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  • Of Secrets and Wolves

  • Winsford Shifters, Book 1
  • Written by: Alice Winters
  • Narrated by: Greg Boudreaux
  • Length: 10 hrs and 13 mins
  • 4.7 out of 5 stars (33 ratings)
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Of Secrets and Wolves

Written by: Alice Winters
Narrated by: Greg Boudreaux
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Publisher's Summary

Rowan

My whole life, I’ve been taught to despise shifters. So when I’m hired to track two escaped convicts, I’m suddenly thrust into the world I hate - or thought I did. Yet I’m inexplicably drawn to the alpha of the pack, whose land the convicts may be hiding on. He’s different than any shifter I've ever met - laidback and quick to laugh, caring, and protective, and makes me feel complete for the first time in my life. As secrets are revealed, I start to wonder if everything I’ve been raised to believe was a lie, though it may not matter, because it seems like someone wants us dead. 

Quinn

I’m no stranger to prejudice from humans, but it’s different when Rowan comes into my life. Though I shouldn’t let myself be distracted, I’m captivated by him. At first, he’s stiff, fighting to keep his misconstrued beliefs intact, but as I break down the wall he’s created, I’m able to show him a place among the fun chaos of my pack. After one of my pack goes missing, it leaves Rowan and me racing to bring them home. The only way we’re going to survive this is if Rowan learns to accept the bond that’s growing between us - a bond that could give us the strength to put aside our reservations and give in to what both of us want. 

Of Secrets and Wolves is an action-filled romance with a dash of comedy. It’s the first book in a series with a continuing storyline and an HFN.

©2021 Alice Winters (P)2021 Alice Winters

What listeners say about Of Secrets and Wolves

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

great debut

This book, like every other Alice Winter’s books I’ve read, is fast-paced, hilarious, and engaging. There is still a kind of grumpy/sunshine dynamic in this series, but I don’t tire of it, and she’s so good at writing those relationships.

When two prisoners escape from a nearby prison, Rowan Sinclair, an ex-soldier turned tracker, is hired to help the police find the two fugitives. Because his superior thinks that the fugitives might be hidden in a shifters’ village not too far, Rowan is forced to go there and work with Quinn, the alpha of the village. Rowan grew up in a house where prejudices against shifters were part of his upbringing, and he’s been told his whole life that shifters are aberrations and that their animal sides make them freaks, unfit for “normal” society. However, the more time he spends with Quinn, the gorgeous, slightly cocky, but very funny and kind alpha, the more confused he gets because he quickly realizes that Quinn is the complete opposite of what a shifter should be, according to what Rowan has been told and taught.

I like the world-building of this series. The concept of shifters is nothing new, but in this version of our world, shifters are treated as less important than humans, and it creates a big rift between humans and shifters. They do coexist, but there is a lot of anger and tension on both sides because the shifters are fed up with the injustice they are victims of, and the humans live with all their preconceived ideas and prejudices against shifters, making them wary and even scared of them. It gives a slightly darker tone to the story despite all the laughs and banter. I also like the fact that a pack can have a lot of different shifters such as bears, wolves, jackals, or dogs, and they all live together and are even able to live with humans too sometimes. The whole concept of “mates” is also present, but not only limited to shifters of the same species. A bear-shifter could have a tiger-shifter as a mate and they could still have kids. It made the shifter dynamics more interesting than what we have with the usual “wolf pack”.

Quinn is the typical Alice Winter’s light, sunshine-y, sarcastic, and instantly lovable main character and I loved him from the start. While he reminded me a little bit of Finn from How to Vex a Vampire, he was not as sassy or sarcastic, but he is still very funny, and he also has this strong leader vibe. I especially liked that he was a “non-typical" alpha, he’s not the over 6 ft. and 300 pounds of muscle mountain of a man, he is average in size and height, but makes up for it by being fiercely loyal to his pack, and driven to do anything to keep them safe. He has a big capacity for sarcasm and laughing at himself, and also an astonishing self-control that I admire. I would have lost my shits a few times if I’d been in his shoes.

