Book: To Touch You
Series: Mates #4
Publisher: The Romance Authors
Publication date: May 4, 2017
Length: 260 pages
Reviewed by Meredith
“His name is Salvatore Rossi. He’s a vampire. And he’s my true mate.”
By not relying on anyone except himself, Salvatore Rossi escaped a dead-end existence and reached the height of corporate success. But just when he has everything he always wanted, fate throws Salvatore a challenge he can’t solve alone and a young wolf shifter comes to his rescue.
Since childhood, Yoram Smith’s family was certain he would grow to become Alpha and save their beloved pack from its slow demise. When the time comes for a new leader, Yoram is forced to juggle his duty to care for a splintering pack with his duty to care for an absent mate, and his own strength suffers.
Being turned into a vampire didn’t alter Salvatore’s life philosophy: if you don’t rely on anyone, nobody can let you down. But when the boy who saved his life becomes a man who needs his help, the icy vampire must find his humanity.
The next installment in Cardeno C’s Mates series is To Touch You. It’s a vampire shifter romance. In this series, we haven’t seen that since Ethan and Miguel so it was nice to explore this avenue again. We had heard of Yoram through other books and this time we get his story.
When Yoram discovers his true mate he’s only seven and it leads to a lot of struggles. I have to say now, Yoram is such an outstanding character. His loyalty is flawless. Sal, his true mate, pretty much rejects him and it pays a toll on Yoram. But Yoram refuses to turn his back on Sal. What he does for his vampire all these years is incredible. And the biggest part is, Yoram saved Sal’s life. When it came to saving Yoram’s I was curious how Sal was going to redeem himself. I wondered if I’d believe him.
Through these many years this book takes place it did seem that these two got their facts here and there. I wonder if they knew everything going in would it have taken Sal as long to get his head out of his a**.
There’s conflict of course but I wasn’t on edge. This for sure is a story about growth, acceptance, and of course romance. I loved the way Sal’s character turned things around in the end. I enjoyed this addition to this series and recommend all of them!
Woodsy, earthy, and rich. The scent was familiar but not. His brain working overtime to place the intriguing perfume, Salvatore quickened his pace, flicked the locks on the door, and yanked it open without bothering to look through the peephole. Dozens of snapshots simultaneously flooded his brain.
Thickly muscled arms.
Sandy brown, closely shorn hair.
Long fingers with neatly trimmed nails.
Tan skin with freckles sprinkled over a straight nose.
A five o’clock shadow on a strong jaw.
Ocean blue eyes.
And finally, a recognition of the scent. It was deeper than it had been thirteen years earlier, thicker and more vibrant on a body than in blood. And it coiled through him and settled in his core.
“I heard you were looking for me.” Like his scent, Yoram Smith’s voice had matured. It too was deeper and richer.
Too distracted to form words, Salvatore stepped aside to make space. Silently, Yoram accepted his invitation and walked into the room. His bicep brushed against Salvatore’s shoulder, setting off a shower of tingles. Sucking in a shaky breath, Salvatore rubbed his hand over his cheek, pushed the door shut, and then turned around.
“You look different.” Smelled different. Sounded different. Made him feel different.
“Not so gangly anymore?” One corner of the impossibly full lips quirked up along with a dark eyebrow.
“No,” Salvatore rasped, his gaze roaming over the wide chest and hairy forearms. “Not gangly.”
“Getting older’ll do that to a man.” The same eyes that had once looked at him from a round, boyish face, swept over him with a decidedly different expression. “Except you. You look exactly the same, Sal.”
The only other times he had heard that nickname had been in the high-pitched voice of a seven-year-old and the slightly squeaky voice of a teen. Hearing it in the deep, raspy, masculine melody brought every molecule in Salvatore’s body to attention.
“You also look hungry.” Yoram tilted his head toward the desk beside him. “I have what you need.”
Tearing his gaze away from the man was difficult, but Salvatore managed to flick his attention to the large bag now sitting next to his laptop. He hadn’t noticed that Yoram was carrying anything when he came in; his hunger must have been more distracting than he realized.
“Why did you stop bringing it to Vegas?”
This time both sides of Yoram’s mouth rose along with his eyebrows. The blue eyes sparkled despite the low light.
Raising his closed hand to his mouth, Salvatore coughed. “That didn’t come out right.” He normally prided himself on having social graces but that was decidedly rude. Salvatore was well and truly flustered, which never happened. Or, he supposed, almost never happened. “It’s been a long day.”
