Monday, July 28, 2014

Home the Hard Way by Z.A. Maxfield

Title: Home the Hard Way 
Author: Z.A. Maxfield
My Rating: A+

Genre: Romantic Suspense (m/m)
Series: -
Main Characters: Dare and Finn
Release Date: July 2014
Publisher: Riptide Publishing
Links to Purchase:
Sexual Intensity: hot

Story Overview:
Dare Buckley has come home—or at least, he’s come back to Palladian, the small town he left as a teenager. After a major lapse in judgment forced him to resign from the Seattle PD, Palladian is the only place that’ll hire him. There’s one benefit to hitting rock bottom, though: the chance to investigate the mystery of his father’s suicide. 

Dare also gets to reacquaint himself with Finn Fowler, whose childhood hero worship ended in uncomfortable silence when Dare moved away. But Finn isn’t the same little kid Dare once protected. He’s grown into an attractive, enigmatic stranger who neither wants nor needs what Dare has to offer. 

In fact, Dare soon realizes that Finn’s keeping secrets—his own and the town’s. And he doesn’t seem to care that Dare needs answers. The atmosphere in Palladian, like its namesake river, appears placid, but dark currents churn underneath. When danger closes in, Dare must pit his ingenuity against his heart, and find his way home the hard way.
My Review:
I had another reviewer tell me a few weeks ago that I was going to love this one and she was so right. I LOVED this book. I'm normally a fan of romantic suspense and this one does it really well. I had NO IDEA who the bad guy or what was going on until it was revealed. And there were so many twists in the middle of this story that just made it an awesome read.

This book is about Finn and Dare. Growing up, Dare was always Finn's champion. From kindergarten, the kids knew that something was a bit different about Finn. That combined with his mother's reputation made his school life horrible...but Dare, who was 6 yrs older than the young Finn, took him on and protected him. Finn worshiped Dare and Dare was okay with that. But then when Dare was 14 and Finn was 9, everything fell apart. Finn's mother died and a few weeks later, Dare's dad committed suicide. Dare and his mother moved away and he never looked back or answered Finn's letters. 

Finn was devastated, but has moved on with his life. Now it's 15 years later and Dare is back after his career as a police detective in the city implodes. He's hired on at the small police department in Palladian and finds himself once again drawn into the circle that is Finn...something the locals aren't so sure about. And things with Finn certainly are not as Dare remembers. I loved the revelations about Finn that are slowly revealed throughout this story. The more I learned about him, the more I loved him. Finn's complex character MAKES this story. He's so strong and with every revelation he grew to be more and more of an enigma. 

Dare, on the other hand, seems to have lost more and more of himself since he left this small town. It was interesting to see how their characters basically switched positions as the story evolved and secrets were revealed. This was definitely a case of complex characters not being what they seem at first. I loved that about the story. 

And that's all before you even get to the romantic suspense story line. There were so many twists and turns to this one. I had NO IDEA who the true bad guy was, and there were several times where I was COMPLETELY shocked about where the story went. I loved that it kept surprising me throughout the entire book. 

I definitely highly recommend this one. There's a great relationship developing between these two men as the romantic suspense line escalates. It's surprising and entertaining and complex. I loved it!

I received a complimentary copy of this book in return for an honest review.

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