Friday, October 28, 2011

BoB Read #9: Shades of Gray by Brooke McKinley

Title:  Shades of Gray
Author: Brooke McKinley
My Rating: A++

Genre: Romantic Suspense
Series: -
Main Characters: Miller & Danny
Release Date: December 2009
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Links to Purchase:
Sexual Intensity: hot (m/m)

I received a copy of this book from the publisher and NetGalley in return for an honest review.

Story Overview:
Miller Sutton, a by-the-book FBI agent, is starting to see some troubling shades of gray in his black-and-white world. He comes face-to-face with his doubts in the person of Danny Butler, a mid-level drug runner Miller hopes to use to catch a much larger fish: Roberto Hinestroza, a drug lord Miller has pursued for years. 

Danny has no interest in being a witness against his boss, both out of a sense of twisted loyalty and because he knows double-crossing Hinestroza is a sure death sentence. But he reluctantly agrees to cooperate, and as he suspects, it doesn't take long for Hinestroza to figure out the betrayal. 

Miller is surprised to discover Danny's not the career-criminal lowlife he expected; at the same time, Danny finds himself helplessly attracted to Miller's innate goodness. They barely begin to explore the sparking attraction between them when Hinestroza's hitman tracks them down, and then they're on the run, both for their lives and for any kind of love.

My Review:
This is absolutely one of the best, most emotional, most beautiful stories of ill-fated love that I have ever read. OMG, I cannot even begin to express how good this book was!! This is the love story between two men. If you enjoy M/M romance or have ever been tempted to read a book about two men, YOU NEED TO READ THIS BOOK! I have to admit that I haven't been reading m/m romance for long, but there is just something about two men willing to put their love out there that is so gorgeous. This book is even more beautiful than normal though. This is a romance between two people. Two people that can never have a relationship simply by who they are.

Miller is an FBI agent who has spent the last three years going after a drug lord, Hinestroza, but not having much luck. Finally he catches a break when, in a normal traffic stop, a cop found an unregistered gun in Danny's glovebox, one of Hinestroza's right hand men. He has Danny right where he wants him and finally convinces him that it's in his best interest to become a witness against his boss.

Danny worked for Hinestroza from the time he made a bad decision at the age of 18. He has been in prison a couple of short periods of time, but that is nothing compared to the 5 years that he will get for the handgun. He knows that it means signing his death warrant, but he is tired of the life and wants out so he agrees to the deal.

Danny & Miller are together from that point out and will stay that way until Danny testifies at the trial and then he will go into the Witness Protection program where his past will be thrown away and he will become a different person with no ties to his past. Miller is straight (at least that's what he says and believes.) He has been engaged to Rachel for 5 years, but is having a difficult time committing to her. They don't even live together yet. Danny is gay. He tried to lie to himself and others, even had a wife himself for a while, but he finally admitted that men are where his passion lies. These two men are together pretty much 24/7 and they form an easy friendship first. There are glimpses of attraction, but neither one acts upon it, respecting the boundaries that their situation entails. At some point, you know that is going to change.

The slow build-up between Danny & Miller is so gorgeous. Throughout the book, you get flashbacks into both men's lives to see how they got here. These are complicated guys in a really difficult situation. There is no black & white here. No good. No bad. Things happen to everyone that is beyond your control. It is how you react to those events that determine who you are and where you end up in life. No doubt about it, Danny has made some bad decisions, but he is not a bad guy. On the other hand, Miller, in his ardor for doing what's right with the FBI, has also made some bad decisions, but again he's not a bad guy either. One different turn in either of their lives and things could have turned out differently for both of them. But now they are stuck. Miller is an FBI agent. Danny is a criminal. The fact that they are in love doesn't change the fact that this is temporary. They will NEVER be able to have a long-term relationship. The reality of it is heartbreaking.

OMG, this book was SO GOOD!! The story is so beautifully written. The characters are rich and deep and so soulful. Your heart literally breaks for both of them. I received this book in e-format from the publisher and NetGalley to review, but I just got off of Amazon where I spent $18 to get a physical copy of this book because it is so freaking good. Read it! You will NOT regret it! 

BoB Haiku:
Two men, different sides.
Passion that can't be denied.
Two hearts intertwined.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Wow, A++, with that review and the knowledge that you had an eFormat of the book just to go spend $18+ dollars on Amazon to get the physical form...just goes to show I need to add this to my TBR list and I need to read it! I just don't know when I'll be able to. :-(