Rowan is the grumpier side of the grumpy/sunshine couple, but then again he changes a lot in this book, and to be fair he is more stern than grumpy really... My only issue is that the changes happen pretty quickly. That is one reason I don’t always enjoy the whole "fated mate" plot, it creates situations with either insta-love or a complete change in behavior only explained by the fact that “he is my mate". The Rowan 2.0 that we get once he's finally admitted that he feels something for Quinn is much better, and the witty banter and hilarious situations between Quinn and him and great, but I would have loved it even more if we could have seen a slower development instead of having him drastically change in the span of a few days only, although I understand that with the plot, it wouldn’t have made sense for him to spend a whole month with the shifters to give him time to slowly come around.

There is the typical Winter's brand of humor in this book, so those who love the craziness of her characters will be happy, but overall, it was less intense or farfetched than the other series I've read from her. It's a more subdued version of the hilarious and improbable situations her characters always find themselves in, but it’s still very entertaining and it made me laugh out loud a few times.

There is a mystery in this book, but also a cute and funny romance. There were a few steamy smutty moments and plenty of sexual tension, but the romance is not too intense yet. The ending is pretty open, as very few of the plot lines are resolved in this book, so I am really curious to see where this is going, and I definitely want more of Quinn, Rowan, and Ari.

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Enjoyable

very good book! Greg Boudreau is always a great narrator. can't wait to listen to more in the series

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

campy fun

This book doesn't take itself too seriously. The narrator was excellent, but he leaned hard into the humour, and sometimes it was a little much.

I enjoyed the overall worldbuilding and characters. I would have appreciated some slightly less obvious turns, especially in Quinn and Rowan's growing relationship.

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1 person found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Loveeeeee this!

I cannot wait for the second book! As usual with Alice’s books I’m laughing constantly and hanging on every word. Greg’s narration is on point and gives a depth to the character that only he could deliver!
I highly recommend this book!

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Amazing writing and narrating

I love all things Alice Winters. But I’ll be honest, I was not sure about a shifter series. I put this series off until the second book came out then I decided since I love Alice so much that this would be a great series. Boy am I glad I bought it. This series is funny, witty and amazing. One of my favourite series by Alice.

Quinn is a wolf shifter that has his own pride and ends up tangled in a giant mess after meeting Rowan (a shifter that’s been denying his animal side his whole life). The two embark on a thrilling, life altering quest that sees Rowan embracing his inner leopard and finding his mate in the alpha wolf Quinn.

Greg does an amazing job as narrator of this series. Don’t hesitate to get this series and enjoy every minute of it!!!!

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Great speaker and surprisingly funny

I’ve read Alice Winter books before and they have been funny. This audio book was so much more. The speaker is really good and his reading of the book makes it more special. I laughed out loud a few times with earbuds in and strangers looking at me. The story line is really good too. My favourite audiobook so far. On to book two!

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Enjoyable!

I love Alice Winters, I love Greg Boudreaux, I love wolf shifter stories, so this was a yes for me. It's got the hilarious banter you'd expect. A sweet, loving, ridiculous relationship between the MCs. And funny, developed supporting characters.
I also love mysteries, so I'm digging the story line and where it'll lead. Can't wait for the next!

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 2021-05-03

Not Charming

I've previously listened to two other Alice Winter's books - Happy Endings and A Villain for Christmas - both of which I enjoyed for their charming characters and witty banter, despite the fact that the plots felt a bit shaky. So, I was quick to purchase this story when it came out only to find everything I liked about those stories was completely lacking here. The two main characters don't feel fully fleshed out. Quinn the alpha is supposed to be laid back and funny but also a scary leader, but when bad things start happening he comes off only as incompetent with no toughness at all. Tracker Rowan is apparently struggling with his history of being taught shifters are bad, but clearly doesn't believe any of what he's been taught to begin with (not that many specifics about how they're bad are even stated). And he has no personality beyond this supposed internal racism struggle. I could see no reason why the two main characters would like each other, so there was little to no heat to their romance. Subcharacters are annoying, and their response to dangerous situations illogical.

Finally, I had previously loved the narrator Greg Bordeaux in Happy Endings, but he did not do dual narration well. I was unpleasantly surprised by this, since he did do voice distinctions well before, but I regularly got confused as to which character's chapter it was / who was talking between the two mains. I currently have about 2 hours left of listening time in this book and I am debating even finishing. The only reason I gave it a few stars in that I think my expectations were high given my previous experiences with this author, and if I'd approached it not knowing how much better it should be then I'd have been able to at least finish this story.

