Sunday, March 25, 2012

Cop Out by K.C. Burn

Title:  Cop Out
Author: K.C. Burn
My Rating: A

Genre: Contemporary Romance (m/m)
Series: -
Main Characters: Davy and Kurt
Release Date: November 2011
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press

Links to Purchase:

Sexual Intensity: hot

Story Overview:
Detective Kurt O'Donnell is used to digging up other people's secrets, but when he discovers his slain partner was married to another man, it shakes him. Determined to do the right thing, Kurt offers the mourning Davy his assistance. Helping Davy through his grief helps Kurt deal with the guilt that his partner didn't trust him enough to tell him the truth, and somewhere along the way Davy stops being an obligation and becomes a friend, the closest friend Kurt has ever had.

His growing attraction to Davy complicates matters, leaving Kurt struggling to reevaluate his sexuality. Then a sensual encounter neither man is ready for confuses them further. To be with Davy, Kurt must face the prospect of coming out, but his job and his relationship with his Catholic family are on the line. Can he risk destroying his life for the uncertain possibility of a relationship with a newly widowed man?

My Review:
This book was really, really good. The book starts with Kurt waking up in the hospital after being hurt in an explosion which killed his partner Ben. They'd been giving a tip and were investigating it when the building exploded. Ben didn't survive. In the fall-out of losing his partner, Kurt realizes how little he knew about Ben even though they'd been partners on the police force for three years. When he realizes the mourning man at the funeral, Davy, was Ben's life partner, Kurt is even more confused. He had no idea that Ben was gay and feels awful about that fact. When Kurt visits Davy at home, he quickly realizes that Davy has sunk into a deep depression and doesn't have anyone to support him and help pull him out of it. Kurt takes it upon himself to help and they become friends.

The events in this book take place over about a year and a half in time, so the build-up is really slow and realistic. These guys become friends. They are both still mourning the loss of Ben and Kurt is recovering from his own injuries. Kurt never knew Davy pre-depression so watching him come out of his shell and into his own as a person is an eye-opening event for Kurt. Ben had been an overbearing, dominant lover and he had suppressed Davy in their ten year relationship to the point of emotional abuse.

In the midst of Davy dealing with his grief, there is Kurt. Kurt's 31 years old and has always dated girls although he's never found it all that satisfying. Girls have always just been a way of life. He doesn't even consider anything else until he's having to examine Davy & Ben's relationship. As he heals from his wounds and develops this friendship with Davy, he begins to realize (VERY slowly) that he's attracted to Davy. I really liked how slowly this part of the story line developed. It seemed to me to be very realistic and honest. Kurt is dealing with a lot and is shocked and appalled to find himself attracted to Davy. He also knows that he can't do anything about it because Davy is still dealing with his grief. It's a difficult situation all the way around and was written just brilliantly. 

In the midst of the beautiful story about the friendship developing between Davy and Kurt, there are several side characters that add so much to this book. First is Jenny & Simon. Simon is Kurt's new partner and he's completely different from Ben. He's open and honest and wants to be friends with Kurt outside of work so they talk about everything. He's married to Jenny and she spots the chemistry between Davy and Kurt before anyone else. Another huge influence on this book is Kurt's family. He has a HUGE, supportive family, but he worries about their reactions to his new sexuality. The best part of this story line for me was his brother Ian....simply, an interesting twist which I really liked.

Overall, this is just a beautiful book. I enjoyed the story from start to finish. In the first half of the book, it's all about grief, recovery, and friendship....and I found this just as good as when the conflict of the relationship started. Like I said, the build-up was written perfectly. I'll definitely be adding this book to my re-read pile for the future.

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