Reviewed by Susan65
Title: And Your Enemies Closer
Author: Cecelia Stryder
Series: Love & Deceptions #1
Genre: MM Contemporary
Length: 258 Pages
Publisher: Lovelight Press
Release Date: September 30, 2016
Available at: Amazon
Add it to your shelf: Goodreads
Blurb: “You’re dead.”
“No one knows the real Cori Archontis. All anyone ever cares about is that I’m the lead singer from that band.”
Five years have passed since Cori Archontis traded dirty money for fame and skyrocketed his band, Love & Deceptions, into stardom – five years spent drowning his past in narcotics, dating women to stay publicly closeted, and running from his mistakes. But Cori’s time is up. The Hollywood based crime syndicate who pushed him to the top of the charts is done waiting for him to pay back his debt.
And they’ve sent the most handsome man Cori’s ever seen to collect what Cori owes them – his life.
“No matter what, I’ll never let myself be like my father.”
The job is simple. Get in, put a bullet through the kid’s skull, and get out. Nero’s done it before. He’s been a member of crime syndicate The Mad Royals for twenty years, and as crime lord Caligula’s right hand man, he’s as unsympathetic as he is ruthless.
And it’s cocky, gorgeous, arrogant flirts like Cori that Nero hates most of all.
But there’s a vibrancy in Cori’s voice and a sincerity in his song that makes Nero’s finger pause before he pulls the trigger – and it fills him with dread. He’s been sworn off men for longer than he’s been a Royal, and there’s no way he’d ever stoop so low as to go down the path he followed.
“I’m ready to give it all up – for you.”
But fate has other plans.
When two troubled pasts collide and expose a threat far more urgent than a simple debt, Cori and Nero’s lives are thrust onto parallel tracks. Forced to trust one another while the world unravels at their feet and old scars open fresh, if they want to survive, they’ll have to learn to conquer their differences and find middle ground.
Or maybe somewhere even closer than that.
Review: This was a great story, even if you really needed to suspended belief here and there. But truthfully, if I wanted real life, I would never pick up a book, so stories that get knocked for being unbelievable just confound me to no end. Anyway, the premise of this story is part of a conspiracy theory that I’ve heard bantered around for years…that being the rich and famous are all part of a crime syndicate and if you don’t pay your dues, or in this case, your loan in full, within a certain time frame then bang, bang…you’re dead.
Cori is the lead singer of a popular band and was one of the ones who basically sold his soul for fame and fortune. But Cori didn’t pay, wasn’t as rich as he expected to be, and lo and behold, this is where Nero enters the picture. Nero is the “I’m-not-a-hitman” hitman for the Royal’s, the crime syndicate that “sponsored” Cori. Nero is cold and calculated, lives like a pauper, and still struggles with his own past when he gets the call to take out Cori.
Cori really is a good guy, but he knew what he did to get famous and was prepared to pay the price once he realized that the alternative was spending his life with Patrick. Patrick is the ex-boyfriend that was abusive when they were teenagers and is now a full blow psychopath as a man. Amazingly, and this is what dragged me into the story right away, when Cori and Patrick and Nero all show up at the same time, I was blown away. What’s the chance that the moment the hitman comes collecting, your abusive ex is the one to save the day…or did he, or is this all an elaborate scheme? There is a lot going on and the action is fast paced and consistently moving from point A to point B and back again. One never knows how this will end until the end…and for that, I loved it.
Overall Impression: I really liked it
*I received a copy of this book from the author in return for a fair and honest review.*