he can’t refuse her request. But can he help her protect Annie when his own heart is at risk?
Sometimes I wonder how things would have turned out if I hadn’t. If I’d kept my nose buried in that menu in search of a dish Icouldn’t pronounce. But I didn’t. I looked up and saw Annie hanging onto the banister as she descended the stairs that led to the Michaels’ apartment. She clung to the hand of a girl I guessed was her babysitter as the two of them made their way across the room toward the kitchen. Annie wore a pink fleece footie sleeper and her auburn hair hung loose around her face. I think that’s what pushed me over the edge. She looked so damn innocent. I pushed my chair back from the table and grabbed the wolf hat out of my jacket pocket.
Hunter’s eyes darkened. “What are you doing?”
“Be right back.”
“I have to. I’m sorry.”
Before I could stop myself, I stood up and set off after Annie and the babysitter. They were waiting outside the kitchen doors. Annie was staring at the doors as if she were waiting for her mom to breeze through them, like she always did. The babysitter’s eyes flitted across the restaurant, looking for people she recognized. Then she turned back toward Annie and smiled down at her.
Liv appeared just as I reached Annie and the sitter. Her eyes locked onto mine and even Annie could read the warning there. Stay away from my child.
WRAITH is a fantastic little paranormal story full of suspense and with an adorable helping of romance. Kira’s POV is engaging and easy to read. She’s a little quirky, which made her instantly relatable for me. Her love of flying is evident, and her struggle to understand her gift feels real.
Kira and Hunter’s relationship is all kinds of wonderful. It’s clear Hunter cares about Kira and wants to protect her, and it’s refreshing that he doesn’t fulfill that desire in a bad-boy alpha way. At one point, Kira makes a reference to Hunter being kind of a playboy, but I didn’t get that from his character at all. He’s a nice guy, and the transition of his and Kira’s relationship from friends to more felt completely natural.
The mystery is very well done. The hints from when Kira’s brother disappeared years ago carry forward into the current situation with Annie. And the current situation left me with questions, which made me glad to see WRAITH has a sequel. I want to know more about Hunter’s connections to the wolves and more about how the bad guys aren’t the bad guys.
The only thing about WRAITH that bugged me was the opening. The first chapter felt like a lot of backstory, and as a result, it wasn’t until chapter 2 that I felt invested in the story. Otherwise, this was a great little read, and I would definitely read more from Hains.
Gwenan Haines lives in New England with her daughter and a Siberian husky born on Halloween. She’s been hooked on suspense ever since her mom read her an old Nancy Drew mystery when she was five years old. She also loves romance and fantasy. Her paranormal novella, WRAITH, and novel, SHIFT, the first two installments in the SHADOW WORLD series, are under contract with Wild Rose Press\’s fantasy line. When she’s not plotting her newest mystery, she teaches community college and writes lots of poetry.
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Gwenan Haines will be awarding $20 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.a Rafflecopter giveaway