Never His Mate by Sarah Spade

Never His Mate by Sarah Spade
Series: Claws and Fangs #1
Published by Self Published on May 18, 2021
Genres: Paranormal, Romance, Shifters, Vampires, Werewolves
Pages: 352
Format: eBook
Source: Purchased
Purchase on: Amazon// Barnes & Noble// BookBub
Add to: Goodreads // StoryGraph

After my mate rejected me, I wanted to kill him. Instead, I ran away—which nearly killed me...A year ago, everything was different. I had just left my home, joining the infamous Mountainside Pack. The daughter of an omega wolf, I've always been prized—but not as prized as I would be if my new packmates found out my secret.
But when my fated mate—Mountainside's Alpha—rejected me in front of his whole pack council and my secret got out, I realized I had one choice. Going lone wolf was the only option I had, and I took it.
Now I live in Muncie, hiding in plain sight. If the wolves ever left the mountains surrounding the city, I'd be in big trouble. Good thing that the truce between the vampires and my people is shaky at best and Muncie? It's total vamp territory. Thanks to my new vamp roomie, I get a pass, and I try to forget all about the call of the wolf. It's tough, though. I... I just can't forget my embarrassment—and my anger—from that night.
And then he shows up and my chance at forgetting flies out the damn window.
Ryker Wolfson. He was supposed to be my fated mate, but he chose his pack over our bond. At least, he did—but now that he knows what I've been hiding, he wants me back.
But doesn't he remember?
I told him I'll never be his mate, and there isn't a single thing he can do to change my mind.
To Ryker, that sounds like a challenge. And if there's one thing I know about wolf shifters, it's that they can never resist a challenge.
Just like I'm finding it more difficult than I should to resist him.
Never His Mate is a full-length PNR featuring Gemma Swann, a wolf shifter who is hiding a damning secret. When her fated mate rejects her for another female, her anger and her embarrassment lead to that secret getting out. Since staying behind on the mountains is just not an option and going back to her home pack is impossible, Gem decides she has one choice: risk death by fang in Muncie, the vamp town surrounding the mountains.
Luckily for her, she not only manages to survive the local vamps, but she makes friends with one. Things are looking up for her: she has a place with her roommate, a new job she loves, and the certainty that she'll never have to look at Ryker Wolfson's handsome face ever again.
Until he stalks into Muncie and, suddenly, Gem is confronted by his rejection all over again. So what if he says he had a good reason? If he thinks she's going to take him back now, he has another think coming.
Because Gem? She'll never be his mate...


Welcome back to another installment of I picked this up because of BookTok. This time, I was sucked into Never His Mate by Sarah Spade. This was an unexpected treat! I think more than the story itself, I loved the worldbuilding, though the romance was certainly a fun time.

This book will be frustrating to some readers, particularly those that hate the miscommunication romance trope. And though I will gripe about it as I read, I definitely, secretly love it because there’s no actual betrayal and a conversation can fix everything. We’ve got main characters Gem and Ryker, a pair of fated mates, that fell apart when Gem believes Ryker has rejected her. She’s left, rebuilt her life (alongside a vampire no less), when Ryker comes back wanting to claim her. Why’d he reject her? Who knows because he still can’t give her a clear answer. The push and pull between them is deliciously frustrating. We can feel how much they want each other but are too stubborn or proud or dumb to work through it.

I know I say I’m always surprised by this, but the fact that there was a plot outside of romance was pleasant to see! We get only hints of it with Spade never going heavy handed on the were or vampire politics, but that’s what makes me want to continue with this series and this world she’s built. I want to learn the intricate ins and outs. I want to get into the gossip of every relationship and see how they each piece together. Honestly, I did not expect the reason for the rift to be what it was, which was a nice surprise (for me.) While the pacing did heavily favor the romance, feeling a bit rushed toward the end, I can rationalize this to myself by saying there is a very direct follow-up which likely will answer all the lingering questions.

Never His Mate by Sarah Spade is a quick paranormal romance that opens up a vast new world to explore. If you’re okay with miscommunications and fated mates, I think you’ll really like this one. If you can’t stand angst that could be cleared with a conversation, you might want to steer clear.


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