Series: The Perfect Gentlemen #1
Published by Berkley on August 18th 2015
“Gabriel Bond really wanted to murder his best friend.”
FINAL DECISION: How did I miss this series? I absolutely loved this book which has funny, sexy and likeable characters, complex issues, an intriguing mystery and is hot, hot, hot! I totally fell in love with the characters and flew through this book.
THE STORY: Gabriel Bond, one of the six “Perfect Gentlemen” of Creighton Academy, is left adrift after the death of one of his best friends Maddox Crawford. Grieving and angry and a little lost, Gabriel seeks some forgetfulness with a woman he meets in a bar. Everly Parker isn’t a woman who engages in one night stands, but the handsome and sexy Gabriel is an opportunity that she doesn’t want to pass up. Things become complicated, however, when Everly and Gabriel meet again and find out that Gabriel is Everly’s new boss and Gabriel finds out that Everly is the woman he believes was Maddox’s mistress. Then Gabriel becomes a suspect in Maddox’s murder.
OPINION: This book just sucked me in and wouldn’t let go. The Perfect Gentlemen are sexy, dominant men who have a funny and even somewhat sweet relationship. They call one another brothers and their relationship is the central pivot point in the overarching story. The men needle, tease, taunt, challenge one another and are devoted to one another. Without this foundation in the book, it would be impossible to understand or believe what these men are willing to do for one another. The unshakable relationship between these men also serves to show how important the relationship between Gabriel and Everly becomes as she dislodges the other Perfect Gentlemen as most important to Gabriel.
Some readers might grumble about the fact that the overarching mystery that begins in this book with Maddox Crawford’s death is not resolved in this book. I like my series to be closely connected and prefer that there be overarching issues which thread through all the books in the series. This book is just about perfect in that regard. Some questions are answered in this book and some questions linger on and is picked up by the next book in the series. The romance itself is complete.
Before I began reading romances, I was an avid mystery reader and I still really enjoy a good romantic suspense or romance/mystery book. My complaint is often that either there is too much suspense and little romance or the mystery is no real mystery but rather nothing more than an excuse to create drama for the hero and heroine. Not so here. The mystery seems organic and vital to the story and yet never overshadows the romance between Gabriel and Everly. I was satisfied with the answers I got in this book even as I wonder about the bigger questions left unanswered. Obviously, I don’t know what the ultimate answers are but the writers have earned my trust by creating a clever and intelligent beginning.
While Gabriel is definitely a yummy hero. Unapologetically a highly sexed man, I loved how Gabriel doesn’t apologize for his sex life and doesn’t ask Everly to apologize for hers. Powerful and yet willing to listen to Everly (after some initial misunderstandings). He treats her as an equal to him intellectually and sexually. He’s funny and sexy and has some darkness in his past — what’s not to love?
I adored Everly as well. She is smart and capable. And can she handle Gabriel! I especially like that Everly has a profession that is not usually given to women in books. She is head of information security and is a hacker. Her particular skills are especially useful in the mystery. Loved, loved that Everly is not a damsel in distress but an active participant in the story and in the mystery.
This book just hit me in the right spot. In fact, the hardest decision for me was whether to read the next book right away or re-read my favorite parts of this book. My decision was to continue with the series and then re-read. The best of both worlds.
WORTH MENTIONING: The books in this series all deal with one overarching mystery that begins with the death of Maddox Crawford in this book. The overarching mystery is not resolved here even though the immediate issues raised in the book are resolved.
CONNECTED BOOKS: SCANDAL NEVER SLEEPS is the first book in The Perfect Gentlemen series.
STAR RATING: I give this book 5 stars.
NOTE: I received a free paperback copy of this book at the RT Booklovers Convention. There was no request or requirement that I write a review or that I say positive things about this book. All opinions contained herein are my own.
Reading this book contributed to these challenges: