Author: Sloane Kennedy
Publisher: Self Published
Cover Artist: Jay Aheer
Rating: 5 of 5 Stars
Publication Date: 06/17/2016
Length: Novel (~ 50K-100K)
Genre: Gay Romance
Ex Special Forces soldier Michael “Hawke” Hawkins has spent every day of the last ten years waiting for the moment he would get to watch the life fade from the eyes of the men who brutally murdered his wife, but when he finally gets the break he’s been waiting for, the trail leads him to someone he wasn’t expecting.
After nearly two years of running, 24-year-old Tate Travers has become an expert at hiding…until the day a dangerous stranger shows up looking for vengeance and threatens to destroy the fragile life Tate has managed to build for himself and his five-year-old son. Except the life Tate has been struggling to hold on to started unraveling long before Hawke showed up looking for the same men Tate has been running from…his own father and older brother.
Retribution – it’s all Hawke has wanted since the day he held his wife’s hand as she took her last breath. And he won’t give that up for anything or anyone…not even the tormented young man trying to give his little boy a better life. Because Tate is the only one who can lead Hawke to the men he’s been searching for. And if it means forcing the young man to confront the past that nearly destroyed him, then so be it.
Only the last thing Hawke expects to feel is something besides the hatred that has driven him. And he definitely never expected to feel it for a man.
But when it comes down to choosing between the unwanted feelings Tate stirs in him and the revenge he’s finally close enough to taste, will Hawke be able to give up the one thing that has kept him going for a second chance at a future he gave up on ever having?
Two men living with their demons, Two men running from their pasts, Two men who may be able to fix each other…
Retribution is book 3 in The Protectors series by Sloane Kennedy and is my favourite so far. Hawke’s story was the story I was most anticipating as we knew the least about him. We knew he had been hurt in the past but we were just teased with the details and didn’t really know just how damaged he was and how cold he had become.
Sloane jumps right in there at the start and Hawke and Tate’s meeting involves a gun – Hawke is holding it and Tate is facing it. Hawke has waited a decade to catch the men responsible for raping and murdering his wife. The trail has led him to Tate Travers and although his DNA is a match his age isn’t and it’s obvious pretty quickly that although connected Tate has demons of his own and they are tied up with the same people.
Tate ran far and fast two years ago when he finally escaped the hell he was living. He’s jumpy, he’s scared but he is also ferocious when it comes to protecting his five year old son. He’s a character with a lot of inner strength and someone as a reader I quickly came to like. He quickly becomes the key to Hawke’s revenge even if at first he is unwilling and terrified.
As well as Hawke living with his need for revenge he is swamped by guilt and after ten years it is suffocating him. When he starts to feel an attraction to Tate he almost can’t cope with all the conflicting emotions. He runs hot and cold a lot of the time, he is scared all of the time and it makes him quite difficult to understand, or perhaps even like, in the beginning.
This pair are electric together, as is pretty much always the case with Sloane’s characters, but there is more to this one. Matty was great, the storyline cleverly woven in and of course it meant we got to spend time with Ronan and Seth – bald heads and all. Ronan and Hawke’s characters evolve quite a lot and their change in circumstances have them both revaluating their jobs. Tate gained a family and after everything he had lived through he really needed that almost as much as he needed Hawke. There are more characters stories to be told though and I am already looking forward to 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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