Author: Debbie McGowan
Publisher: Beaten Track Publishing
Cover Artist: Unknown
Rating: 2.5 of 5 Stars
Publication Date: 09/22/2016
Length: Long Novel (~ 100K+)
Genre: Gay Fiction, Mystery/Thriller
Three years after the death of his civil partner, DCI Gray Fisher is finally ready to make the break from the police. For too long, he has used his work as a means of survival; now, he’s looking forward to a nice, quiet life in academia.
Investment banker Will Richards is a walking, talking contradiction. With his love of surfing and his farmhouse menagerie of rescue animals, he’s far removed from Gray’s idea of the perfect man, but that’s ‘not a problem’. Gray wants nothing more than friendship, and Will seems happy to accept that. After all, with his mum’s illness and resigning from his job, he’s got enough on his plate already.
Assuming, of course, he’s telling the truth.
When former colleague, Rob Simpson-Stone, asks for Gray’s help with a case of a destitute banker who faked his own death, Gray is understandably reluctant to get involved…until Rob reveals the identity of one of the suspects.
This is one of the most difficult books I have ever read when it comes to rating and looking at the ratings and reviews it already has I am going to be in the minority. The book was well written, the mystery well thought out but I didn’t engage with any of the characters, it fell entirely flat for me and I spent the first half of the book thoroughly confused.
The first 25% of the story made me feel as though I had been dropped in mid series – so many character names without the characters actually being on page. I had no idea who they were or their relevance to the story and for a while I couldn’t even work out who the main characters were as there was a choice of 3 to pick from.
This confusion also carried over into the interactions of Will and Gray, two of the main characters of the story, it felt like they already had a history that the reader wasn’t privy to – again making it feel like this wasn’t the first book in a series and that I had missed some important parts to the story. I didn’t understand Gray’s mistrust of Will and I actually re-read a couple of chapters convinced I had missed a pivotal point.
Lastly, this book is listed as a romance and it most definitely isn’t. It’s not until the very end of the book that Will and Gray actually get together but for the most part this story is a mystery and Will and Grey are more like vague acquaintances who don’t trust each other.
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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