Blood Noir

***Plot Spoiler Included***

When up-and-coming photographer, Alex Klein, is offered a lucrative contract for a photo shoot in Seattle, he accepts. Immediately, his lover of ten-years, Harley Scott, a private detective, has a bad vibe.

For years Harley has been acting as Alex's protector. When he'd met him, Alex had nightmares nightly. The nightmares had disappeared, until lately. Not only that, a mysterious woman has begun following them.

When Alex arrives in Seattle, he meets Erica Kenyon, a reporter and the author of a book about serial killers. Alex's job is to go to the sights where murders have occurred and shoot from the victim's perspective.

The first place they visit, Alex realizes is the setting of his nightmares. Things begin falling into place and Alex pieces together that he is the son of the serial killer who'd once lived there.

Harley is feeling more and more uncomfortable with Alex's trip to Seattle. When his break line on his vehicle is cut, he demands Alex come back home. When Alex refuses, Harley heads to Seattle to save Alex again.

Oddly, Alex isn't the one in trouble, Harley is. I don't want to spoil the story, but suffice to say there are many plot twists that include a hit man, Alex's mother and more.

When I began the book, I was intrigued by the premise, the relationship between Harley, and Alex and by Erica Kenyon and what she was hiding.

Half-way through, I was disappointed in how the story was unfolding. The pacing was frenetic. And every time a  character was threatened they acted the same way, by physically attacking one another.

Also the plot was fraught with coincidence. For example, Erika didn't know Alex was the serial killer's son. It was a coincidence that she took him back to the house to photograph where his Dad had committed so many crimes.

And things didn't make sense, why would Harley demand Alex return home, when that was were the murder attempt had been? He didn't seem to notice it was his own life in peril.

It felt as if the author made things up on the fly to make it all more dramatic. For example, throughout the book how much Harley and Alex love one another was on display, yet in a scene at the end, Alex hears Harley tell another person that he loves him.

Alex's reaction is, 'he's never said that.' My reaction is HUH? He did tell Alex he loved him. A character is killed mid-way through and another introduced for no apparent reason.

Okay, enough. Like I said, it started off strong, unfortunately it dissolved into muddiness.

Book Blurb for Blood Noir

Length: 276
Erotic-Romance, GLBT, Contemporary, Suspense, Crime Thriller

Alex Klein, professional photographer, leads a blessed life with a supportive family and longtime lover Harley Scott, a successful PI. However, everything is about to unravel. He found peace in the arms of Harley after suffering from night terrors most of his life. Now the night terrors are back and his new assignment in Seattle may be the cause.

While he struggles to control his fears, back in St. Louis, Harley unravels a secret that could destroy the life they've created together. Maggie Reynolds is a convicted murderer, former member of a violent, gang that terrorized the West Coast in the 1980's. She may also be Alex's birth mother, finally free after 25 years in prison. Positive his lover is in danger Harley heads to Seattle to save him from a mysterious stalker not beyond murder to get what she wants. Are Maggie and the stalker one and the same?

Sometimes no matter how many lies you weave the past will come back to bite you in the ass. An intricate web of blood and deception discovered, over two decades in the making, and Alex begins to question his entire identity in the wake of fear. Can he free himself from his past before it claims everyone he loves?

Night Owl Reviews Oct, 2009 2.75