Rating: 4.5 stars
Buy Link: Amazon | All Romance
Working for a company contracted to drive supply trucks for the military in Iraq, Adam Madison spends his days in a world of danger and excitement. He’s good at his job and keeps a cool head in tense situations. The one thing that he dreads is the full moon. For the most part the group of wolves he works with are good guys, but it’s not the same situation with the rest of the camp. The pack on base is a group of bullies, tormenting and molesting those weaker than them, including both humans and submissive wolves.
A rumor hits base that the True Alpha of the Armed Services is sending his Omega to get a handle on the out of control shifters on base, and Adam finds himself a little nervous. Not only will Dawson’s presence threaten Adam’s secret—that he’s Major Tim Madison’s little brother—but Adam has met Dawson before and his attraction to the wolf is difficult to ignore.
When Dawson lands on base, Adam fights against his attraction. Because of his past, Adam is certain that happiness and relationships are not in the cards for him. As Dawson roots out the problem with the pack, he also finds a way to make Adam open up. At first, Adam is certain that what they have is momentary and that Dawson will find someone else when Adam’s gone.
When the CIA shows up on base, investigating increased Al-Qaeda activity, things change. Secrets are told and a fight for pack leader ensues. But the most dangerous of encounters is yet to happen, and may just tear Adam away from Dawson just when he is starting to believe in something again.
Strength of the Mate is the third book in the Tameness of the Wolf series by Kendall McKenna. I’ve loved this series since day one. I really, really liked this story, although I still love book one the most. Strength of the Mate is still intriguing, angsty, and awesome. A masterpiece of paranormal/military romance.
What I like most about this book is the different levels of Adam’s vulnerability. Adam is not military. He works with military but that’s the extent of his experience, outside his knowledge of his brother’s role, but his relationship with Tim is strained. So as non-military personnel he’s vulnerable every day at work. He’s human among a pack of wolves, so physically he’s vulnerable to their superior strength, especially before Dawson shows up at camp. Emotionally, he’s vulnerable. His past, the dark spot in his life, refuses to let him go. He refuses to forgive himself for his actions then, thus closing himself off to all relationships. And with Dawson he is utterly vulnerable. Even when Adam doesn’t want to admit it, he’s submissive, if only to Dawson. He lets himself revel in vulnerability when he is with Dawson. But I don’t want you to think that Adam is weak. He’s far from it. He’s amazingly strong and bold. He’s determined and passionate. He stands up for the underdogs and fiercely protects those he cares about. All around he’s a very balanced character.
Adam’s weaknesses are balanced by Dawson. He is so patient with Adam, but he does have his limits. When Adam runs emotionally, Dawson calls him out. He pushes Adam to open up. He makes Adam want more, want to be more. Dawson has many strengths, but his one weakness and the thing that makes him most vulnerable is Adam. Which is why they balance each other out so very well. Their relationship is give and take with a side of tug of war. But intimately they couldn’t be more perfect for one another. Hot doesn’t even begin to describe them.
Just like the other two books in this series, I am once again captivated by this author’s words. I’m pretty sure I once described it as literary crack. I’m going to stick with that description. I had a hard time putting the book down. McKenna has a way with words. Combining action, excitement, drama, romance, steamy sex, and overall sexual and plot tension, this author kept me on the edge of my seat.
I am still in awe of this world. Including this book, McKenna has continued to grow and progress this world—not only the paranormal side but the military life. It’s vastly creative and descriptive. From the beginning, this author has left nothing to the imagination and that still holds true.
I have no complaints. I absolutely love this story and this world. I can’t wait to see what comes from this series and this author next. I highly recommend Strength of the Mate by Kendall McKenna.