“Conscience isn’t something all people are born with…”
Gabriel Church is a portrait in contrast. It would be easy to get lost in his pale-blue eyes, ache with the need to feel the strength of his masculine frame. He appears to be nothing but animal and instinct. The only people who know the full depth of that truth are dead, murdered, or two thousand miles away.
Gabe is a serial killer. For the first time in his life, he has more on his mind than his own survival. This time he is running from Seattle to protect the only person he thinks innocent in his laundry list of crime and murder: Christian Maxwell, his biographer and unexpected lover. Drawn to a place he never thought to return, Gabe finds new and different realities. Realities that insist he let go of his tragic past, those incredible perceptions of God, and his own divinity. He must open his eyes to what the love of a good man can do to heal a broken soul.
But when the killer is confronted by his own willingness to love and sacrifice, he is forced to ultimately ask the question: Just how far will he go to save a life . . . when all he’s ever done is take them?
This story was slow to start and I had trouble getting invested. I was so excited about this book so I could find out what happens with Gabriel and Christian. There is more rehashing of the previous book than I would have preferred in a sequel. I felt like I didn’t get much new story until farther in. I liked getting to learn more of Gabriel’s background, but much of it was touched on in the first book. This was just more in depth. Being inside Gabriel’s head through the majority of the story was interesting. But I lost interest quickly with the lack of any on page action or dialogue. It’s hard to read a story that’s a mostly introspection.
I enjoyed getting to see the point of view of some of the other characters. Especially Father Kait and Detective Keen. Seeing how they think and react to Gabriel was so interesting. I loved Father Kait. He was so supportive of Gabriel despite his actions. He was a wonderful Catholic priest and I hope there’s someone out there that resembles Father Kait in action and temperament.
Gabriel’s actions regarding Detective Keen’s investigation don’t make sense to me. It seems like the wrong move to make and is going to wind up being what brings him down in the end. I know why he did it. But it didn’t seem like Gabriel properly thought out what he did and the repercussions.
While the bond between Christian and Gabriel grew in the story, it wasn’t as believable as in the first story. I started to question both of their motives for being together as the story went on. The ending was predictable, you could see what was going to happen the closer you got. Part of me wants to see what happens in the next book, and the other part is disappointed this one didn’t live up to my expectations.
Cars weaved dangerously onto onramps as everyone was frantically trying to make it to offices, day jobs, or the nearest shopping malls. Everyone was out to make a living, but for him life was different. In the burbs, Gabe made a living with a towel and a pair of shorts. Stopping in at motel pools, appearing like any other guest out for a swim. His true intention was spying for purses sitting open by the women tanning themselves on chaise lounges.
Gabriel wasn’t vain, but he knew what catnip a strong physique could be for a lonely female traveler, and he knew how to work the tourist trade even better than the brown-skinned boys from the beaches of Puerto Vallarta. But it was more than loose change he’d be begging for. Motel pools were ideal because husbands rarely swam with their families, but mothers knew the importance of getting screaming children out of tiny motel rooms and into pools. It meant they could sit in quiet solitude, possibly reading and tanning their alabaster skins as urchins on sugar highs splashed and frolicked at their feet.
It was the perfect savanna for hunting when you had a build like Gabriel’s. And if his target was a lone single woman, he often used his skills to get her to draw him to her room for sweaty sex between the sheets. Purses and pocket books were easy, and when they weren’t available, there were pool games for money and poker with betting. He considered his petty theft something few would miss, and his efforts enabled him to stay off the grid and under anyone’s radar. He’d never been arrested or ticketed for any of his minor crimes for cash because he was that good. A tempting smile went a long way for him, and he could be charming and self-effacing whenever he needed. Christian had chuckled and called him whore when he’d explained how he maintained his existence back in Washington. Remembering that incident brought a faint grin to his face, and he found pleasure that the writer hadn’t judged him harshly, as others might’ve.
“You do what you have to if you want to survive, little buddy.” Church had offered over Christian’s raucous laughter. It had been one of the first times they’d discussed his manner of survival or money during one of their many frequent interviews in the Mayflower. He had to admit they’d been a little drunk by then after Maxwell had purchased a bottle of premium bourbon and carried it back to their suite as entertainment and distraction. They were inebriated more often than he cared to admit, but it was a necessary evil when Christian was asking him to reveal his deepest, darkest secrets. The only way he could get to the impervious truth was by laced libation and longing looks of sympathy and interest. One of Gabe’s fondest memories came from them sitting on the sofa in the spacious suite at the Mayflower in their underwear, close enough that their knees were touching. They were already high on bourbon and colas, and they laughed and joked well into the night. It was something Gabriel had never experienced before, as unfathomable as that might have sounded.
Rodd lives in Dallas, TX at the moment but hails from the sticks of Oklahoma. Check out his web presence at RODDCLARK.COM. Interested in the M/M Mystery, Romance and Thriller genres but has a varied interest in many books. It has been written that his writing has a very dark and distinctive voice with a need for deep exploration and analysis. “Torn and Frayed” is the sequel to his popular romantic thriller, “Rubble and the Wreckage.” The third chapter of the series should be released later in the year and give readers a chance to see how their wicked story is resolved.
Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/Rodd-Clark/e/B00KGDSYSQ/ref=dp_byline_cont_ebooks_1