The book starts with a very Mary Sue moment where Campy (Cameron), despite only working one shift a week, and not having any qualifications, was somehow the only person at the animal centre who could solve a problem with an animal. A problem that had been going in for a few days. Followed up by all the other workers (at an animal rehab centre) being scared to work with the birds of prey so it was left to him. Seriously? The cliche pretty much set the tone for the book.
Not helped by some really sloppy editing. In one scene Tank and Brewer are kissing and mentioned as recently together, in a later scene, they aren’t together yet. Given Tank’s book is written, it shouldn’t have been hard to got the details right. Another situation has Brewer having a drink at a gay club with Campy to keep an eye on Jackson’s date, then later in the book, said he thought Jackson was straight. Not to mention that in Tank’s book, Campy flat out says Jackson is straight, (which while addressed about 2/3 of he way in, felt clumsy and more like a work around than truth).
Basically the characters didn’t feel true to the way they had been portrayed previously. Which was disappointing, as I liked those characters more. Jackson is lacking the easy self assurance he was depicted with, and Campy, well... he’s lying (for reasons that seem flimsy) and has no self awareness.
And this is a ridiculously slow burn, while we wait for Campy get with the program. There was a lot of frustration, and I kept nearly giving up. It dragged on too long. It also meant that there was a lot crammed into the last third of the book, leaving it feeling unbalanced.
All in all it just didn’t work for me. It didn’t gel, a lot of things didn’t feel believable. Also, this series celebrates porn stars, so Campy’s active dislike of working in the industry and only doing it because he had to felt insulting.
I also do not know why the authors thought it was a great idea to highlight that Jackson was named after Confederate racist bigots when it added nothing to the story.
And as it is set before Heart’s story, he is basically a ghost in this book, and we certainly don’t see how his relationships are going which felt disrespectful to his character when everyone else was featured.
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