Title : Hostile Ground
Publisher : Riptide (BUY HERE)
Genre : M/M, Contemporary, Thriller
Length : 300 pages (e-book)
Published : May 12, 2014
Rating : ★★★★
After the deaths of three undercover cops investigating a drug ring in a seedy strip club in Seattle, Detective Mahir Hussain has been sent to finish the job. He joins the club’s security team in the hopes of finding enough evidence to bust the operation before the men in charge find a reason to put him in a shallow grave.
To protect the strippers, only gay men can work the club. Ridley, the cold and intimidating head of security, knows exactly how to test potential new hires—including Mahir. From the minute they meet, Mahir and Ridley engage in a dangerous dance of sex and mind games. Mahir needs to find his evidence before Ridley figures out he’s a cop—and before they both grow too close to betray one another.
As the game goes on, Mahir burrows deeper into the operation, where he learns there’s much more happening than meets the eye . . . and why every cop who made it this far has been silenced with a bullet.
The blurb of this book pretty much screams gritty and suspenseful. Then you see the authors and you know it’s going to be dark and sexy. I’d say it delivered on all my expectations.
The book starts off with the MCs very much on opposite sides of the good guy bad guy debate. Mahir is going undercover in a strip club where they hire only gay men so they don’t have problems with them messing around with the strippers. To get the job Mahir has to pass the test of the sociopath head of security for the club named Ridley. Right away the men clash. That also makes it exciting and creates some intense sexual tension between the MCs that has you anticipating the next move they’re going to make. Will Ridley see through his facade? Will he kill him on the spot? Mahir pushes him on instinct but also has to submit. Dare’s him to push him sexually. The game here is so good and honestly fun in a sick can’t take my eyes off this kind of way. You are not supposed to want to dropped to your knees and blow the guy who you think killed your fellow cops. Ridley is more than happy to take control and make Mahir do what he wants. It was a very hot and sexually charged introductions scene. That tone keeps going for a while as the guys test each other and give into their desires. Some really raw sex scenes. I think the build up to the actual physical acts almost trumps the sex itself. Loved their jacked up chemistry in the first part of the book. Then you’re waiting to see how Ridley acts during their next meeting right along with Mahir.
The tension as far as the MCs does really taper off after and turn almost tender. Feelings start to develop but Mahir has a job to do. At first I was disappointed but then I settled into that and let the plot play out. There was still danger and intrigue but not as intense as the beginning of the book. The baddie was vile and I thoroughly hated him. You know he’s doing something bad. Something really bad but you’re pretty much left guessing until the end what it is he’s doing.
I think by the end of this book I just wanted to know they both came out of it alive. I don’t know if that made the ending feel rushed or convenient but I definitely preferred the first 2/3 of the book. You’d think the ending would be the high point but for me it wasn’t. Maybe Voinov just brings out the need for intensity from me. Who knows!
I really enjoyed this book. You’re thrust right into this dark underworld with Mahir and I loved it. The threat of him being found out kept me on edge for most of the book. The authors throw in other elements just to make it that much harder on him that I can’t get into without spoiling. Great intense sex scenes. Witty banter between the characters that helps you connect to them beyond the parts they’re playing for those watching and waiting for any hint of disloyalty. Great read. I highly recommend this one.
Rated 4 stars by Whit