“Yeah, the trip between here and Vegas takes a lot out of you.” He moved toward Salvatore, his eyebrows pulled down in worry. “I was teasing you, Sal. Go on and eat.”
Darting his gaze to the bag again, Salvatore shook his head. He had been looking forward to more of the good-tasting blood, had come to Kfarkattan for that very reason, but in that moment, the bags weren’t appetizing. “Later.” Salvatore took a step forward. “Are you well?”
“I’m fine.” Yoram smiled. “Thanks for asking.”
“Then why did you stop coming?” Another step.
“My pack needs me to stay close. We’ve had a fair bit of…” Yoram licked his lips, the action captivating Salvatore’s attention. “Upheaval.”
“What kind of upheaval? Is it safe here? Do you need to relocate?”
Rather than answering the question, Yoram slowly shook his head and repeated his statement. “My pack needs me to stay close.”
Twenty years after this shifter had talked Miguel Rodriguez into saving his life by ending his humanity, Salvatore still didn’t feel any notable connection to vampires. He didn’t know if that was because he had been quite a bit older than most people when he was turned or because he spent only minimal time with other vampires. After living apart from humans for so long, he wasn’t particularly connected to them either. He wasn’t sure if he ever had been. Clearly, Yoram’s feelings for his pack differed. That wasn’t a surprise considering how protective the shifter’s family had been earlier that night and, for that matter, two decades earlier.
“There are plenty of other wolves who can look after your pack. What about all those cousins of yours?”
“Are you worried about me, Sal?” Yoram walked toward him.
“I don’t want to stop getting your blood.”
Yoram flinched and stopped in his tracks.
A pang of regret shooting through him, Salvatore said, “That didn’t come out right either.” He brushed his hand over the hair on his chin and sighed. “I’m usually much better with my word choices and considerably less tacky.” He had trained himself to excel in both of those qualities.
“Nothing wrong with being honest.” Yoram sighed. “And anyway, you’re right. We need to figure things out.” He reached over his shoulder to rub at his own neck, the action highlighting the ropey muscles in his forearms and the bulge of his bicep. The little boy Salvatore remembered was long gone. “You need my blood, but my pack can’t spare me. I considered shipping it to you, but the postal service isn’t going to deliver this particular type of product, and even if they did, we’d have trouble keeping it cool long enough to make the trip, especially during the summer.” Yoram pulled the desk chair out, lowered himself onto it, and stretched his long, booted legs. “Now that you’re here, we can put our heads together and figure this out.”
The solution was ridiculously simple. Salvatore would simply hire a courier to pick up the blood from Yoram and fly it to him. It wouldn’t be cheap, but money wasn’t an issue for him. He had substantial investments, earned more than one man could ever spend, and barely had expenses. He opened his mouth to explain that to Yoram, but before the first words fell from his lips, he remembered what Ethan Abbatt had said earlier that evening.
Yorry needs this here vampire just as much he needs Yorry.
“I can stay in town for a while.” Salvatore didn’t know what Yoram needed from him, but if Ethan’s statement was true, Salvatore had an obligation to figure it out. Much like his words had saved Salvatore’s life when he was a dying human, Yoram’s blood had sustained Salvatore’s life as a vampire.
“This situation isn’t going to be fixed overnight,” Yoram said tiredly. He looked down, rubbed his large palms over his thighs, and sighed. “I’m sure you have a life to get back to.”
Actually, he didn’t. There was nothing and nobody waiting for Salvatore in Las Vegas. Or anywhere else. “I can spare some time.”
“Yeah?” Yoram raised his face and turned it toward him.
Whether it was the angle, the motion, or the light, Salvatore didn’t know, but for the first time, he noticed the lines of Yoram’s neck and the blue veins throbbing beneath his skin. Swallowing down the sudden moisture in his mouth, he nodded.
“I’m not going to pretend here, Sal. It’ll be nice to have you nearby.” He lowered his gaze and then looked up at Salvatore from underneath his eyelashes, a bashful expression out of place on the obviously confident man’s face. “You have to know how much I’ve missed you.”
He knew Yoram had taken a liking to him as a boy, knew he had developed an inappropriate crush on him as a teen, knew Yoram thought of him as something shifters called a true mate, yet despite all of that, Yoram’s words took Salvatore off guard. But what surprised him even more was the warmth that blossomed in his chest in reaction to Yoram’s confession.
“Then it’s a good thing I’m staying.”
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