Author: Sam B. Morgan
Reviewed by: Diane
Publisher: Loose Id
Genre: M/M Cops
ISBN 13: N/A
Summary: Detective Douglas Brody has only ever known the life of a cop. Raised strict but fair by his police chief father, he joined the academy right out of school, climbed the ranks hard and fast, and now works homicide for the City of Charleston. The job is his entire life. For years it’s kept him happy enough to minimize the side of him that craves what he believes is wrong. An accident on the job puts him on medical leave and everything in Brody’s world changes. He has to prove himself once more to be best cop in the department, all while dealing with Zack – his persistent, sexy, and out of the closet physical therapist.
Zack is tan skin, big grins, floppy hair and tackles his job with the same full-blown enthusiasm he does everything else. When the “patient from hell” is thrown his way by another PT who can’t handle him, Zack is committed to achieving the impossible. His new patient is a head strong and hot as hell homicide detective, who oozes as much resentment as he does sex appeal. Any involvement with a patient, especially a man who is so deep in the closet he can’t see light, is something Zack swore he’d never do. But Brody slowly proves too much to resist…
Review: Douglas Brody, who goes by Brody, is a homicide detective, big, intimidating, gay but deep in the closet since he was taught to be homophobic before he even knew he was gay. His Dad, who was a police officer and former Chief, raised him as a single parent and he always wanted to make his Dad proud, so he did everything that was expected of him. He enjoys his work, but one case has been shadowing him since he was a beat cop and when chasing a lead with his partner Lamont, he blows out his knee, going off duty and requiring physical therapy. Zack is the physical therapist that takes over Brody`s care from another PT when Brody is deemed difficult. Zack sees it right away, but he loves his job and has no problem taking what Brody dishes out and hands it back to him too!
When Brody asks Zack to continue to train him before his physical exam to get back on duty, lines get crossed and get crossed again and they almost lose what is really important.
The story is told from their alternating points of view.
I loved this book, it is the first book I`ve read of this author, but I have not only bought Sam`s debut novel, I will be looking for future books!
Brody comes across as tightly wound and tightly controlled right from the start. You get the impression he became a police officer since it seemed to be the `family business`, but that he does enjoy it and it is the one place he feels confident. The more you get to know about him and all the secrets he has been holding on to so close, the more you realize that on the job is the only place he feels he is not playing a role. When he was a new officer on the street, he discovered a female murder victim, who went to the local college and he has been haunted by that discovery ever since, especially since there have been 4 murders over the years. Being off the job due to an injury was not what he needed – or so he thinks.
I loved Zack from the word go, Brody`s description of him makes you think of some kind of laid back, zen surfer dude, but since the point of view alternates, Zack knows exactly what people assume about him and loves to prove them wrong. And he does that with Brody in their first session! And because he doesn`t take any of his crap, Brody comes back – but part of his abruptness with Zack is that he also finds him attractive, something he has been able to keep under wraps for most of his life. Zack is just as attracted to Brody, even though he initially thinks he`s straight. Which sets the stage for their connection because they are drawn to one another, although they are both trying not to be physically attracted.
I liked the fact that before there are any scenes acting on attraction, the first half of the book establishes their relationship as two adults. That it progresses from professional, t friendly to beyond friends. And although Zack seems like the more outgoing of the two, he actually lives a pretty quiet life. Brody, on the other hand, lives a quiet life because he does not seem to let people in – and often snaps at people without thinking first! You get the impression that the time they spend together, even if only running or talking, is the happiest Brody has ever been, that he does not let many people in, but he chose to let Zack in, and not just because of the physical attraction.
And Brody`s case keeps being brought up, and with how things play out when he does get returned to active duty, it brings everything to a head – and he realizes how much the time with Zack has opened him up, in good ways, including how to approach the case. Although his general stubbornness almost cost him everything!
The back story for Zack is feeling he is easily left – his father walked out on his Mom and sisters when he was quite young, the man now has another family and calls Zack only when he wants something and refers to the boy in his other family as `his son`, and the last relationship he had was in college where the person ended it by saying he was marrying a woman and Zack should forget they ever met. So, when things get rough, all those feelings resurface – which is where you want to smack Brody silly, then hug him, and you just want to hug Zack!
If you like police dramas, coming out stories for older men and seemingly opposites who attract, I believe you will enjoy this book! There are some love scenes, but they run the gamut from simple cuddling and kissing to lovemaking, but they seem essential to the story so Brody can realize what he feels and what he desires is okay. As I said, I`m definitely going to be looking for more from Sam B Morgan!