Today we’re so pleased to welcome author Piper Vaughn on the Prickly By Nature blog tour. Thanks so much for joining us.
Knotty By Nature by Piper Vaughn
Hi, all! Thanks to The Novel Approach for having me. :D
In case you missed it, my book with Kenzie Cade, Prickly By Nature, book two in the Portland Pack Chronicles just released on November 16th.
If you’ve read the first book in the series, Prickly Business, you’ll know that one of our main characters is a hedgehog shifter and the other one is a wolf. And if you’ve read a lot in the shifter subgenre, you’ve probably run across knotting, which also occurs in this series.
What is knotting, you ask?
Well, allow me to explain. :3 In reality, when wolves (and other canines) mate, the base of their penis swells and essentially locks the penis inside the female wolf. The female wolf’s muscles play a role in this whole process, but essentially, the swelling of the knot (aka, bulbus glandis, for the scientific folk) prevents the male from withdrawing to promote insemination. Basically, Mother Nature is trying to produce more wolf pups ASAP. (There are videos of wolves being locked together and being pretty pissed off about it, while others simply settle down to grudgingly wait it out.)
The concept of knotting is something I’ve read in a lot of fanfiction, but it’s showing up more and more in shifter books lately. Some people hate it, some people love it, and I’m in the latter category. Yes, I am a fan of the idea of two mates being “tied” together for a certain period of time during sex. In real wolves and dogs, this can last up to 30-35 minutes. The timing runs across the gamut in the stories I’ve read—from a few minutes to an hour. In our world, it’s only a few minutes before the knot wanes… and let’s just say our hedgie shifter (Avery) is a fan of his mate’s knot. ;)
For those who haven’t read about this yet, but would like some recs, these are some of my favorites. And, of course, every book in the Portland Pack Chronicles will feature a scene or two.
First, we have Toni Griffin’s Holland Brothers series, starting with Unexpected Mate. This is one of my favorite shifter series, and there is knotting in every book. My favorite of them all is Forbidden Mate, which I love, love, LOVE.
Then there’s The Protector by Cooper West. These are dog shifters and the world building was really unique. The “Protectors” can shift into dogs, and the “Handlers” are their human partners. The main character, Alex, is the first Protector to outlive his Handler, and he’s crippled by grief with no hope for the future…until he unexpectedly bonds with another Handler, which is an unprecedented event. I loved this story!
There’s also I, Omega by Kari Gregg, and actually she has a couple of others with knotting too. This had some hurt/comfort and the mate bond, which is a concept I always enjoy, and alpha/beta/omega dynamics, which I like reading about. And Kari Gregg can write one helluva sex scene, let me tell you.
And for a more recent—and free!—title, check out Ezekiah by Lisa Henry, which included some BDSM, knotting, a/b/o dynamics, and great chemistry between the characters. I’m really hoping she’ll do more in this world at some point. (Warning for some dub-con, though.)
Last but not least, He’s Just Knot That Into You by Nico Jaye. I mean, I was hooked by the title alone! I love a good pun (if you can’t tell from the title of this blog post). It was different than the norm, set in a world where everyone knows about werewolves already. Tanner is on the hunt for his mate when he sense him but can’t figure out who he is. Bad date hijinks ensue!
What are your knotting faves? If you haven’t read it before, would you be willing to try a book that featured knotting scenes? It might just be an acquired taste for some, but I think it’s fun… and it can be really sexy too, in the hands of the right author. ;)
Blurb: In the four months since hedgehog shifter Avery Babineaux started investigating the disappearance of a young female werewolf from the Portland Pack, he’s discovered his life’s passion. Now he’s apprenticing under established PI Corbin Reid. Avery hopes his training with Reid will help him finally bring Lacey home, but detective work isn’t without its perils, and the potential dangers strain his relationship with his new mate, Dylan.
Dylan Green would be perfectly content with his mating and his motorcycle shop if it wasn’t for his constant worry about Avery’s safety and the fact that Avery’s never home. Proud as he might be of Avery’s determination to prove his worth and fulfill his promise to Lacey’s father, Dylan can’t stand the thought of Avery being hurt. Yet what right does he have to demand Avery give up his job when it’s clear Avery’s found his true purpose? Still, Dylan wishes he could, and the appearance of a new police detective who sets his sights on Avery only adds to the tension.
Something has to give, but stubbornness runs in both their veins, and it might take a catastrophe for them to find a compromise they can live with.
Piper Vaughn Bio: Piper Vaughn wrote her first love story at eleven and never looked back. Since then, she’s known that writing in some form was exactly what she wanted to do. A reader at the core, Piper loves nothing more than getting lost in a great book—fantasy, young adult, romance, she loves them all (and has a two-thousand-book library to prove it!). She grew up in Chicago, in an ethnically diverse neighborhood, and loves to put faces and characters of every ethnicity in her stories, so her fictional worlds are as colorful as the real one. Above all, she believes that everyone needs a little true love in their life… even if it’s only in a book.