The internets luh-luh-love this book. This is the voted number one m/m romance on Goodreads. So I thought I’d give it a spin over the weekend because I was feeling a little moody and I wanted something light that would give me feels.
It was okay. That sounds terrible, I know, but I mean it in the most okay way possible. I don’t regret reading it, and I enjoyed it. But I totally had expectations about it being the best rated romance book. It just didn’t do the moon and stars for me. So go in thinking “pretty good” not “amazeballs,” and you should be kosher.
Okay, first things first, don’t get all attached to this as a series starter because you see it’s called “Zero at the Bone #1” on Goodreads. There are a few other short stories with these characters, but no other book-length stories, and it’s been out for five years, so I wouldn’t hold my breath, you know? Anywho, on to the story.
D is our cold-hearted, no feelings hit man main man who only kills people who deserve it. Drug dealers, child molesters, Nazi art thieves (not making that up), and the like. Well, he gets blackmailed into murdering a facial surgeon who saw a crime go down in a parking garage, but when he gets there to do the murder, he can’t because Dr. Jack’s eyes are too pretty. Well, that and he doesn’t kill innocent people. So D and Jack hit the road together, fleeing hit men, witness protection, and a shadowy mastermind that wants them both dead.
Now, since we know the genre and can see the cover, obviously sexy times ensue.
First they lay low in a cabin in Aspen, where their feelings start to come out. Then they lay low in a cabin in Wyoming and have all the couple times. Then they lay low for a weekend in Maryland waiting on Jack’s transfer into permanent Witness Protection. And in all this waiting, they hash out their lives and fall for each other. Sure, it’s a little Stockholm-y, a little “falling in love with my kidnapper, my savior, but still my kidnapper.” But it’s sweet, and the epilogue is fun, and I certainly wouldn’t have minded this being a series.
I have to ding it on a couple of points. First, reading dialect is no fun. I don’t remember where D is supposed to be from, but his Southern/hick dialect writing makes him sound like an inbred idiot. And I say this as someone who is lovingly from the South, but if dialect doesn’t make a point and it doesn’t well on a Twain-esque level, skip it. Just remind me that they’re country every now and then. Because reading dialect blows.
Also, I don’t know…maybe it’s the high stress of the situation, but everyone is very intense in their love declarations and I’ll never survive if you leave mes and it’s the end of the world because this one relationship might probably not work. Granted, this is my own “you make a relationship work, you don’t fall into it” attitude coming out, and that does not a very sexy romance book make.
But try it out. It’s better than most. And from me, that is high praise.
JMF Rating: 7/10
‘Til next time,