Title : Dirty Deeds
Series : Dirty Deeds, Book #1
Author : S.E. Jakes
Publisher : Riptide Publishing (BUY HERE)
Genre : M/M, Contemporary
Length : 94 pages (e-book)
Published : January 13, 2014
Rating : ★★★★★
Two seasoned operatives finally meet their match: each other.
Cillian works for the mysterious Special Branch 20: an organization that runs black ops commissioned by the British government. His specialty is deep undercover assignments with virtually no support. He’s been alone for so long that he no longer knows anything else.
Mal’s also used to being alone. Wanted in several states and even more countries, he’s not allowed in the vicinity of any of his former Navy SEAL teammates. And his current assignment is to track Cillian in order to discover the spook’s endgame. Except he’s no longer sure which one of them is getting played.
Cillian isn’t about to let the mission that’s consumed him for the past several years crumble because an outsider is poking around where he doesn’t belong. But Mal forces his way through Cillian’s defenses—and into his heart—exposing a devastating betrayal that could destroy them both.
We were lucky to get this arc from Netgalley – although general release is January 13th the book is available for pre-order right now at Riptide.
Two reveiwers tackled this book… what? a novella of 83 pages storytime had such an impact?? … Oh. Hell. Yeah!
FAYE : So, I’ve stated before I’m somewhat obsessed with SE Jakes Hell or High Water series. When the spin-off became available of course I was all over that. Add to that as soon as I heard Cillian would be getting his own story I was happy as that would mean his grubby hands would be far from Prophet. This was, for me, a win win situation. I dove in head first. Cillian is searching for John. It’s his single most important objective. He’s got informants all over the place looking for the man. While meeting an informant at a night club, Cillian takes the opportunity to relieve some stress and heads to the back room of the club for a moment of anonymous sex. Cillian finds himself manhandled and completely owned in a way he hasn’t allowed or wanted in years. He is haunted by the encounter. Mal is searching for John and he’s using Cillian as a means to find him. Having sex with Cillian in the back room of a club wasn’t necessarily the best move, but it killed several birds with one stone. Mal then breaks into Prophet’s laptop and accesses his email and Instant Messages. Mal decides he wants to start up a flirtatious banter with Cillian much like Prophet has, but he has plans to take it farther. Amidst the flirtatious banter with a friend of Prophet’s, Cillian’s informants are being murdered.
Over the course of a few days, Cillian and Mal begin to IM each other some very explicit things as well as some very personal things. Each man is so accustomed to having the upper hand they’re slightly stunned at the depth of the intimacy they’ve managed to achieve over such a short time through such an impersonal medium. As though neither man realized he had to guard himself against an avatar picture and flashing cursor. Their “anonymous” action in the backroom of the night club is also continuing and the lines between reality, fantasy, and work are blending and blurring. Then both men have their already shaky foundations destroyed.
Okay, this book was amazing. To put this in perspective, Barb has never shamelessly stolen one of her reviewers’ books before. I cannot blame her for this at all. As I said, this book was amazing, not only for a different perspective on Tom and Prophet, but for Cillian and Mal. These men have some serious trust issues to work through! As trying and as difficult I find Tom and Prophet’s relationship to be I have to say it’s a cake walk as compared to what faces Cillian and Mal. Their problems also put into perspective Prophet’s overwhelming desire to protect Tom. I had assumed Prophet was being unduly dramatic in his need to shield Tom. Tom is a competent adult and law enforcement officer. This book made Tom seem like a sweet and abandoned babe in the woods surrounded by a pack of wolves. To say the very least, Cillian and Mal are in a more dismal and much more dark situation.