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16 people found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 2021-04-24

Loved the book

Okay so I was kind of disappointed to see that this book was place on audio only for the fact that I have been waiting for the second book of Happy Endings to be on audio. Don't get me wrong I love Alice Winters style of writing the humor that is incorporated within all her stories. I've literally gotten all her books. I have to say however this book when I read what it was going to be about, it really did not catch my interest. I was on the fence about it before it became an audiobook. Which is kind of funny because I love all that this story was to bring. I love stories of shifters, magic, mystery and Mayhem and of course a touch of Comedy. But for some reason unlike all her other books that I was drawn more towards, this one really didn't capture my attention, when I read the description. however when it became an audio and I noticed that one of my favorite narrators was the one to narrate it I listen to the sample and it intrigued me so I purchased it. And I have to say that I am absolutely glad I did. I love the cover of the book. I loved the story and I can honestly say i cant wait for the 2nd one to come on audio. It goes to show you that you really can't judge a book by any thing. Because you never know what may lay within it's pages. I can tell you it was worth buying and i am glad did.

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7 people found this helpful

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  • Jermaine Hargrove
  • 2021-05-25

Not a single Original idea

Narrator carries the story. The worst parts of Animorphs, Twilight, True Blood all in one without any of the redeeming effort or charm
The character development is nonexistent. And it's hard to empathize with any of the characters.

The lore/ world building is lazy and it attempts to add social commentary about prejudice while missing the mark completely.

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5 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Kindle Customer
  • 2021-05-15

a waste of time

i have liked some of Alice Winrers earlier books, but this was just too dumb.
there are a lack of human understanding and the worldbuilding is not really there.
i can not recomend for any adult, but if you take out the explicit sexual encounters, this might be sutual for children or young adults who are not so demanding of their literature.
Greg Boudreaux did a great job with a boring book, so kudos to him.

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  • MayBae
  • 2021-05-02

Awesome narration!

My first Alice Winters audiobook from start to finish! It was a cute story that had both humor and a good plot. Greg Boudreaux nailed it, as per usual. I had not read the book beforehand, but shifter books are usually in my wheelhouse. This follows Rowan, a anti-shifter tracker-for-hire hired to track down some escaped shifter prisoners, and Quinn, the Alpha of a shifter pack near the prison, and their subsequent relationship. There are lots of characters involved on both sides and rarely is there a quiet moment between the two (Rowan and Quinn) to progress their relationship. It definitely kept the book moving, but was frustrating as well. There is a tentative HFN at the end, but no resolution for the bigger problems facing the pack. I assumed Book 2 would zoom in on another couple, but I see it’s just a continuation of Book 1, which is not something I particularly like or will follow through on. Every time another book is made around the same couple, the angst is always kicked up a notch and I get bored with both the characters, and the drug-out storyline. If you’re looking for a semi-lighthearted storyline that has some mystery to it, I’d highly recommend this book. It’s not a bad way to spend the day and is something I will definitely re-listen to in the future.

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Skillet
  • 2021-10-01

Same characters in every book

I have listen to several of Alice Winters' books and enjoyed them for the most part. But, after a while you realize she writes the same characters over and over. She just changes the names and species. Even the dialogue and banter are the same from book to book. The characters say, " You're just evil," to their partners in a flirty tone across all the books so often it could be a drinking game.
Solid performance from Greg Boudreaux, as usual.

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2 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Sonna
  • 2021-09-13

Superb narration

Fun book, very funny. The narration was outstanding. Different take on an alpha. Not very alpha-y. Still enjoyed it though

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Robert Johnson
  • 2021-06-09

Not worth the effort

I have 'read' other Alice Winter books, this one however is not of the same quality. Formulaic, overused tropes, lack of world building. lack of character development. tries and fails to deal with issues like redemption, personal change and bigotry. Bottom line it is just not very well written, is fully of stereo types posing as characters and has all the worst points of several major hits with the non-discerning.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Lucy Wildboots Tree
  • 2021-05-17

Not the author’s best

Just another shifter romance. Nothing special about it. Same plot, same characters. When I pick a book from this author, I expect much better. I am, frankly, amazed the narrator was able to read it without snickering.

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  • Kashonna
  • 2021-05-07

great beginning

This was a great start to a new series. Quinn & Roean were the perfect couple.

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1 person found this helpful