Today, I’m reviewing Perilous Hearts, book three in the Deviant Hearts series by A E Ryecart, a m/m romantic thriller.
Title: Perilous Hearts, #1
Series: Deviant Hearts
Author: A E Ryecart
Genres: M/M contemporary romance, thriller, suspense
Publication Date: March 8, 2019
You can lock your door, but can you lock your heart?
Blurb: Finding the courage to end his relationship with his manipulative and vicious boyfriend, Jamie Wheeler turns to his close friend Ed Corrigan to help him get his life back on track.
Jamie and Ed have been inseparable for years, and all it would take is a small step to cross the divide from friends to lovers.
It would be the biggest mistake they could make.
Jamie seeks the security of a settled long-term relationship, but Ed vows never to put his heart on the line again after a devastating betrayal. Anything beyond friendship is a risk, and could break them forever.
As Jamie’s vindictive ex causes trouble from the side-lines, a face from the past makes an unwelcome return. Jamie’s life isn’t getting back on track, it’s coming off the rails, as a series of seemingly random events lead to only one of two conclusions: either somebody’s playing a dark and sinister game, or Jamie’s losing his mind.
Tensions rise and danger approaches, drawing Jamie and Ed closer than ever. But time is running out as they race to discover not only what is happening, and why, but also what they truly mean to each other.
The third book in the Deviants Heart series, Perilous Hearts is a slow burn friends to lovers romance intertwined with dark psychological suspense. It can be read as a stand-alone and there is no need to have read the previous two books in the series. No cliff hanger and HEA guaranteed.
First off, although this book is the third in the series, it truly reads as a standalone. I haven’t read books one and two, and this did not impact the story. This book truly belong to Jamie and Ed, which is great.
Jamie has a nice background that shapes the kind of person he is today–a little bit lost, very unsure of himself, and moving from one bad relationship to the next. He’s got a knack for picking men as messed up as he is. Career-wise, he’s doing great. He has his own print shop and business is good.
This sets up Jamie for a great character arc I was looking forward to reading, but alas, Jamie doesn’t quite reach his true potential. He does become stronger throughout the novel, and he does come out of his shell by reaching out for help. But I really hoped to see him truly stand his ground. Or perhaps I’m wrong. Maybe because of the story arc, the author couldn’t give Jamie the shining moment he deserves.
As for Ed, he’s been burned badly by a former friends-to-lovers relationship, and he’s sworn off touching another “friend.” But there is sexual tension that grows between Ed and Jamie. It’s a wonderful slow burn that is believable. I thought the author excelled here at bringing to life their relationship. Bravo!
The opening is brilliant. The author dumps the reader into full-on action as Jamie attempts to leave a dysfunctional relationship with Ed intervening. From there, the duo head for a weekend away since Ed believes this is the best thing for Jamie. The friendship between the two is strong. And this made me smile.
Then there is the “thriller” part. I won’t go into too much detail, but the author did an excellent job, even though I had a good hint of who was stalking Jamie. But that’s fine. I found this “thriller” part is what pushes Jamie and Ed together, and forces them to revisit their friendship and what they truly want. There is even a nice twist to the suspense that took me by surprise. Well, I can’t call it nice, LOL. More along the lines of shocking.
The author is a strong writer, which compelled me to read the book in the first place. I glanced through the excerpt and thought, “Strong writing. I wanna read.”
I recommend Perilous Hearts. It’s a nice beach read for a lazy summer afternoon.
Have you read Perilous Hearts? Do you agree with my review? If you haven’t read the book, are you willing to give it a try?