To me, the most fascinating aspect of the nascent relationship between Cillian and Mal is their failure to protect themselves in an online interaction. These men are super spies, they kill and leave no trace, they protect an unknowing and thankless society, then go back to their anonymous hotel rooms and pour their deepest secrets onto a cold and inhuman communications mainframe in a desperate attempt to ease their loneliness. This was such a realistic and human flaw. Both men knew they were going too far and exposing too much but the attention was too good to ignore. Their need to be understood was too great. So, these men are now stuck in the unenviable position of relying on someone for emotional support and now that person is the last person to whom they can turn for emotional support. These guys are so screwed and we have around a year til the next book in their series. Someone distract me, please.
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BARB : I came to this book from a different stand point to Faye – I was intrigued by the world that SE Jakes was building… but (and don’t kill me here) I was not totally in love with Prophet and Tommy. They are incredible, complex and heart breaking characters – and I am still going to read the next book – but I was not obsessed, like so many of my friends were. Then along came Dirty Deeds with Mal and Cillian….. and they blew my mind!!! And that, people, is how a great series becomes an EPIC series: the merging of different stories and couples into one sublime continuation of power plot development with characters that leap out of the book and grab you by the fucking throat!! That is the world of Extreme Escapes Ltd. And I cannot get enough of it!
We already met Mal and Cillian in the H*H series and they certainly grabbed my attention. Cillian more so than Mal – I am and always will be a sucker for Brits. And dirty flirty Brits? Let the swooning commence 🙂 We know that Mal withstood an horrific attack while on a mission a few years back, and he has been left with damaged vocal chords and no voice. He is a good friend to Prophet, having served with him, and knows all about John Morse. Cillian is the guy who shares custody of his couch with Prophet. And now Tommy. Although he may not want it back again now 😛 In the H*H series we see snippets of Cillian’s activities and we know that the connection between all these players is going to come and it is going to be HUGE!! A Six Degrees of Oh.My.God!! Right there! And it did not disappoint.
Here is a brief summation of how I saw the story unfurl – and to do so with no spoilers is tough!! The book deals with Cillian working a case, chasing down his mark. But all his contacts are falling and failing. Who is getting to them? And why? Mal is keeping an eye on Cillian… Why? Whose case is he working? The two guys have a “random” hook up early on in the book and it is hawt! Mal seamlessly slots into Prophet’s old role of sexting with Cillian – but between these guys is a connection that goes way beyond the Prophet/Cillian banter. They really seem to get each other. I loved how the sexy chat between the guys wove its way through the story, like a light relief from the serious storyline (which the readers and the MC’s needed!) Ultimately you just know their cases will collide – but the final piece of the puzzle will leave you gobsmacked. Such a clever, cool and oh so cruel twist of fate that SE Jakes has dished out for these guys! What a wonderful web she is weaving.
- If you loved H*H then I just cannot see you not loving this addition to the series.
- If you were ambivalent about H*H then I bet this installment hooks you!
- Finally, if you haven’t read H*H – and you read this, then you will be downloading the entire SE Jakes back catalogue. I would put money on it!! And then buckle up as you are in for one helluva ride!
I honestly cannot recommend this book highly enough. For a short book (83 pages) SE Jakes has managed to create a KAPOW-worthy read that has everything!! Sex which is incredibly hot – but coupled with a plot that is soooo clever, it truly blew me away. Espionage with a twist. An evil twist!!
For me, Mal and Cillian are set to be even more intense than Tomny and Prophet – they have a connection from the get go. But it is complicated 😛 Go. Buy the Book. Join us in the “is it 2015 yet?” mantra as we wait for Dirty Lies.
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So that was what we both thought – and our thoughts were truly running amok! Immediately after we finished the book we had messages flying back and forth – the fall out was that emotional! Check them out HERE or on Goodreads, for a laugh! But be warned.. there be spoilers!! SERIOUSLY serious spoilers!
Finally … I guess I should apologise for (semi)gazumping Faye with this book … um, sorry 😉 By means of apology I am offering up a free e-copy of this book to one lucky commenter – all I want to know is … have you ever shamelessly “stolen” something?
Rated 5 stars by Faye and Barb