Book Review | Truth or Dare by Ariana Nash

America. The land of the free. Unless you’re a latent.

Kage is missing. Alexander Kempthorne would prefer he stay that way. Life at the new-look Kempthorne & Co agency is difficult enough without adding a missing American to the mix. But John “Dom” Domenici won’t abandon someone who was once their friend, even if Kage is “technically” an enemy.

But as the team investigate Kage’s disappearance, a traumatic, hidden past comes to light. And a missing person case soon turns into a fight for survival for Dom and Kempthorne, in a land not-so-free.

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Breathless action, suspenseful mystery, and steamy romance combine in the fast-paced gay adventure series from the author acclaimed for their enemies-to-lovers, epic twists, and morally conflicted characters.

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How was it?

A missing ex-lover, a dangerous country for latents, and two lovers smack in the middle of it. That’s how the Shadows of London fourth entry starts and it’s quite the ride.

When Kempthorne became a bigger focus in Trial by Fire it came as breath of fresh air, because Dom’s poor decision making skills was starting to be grating. Here it rears it’s ugly head again to the point where I was tempted to skip paragraphs and chapters whenever Dom acted like an idiot. Even the will they? Won’t they things was back.

But fear not, this entry gets increasingly better and captivating. Taking place in the united states seem to give the story a new edge, well a different edge. Alex and Dom are challenged in new and interesting ways. We learn a lot about Kage – some of which surprised me -, we also get to see Alexander and John as a couple. It’s a lot of unsaid, which can be frustrating, but then it gets amazing between them. The fact that it happens in book four is a tad annoying but I loved it so who cares.

Out of all the previous books, this entry is the one I had the most trouble putting down, the action is gripping and nicely paced. I love how the characters are evolving, even though some aspects about their personality still annoys me. It’s a great read, I might dive back in before the audio version is out.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

Truth or Dare is available on Amazon (Kindle, and Paperback).

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I received an advanced copy of this book and this is my fair and unbiased review.

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Book Review | Trial by Fire by Ariana Nash

The third book in the thrilling Shadows of London series.

It’s not just Kempthorne’s secrets bubbling to the surface of London’s streets …

Outmanoeuvred at every turn by the figure known as “M”, only Alexander Kempthorne can free Dom, but juggling the horrors of his own past, containing a rising preternatural threat and the twisted machinations of “M” might just be too much, even for Kempthorne. Can Kage Mitchell be trusted to help?

Alexander Kempthorne lost an agent before. He’ll not lose another. He’ll do anything to save Dom, and if that means revealing who and what he truly is, then his time has come.

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How was it?

Twists and roller-coasters of emotions can be fun but when most of the decision making habits of the main characters you follow, doesn’t make sense to you, it’s a bit of chore. In a Tide of Tricks Kempthorne grew on me, so it was great that for almost a quarter of Trial by Fire we see life outside Wordsworth, subsequently spending more time with him, which was pretty amazing. And you know what? I did not miss Dom.

With M’s identity revealed I really thought this was going to be an engaging action-driven part of the story. Instead it was a lot – at least too much for me – going back and forth to places for dubious reasons. It almost felt like filler. Sometimes, I even felt the story edits as the flow wasn’t as smooth as I wanted it to be.

So reading it wasn’t the smooth and exciting ride I wanted it to be but there was enough to keep me going. The sexual tension between Dom and Kempthorne is top notch here. In previous entries, I didn’t understand the attraction between the two and didn’t see it has necessary, whereas here it was entertaining and juicy.

Despite the twists, emotion filled reveals, and gut punches I was tempted to skim this one too many times. It didn’t totally grip me, except when it comes to the evolution of Kempthorne, and his relationship with Dom.

Rating: 3 out of 5.

Trial by Fire is available on The Book Depository, Amazon and other book retailers near you.

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