First, I just want to say that I love this cover! It’s what caught my eye at first and then I realized it was by Ms. Kat and I knew I had to have it right away and I’m so glad I read it!
Blowing off some steam after one of his cases goes unsolved, Jeff meets Alex, who’s as far from his type as he can get. No matter his rejections, Alex won’t take no for an answer and it isn’t long before these two are jumping into bed for a one-night stand. Except now Jeff can’t get Alex out of his mind and finding it harder and harder to deny he wants to see Alex again and with a little push, he does just that but things don’t exactly go as he planned. When the mayor’s daughter starts receiving threatening letters toward her disabled daughter, Jeff starts looking into other disabled kids and before long, Alex, and his brother Sean, fall right into the middle of Jeff’s investigation. Jeff wants Alex but with his prejudices, he can’t handle Sean, who he considers Alex’s ‘appendage’. It’s a rollercoaster ride for these two while Jeff tries to not only solve the mystery of the threats but to also work through his feelings and decide if Alex is worth all the effort.
At first, Jeff is one hell of a jerk. Most readers will definitely be turned off by him but my best advice is to just stick with it. He changes but it’s a hard, long process and he messes up during that journey. Jeff is aggressive, demanding and very stubborn and he’s this way to man, child or woman. His physical appearance is just as intimidating as his personality but he’s also judgmental and prejudiced to the point of heartbreaking. I loved that he was so unlikeable because that actually made him more likeable. I didn’t like his reactions to the disabled kids, in fact, his disgust towards them broke my heart. At the same time, I loved the struggle within him, the growth he achieves from his initial dislike to his grudging acceptance. Alex is the complete opposite in that he’s compassionate, gentle towards Sean and lovable. He’s stubborn and pushy but underneath it all he’s vulnerable and just wants someone to take care of him for once. Jeff gives him that opportunity and, if anything, I loved the relationship these two have because Jeff always knew the right moments to be tender and gentle. It starts off purely sexual but the situation they’re put into speeds along their feelings to something I really enjoyed.
While this book focuses on the mystery of whether threatening letters and injures to numerous disabled children is serious or not, it’s also very centered on the change Jeff goes through. From his views that he doesn’t want a relationship to developing feelings for Alex, who is in no way Jeff’s type but also how Jeff’s views on Sean – his disgust, how uncomfortable he is around him, and whether it’s even worth the effort to try – changes. You see a man who is essentially a brute slowly changing into a guy who wants to care for two of the most vulnerable people ever. It’s sweet but also heartbreaking and while the villain was easy for me to spot, the execution of how the author handled Jeff and his prejudices, as well as, his relationship with Alex and Sean, more than made up for it, IMO. That’s not to say the mystery was lacking, in fact, I really enjoyed it and liked that I was taken so deep into the investigation.
My biggest issue with this story was the ending. I take that back, the ending was actually really great, one that had my heart racing with me on the edge of my seat and I adored it wholeheartedly, but I wish more than anything Ms. Kat would embrace more epilogues because I felt like there needed to be more of a conclusion for after the fact. More than anything, I desperately wish there had been something to inform us on what happens next not just for Jeff and his job but for Sean, the school and ultimately Alex but also what’s next for Alex and Jeff, how this new development affects them. Beyond that, I think Alex could have been a bit more fleshed out because by the end, I realized I loved him to pieces but I didn’t really know him as a character either. Granted, this is the start to a new series so I’m probably just being very impatient right now.
Overall, I adored this book. It has its faults but what book doesn’t? I loved the conflicts that Jeff goes through when it comes to Alex and Sean but I also liked the mystery even if it was a tad predictable. The story is heartbreaking at times, funny at others and adorable everywhere else. I loved these characters and especially loved Sean. More than that, I have to say that Parker, Jeff’s partner, was a spitfire that I could never get a read on but found highly amusing. I’m glad this is a start to a new series because I can’t wait to read more about Jeff, Alex and Sean and to hopefully get some areas tied up better. As it is, this was a great story and I hope others are willing to give it a try and enjoy it as much as I did!