Alaskan Rescue and Wilderness Defender are books #1 and #2 in the Alaska K-9 Unit series. Both of these stories were recently published together as an audiobook: Deadly Alaskan Pursuit. There are nine stories in this series at this time, and I am looking forward to reading or listening to more of them. Thanks to HarperAudio for my copy of this audiobook upon request. The rating and opinions shared are my own.

Alaska Rescue (Alaska K-9 Unit #1) by Terri Reed, Natalie Duke (Narrator)

Published April 13th 2021 by Love Inspired Suspense, August 23rd 2022 by Harlequin Audio

3.5 Stars:

Alaska Rescue is the first book in the Alaska K-9 Unit series. The series is about the Alaska state troopers and their K-9 partners, who are called to investigate different crimes in Alaska. It is a relatively short book, but it packs a punch. The K-9 Unit is called in when a wedding party is reported missing during a hike. The guide is found dead, shot, and one of the bridesmaids, Ariel Potter is found hanging from a cliff. The bride, groom and best man are still missing. When Hunter McCord and his K-9 partner, Juneau rescue Ariel, she tells them that she was pushed. The race is on to find the rest of the wedding party, as well as who killed the guide and tried to kill Ariel. Hunter volunteers to stay with Ariel to protect her until the case is solved, but there is someone out there with secrets, as well as wanting to blame it all on the bride.

This was a fast paced story with suspense, a bit of romance, faith and twists. I enjoy books with K-9 characters and Juneau was a great officer. Ariel is a likable character, one who breeds sled dogs. Her character shines through in her concern for her friends that are missing as well as her dogs. Hunter is a dedicated officer and is also very good at his job. Their attraction to one another is sweet and is a slow building romance. There is a mystery to unravel and find out who is after Ariel and why. With likable characters, including the K-9 ones, this is a nice read with a fun setting, a bit of romance, and thread of faith. My one complaint is that there are some unresolved issues, which I am hoping will be solved in further books in the series. Natalie Duke does a great job with the narration of this story. Her voice is easy to listen to and she adds just the right amount of emotion.

Wilderness Defender by Maggie K. Black, Teri Schnaubelt (Narrator)

Published May 25th 2021 by Love Inspired Suspense, August 23rd 2022 by Harlequin Audio

4 Stars: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

In this second book in the Alaska K-9 Unit series, we get to know Alaska trooper Poppy Walsh and her K-9 partner, Stormy, who we met in the first book. She is on the trail of poachers, working with park ranger Lex Fielding. Poppy and Lex were engaged at one time, but Lex backed out of the wedding. He has since married, had a son and divorced, but there is still chemisty between him and Poppy. Can they find the poachers, keep everyone safe and rekindle the feelings from years ago?

This is a romantic suspense story with faith running through it. There are two blue bear cubs in danger and they have to find the poachers before they get the bears on a ship or in the air. I had never heard of blue bear cubs, so I looked them up to get more information. Poppy and Lex have a lot of chemistry and as they work together, they talk things out and begin to understand what happened years earlier. Will Stryker and his K-9 partner, Scout also help out with the dangerous criminals. Things get a little scary for Lex when his family is also targeted. I was on the edge of my seat at times while reading this action packed story. I am familiar with poaching in Africa, but don’t know a lot about it in North America, so this brought this situation to my mind. There is a reference to the missing bride in the first story, but she is still missing by the end of this book. I enjoyed this story a bit more than the first one, perhaps because it seemed more realistic. I am looking forward to continuing to read or listen to this series. Teri Schnaubelt narrated this book and I enjoyed her performance. She is a narrator I am familiar with and her voices, expression and pace bring this book to life. I recommend it in any format.