Review – Bear Naked by Dana Marie Bell

Bear NakedPublisher: Samhain
Publish Date: February 11th
How I got this book: eARC from publisher

To win a frightened heart, you have to bare your own.

Any woman would be eager to be Ryan Williams’s mate. Any woman but Glory Walsh. The sexy bear shifter is beautiful, strong and persistent, she’ll give him that. But Glory’s past taught her one simple truth: people leave. She can’t get past the fact he left her once before. Okay, so he had a good reason, and he did come back. Try convincing her emotions.

When Glory finally agrees to a date, Ryan feels like shouting hallelujah. He only left his mate to hunt down the man who’d shot her, but convincing the stubborn woman she has a permanent place at his side is tougher than he thought.

Their date takes a turn for the bizarre when Glory thanks Ryan for the series of romantic gifts—gifts Ryan never sent. It seems her past is coming back to bite her, and before it has a chance to sink its teeth in and tear her out of his life, Ryan will have to bare it all, right down to his soul, to protect the woman he loves. Even from herself.

Warning: This title contains explicit sex, graphic language, a blue-haired heroine, and a hero who isn’t afraid to get all kinds of naked.
*Blurb from Goodreads*

I’ve really enjoyed the Halle shifter books, and getting to see Ryan and Glory finally get their HEA was such a fun ride.

Glory has been resisting mating with Ryan for awhile, all because of her deeply ingrained fear of him leaving her. He left her alone in the hospital once, and she just knows it’ll happen again. Despite the fact that Ryan says he won’t leave, she needs him to prove it to her with his actions. When someone begins stalking Glory, Ryan absolutely refuses to leave Glory’s side, in fear of what might go wrong.

Ryan adores his mate, but her abandonment issues are more intense than he ever imagined. But staying by her side isn’t exactly a hardship, especially as they work together to figure out who is stalking her. With the return of her long lost brother and sister, Glory and Ryan set out to find Glory’s missing twin, who might be the reason Glory can’t seem to shake her new stalker.

I loved getting to see Ryan and Glory finally get their HEA. I love Ryan’s large extended family, and I’ve really enjoyed getting to know more about the bear shifters in Bell’s world. I think one of my favorite aspects of this series is the huge cast of secondary characters, and how unique each and every person is. Getting to see old favorites and meet newcomers is one of my favorite aspects of this series, and Bell doesn’t disappoint.

The romance between Ryan and Glory wasn’t what I expected. Glory was so reluctant to move forward with Ryan, and given her past I couldn’t exactly blame her. However, it seemed as if Glory went front being against the relationship to one hundred percent in. I didn’t feel like she really grew emotionally into their relationship, and maybe it was just me, but I almost felt like there was a bit of insta-trust on Glory’s part. Not that Ryan didn’t do everything he could to earn her trust, but it seemed as if Glory gave it to him sooner than I expected.

I’ve felt like the previous books in this series did a really good job of standing alone, and while the romance between Ryan and Glory is definitely a stand alone, the other aspects of this plot were left with a lot of dangling threads that will need to be explored in future books. From the possible mating bond with Glory’s twin Hope and a character I least expected, to the weird prophecies and the other possible two matings, there was a lot going on in this book outside of Ryan and Glory’s romance. I definitely felt like Bell left a lot of open doors for this series.

One thing I did really like is getting the chance to spend more time in Glory’s POV. There is so much about her backstory that I both loved and thought was totally crazy. She was such an interesting heroine, and I honestly can’t remember the last story I read where the heroine had such strong reaction to abandonment issues. It was a nice twist that I thought Bell handled perfectly.

All in all, I really liked the third book in the Halle Shifters series. I love getting to know more about the different types of shifters, and look forward to possibly getting to see some fox shifters next (HOPEFULLY!). I really liked Ryan and Glory, despite the fact that I struggled a bit with their romance. Despite that, they were both such fun characters, and watching them get their HEA was worth it.
I give Bear Naked a B-

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