The Hounds of Annwyn, 1
As guardian of the gate to the spirit world, hellhound Adrian Mason is responsible for apprehending errant necromancers, and now he has his hands full with a demon on the loose. When all evidence points to Miriam Spencer, she swears she's not to blame. Though she is descendent from a family of powerful witches, Miriam can barely divine answers from a magic eight ball, let alone raise spirits.
But, if she's not the culprit, then who—or what—is wreaking havoc on the small upstate New York town? Falling for his prime suspect isn’t on Adrian’s agenda. Duty-bound and with time running short, he must bring Miriam to justice, or face his own.
Adrian pulled back from their kiss and hugged Miriam tightly, pressing her breasts against him. He nuzzled his nose into her hair, inhaling her cinnamon-sandalwood scent, filling him with warmth. He knew Miriam could feel his need, the hardness of his cock pushing into her stomach and pulsing with every heartbeat, but she just felt so damned good to hold.
His hands never ventured beyond her waist, though he perceived her clothes as a barrier between him and pure bliss. Her form-fitting jeans and blouse had him on edge the entire time he’d sat in the kitchen, wishing for a moment he would be able to tear them off. The need to feel his flesh against hers, to have her wrapped around him as he thrust into her over and over, tempted his restraint as he breathed in her scent.
“Incredible,” he said into her hair. “No witch should smell this good to a hellhound. It’s dangerous.”
“It’s called shampoo,” she said into his chest with a gentle smile in her voice. “It wouldn’t hurt you hounds to use it either.”
Adrian cupped her face with his hands and kissed her again, harder this time. Her lips, as soft and delicious as he imagined they would be, molded into his so perfectly. So dangerously. Everything about their union was wrong, forbidden by both their clans, and yet he had never felt such peace. For now, he reveled in the gentle sensation of her mouth latched to his and how perfectly her curves felt pressed against his body.
Mixed in with the spice, her feminine musk grew stronger. Her arousal drove the animal in him beyond his control. He could feel his canines lengthening, and the dull prick of claws trying to push from under his fingernails. Reluctantly he broke their kiss, drawing a sound of disapproval from Miriam. Stubbornly, she reached her hands under his shirt while her lips travelled across his neck. He inhaled sharply, letting her explore with her tongue and fingers.
“No,” he said, placing his hands firmly on her shoulders.
“I need to touch you,” she insisted, sneaking her fingers into his waistband and grazing the sensitive skin beneath.
“Please,” Adrian stated decisively. If Miriam went much further, he’d lose complete control, and he was already nearing the edge as it stood now. It wasn’t fair to her, and the least he could do was try and give her the pleasure he would need to deny himself.
Miriam’s faced was flushed, her lips parted. She seemed to avoid looking at him as she spoke, her sentence punctuated with rapid breaths in between words. “I know. I don’t know what came over me. I guess it’s my penchant for sleeping with hellhounds.”
Adrian couldn’t help himself and laughed.
Pulling away abruptly, she hugged her arms around herself, almost as a shield. “What do you find so amusing?”
“There’s another hole in your story, love. No hellhound has ever mounted you.”
Her red face grew pinker by the moment. “Not that it’s any of your business…”
“If you ever had sex with a hellhound, you would have been able to cast back those demons that were chasing you down the street, but you didn’t even try. In fact,” he went on, stepping closer to her and giving her a predatory smile. “I don’t think anyone has ever touched you before.”
“Again,” Miriam said, dropping her arms and poking one sharp index finger into the center of his chest and taking a step back. Adrian conceded and let her go. “It’s none of your damn business who I’ve slept with, or if I’ve slept with anyone, or who I want to sleep with. And I find it a little unnerving that you can tell just by sniffing my hair.”
He laughed again. “It’s the pheromones you’ve been emitting since you walked in here,” he explained. “They’re stronger than any human or witch I’ve ever smelled, but it’s clear you have never been attached to anyone. I don’t know how to describe it. You smell innocent. And I love it.”
Silence stretched on for a few long moments, the air thick with tension. Nothing in the laws of his pack or Miriam’s coven would permit him to mate with a witch. It was considered treason, a conflict of interest between his duty as a hellhound to guard the spirit worlds and the rituals of the witch that played with that delicate balance. Jacob’s encounter had resulted in the young hellhound becoming spellbound. This was the precise reason behind the laws that prevented sex between the two clans.
Her voice was guarded, heavy. He was convinced now the flush on her skin was an echo of the lust she tried to tamp down in her voice as she spoke. “Why should I trust you, after everything you’ve done to me?”.
It killed Adrian that he couldn’t have her completely, to never prove to Miriam just how much he wanted, no, needed to protect her. Her innocent words, the way she worried her hands together as she stared up at him expectantly, reminded him why he was so taken with Miriam when he went with her as the guardian for her first ancestor summoning.
Adrian was also reminded of why he broke off their friendship in the first place. He wanted her, and that was unacceptable to his kind.
“Why should I trust you?” she repeated.
Adrian stepped closer to her, leaning his hands on the wall and pressing Miriam against it with his body. He ground his hips into her while she whimpered helplessly with fear and need. He lowered his mouth to her ear, his lips curling away from his teeth. “You shouldn’t.”
Posted by Unknown on 25th Apr 2012
Miriam Spencer is a witch with no discernable powers. She works in her mother’s shop and has lived as an outsider in the witch community for her whole life. She is small, gentle, and very pretty.
Adrian Mason is the leader of the Hellhounds. They are shapeshifters who guard the world from the spirit realm. He is forbidden from having a relationship with a witch but is strangely, and strongly, attracted to Miriam.
There is a dangerous demon on the loose in the small upstate New York community that is home to the Hellhounds and Witches. A reliable witness and victim has named Miriam as the necromancer who summoned the demon. Miriam, however, is unable to cast the required spell. Adrian is forced to take her into custody until he can uncover the truth, but he is puzzled by his intense attraction to Miriam.
This is an interesting tale with a new paranormal hero. The author’s depiction of the hellhound put a new spin on a previously secondary and often villainous paranormal creature. Adrian is a very attractive alpha hero with a strong sense of honor. Miriam has been kept in the dark about many things, but is by no means a weakling heroine. The villain of the piece is pretty easy to pick out, but bringing a villain to justice is not always easy, even when you know their identity.
Posted by Unknown on 16th Apr 2012
Miriam isn't sure she why she can't do magic. All she knows is that it has something to do with her father. Miriam has been pretty content with her life, until Adrian comes back into the picture accusing her of bringing demons into this world. Miriam can't seem to convince Adrian that she couldn't have possibly done any magic. On the way to take her for judging, the demons attack. Adrian decides to keep her hidden until he can sort out who is behind the attacks and why they are after Miriam.
Waking the Dead has much to offer the imagination. The hellhounds are especially interesting to me. As the story line develops, you learn more about Miriam and her history. Renee Silvana brings very creative thinking to Waking the Dead. The sensual scenes are wonderfully written and Miriam and Adrian's chemistry jumps of the page. If you love a book that opens up your imagination, Waking the Dead is a paranormal romance worth taking a look at.
Posted by HMG on 8th Dec 2011
I really liked her very different characters. They had great tension between them. I enjoyed the way she described their world, it felt very real to me. I can certainly see where she could continue their adventures together. I enjoyed this book and wish the author the best of luck.