Author: Damon Suede
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Cover Artist: Paul Richmond
Rating: 3.5 of 5 Stars
Publication Date: 11/20/2015
Length: Novel (~ 50K-100K)
Genre: Contemporary, Fiction, Gay Fiction, M/M Romance
PENT UP: Mix business with pleasure and take cover.
Ruben Oso moves to Manhattan to start his life over as a low-rent bodyguard and stumbles into a gig in a swanky Park Avenue penthouse. What begins as executive protection turns personal working for a debonair zillionaire who makes Ruben question everything about himself.
Watching over financial hotshot Andy Bauer puts Ruben in an impossible position. He knows zero about shady trading and his cocky boss lives barricaded in a glass tower with wall-to-wall secrets and hot-and-cold-running paranoia. Can the danger be real? Is Andy for real?
What’s a bullet catcher to do? Ruben knows his emotions are out of control even as he races to untangle a high-priced conspiracy and his crazy feelings before somebody gets dead. If his suspicions are right, Andy will pay a price neither can afford, and Ruben may discover there’s no way to guard a heart.
So hello cover! How yummy is that bad boy staring us down?
Ok so on to the story. Overall, I enjoyed this one. It was a different take on the double GFY trope that worked for me. I have to start of by saying that individually, I didn’t love the MCs. I liked them, Ruben much more so than Andy, but I didn’t really connect to either of them. And I never understood Andy, his behavior, his secrets, his motivations, at all. But that could be a result of the story only being from Ruben’s POV.
However, I really did connect to them as a couple. I found their relationship odd at times, slow at others, but overall, I liked the stumbles and realism injected into their romance. I liked that their sex life was wonky and dirty and confusing. I liked that these were not porn stars getting it right on the first try. I liked that both were stuck in their heads afraid to make that first move. That both men were tentative but that once the lust took over, they were visceral and raw. I felt that new relationship, can’t keep my hand off my partner, want sex all the time vibe perfectly. I really enjoyed these men together. They were HOT and vulnerable and oddly tender in their ferocity.
I also liked that these were flawed men and that their flaws almost ruined a good thing. But once they realized their love for one another, they compromised in their own screwed up and not quite right ways. It was a good romance that I found believable.
I loved that this story had so many layers. I loved that those layers were all intertwined. I loved the addiction and the clear picture that was painted of recovery. And that recovery was all about overcoming yourself. About overcoming the rationalization, the transference, the denial. Ruben’s struggles to stay away from alcohol were only a small portion of his journey to sobriety and in a weird way Andy was a vital piece needed to keep him on the right path. But at the same time Andy had addictions of his own and together these men had the potential to be a lethal combination.
However, I never did connect to or understand the mystery/plot one bit. I started off thinking that I was just confused because not all the details had been revealed but soon found out that I was just confused and those details were never going to be given. This entire plot felt disjointed and unfinished. Not unfinished in the sense of being unresolved, but unfinished in that the journey from start to finish was not fully developed. I had this weird sensation of things being outlined and then filled in with dialogue only. As if the actions and the meat needed for me to understand the random conversations were missing. Like I was listening to only 2 pieces of a three way conversation. After a while, I gave up on the plot and only read on for the relationship. I would have DNF’d this one if it had not been for the relationship.
In the end, I enjoyed my reading experience. There were so many things I liked about this story but for me, I needed a more cohesive and developed plot for this to really be a recommended read.
I would like to thank the publisher for providing me with the eARC of this title in exchange for my honest opinion.
I have a number of paperbacks, most of which are signed, to giveaway. Over the between now (11 Mar 2017) and 31 Mar 2017, every comment on the blog (this post and all other new posts), will be entered to win 1 of these paperbacks. There are also some misc swag items, so there will be a few packs of these to give away as well.
Thank you so much for your support over the last 4 years. Prism will be closing its doors on 1 April 2017. All content will remain available, but no new content will appear after 31 Mar 2017. As such all request forms have been turned off. Again Thank you,
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