Monday, 28 August 2017

How to Wish Upon a Star by Eli Easton – Audio Book Review

Howl at the Moon #3
Narrator: Matthew Shaw
Audible Audio Book published by Pinkerton Roan


Dr. Jason Kunik is working on the most earth-shattering genetics project ever, DNA mapping of a new species, the quickened—dogs who can shift into human form. The problem is, no one knows the quickened exist and Jason can’t betray them by publishing his studies. When he moves to Mad Creek to continue his research in a town full of quickened, all he wants is peace, quiet, and to be allowed to bury himself in his work. Perhaps if he figures how out the mutation is activated, he can silence his own inner dog forever.

Milo is a hospice comfort dog who has bonded with, and lost, many beloved patients in his life. He intuitively understands sickness and pain on a spiritual level most can’t see. When he gains the ability to become a man, he thinks he finally has everything he ever wanted. But being a man isn’t the same thing as being loved, and taking shelter in Mad Creek isn’t the same thing as finding a home.

When a mysterious illness hits Mad Creek and threatens all the quickened in town, it’s up to the scientist and the comfort dog to figure out what it is and how to stop it. Along the way they might discover that true love is possible—if you wish upon a star.


How to Wish Upon a Star is the third book in the Howl at the Moon series and, as far as I’m concerned, the most suspenseful story so far. While there was danger from drug dealers in the first two books as well as the ever present risk of the existence of the Quickened being discovered, I didn’t find myself on the edge of my seat. In this book however, the risk is very direct and very personal, affecting characters I’ve come to know and care about, and I kept on wishing the narrator would read faster so that he could put me out of my misery and show me that all’s well that ends well indeed.

While in the first two books the romance centred around one full blood human and one Quickened, in this book both Jason and Milo are quickened, be it that Jason was born one and Milo only very recently discovered he could shift.

Jason as a bit of an enigma and it took me a while to warm to him. He has huge issues with who and what he is and has basically been denying his inner dog for years. As a result he suffers from anxiety and is more than a little abrupt and very stand-offish. He needs Milo’s innocence to get back in touch with his softer, canine side because you can only hide and deny a large part of yourself for so long before it will make its presence known, whether you want it to or not.

Milo, on the other hand, was such an endearing innocent he made my heart melt every time he opened his mouth or acted. Having said that, that same innocence also made me think that maybe Jason had a point when he thought that it was too early for Milo to be mating, that Milo needed more time to learn how to walk (pun intended) and live like a man before committing.

Part of the reason for my doubts about the compatibility of these two men was probably the result of the fact that we spend most of this story in Jason’s head which made it easy for me to see and understand all his doubt while for a long time, I had little or no idea what was going on in Milo’s head and heart. But, once we did get a glimpse at Milo’s motivation my reservations melted like snow under the sun and I found myself fully invested in the couple.

As I said, this story is far more tension filled than the previous two. The danger affects the whole town of Mad Creek and characters I’ve come to love were suddenly in real danger. It gave the story a heartstopping yet thrilling sense of urgency. On the other hand, there were also moments that made me snigger out loud, such as when Jason refers to what he has to do as a ‘Timmy in the well moment.’

The last chapter of this book made me think that there are other trials and tribulations ahead for Mad Creek and its residents. And that’s good news since I can’t see myself growing tired of these stories anytime soon — or ever for that matter. Because they’re faultlessly written. Because they give us memorable characters who make a powerful impression, and, more than anything, because she makes her (newly) quickened sound so much like dogs (or what I imagine dogs would sound like if they could speak), that it blows my mind. In Eli Easton dogs have found their mouth piece.

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