October 24, 2014

Liked It: Liulf by Victoria Danann + Giveaway

Series: New Scotia Pack 1
Format: Mobi
Release Date: October 18, 2014
Publisher: Andromeda LLC dba 7th House
Source: Author
Recommended By: Literati Author Services, Inc.
Genre: PNR | Sci-Fi | Historical

First of a series of three novellas about the Brothers Cu Ahlee.

USA TODAY Bestselling author, Victoria Danann, wrote this series as a follow up, based on Moonlight, Best Vampire~Shifter Novel of 2013.

For a thousand years the highlander werewolves of Scotia have enjoyed the protection of the fae monarchy, but the straining population has forced them to adapt or die. Or move. Liulf has spent centuries waiting for a true mating while others settled for comfortable compatibility. When he emerged as the new alpha, little did he know he'd find her when he leads his pack to a new world.

Werewolves, fae, highlanders, and a novella? Say no more, I want to get my hands on LIULF by Victoria Danann stat! I've been craving for good historical romance novels lately and as this has paranormal elements to it, it's a win-win for me. Plus that sexy dude in a kilt didn't hurt either, in fact it made joining the virtual book tour a no-brainer. Like come on, when there's men in plaids involved, it's almost always a guarantee that it's going to be one hell of a partayy!! *waggles eyebrows*

So LIULF is the first of Nova Scotia Pack which is a spin-off of VDanann's other series. I liked the Nova Scotia Pack's werewolf myth, it follows the archetype where they're very primal, feral, savage, and feared in their realm and not the trained puppies we sometimes come across in this genre. I mean the wolves here are not adorable at all and cute is the last thing you want to use to describe them. I also liked how the story is rooted in a bargain with the fae in exchange for protection and the whole angle about crossing realms was very magical. 

The pace is quick and the intent straightforward, move to the new realm and rebuild. The conflict didn't have anything to do with pack politics rather it was about which female gets Liulf. I like the direct approach but the world building suffered a little as well as the character development. Like I said, LIULF is supposedly a historical Highlander story but it lacked landscape although I did appreciate how the characters talk with an "accent" if you know what I mean, made it easy to visualize all of them. Then there's the time traveling aspect which was vague, I wish it was expounded on more as opposed to some simple abracadabra. I also felt like there was no character development, Liulf is a new Alpha and it's been said that he's hot and all but aside from his good looks and position in the pack, I didn't really get the sense that he's a good catch or what kind of a leader he is. The plot IMO is too big to be contained in 78 pages, it's almost like squeezing in my fat ass in a pair of size zero jeans. Not happening. 

LIULF had a lot of potential, I liked the premise and the story it intended to give us. It's a good start though I wish there was more pages to accommodate the story better, more room to explore and illustrate the story. I hope the next one is better drawn and fleshed out and hopefully I get my fill of that yummy highland werewolf fantasy that was promised.

Liulf squatted on the castle parapet with his back to the sound of the ocean crashing against Girnigoe’s black craig cliffs. If he let himself think about the damp cold or the January wind that tried to penetrate flesh and bone, he’d start to shiver in a way that would rack his whole body…. So he’d learned to focus on other things. Looking east, over the land he loved, he felt a sense of pride and history. And memory. In his slightly less than four hundred years, he’d covered every inch of pack territory in wolf form and much of it in biped form as well. He knew he was blessed with good things, but that didn’t fill the underlying emptiness that he couldn’t quite pinpoint. Lack of purpose maybe. There wasn’t much satisfaction in guarding a border without an aggressor.
That very day a wolf had said it was easy for Liulf to make reckless choices because he didn’t have a mate. Liulf had kept his face passive, but inside the words had stung. It wasn’t as if he could control destiny. What Lycan didn’t want to find his mate? Well, perhaps Conn would prefer to be a bachelor wolf forever.
It was true that Liulf could have settled for a bitch who was merely compatible, as most did. But he hadn’t because he knew there was more. There was mating that was, well, magical. He wouldn’t say so out loud because his brothers would never stop razzing him if he did. But he lived with a constant yearning that never subsided, spoken or not.
All the carousing in the world wouldn’t take the edge off his desire. And he should know. All he had to do was keep from cursing the Fates until they saw fit to gift him with the one. The one he knew was out there.

A snippet from an early review says: "This is a wonderful off shoot of that series (Knights of Black Swan). In MOONLIGHT, we learned that wolf shifters were having a rough time. Humans were spreading into their lands and using high powered weapons to kill them in wolf form. Towns and cities were destroying the wild areas."

This couldn't be more timely since we learned just 2 weeks ago that the planet has lost HALF of its wildlife in just the past 40 years. Certainly the wildness of werewolves is a metaphor for that part of us that longs for the call of Pan.

