Paris in Winter, 1943.
The Loupin pack is a group of canidae operating as a cell in the French resistance, sabotaging German supply lines and taking out as many German soldiers as they can. After a series of successes, they’re dealt a staggering blow in a surprise attack that leaves their leader, Philip, dead. Philip’s lover, Simon, becomes the pack’s new leader, but the fight has gone out of him. He and the rest of the pack retreat to occupied Paris where he drowns his grief in whatever alcohol can be found in any taverns that are still open. He’s finally pulled out of his stupor by the arrival of a British Intelligence officer named Kenneth Mackay, another canidae who reveals the attack on their cell was not an isolated incident. It was part of a concerted effort by the Germans to clear northern France of any opposition for reasons unknown.
Simon puts aside his grief and sorrow to discover the truth behind Philip’s death. Teaming up with the British soldier, Simon and the pack return to the countryside they abandoned months before. They soon find themselves facing a fierce and cunning enemy whose plans could bring countless deaths and untold destruction.
In this novel set in the world of ‘Underdogs,’ Simon, Kenneth, and the rest of the Loupin pack are the only thing standing between the new darkness and must do everything in their power to stop it… even if it costs their lives.
This story was so good. It’s the first in the Underdogs world I’ve read and you definitely don’t have to read the others to enjoy or understand this one. I loved the world built with how wolves function and their role in historical events surrounding WWII. It was fascinating seeing how the pack structure translated to resistance cells in time of war.
The four central characters to the story were so wonderfully written. You get to know them and see how they handled a level of stress and tension few can understand or sympathize with. Simon was such an amazing character. He had such strength to overcome his grief far more quickly than most would be able to handle. Sandrine was such an enigma I loved getting to see into her emotions throughout the story. Kenneth was someone that was able to adapt to any situation and his dynamic personality shines through as the stakes get higher. Minuit was so naive and impressionable you couldn’t help but want her to succeed and find happiness.
I loved being pulled into this story and kept on the edge of my seat the whole time wanting to know if there are people playing both sides, if the resistance will succeed, if the tension between the characters is just a consequence of their circumstance or if they truly have feelings for each other. The story is wonderfully written that you don’t realize how quickly you’re reading the book and how much time has passed.
I will say that the romance in the story is subtle and not really the point of the story. I enjoyed the main plot way more despite being a romance lover at my core. There is on page sex scenes in a variety of combinations including MMF, FF and MM. The scenes are relatively short and all serve a purpose but if that’s not your thing skip over the detailed part to keep going with the emotions and the main story. I will definitely be reading more in this world. Plus I hope to read more by Mr. Cannon in the future as well. I loved his style and want more of it.
Four and a half
Geonn Cannon is a male author who grew up in Oklahoma, thousands of miles from the nearest coastline, who found his calling in stories about women who live on an island in the Pacific Northwest. In 2010, Geonn became the first male author to win the prestigious Golden Crown Literary Society Award for his novel “Gemini.” In 2015, he won it again for “Dogs of War.” He was also invited to write an official tie-in novel for the television series Stargate SG-1. He is currently working with Tello Films to turn his novel “Riley Parra” into a web series. His first name is pronounced just like “John.”