I read a book: Her Orc Protector (Black Bear Clan #4), by Zoe Ashwood

You may remember the Black Bear Clan of orcs from my review of the previous volume of this series, Her Orc Warrior. I loved that everything about that one and to the surprise of no one, I loved the follow up, Her Orc Protector. It’s not really fair to call it a follow up though. Each book in this series can be read as a standalone. Characters from previous books do appear, but you don’t need to have read them to be able to follow the story in this latest volume.

This story starts off with a woman named Ivy being dragged into the forest in the dead of winter by a couple of men from her village who have been tasked with executing her on suspicion of being a witch. She pleads with them to let her go, and when that doesn’t work, she plays into their fears and curses them as they tie her to a tree and leave her to be eaten by wolves. They run away, hoping to avoid the same eaten by wolves fate, and Ivy is left hoping she will freeze to death before the wolves get to her.

Just as she’s resigned herself to her fate, she hears someone approaching. Is it the wolves? Have the men come back to finish the job? Not quite. A pair of warm green hands releases her from her bonds and carries her to safety. She goes with him willingly but warily, because like all humans, she has heard stories about orcs and is certain that his kindness comes with a catch. He is nothing but kind, caring, and respectful as she heals from her injuries in his care.

I love all of the characters. Ivy is a strong independent woman who don’t need no man. She has vast knowledge of herbs and healing remedies. No wonder they thought she was a witch. Lots of women who did nothing wrong other than being able to handle their own lives were accused of being witches before we knew better. She is suspicious but open minded. She allows people to prove themselves despite her preconceptions. And Korr is everything. He is strong and he is vulnerable. He does his best to allow her to heal without dumping the whole fated mates thing on her until she pushes for answers, and even then, he allows her the time and space to figure out how she feels about it. Kudos to Zoe Ashwood for writing another story that empowers the heroine by giving her control over whether the pairing will result in pregnancy or not.

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Once again I am left feeling happy and hopeful. There was a little gap in the getting to know you phase of the relationship, but you get the feeling that they are very compatible and complement one another in a way that betters both of them. If you like monster romance with likable characters and HEA, read this series.

Big thanks to Zoe Ashwood and Booksprout for providing an ARC in exchange for an honest review. You can buy Her Orc Protector on Amazon or read it as part of your Kindle Unlimited subscription.

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