USA Today Bestselling Author
2013 Winner in the categories of:
• BEST PARNORMAL ROMANCE NOVEL (Vampires & Shifters) – Moonlight

My early work (eight-years-old) would be called fan fiction today. I began by writing my version of Bobbsey Twins novels on legal pads that my dad brought home from the office. As an only child - in the days before children became little electronic receivers - there was often not much to do other than seek amusement in my own head.

Childhood fantasies involved being the only girl (for some odd reason) at a ranch for wayward boys. Yes. I do realize this sounds vaguely familiar. T hose fantasies were supported by real life events because the boys included me in the afternoon neighborhood games whether it was cowboy/Indians or G.I. Joe.

When I left the Bobbsey Twins behind I didn't write again until I was married with children and in my mid-twenties. I completed a paranormal romance and gave it to my spouse to read. After hearing his criticisms I didn't write again for decades. At the time I didn't understand that he's the absolute farthest thing from my audience.

It turned out to be a blessing because during that time that I didn't write, I lived an extremely full life. I traveled a lot, raised a family, got an education (I have an M.A. in Psychology.) and explored my compulsion to be a spiritual seeker. The fantasies were a constant companion throughout. The faces and names of the characters changed as I matured, but they remained a source of comfort. They helped me through hellraising teenagers and three near-death scares.

By the time I started writing again, I had something to say. I write cross-genre with uniquely fresh perspectives on paranormal creatures, characters, and themes. Add a dash of scifi and a flourish of fantasy to enough humor to make you laugh out loud and enough steam to make you squirm in your chair. My heroines are independent femmes with flaws and minds of their own whether they are aliens, witches, demonologists, psychics, or past life therapists. My heroes are hot and hunky, but they also have brains, character, and good manners - usually - whether they be elves, demons, berserkers, werewolves, or vampires.

If you're interested in me personally, I am also a classically trained musician who defected to Classic Rock. This is Roadhouse, the very best in Classic Rock, taken near The Last Concert Cafe, Houston Texas, 2011. I'm the utility player which means I play rhythm guitar, keyboards, sing back ups and a few leads. I authored and illustrated Seasons of the Witch calendars and planners for fifteen years. I live in T he Woodlands, Texas, which is why I sometimes joke about being the witch in the woods. Married. Four children. One very smart, mostly black German Shepherd dog.

Stalk Victoria
Website | Facebook | Goodreads Fan Group | @vdanann | Pinterest


  1. Is it wrong that I had to stare at the cover for more than a minute? :P

    Thanks for posting this and making my Friday a little brighter. Have a lovely weekend!

  2. Oh geez. It seemed a bit too much, isn't it? I mean men in kilt and a werewolf to boot? Say no more. I'd probably jumped on that wagon before you could even say, "kilt". Lol. It's too bad the story wasn't as developed as you'd expected. But I hope you'll enjoy the next books in the series!

    1. Novellas are tricky, the plot should be proportionate to the length of the novel

  3. I'm a bit of a sucker fro those men in kilts too.

  4. I know, novellas rarely satisfy me. I always waant more. They seem to end just when things are getting ramped up. Hopefully the next book in the series will be awesome. Happy weekend.

    1. This is usually the case with fantasy novellas, the world building alone will eat up a lot of the pages

  5. I haven't read her other series yet, but yeah, kilted wolf shifters does it for me too. Sounds good.

    1. Sigh, all commando down there, that's what I call easy access

  6. I do love the cover and the paranormal twist sounds wonderful.The huge plot worries me, I may wait to see how the second book weighs in for you.

    1. Yeah, I wish this was a full length novel instead of a short one

  7. Yeah, that cover definitely grabs your attention. I like that this one mixes the historical aspect with paranormal. It's a shame it wasn't all you were hoping for, but maybe the rest of the series will expand on this novella. Great review!

    Teresa @ Readers Live A Thousand Lives

  8. That wold is checking out his package

    1. LOL, he's flashing it, I wouldn't blame the poor wolf

  9. Love that it is a historical romance with paranormal elements. I don't see that that often. Sounds interesting.

    1. True, it's usually Steampunk, we need more of this

  10. Too bad about the development of the characters but I confess that I'm really intrigued because the mixed sounds perfect for me! I love a good story like that and I hope the following one will be even better.

    1. Give it a try, you might enjoy it better than I did ;)

  11. too much, lols @ fat ass squeezing in a pair of 0 jeans...girl, I feel you on that one ;D

    I think i will give this one a go, its short and a historical with/a paranormal edge...that I like ;)

    love the review!

  12. Did you say kilts?!? I'm a sucker for a guy in a kilt, too. And he's a werewolf. I'm glad this was a good intro to the series even if left you wanting, Braine. I do hope the next installment is more satisfying. I'll put it on my tbr.


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