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HaBO: Hero and Heroine are Both Alphas

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This HaBO comes from Megan, who is searching for a paranormal romance:

I read a book at least 2 years ago. It was a contemporary wolf shifter novel with enemies to lovers trope.

The heroine was the daughter of the prior alpha who is killed by the hero prior to the book starting, which is what elevates the hero to alpha. He allows a bunch of degenerate wolves to join the pack and the pack goes to hell. Upon becoming alpha, the hero forces the heroine to show submission to all of the other pack members, which she does to avoid a fight with the alpha (It becomes a big plot point that she should be a leader in their community and that her talents are wasted at the bottom of the pack pecking order).

She stays with the pack until her younger brother graduates, and then she puts in her application to leave. She knows that the new alpha is her fated mate from the day she meets him, but he’s clueless until she puts in her request to leave years later. He then tries to pursue her. She leaves her pack and joins another pack as their female-alpha and pretends to be in a relationship with the new pack’s alpha.

There’s then lots of interactions between hero and heroine in inter-pack meetings that are held. Ends in a HEA.

The hero sounds kind of terrible? Does anyone recognize this book?


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  1. 1
    Kit says:

    There’s so many PNR’s like this I can’t even begin to guess what one it is. Feel the hero should be in inverted commas there and the only HEA in this should be heroine getting the hell out of the pack, preferably on a motorbike with the sun setting…

  2. 2
    DiscoDollyDeb says:

    @Kit: I was thinking the same thing. I haven’t read much shifter romance and I don’t know all the tropes & conventions of them, but I have to think a supposed Alpha who basically lets the pack go to hell would not be considered either a good leader or a good hero.

  3. 3
    MaryK says:

    If there are a lot of female alpha PNRs, I haven’t seen them.

  4. 4
    Gloriamarie Amalfitano says:

    No clue which book this is, but I feel I can say with confidence that the heroine doesn’t need a jerkface like the hero in her life and what are the powers that be thinking to give such a dumbass for a fated mate?

  5. 5
    DonnaMarie says:


    Kills here father, degenerates the pack, makes her a gamma, ànd he’s the HERO?

    Is this maybe misworded and it’s the father who lets in the bad members and the new Alpha kills him to save the pack? Because that makes a lot more sense in terms of PNR conventions where it’s generally accepted that a wolf who sucks at pack management is never the hero.

  6. 6

    Hard agree with the comments above– an alpha wolf who can’t manage his pack is as antithetical in Romancelandia as a hero who can’t get his heroine off. It would only work if fixing that is THE point of the plot, because that just can’t stand

  7. 7
    cleo says:

    Eve Langlais has some female alphas but IDK, her shifter books tend to be a little fluffier than what’s described.

  8. 8
    Michelle says:

    @ MaryK

    Nalini Singh’s newest psy-changeling Alpha Night has a woman alpha!

  9. 9
    denise says:

    Caris Roane writes a lot of books with strong female alphas .

  10. 10
    DiscoDollyDeb says:

    @SBSarah: I know you probably don’t control all the ads that appear in the central text of the site, but today right above the comments there’s an ad for a product called Sonix Pest Repeller that features a pair of hands holding a dead mouse. I don’t classify myself as an overly “sensitive” person (and I’m not sure if different ads appear for different viewers in different regions, so maybe not everyone else is seeing it), but a dead mouse is not something I’m expecting to see when I open SBTB.

  11. 11
    SB Sarah says:

    Oh good grief. Thank you for letting me know! I’m on it.

  12. 12
    Lisa F says:

    Wow, an alpha structure with bureaucracy. I’m intrigued.

    (Also I join everyone on team Free the Heroine).

  13. 13
    DiscoDollyDeb says:

    @SBSarah: thank you. The weird thing is, on my iPhone, in the same space, I’m seeing a very nice set of abs attached to a guy pulling a shirt over his head on the cover of a book called PAGING DR. HOOKUP. But on my iPad, in exactly the same spot, I’m getting dead mouse.

