This was a fascinating paranormal romance tale, with Polar Bear shifters, dream walkers and Native American undertones. I really liked the two main characters and I thought Riley was a complex well written character . Russell was a great character, too. He was loving and supportive. The story is interesting with a hint of danger from Riley’s past. A good heartwarming romance
I enjoyed the story behind the characters and appreciated their diverse reactions and shifter/psychic overtones. Based in Alaska, so very tight location. The drama behind the story was really very impressive. Good read, if you like this type of book.
A classy and fascinating mix of lust, love, dreaming and danger in an awesome setting. This starts out as a regular story about a teacher and her pilot, the potential for romance right there in the opening scene. Things quickly advance beyond simple when our hero strips off and shapeshifts and it’s revealed our heroine is hiding from something supernatural and sinister. The story to follow is a sweet romance that twists into an out-of-control thriller. The animal in pursuit of a mate is one of the highlights, handled with class and delivered with appropriate passion – natural and hot. Another winner is the way the teacher/pilot regular life story remains grounded while the shifter and dreaming aspects take us to extremes of imagination. It’s a clever blend. Another highlight is the climax, which comes on fast and is all power…. Romance, thriller, supernatural, the internal heat and external cold of nature – this book works.
I’ve read two of the Hearts In Winter books from Simone, When the Music Ends and When the Words are Spoken, and I absolutely loved them, so I was looking forward to reading Polar Heat.
The story takes place in Alaska, which is a place I’ve always wanted to visit, S that gave this tale a special appeal. Russell is a Native American who also happens to be a shapeshifting polar bear. When Russ meets Riley, the new kindergartner teacher, it’s love at first sight, or scent for him. Has he finally found his lifetime mate? Will she accept him, and his polar bear? And what about her secret past? Will she be able to overcome her previous abuser?
I really enjoyed the metaphysical elements of this story. I could tell Simone did a lot of research regarding dream walking, spiritual bonds, and herbalism. There is some action, especially toward the end, but mainly it’s a romance story, so the pace is slower as Russell and Riley do their get-to-know-each-other dance. Riley is hesitant about starting a relationship as Russ is much older than her, plus she has a dark past she’s escaping from.
I really liked Russ’ character, and I wouldn’t mind meeting a person like him myself. On the other hand, I had trouble with Riley. Most of the first half of the book is from Russ’ POV, so we’re not really introduced to Riley’s feelings or motivations other than through dialogue or dream sharing. Even knowing the abusive life she had as a child, I felt she was too weak. I think Simone tried explaining some of that by the psychic bond that her half-brother had over her, but still, she never balked at finding out about Russ. She just calmly accepted everything that happened between them, her step-brother, and Russ’ mixed family. For me, she had no heart and I found her unrelatable.
All-in-all, I did enjoy the adventure in the great state of Alaska, but I was also disappointed as I was really looking forward to an awesome love story that just wasn’t there. This book would be perfect for readers who love romantic shapeshifter stories. I give it 4 feathers.
The premise of a werebear, not a werewolf, is what initially drew me to this story. Ok, the cover played a part as well, because let’s face it, what’s not to like about a handsome shapeshifting man who can be romantic, protective and still carry off that essential element of mystery? It did not take long, however, to discover that Polar Heat was far more than a frolic with deliciously steamy, yet delightfully UN-raunchy, intimacy that kept me turning the pages and made my heart beat faster…then faster!
Older man meets younger woman; it’s a rather timeless proposition, yet the author adds twists to this traditional storyline through a fascinating blend of Native Alaskan lore and mysticism that sets the tale apart. Russell Tadzea is not merely a man; he is a 10-foot tall, 1000 pound polar bear with all the carnal urges and instincts of a beast, controlled through the strength and integrity of the man he has become through trials and customs unique to his distinctive culture. Riley is beauty and innocence personified, with a haunting history and vulnerability that is as compelling to his nature as the winter snow.
The presentation of their ever-strengthening bond is both beautiful and intriguing as the author weaves their magical story in unexpected ways. The primal animal within Russell recognizes his mate at first scent, rather than at first sight. The strength of their bond blossoms not in the cockpit of his plane or the playground of the school where she teaches, but in the realm of their dreams, as both have a unique gift of dream walking. The purity within Riley is drawn to his strength, in spite of, or perhaps because of, the physical manifestation of his age that initially worries her: his white hair, which is far more indicative of who he truly is than she could ever imagine.
And who he truly is quickly becomes as irresistible to the reader as he becomes to Riley.