Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Softpaw (Smilodon Pride Book 1) by Osiris @Brackhaus and Beryll Brackhaus

Genre: Urban Fantasy/LBGTQ/Erotic Romance

Connor’s life used to be the dream of any cultured werecat. He spent his days in Paris’ gay quarter with comfortably little real work, playing the piano, surrounded by art, fine food and good friends. Now, a feral vampire preys on the prostitutes of ‘his’ quarter, killing the boys of the Marais, one by one.

When Connor invites a newly arrived hooker to stay on his houseboat, the last thing he expects is Michel to be a member of the Brigade Criminelle - a troubled, hunky rookie cop sent undercover to explore Connor’s connection to the murders, picked mostly because he had been a boy of the Marais himself, not so long ago.

Hiding their true natures becomes a problem for both when their initial attraction becomes much more than they ever thought possible. But in order to bring down the serial killer and maybe have a chance at making their relationship work out, one of them will have to take the first, critical leap...”

Beryll and Osiris Brackhaus are a couple currently living their happily-ever-after in the very heart of Germany under the stern but loving surveillance of their cat. Both of them are voracious but picky readers, they love telling stories and drinking tea, good food and the occasional violent movie. Together, they write novels of adventure and romance, hoping to share a little of their happiness with their readers.

Beryll: An artist by heart, Beryll wrote stories even before she knew what letters were. As easily inspired as she is frustrated, her own work is never good enough (in her eyes). A perfectionist in the best and worst sense of the word and the driving creative force of the duo.

Osiris: An entertainer and craftsman in his approach to writing, Osiris is the down-to-earth, practical part of the team. Broadly interested in almost every subject and skill, with a sunny mood and caring personality, he strives to bring the human nature into focus of each of his stories.”

Michel Dupont has a dubious past; he has fought his way back from sex, alcohol, and drug addiction with the help of his arresting officer, Capitaine Thierry Plouescat. Despite Plouescat and Michel’s rough start, Plouescat had become like a father to Michel. As such, after many months of rehab and therapy, Michel has recently graduated from E’cole Nationale de Police at the top of his class.

As his first assignment, Plouescat proposes to send Michel undercover as a male prostitute in Marais. Straight into the pit he has pulled himself out of to get close to Connor Acothley, their prime suspect for the serial killings happening in Marais. Connor, who plays the piano at Chez Chantal, a small but respectable gay pub, likes to think of himself as a sensitive, cosmopolitan, educated soul whose job it is to protect his small corner of gay Paris.

Both Michel and Connor are fully developed intriguing characters. I really liked them both. Connor’s Native American background and love of art drew me in. Michel’s physique made him captivating, his struggles and sharp mind made him likable once you set his ego aside. Neither Connor nor Michel fully trust each other, and this hampers both of their investigations. Their sexual attraction becomes its own story arc and adds a dimension with complications as we are allowed insight into both of their inner thoughts.

I generally love knowing what is going on in the characters heads; however, this time it separated me from the emotion. Sensations got lost in the translation of the action. Weird, huh? So don’t read this story for the sex. Instead enjoy the story for the twists in the plot and the paranormal elements. There is much more going on here than the reader is aware of until the end. Obviously, this book is setting up a series, which I think has promise. Hopefully, Connor and Michel will stop obsessing about sex and go with the flow. It should be interesting to see how this all develops.

Buy now from:    Amazon US    Amazon UK

Southpaw is book one in the Smilodon Pride series. This is book meant for adults, it depicts male prostitution, rough and explicit sex, as well as colorful language with several F-bombs.

Format/Typo Issues:
I noticed a small number of proofing errors in the file that was submitted for review.

Rating: **** Four Stars

Reviewed by: ?wazithinkin

Approximate word count: 75-80,000

No comments: