Reviewed by Heather Brown-Coward
TAGS: Tatiana Caldwell, Ellora’s Cave, paranormal romance, shapeshifters
Paranormal romance author Tatiana Caldwell returns with her fourth book, Cat Out of the Bag. This is the first in her scorching new "By the Tail" series.
Sofia Saldana is the everyday typical New York City working professional woman. She wears many hats but she plans a must-needed escape from the everyday hustle and bustle. Unfortunately for Sofia, she hates flying and while she managed to secure the last seat on the plane, it happens to be a window seat. Her seatmate, Nathan Dawson, picked up on Sofia’s fear of flying and tried to distract her with small talk during the long flight. Soon, an attraction began to brew. Nathan also notices something else: Sofia’s scent was oddly familiar, like a fertile cat, but he begins to doubt his instincts. In his world, there were not too many animal shifters. Sofia, in turn, had an uncontrollable physical attraction to Nathan, and wondered why. When he drifted off to sleep and his hand gently grazed her thigh, his touch aroused her beyond what was normal for her--as if she needed his touch. Who, then, is Sofia; or rather, what is she? Thus begins an erotic roller-coaster ride in Cat Out of the Bag, the fourth novel by Tatiana Caldwell.
At first glance, the cover for Cat Out of the Bag may cause one to think it is a call to embark upon yet another urban erotica fiction journey, similar to those written by the author Zane. One should then recall the old saying, “Never judge a book by its cover.” The author’s characters were very vivid and seemed very obtainable. You could picture Sofia as this professional Latina who was making moves in corporate America, yet was always burdened with other people’s responsibility. It was clear that she worked hard and wanted to balance out her life with playing hard. When she had her first sexual encounter on the plane with a stranger, it startled her; she had a rare chance to play a part of that fantasy and act upon those newly lustful feelings. Nathan’s character was layered, and showed depth beyond the typical handsome stranger that one stumbles upon in a new romantic adventure. His realistic, humble, and vulnerable persona was at odds with his physical attractiveness. It was refreshing to see Nathan’s desire to guide Sofia and encourage her to embrace her newfound freedom as a late-blooming shapeshifter, instead of using his knowledge to dominate her. Their love story made sense, despite the paranormal part of the story. This was not your typical unobtainable man that an average woman was trying to win over; it was about two adults that were evenly matched.
The story lingers long after the book has been down. The way the story ended bears the question of whether or not Ms. Caldwell would even consider a series based on these two striking characters. Fans of Sherrilyn Kenyon, Laurell K. Hamilton and Christine Feehan would enjoy reading more Tatianna Caldwell’s books. She is a wonderful introduction to the paranormal romance genre.
Heather Brown-Coward is a paralegal and native New Yorker who enjoys reading, writing, house music, and creating custom baby supplies. She is a member of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc., Tau Delta Zeta chapter. She lives with her husband in Maryland.