Today, I’m hosting author S.J. Coles’ latest release My Iron Knight, a m/m contemporary romance. Be sure to read my book review.
Book Title: My Iron Knight
Series: An Enemy Territory Story
Author: S. J. Coles
Genre: Contemporary M/M Romance, Biker Romance, Action/Suspense/Drama
Tropes: Forbidden love, Enemies to Lovers, Small Town Romance
Heat Rating: 4 flames
Length: 32 900 words/ 137 pages
Release Date: April 12, 2022
Publisher: Pride Publishing
Dash Cassidy loves his town even more than his bike, but his priorities have a violent shift in gear when an irresistible Russian hitman comes along.
Blurb: Darius ‘Dash’ Cassidy has ended up president of the small town of Salvation’s Iron Knights motorcycle gang, almost by accident. His sister, Zara, is the more business-savvy and ambitious of the two, but their father—the infamous Butch Cassidy—was far from politically correct, so Dash was left in charge.
Up to now, Dash has been more than happy to muscle his way through life as his father did before him, even if he is starting to suspect that something might be missing.
But now there’s a new player in town. Iris Damaro has plans to make Salvation the center of her international smuggling operation. Dash isn’t going to sit still while Damaro steamrolls through his town, but when the crime boss sends her alluring Russian number two, Nikita Vasiliev, to do her negotiating, Dash realizes he may be in over his head.
Can Dash figure out where his priorities lie before his town—or his heart—is lost forever?
Note: It is a standalone story and does not end on a cliffhanger.
The doorbell jangled and in stepped Nikita Vasiliev.
He was perfect, not a speck of dust or gleam of sweat on him. He wore a tight black T-shirt and jeans, which did very little to stop Dash from picturing what might lay underneath. His bare arms were surprisingly toned, the muscles sliding under his pale skin as he moved. His smile was thin and his eyes, like white-hot needles, drove right into Dash’s belly. His suited shadows followed, their expressions hidden by sunglasses.
“I told her the same thing I told you,” Vasiliev said smoothly. “I told her to think about it.”
Dash stood, his hand on his gun. Furniture scraped as the diners stood and looked vainly at the exit, now blocked by the suited goons.
“No, please,” Vasiliev said as he came forward, sinuous as a snake, his fine-boned hands held out, palms up. “Do not let us interrupt your meals.” The diners slowly lowered themselves back to their seats, and the Russian turned his smile on Dash. “Mr. Cassidy, let’s not ruin these fine people’s mornings.”
“What do you want, Vasiliev?”
He raised his eyebrows. “Your pronunciation is improving. Did you look it up on YouTube?”
“Gentlemen,” Rosie barked, “this here may be an old- fashioned business, but it’s still my business. Either you order something or take your business elsewhere.”
“I’d say that’s fair,” the Russian said, perusing the menu on the wall. “My associates will take a coffee. I believe I would very much like to try your…blueberry pancakes?”
“Comin’ up,” she said, nodding reassuringly at Big Bill through the hatch, as his face had grown stormy. “Cassidy?” she said, tilting her chin. “I don’t care who your daddy were. My place, my rules.”
“Refill,” he said without moving.
A wider smile spread over Vasiliev’s sculpted mouth. He drifted past Dash to a booth against the wall. “Shall we act like civilized adults?”
Dash glanced at the heavies as they took stools at the end of the counter, between him and the door, and sat.
Vasiliev lowered himself into the seat opposite, interweaving his long fingers on the scarred Formica tabletop. Dash realized for the first time that his fingers were slightly crooked, the skin webbed with scars as fine as silver thread.
Rosie slapped a plate of pancakes and a syrup jug on the table. She set a fresh coffee in front of Dash with a hard look then hastened back behind the counter.
“What are you doing here?” Dash asked in a low voice.
“Quite incredible,” Vasiliev said, pouring syrup on the pancakes. “I was just about to ask you the same thing.”
“You don’t scare me, Vasiliev.”
“Don’t I?” He met Dash’s eyes as he lifted a forkful of pancake to his mouth. He chewed, scowled then pushed the plate away. “Bliaha. How can you have something so sweet for breakfast? May I?” Before Dash could speak, Vasiliev had sipped from Dash’s mug, his blue eyes boring into his over the rim. “Ah,” he said, lowering the cup. “Seems America does get some things right.”
“What do you want with Rosie?” Dash said, fighting to keep his voice under control.
“I came to see if she had had any further thoughts on our proposal,” Vasiliev said, dabbing his mouth with a napkin. “But I’m guessing her position is as yet unchanged. No matter. She has thirteen more days…just like you.”
“What happens then?”
“That’s our business.”
Dash leaned forward on his elbows. “Your boss may be used to getting what she wants, but she won’t get what she wants from us.”
“Then she’ll kill you all.”
“I’d like to see her try.”
I loved the blurb, so I requested to review this one. And I must say the author did not disappoint. This book completely lived up to my expectations.
Dash Cassidy inherited the Iron Knights MC (who rule the seedier side of the town known as Salvation) through his father who was the previous president before passing away. Everyone says Dash is too much like his father, so Dash believes it’s his duty to keep his father’s legacy alive by ruling as his father once did.
Then there is the mysterious Nikita Vasiliev, a hitman for a criminal boss who wants the town of Salvation at any cost, and Nikita, having never failed a contract before, will not fail the lethal and dangerous Iris Damaro. It doesn’t matter that Nikita’s enemy is the powerful president of the Iron Knights.
I love very bad characters LOL. Nikita and Dash are just that. They may be the heroes of the novel, but these two are dangerous men who are loyal to their own people. Even though they are out to kill each other, they are also heavily attracted to each other.
I must say I loved how the author brought the two together and played out the push and pull connection from the first meeting. Even better, they are complete opposites. Dash is vocal, reactionary, and on the hot-headed side, while Nikita is cold, quiet, and calculating. Does this make Nikita smarter? No. While Dash does fumble the ball a few times, he’s always ready to pick it back up and get back into play.
Then there are the secondary characters such as Dash’s sister, his nephew, and the club members who ramp up the conflict because they expect Dash to run the club as his father did, and they demand 100% of his loyalty. Dash knows this, and he’s aware he can’t choose Nikita over the club.
The novel is fast-paced. The sex is hot. The chemistry between the two main characters jumps off the page. And the dialogue between the two is spot on. The novel played out in front of my eyes like a movie from the vivid descriptions and the conflict between the two main characters, as well as the action scenes. Well done, author.
I also like that a lot of the characters, even the two main characters, possessed a conscience. Except for one. And this character I also found very interesting.
This is a face-paced read, with criminals as the two leads, and they were true to character as two men who grew up surrounded by crime. The writing is top notch. Do yourself a favour and get yourself a copy.
S.J. Coles is a Romance writer originally from Shropshire, UK. She has been writing stories for as long as she has been able to read them. Her biggest passion is exploring narratives through character relationships.
She finds writing LGBT/paranormal romance provides many unique and fulfilling opportunities to explore many (often neglected or under-represented) aspects of human experience, expectation, emotion and sexuality.
Among her biggest influences are LGBT Romance authors K J Charles and Josh Lanyon and Vampire Chronicles author Anne Rice.