Title: Colorado Wild
Series: Colorado Heart #1
Author: Sara York
Author: Sara York
Genre: M/M Romance
Release: September 27, 2013
When love sneaks up on you, shoot for the heart.
Billy Bradford has a secret, and it's bigger than the fact that he's an assassin. When Tucker Hayes, Billy's "straight" best friend, is injured on a mission, Billy acts in haste, kissing Tucker. Shocked by the act, Tucker runs. But desire is stronger than convictions, leading Tucker to hunt down Billy.
The other guys on the ranch are oblivious to Tucker and Billy's actions as they investigate a new target. Grant Stovall is hung up on his ex, but Roger Burk, their new operative, catches his attention and one small touch isn't enough.
Meet the cowboys of Wild Bluff Ranch in the first book of the Colorado Heart Series, Colorado Wild.
Some reviews are tougher to write than others. With this one I've really had to think hard about what I want to write. Not because I didn't like the book but because I wanted it to be so much better than it was.
Let me set the scene: This is a story about a team of disavowed assassins who live on a ranch in Colorado tending 'horses by day and killing off bad guys by night.' Okay. This is my own interpretation of it. They are basically cowboy ranchers to the world but really a group of vigilante assassins, almost like super heroes. You know. Batman is Bruce Wayne by day and Batman by night. Or Superman who is Clark Kent during the day and Superman when he needs to save the world. You catch my drift here.
Each member has to be specially screened and by invitation only. They go through rigorous training even more than the Marines, Navy SEALs or even British Special/Elite Forces. The government doesn't even know they exist although the CIA recruits the members. So these are supposed to be an elite group of fighters. They go out on on missions and rid the world of bad people.
The characters: The team is made up of Duff (who is the leader), Grant, Billy, Tucker, Zander, Mike, James, Marshal, and Roger. I feel as if I may have missed someone out. Anyway, Roger is the new guy who just joined the team and one team member left, Craig. Craig had been in a relationship with Grant for 5 years before he left, leaving Grant devastated and unable to get over him.
When Roger comes into the team, there is some attraction between him and Grant but Grant is still too attached to Craig emotionally to do anything more. Also Rogers is suffering from his own loss.
Billy has been in love with Tucker, who is his best friend and also straight, for about a year but has never told him. When Tucker is injured during a mission, Billy kinda loses it and thereby triggers the start to more between them.
What worked for me:
The first chapter of this book held my attention and really pulled me in. I loved the suspense surrounding what the group did and how Roger would fit into it. It also set my expectations quite high for this story. I was expecting a suspense-filled, if not action-packed romance.
The romance part of this book was good. I especially enjoyed the sexual tension between Roger and Grant. Although the main romance is between Billy and Tucker, I didn't get really invested in them as much as I did with Grant and Rogers. Perhaps because I'd seen Grant and Rogers on page first.
What didn't work for me:
I said I was expecting a suspense-filled romance. Unfortunately the suspense fizzled out quite quickly and there was certainly not much action. This read more like a drama and the characters came across more like school teachers than assassins. They spent so much time talking (on the page) and very little doing anything, even in smexy department.
There was nothing to distinguish the characters apart from names, hair and eye colors. Sometimes when there are no dialogue tags I had to re-read the conversation to distinguish who said what. With no change in speech patterns they all sounded alike and they all sounded like a bunch of women chatting over coffee. I struggled to picture them as a bunch of elite fighters.
The one opportunity the author had to really showcase their skills, when they had to kill a terrorist sponsor, was missed. That scene would've worked so much better from the POV of the guy executing the kill to ramp up the tension. Instead it was narrated from his colleague's POV who was sitting in the van and brushed over. Think about it. If you were watching Mission Impossible, who would you rather watch: Ethan Hunt trying to get into an impenetrable vault or the guy sitting in the van yards away talking to him via his ear piece?
If you are looking for pure male/male romance then this is an okay read. I just wish it was better. Will I read more from this series. Perhaps. I'm certainly curious enough about how Grant deals with his ex. And the books are available through Kindle Unlimited.
Disclaimer: This book was provided by the author/publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Amazon CA: http://goo.gl/grY04H
Amazon UK: http://goo.gl/CpAO7H
Amazon AU: http://goo.gl/xynpZV
Sara enjoys writing twisted tales of passion, anger, and love with a good healthy dose of lust thrown in for fun. Almost a quarter of a century ago Sara met her lover, falling for him after knowing him for ten minutes. Sara's passion for him comes out in her stories, mixing with her passion for life, love, and good times, flowing onto the page and becoming tales from the heart.