Author: RJ Scott
Publisher: Love Lane Books
Cover Artist: Meredith Russell
Rating: 5 of 5 Stars
Publication Date: 03/24/2016
Length: Long Novel (~ 100K+)
Genre: Gay Romance
A man without memories, and the cop who never gave up hope.
When he wakes up in the hospital, the victim of a brutal beating, John Doe has no memories of who he is or who hurt him. The cops can find nothing to identify him and he can’t remember anything to help… except the name Ethan and one recurring place from his dreams. Two words, and they’re not much, but it’s a start: Crooked Tree.
Detective Ethan Allens has never stopped searching for the two boys who vanished. When a report lands on Ethan’s desk that may give new leads, he jumps at the chance to follow them up. The man he finds isn’t his brother, but it’s someone who could maybe help him discover what happened twelve years ago.
What neither man can know is that facing the very real demons of the past could destroy any kind of future they may have together.
The best book RJ Scott has written in my opinion.
There has been a huge gap between the first book and this book being published but it was very easy to pick up where Crooked Tree Ranch left off and remember all the characters.
This is love story and a mystery all rolled into one and the mystery for me was the best part. It is really well done, keeps you on your toes throughout and it wasn’t once obvious as to what happened up until the end.
Adam and his best friend Justin disappeared from Crooked Tree Ranch twelve years ago – literally just disappeared. Once their friends and family had started to come to terms with their loss the overwhelming feeling was that they were dead. The only one who really fought against those feelings and who never gave up is Ethan Allan. Ethan is a cop so that naturally helped in his search but he is also Justin’s brother and Adam was his first crush/love.
Adam turns up in hospital, as a John Doe, beaten to the extreme and with amnesia, he remembers nothing of his life or the twelve years he has been missing from home except for the name of the ranch and Ethan’s name. This is enough detail to flag him in the police system and Ethan flies out to the hospital hopeful that a part of his past has been returned to him.
I loved the road trip that starts Adam’s return home. It felt like Ethan and Adam were slowly figuring out who they were to each other even after all the time that had passed. Adam has no clue why he ran or where Justin is – he doesn’t even remember Justin but as the days pass small things emerge in his memory but never enough to answer any serious questions.
The reasoning behind it all is revealed although not fully and I expect we will learn much more in the next book. The mystery was well planned out and I certainly didn’t see it coming. It was impossible to put the book down as I raced towards the ending trying to see what happened and if everyone was ok – yet at the same time I didn’t want it to end so quickly.
The romance is secondary but very much there as these two men realise that they never stopped loving each other and learn to navigate around everything that’s happened since the last time they were together.
The only thing left to say is hurry up with the next one
I would like to thank the publisher for providing me with the eARC of this title in exchange for my honest opinion.
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