Molly Reviews: Unsafe Exposure by Kaje Harper (Hidden Wolves Book 4)

Stepping out of the closet as a gay man may be a walk in the park, compared to coming out as a werewolf.

From the moment artist Dylan Shore arrives in Chicago, his life gets twisted like a kaleidoscope. Why does a street gang he’s never met before want him dead? Why is a hot but odd mathematician stalking him? And how can half the things Alex Corwin says possibly be true, no matter how honest he seems?

Alex has a frightening dilemma. Dylan is attractive, appealing, out and proud. He’s also completely unaware that he’s a werewolf. It shouldn’t be Alex’s job to tell him, and warn him that gay wolves usually end up dead. But someone has to, before he finds out in blood and violence.

Chicago’s not Alex’s home town, but somehow he needs to protect Dylan from the local packs, protect the Packs from being outed by Dylan, and keep his cool around the first man to touch his own deeply-closeted heart.

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This story was really interesting and a bit of a change from the rest of the series. Aaron and his pack don’t feature in the story as much and when they do, it’s later in the book. Plus there’s more going on in the background with all of the other wolves. Most of the story kept me on the edge of my seat wanting to know what happens and if Dylan and Alex would make it somewhere safe and be able to have a relationship. There were parts though that didn’t work for me. However I enjoyed the story and truly hope there will be more books in this series.
Alex was someone that hurt my heart a little bit. He hid who he was so hard but still loved his pack, even if he knew they wouldn’t accept him. Alex was unsure of himself throughout the story but you got the sense he would do what he thought was right no matter what. The way he blossomed with Dylan was so sweet. he gained confidence in himself and fully accepted being gay. I loved that towards the end he realized he didn’t have to act one way or be one way just because others viewed him one way or thought he should. He could be himself and want what he wanted and to hell with stereotypes or customary roles.
Dylan was a sweetheart but also a bit of an enigma. He was strong and knew exactly what he wanted in some aspects. But there were times he acted unsure and scared. Some of them of course were times it made sense like when learning about werewolves and what it meant to be one or when he was kidnapped by the crazy humans. But there were times it didn’t make much sense for Dylan to act tentative. As the story progresses you could tell Dylan fully accepted being a werewolf and embraced his relationship with Alex. Dylan loved completely and it was wonderful seeing him content and happy by the end of the story.
The storyline with the accidental Alpha bond was interesting. I completely got how it happened and was a total accident. I also understood why they kept the bond as is at first. When they got to Minnesota, keeping the bond made less and less sense the longer they kept it. I didn’t fully understand why they left the bond as is at that point. I also was a little shocked at how far Aaron let Dylan go in his challenges, unknowing as they were. Aaron is definitely not one to knock people around unnecessarily. But he also never struck me as someone that lets other wolves get away with disrespecting him more than once, twice at the most. His actions here seemed out of character compared to the previous books.
The relationship between Alex and Dylan was quick at the beginning. I liked how they were jumping in bed but still seeing where things went. It went on a fast track from there due to the circumstances beyond their control. You could still tell they were building their relationship even if it was borne out of unusual circumstances. I liked how they continued to build on their feelings when they got somewhere safe and stable-ish. The epilogue at the end is wonderful because you can tell they’re deeply in love and will work to make their relationship last long term. I’d love to see how they handle being together now that life has slowed down for them. But even without that you can feel their love and devotion and know they’ll make it.

About Kaje:
I live in Minnesota, where the two seasons are Snow-removal and Road-repair, the mosquito is the state bird, and where sometimes in winter it can be breathtakingly beautiful. Of course, the deepfreeze chill contributes to the breath-taking, but Minnesota’s a kindly, quiet place and it’s home to me now. I’ve been writing for far longer than I care to admit (*whispers – forty years*), mostly for my own entertainment, and currently am focused on M/M romance (with added mystery, fantasy, history, SciFi…) I also have a few Young Adult stories released under the pen name Kira Harp.

My first professionally published book, Life Lessons, came out from MLR Press in May 2011. My husband finally convinced me that after all that time writing, I really should submitsomething, somewhere. I was thrilled when it was accepted. I have a weakness for closeted cops with honest hearts, and teachers who speak their minds, and I had fun writing the four novels and three freebie short stories in the series. I’ve been just delighted by the reception Mac and Tony have received.

My first free book became the first story that I actually released – I put it up a month beforeLife Lessons just for the fun of getting it out there. Lies and Consequences began as a reaction to the November 2010 election. It looked like the repeal of DADT might be derailed by the political shift and I put the insanity of that law into the book. Then as I was finishing the first draft in mid-December the repeal passed. Which was great, but prompted a rewrite to a lighter and more action/romance book. This was a solo effort and I learned a lot from writing and releasing it and from the reviews. Check Smashwords for that one and many of my other freebies.

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