  14. 14
    OK says:

    Oh wow, the “hero” doesn’t sound like deserves his HEA! I would totally read this book if they didn’t end up together – maybe if he died saving her in the end and she took over rebuilding the pack?

    Following my DNF of A Heart of Blood and Ashes, I’ve been wanting to read a book where the “hero” makes dumbass mistakes and alienates the heroine, she leaves, becomes successful, finds a legitimate new love interest and we spend years seeing the “hero” running into her and missing her and realizing what he lost. Not very charitable of me, but I want to watch the “hero” suffer and grow and become a better person by realizing how being a toxic asshole cost him a great relationship and the woman has now moved on and is doing just fine without him.

    Do such books even exist? Maybe in a multi-book series? I guess I’m just so tired of reading about women forgiving toxic jerks that I’d love to instead read about one being kicked to the curb and regretting his life choices. 🙂

  15. 15
    GeorgeSandSnake says:

    This is pretty much the arc of Sarah J Maas’s A Court of Thorns and Roses trilogy… !

  16. 16
    Vasha77 says:

    @OK: That dynamic (more or less) is actually part of a fantasy trilogy I really liked, “The Gardener’s Hand” by Felicia Davin. I’m trying not to be too specific because I thought discovering the slightly-unexpected character development was one of the fun things about those books; suffice it to say that there’s a character who really screwed up in a love relationship, you’re left wondering for a while whether the couple can get back together, it doesn’t happen, and the character is still doing some serious repenting at the end of the book.

  17. 17
    Kit says:

    @DiscoDollyDeb personally I’m not repelled by a dead mouse but I spent years working in a glasshouse, so I’m pretty used to seeing dead things amongst the plant benches. However I understand it would freak some people out! The advert that makes me fetch is one where they advertise eat cleaning and there’s actually a blob of wax yeuch! That and fungal toenail treatment ads. Unfortunately there’s no ability to report an advert for the reason you just lost your appetite! Gone off topic though, bring on Dr Hookup!

  18. 18
    Kit says:

    I meant ear wax and retch!

  19. 19
    Maya says:

    It’s “Love Blows” by May Sage. The description here fits the plot exactly.

  20. 20
    OK says:

    Thank you @GeorgeSandSnake and Vasha77! I’m going to check both trilogies out.

    I think I must have had A Court of Thorns and Roses backwards when it first came out and I looked at the reviews, because I thought she went from an okay guy to a villain and not the other way around? And the Gardener’s Hand sounds like just what I wanted, I can’t believe I’ve never heard of it.

  21. 21
    DonnaMarie says:

    @Maya looks like our winner. Bad news for anyone wanting to check out this one. Googling netted this on Facebook from 2017 “Quick note about Love Blows – if you’d like to read it pick it up today as I’ll unpublish it tomorrow again ❤️ I’ve put it back online at the request of some of my readers here and on private message but the reviews are pretty horrific so, to the abyss it returns.” and the link to an Amazon review no longer exists. In fact searching by title on Amazon links to her page, but the book doesn’t come up.


  22. 22
    RayG says:

    @DonnaMarie Amazon seems to have it as part of a box set “From the Vault” by May Sage. $3.99 for 5 novellas.

  23. 23
    DiscoDollyDeb says:

    @DonnaMarie: Thank you. I came here to ask if the book was no longer in print when I couldn’t find it on Amazon. May Sage does have a lot of other books available—but not LOVE BLOWS—including one with the intriguing title, SCROOGE McFUCK.

  24. 24
    Megan says:

    Thank you! It’s definitely Love Blows as Maya said. It was my HaBO. Looks like it’s in a pack of books on Amazon: The Vault by May Sage.

    I can confirm its not really a grade A read, but the enemies to lovers in it did it for me.

  25. 25
    CD says:

    I need someone to review Scrooge McFuck immediately.

  26. 26
    G says:

    It sounds a looot like Feral Sins by Suzanne Wright.

  27. 27
    G says:

    Never mind. I definitely mixed them up.

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