Sunday, January 27, 2013

Review: Strength of the Pack by Kendall McKenna

Title: Strength of the Pack (Book 1 in the Tameness of the Wolf series) 
Author: Kendall McKenna
Publisher: MLR Press
Rating: 5/5 Hearts


A Marine werewolf and his commander bring legends to life while surviving combat deployment in Afghanistan.
Lieutenant Lucas Young doesn't know much about shifters. When Sergeant Noah Hammond is assigned to Lucas' platoon, the Marine Corps' True Alpha werewolf challenges the Lieutenant's authority and his self-control. As Lucas learns to dominate and command Noah, he struggles against a strong attraction and deepening emotional bond. During their combat deployment to Afghanistan, Lucas and Noah begin mirroring legendary partnerships. Their bond and their power grow as they survive dangerous combat and ambushes. When one of them is wounded in battle, they both must embrace the strength of their bond before they lose each other forever


Where do I start? I met Kendall at GRL in October, and she briefly discussed Strength of the Pack, which I believe was still incomplete at that time. This came up in discussion because I mentioned how much I hate shifter books because I felt that no one really pulled it off well. She then said that she was writing a shifter book and that she thought she fixed most of the areas that bothered me about "typical" shifter novels, and that she thought I would really like it if I gave it a chance. When Strength of the Pack released, I really waffled on whether or not to pick it up straight away, especially because of the price. $8.99 seemed high, but it is 95,000 words, so this is not just a short novella. So I bought it (obviously, I'm writing a review about it), and I read it. This is the part where I bow down to the goddess herself, Kendall McKenna, because she was so right and I was so wrong. 

I like being this kind of wrong though. I finished the book in just under 3 hours. (I am an extremely fast reader, and from what I gather it takes others about 7+ hours to finish. Yes, I'm a freak) I loved it so much, and I was sad to see it end, so I read it a couple more times. I love the chemistry that the two MC's have from the very beginning. And I love how obtuse they both are. The military portions are awesome. Kendall always does well to capture the true spirit of the military, and the Marine Corps in particular. The shifting portion of the novel was unique, fun, and interesting. Lucas and Noah are awesome. I love them. I can't wait to see more in this series. I also loved some of the supporting characters, specifically Tim Madison. 

One of the other things I loved was the depiction of Capt. Stanley. Why you ask? Because there is always at least one. One jerkoff commander and his jerkoff 1st sgt that cause issues. If you have ever been around the military for any real length of time, you know this. I also really loved the symbioses that existed between Lucas and Noah, especially when one of them is injured. It's really cool how that worked out. I honestly can not say enough good things about this novel. I love how Lucas was very conscious of his position despite his rapidly growing feelings for Noah. The sexual tension throughout this book was fantastic. Congratulations, Kendall, You've converted me... Okay, well at least to YOUR books! 

If you would like to purchase Strength of the Pack, You may do so: 

Direct from MLR



Barnes and Noble

If you wish to connect with Kendall, you can check out her website:

Kendall McKenna

or her page on Facebook:

Kendall's Facebook 


  1. I really want to read this book, sadly I have to wait till payday unless I win it. It just sounds so good. And I'm hoping this turns into a series so I get more books like this!
    goaliemom0049 (at)

  2. I'm with you about having to wait until payday. Thankfully, that's Wednesday night/Thursday for me. I'm going to try to hold out until Friday, as I have a lot of work this week, and I need a treat for being a good girl.

  3. Come back tomorrow, when Kendall takes over the blog, and you'll have a chance to win it! :)

  4. I love the premise of this werewolf shifter story. It sounds unlike any that I've read before. Being a big lover of wolves I haven't found a single wolfshifter story that accurately describe a true Alpha, and its relationship with its pack.
    I can't wait to read this and it is definitely at the top of my gotta have list...*S*
    Wishing you all the best, and continued success!



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