Reviewed by Susan65
Title: The Intersection of Purgatory and Paradise
Author: A.J. Thomas
Series: Least Likely Partnership #3
Genre: MM Contemporary
Length: 204 Pages
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: March 27, 2015
Available at: Amazon and Barnes & Noble
Add it to your shelf: Goodreads
Blurb: Life in small-town Montana has become hell for former San Diego homicide detective Christopher Hayes. No one will hire him, he has made the seething racism his lover Doug Heavy Runner faces at work worse by adding homophobia to the mix, and his most recent jog through town ends when two gay-bashing teenagers hit him in the head with a rock. Deputy Sheriff Doug Heavy Runner has never overcome the abusive relationship that traumatized and shattered him as a young adult. The memories, the lingering shame, and the fear he has never acknowledged have left him resigned to endure the discrimination he faces in Elkin. But he can’t stand it when Christopher becomes a target for that same hatred.
When the mutilated body of one of the boys who assaulted Christopher is found in Doug’s garage, Christopher and Doug return from a vacation in San Diego and uncover a tangle of secrets, lies, and tragedy lurking beneath Elkin’s small-town façade. With their relationship at a crossroads, they’ll have to work together to catch the killer and maybe find a paradise of their own.
Review: I loved A Casual Weekend Thing; it was one of my favorite books, so I was excited to see Doug Heavy Runner and Christopher Hayes get another book. Doug had a lot more to his story that was barely touched upon, so Chris needed to get to the root of his issues before they could attempt a forever kind of relationship. In addition to their own relationship issues, the guys are dealing with murder and suicide cases that will rock the town’s foundation, including the police department. Of course, our boys are right smack in the middle of it all.
Watching Doug ignore the homophobia running rampant in his small town Montana home, while Chris is continually being treated like crap, was really hard to read. No matter what Chris did, he was always suspected in any nefarious business, even when the evidence was to the contrary. How Doug could just blow that off didn’t sit well with me. I was rooting for Chris to move back to San Diego even if it meant these two had to split up…it was that bad.
The title of the book is an excellent representation of the back and forth between these two men who are trying to build a life together. Doug needed to stop punishing himself and allow them to be happy, and Chris needed to nudge him along. I believe Doug would have lived his life dutifully going about his business, regardless of how the town treated him, had he not met Christopher…and that’s really sad. Fortunately, Doug loved Chris more than he hated himself and his past. I was so very happy with the ending, I don’t think I would have been happy with any other outcome.
As much as I liked this story, and loved catching back up with Doug and Chris, it was not as exciting as the first book, and I found myself gladly seeing them settled in their new life together. If there is another book, I will probably read it, but I think it ended well here.
Overall Impression: I really liked it
*I received a copy of this book from the publisher in return for a fair and honest review.*