Review: Kate Sherwood – Long Shadows (Common Law #1)

51ithcmx2l-_sx327_bo1204203200_Author: Kate Sherwood
Reviewer: Barb
Publisher: Riptide Publishing
Genre: Contemporary

Rating: ★★½☆☆ 

Summary:

LA cop Jericho Crewe got the hell out of Mosely, Montana, when he was seventeen. Fifteen years later, he’s back, and everything is just as messed up as when he left. He planned a quick visit to deal with his injured father, but of course things are never that simple. Family complications, police complications, social complications—and, as always, Wade Granger complications.

Jericho and Wade had been so close, once upon a time. First friends, then more than friends—and then, after Jericho’s escape, nothing. Wade’s magnetism hasn’t been lessened by a decade and a half apart; even when Jericho learns that Wade is the prime suspect in the death of Jericho’s father, the old connection still sparks.

When Jericho’s newly discovered half siblings are kidnapped, he needs to trust someone to help him find them. Wade’s a terrible choice, but Jericho’s never been known for his good judgment. Anyway, he’d rather make a bad decision with Wade than a good one with anybody else.

Review:

Responding to an urgent summons to his hometown, Mosely, Montana, LA cop Jericho “Jay” Crewe heads back to find out what happened to his estranged father, Eli. When he gets there, he finds out that there was no urgency since his father was pushed from a cliff and is dead. The urgency came from the stepmother he didn’t know he had. She’s trying to protect the stepsiblings he didn’t know he had and deliberately didn’t tell him his father was already dead.

What Jericho discovers is that his father, as usual, was involved in something shady, and unsurprisingly, his partner in crime was Wade Granger, Jay’s former high school friend and lover. And the sheriff is none other than his former high school girlfriend, Kayla Morgan.

The story revolves around a missing video clip that will apparently shed light on several FBI agents engaging in criminal activities. There’s plenty of backstory of the friendship between Jay and his two “friends,” Wade and Kayla and plenty about Eli and his illegal activities. There’s also kidnapping, intrigue, suspicion, and a shooting.

But there’s no romance. In fact, there’s only the barest suggestion of sexual attraction between Jay and Wade, and even that isn’t clear until the last 5% of the story. So labeling this a romance is a No, IMHO. And other than Jay’s personality, and also likely due to his POV dominating the story, he’s the only character I cared about. On the last page of the book is a very attractive cover advertising the next book in the series. I assume the author plans to build romance into that one or subsequent books, but it’s sure not in this one. But it was when I saw that next cover that I realized that I am leaning toward reading that one in the hopes that this series and the romance picks up.

And because of that potential in the future and my leanings, I decided to rate this 2.5 instead of 2. I found it a little better than okay so that’s my compromise. And I can recommend it to those who enjoy a multi-agency criminal action story, but sadly, not to those seeking romance.

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Riptide Publishing

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3 Comments

  1. Barb,
    I’m assuming, perhaps incorrectly, that you based your low score largely on the novel not being a romance. Please be advised that authors have NO control over how their novels are marketed; Amazon is inclined to label all MM novels as “romance,” or “erotica,” with neither being the case. As the author of MM crime noir mystery-thrillers, Amazon, Net Galley, Prism Book Alliance, et alia always label my novels as “Gay, romance, literary.” I can do nothing to change those labels, nor can my publisher. Just an FYI. To me, this novel sounds like a page turner.
    LJ

  2. That was only part of the reason. The major reason was that I didn’t connect with the characters, except for Jay, who I mildly liked. But I understand your point and I may have been influenced by this being marketed as a romance.

  3. YES, to everything you said! I received an ARC of this one as well and was so disappointed with the lack of romance. I ended up getting the second in the series too…I’m not sure if it’s because I REALLY need to “see” them get together or that I’m a glutton for punishment. lol

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