During the writing of Alpha Wolf Need Not Apply, I made trips to several wolf reserves. As soon as I saw the sign for Mexican gray wolves near Albuquerque, I wanted to drive there and see them. So before we made our return trip home, we did.
To take care of Mexican gray wolves, a facility has to have special permission. They’re much rarer, but they’re much like their cousins in the north. I have to admit I loved seeing all the animals, but I was anxious to see the Mexican gray wolves at play. In my stories, I always include some kind of play time for my wolves, because it’s a way for them to show hierarchy, and a way for them to do what they do in the wild, train to take down their prey. In captivity, it’s somewhat different. When they heard a truck coming, that instantly meant food to them. No one came with food, but the wolves started to race around the fence and play with each other, and that made it fun for us.
Another wolf was isolated in her own fenced-in area. Why? Oftentimes, wolves like to be with a pack. They’re pack animals. But sometimes they grow too old and can’t manage the younger wolves who are in charge, maybe once having been in charge themselves. In one wildlife center in Minnesota, that was the case with one of their wolves. He had been retired. No showing off to visitors to the zoo. No mixing with the wolf pack that consisted of two brothers, the one male being the alpha, and a sister and brother, the female being the alpha by default. Though as feisty as she was, I was certain that if another wolf was introduced, she’d still be the alpha.
In a case in Texas, all the wolf dogs or wolves had “mates.” They don’t actually breed the wolves, only offer them a companion. But one wouldn’t accept a mate. She was a real beta with humans, full Arctic wolf, but put another wolf or wolfdog in with her and she was a terror.
In another case, this one in Nebraska, a wolf was being confined until he was more used to the environment. Once he was, he was allowed into the enclosure with the rest of the wolves and he became the alpha. When we were there, they said they had fifteen pups, seven yearlings and eight younger pups, but everyone was hiding, it was summer, so it was hot, which made it hard to see any of them.
And that’s the thing of doing research on wolves. You can’t always expect to go once and see the wolves out playing just for you. We spent all day at the one in Ely, Minnesota, recording and watching and asking questions of the staff. The wolves would disappear and sleep for long periods, then finally return and play or sleep where we could see them.
In a Wisconsin zoo, the two wolves never made an appearance. One of the personnel said that the wolves only came out early to play and would come out at night. They were around twelve years old, so tired old wolves. Which is totally understandable.
When we were at a different wolf reserve in Minnesota, they had said that they would have to separate wolves out if they had trouble between wolves. The one pack had a total of twelve wolves in it, the largest pack we saw in captivity that remained together.
The Mexican gray wolf that was isolated from the others has her own story to tell. I like to think she just needed her space, or she is waiting to find her perfect mate. What do you think?
About the author:
Visit Terry’s website for more sizzling werewolf romance!
Series: Heart of the Wolf #19
Author: Terry Spear
Publication Date: May 3/16 by Sourcebooks Casablanca
Genre: paranormal romance
Book Links: Goodreads – Amazon(US) – Amazon(CA) - B&N - Kobo - Indigo - Google Play
Back Cover Blurb:
THERE'S A NEW WOLF PACK IN SILVER TERRITORY
Wolf shifter and park ranger Eric Silver is committed to his job policing spectacular San Isabel National Forest, and he's hot on the scent of some mysterious wolves who are up to no good. When Eric's investigation leads him to cross paths with forester Pepper Grayling, he's fascinated to learn this she-wolf is her pack's leader-strong, independent, and definitely not looking for a mate.
AND THIS TIME THE LEADER'S A SHE...
With unknown dangers on the prowl, Pepper is tempted to give in to her attraction to Eric and align her pack with his. But Pepper's been pursued by many an alpha male out to take over her pack and gain her hard-won territory-and Eric is a born leader. How does Eric earn the trust of a she-wolf who's been betrayed so often in the past?
She was furious that Waldron was pulling her away from her own pack to deal with him when she wanted to ensure Susan was properly cared for. As quickly as she was able, she stripped off her clothes, shifted, and ran like the devil to chase Waldron down. Whoever the other wolf had been, he had posed no threat to them. When she ran after the two wolves, she smelled their scents. The mystery wolf was indeed Eric Silver. No way would she want Waldron to hurt Eric after he’d helped Susan!
She was so angry, she could have killed Waldron for his unwarranted actions.
When she spied Waldron still chasing after Eric, she tore into him, growling and snapping to let him know just how angry he’d made her. He whipped around as if to attack, then recognized her and realized that by attacking, he’d lose any chance of courting and mating her—not that he had any—so he backed off. From his narrow-eyed, harsh gaze, she could tell he was irritated to the max with her. If he could have, he would have continued to hunt the other wolf down and finished him off. She worried about Eric—she smelled his blood on Waldron. How badly had Waldron hurt him?
But she knew Eric had been injured even before this because she’d smelled both an antiseptic and blood on him when she first met him.
She listened but didn’t hear any sign of Eric. Growling at Waldron again, she turned and ran off. She continued to pay attention to the sounds around her, making sure he wasn’t following her back to their campsite. She didn’t want to have to say a word to him about any of this when she reached camp. All she wanted to do was see that her cousin Susan was taken care of.
When she didn’t hear Waldron following her, she wondered if he had gone back after Eric.
As for Eric, she already had trouble with one alpha male wanting to court her. She sure didn’t need a second one bugging her, if Eric had any such notion. Still, she felt bad that Waldron had attacked him, and she really hoped he wasn’t hurt too seriously.
Spear’s gradual character development lets you get to know everyone as issues arise. I enjoyed the fact that it was a natural introduction rather than a forced info dump. Pepper’s suspicious nature is a little over the top at times. She’s so focused on the ‘can’t’s’ that life is flying by and she’s limiting her whole pack. Conversely, Eric tries so hard to see the possibilities. It was amazing how different Pepper & Eric’s views were.
This novel was sweet & heartfelt but also dangerous and action packed. It’s definitely well worth the read.
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