I'd have to say that this one was really more like a full novel than a novella. A quick read full of alpha male who is soft when it comes to kids and animals. Yes, he has a deerhound who is loyal to him and he to the hound. :) Olivia is a girl with a healing secret. In this book the army is the bad guy and they are out to find people with "talents" so they can become invincible. Asher is one of the warriors in charge of keeping his people safe who happen to exist on the other side of a portal. As you suspect, passions are ignited and love is found. A sweet book with 2 people you want to root for. It was short so you didn't get too frustrated with the alpha male, but long enough to give you a good story. I give this book 4 1/2 stars and I really want to read the rest of the series.