Reviewed: December 13, 2011
Genre: LGBT-M/M Romantic Suspense
Series: Cut & Run, Book 3
Rating: 4 Stars
Length: 314 Pages
Formats: Print, eBook
Disclosure: An ARC of this book was provided to me by Dreamspinner Press via NetGalley.
This rating, review, and all included thoughts and comments are my own.
FBI Agents Ty Grady and Zane Garrett are going undercover on the high seas. Impersonating an out-and-proud married couple suspected of being involved in an international smuggling ring, they are boarding a cruise ship with shaky intel and limited backup, but Ty and Zane are used to making the best of the murkiest of cases. Well...between being shot, bit, stabbed, crashed, and crunched, anyway.
Okay, so it hasn't been the easiest of partnerships.
In more ways that one, really, as the lovers are dealing with more than just a dangerous case and their ever-present personal demons. The longer they're together, the more their relationship evolves, and the emotions they feel for each other have long-since grown beyond the physical. Not that either of them have come clean about that. Going undercover as a happily married and publicly affectionate couple, Zane as the controlling alpha-male and Ty his submissive arm candy, will stretch their acting abilities, their wardrobe, their sex life, and definitely their hearts.
It's been two years to the month since I first met Ty and Zane in their series debut, Cut & Run, and I love them even more than I did then - which is saying something. I remember how blown away I was by these two very damaged, flawed, rough-around-the-edges characters and the fiction magic that Urban and Roux created with them. I wasn't new to the M/M romance genre, but I was definitely new to this sort of M/M fiction, the sort that transcends the sexuality of the characters to provide gritty, believable characters in a three dimensional, story-rich, character-driven, well-written format.
Ty and Zane are my favorite couple in M/M fiction, period. Irascible, irrepressible, there is just something about them that has always felt so very real and true and honest...even when it's ugly and painful and scary, even when it's uncomfortable and furtive, or vulnerable and hopeful....especially when it's naked and sweaty and sexy...always. That's what I love about them. They touch me. Make me laugh. Hurt my heart. Give me hope. Definitely make me sweat.
They remind me so much of the iconic Riggs and Murtough of Lethal Weapon fame. Well...if Murtough was a white, thirty-something widower and he and Riggs had incredibly hot sex. So...uh...not very much alike at all, actually. Still.
I have to admit, though, for all that I absolutely adore Ty and Zane and love their ongoing interpersonal journey, I can't say I liked the external plot thread either in concept or execution. The undercover operation seemed a bit contrived and manufactured specifically to put the guys into that situation more than it seemed realistic or plausible as an FBI undercover operation. I could be totally off base, but there seemed to be too many unknowns, and the setup was too haphazard for me to believe the FBI would send two agents in - then keep them under when things started to go very wrong.
That was, though, the only negative for me throughout the book, and it merely dimmed the bulb a bit, didn't turn the light off entirely. I adore Ty and Zane. The tentative tip toeing two-step they do around each and every deep and dangerous emotion they have is a more entertaining dance routine than anything seen on Dancing With the Stars and So You Think You Can Dance combined. Pair that up with their job as two kick-ass FBI agents who face death head on with gritted teeth and loaded weapons and you have a book - and a series - with fabulous layers, a quagmire of complications, depth, and dimension.
I can't get enough.
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