Author: Rhys Ford
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Length: 254 pages
He was dead. And it was murder most foul. If erasing a man’s existence could even be called murder.
When Damien Mitchell wakes, he finds himself without a life or a name. The Montana asylum’s doctors tell him he’s delusional and his memories are all lies: he’s really Stephen Thompson, and he’d gone over the edge, obsessing about a rock star who died in a fiery crash. His chance to escape back to his own life comes when his prison burns, but a gunman is waiting for him, determined that neither Stephen Thompson nor Damien Mitchell will escape.
With the assassin on his tail, Damien flees to the City by the Bay, but keeping a low profile is the only way he’ll survive as he searches San Francisco for his best friend, Miki St. John. Falling back on what kept him fed before he made it big, Damien sings for his supper outside Finnegan’s, an Irish pub on the pier, and he soon falls in with the owner, Sionn Murphy. Damien doesn’t need a complication like Sionn, and to make matters worse, the gunman—who doesn’t mind going through Sionn or anyone else if that’s what it takes kill Damien—shows up to finish what he started.
Review: Romance, suspense and thriller are three of my favorite book genres so of course I love the Sinners Series, which is all three. Ford’s combination of steamy sex and edge of your seat action make her books perfectly rereadable.
If you’ve read Sinner’s Gin, which I very much recommend you do before reading this review and/or this book, you know that we’ve just discovered that Miki’s bandmate and best friend Damien didn’t die in the crash like the world thought. Now we find Damien, recovered from his injuries and much of his memory loss, escaping from the false life he’s been forced into at an asylum. With the world believing him dead, his mind a jumble of what it once was, and someone trying to kill him Damien knows he has to get back to Miki in San Francisco.
Finding one reclusive rockstar is harder than one would think so while searching Damien busks, where he meets Sionn, an Irish bar owner slash former bodyguard that just so happens to be related to a certain law enforcement clan. Sionn has had hardship in his life, from family alienation to a tragedy in his work. Running the bar is a stop gap, Sionn has been feeling rudderless and needs to make some choices about his life. And as Sionn and Damien begin forming a tentative sort of relationship the assassin makes another attempt at completely his job.
As meetings and reunions occur, the danger surrounding them lead Sionn and Damien beyond friendship. Not many men can find love, both the romantic kind and the platonic kind, while embroiled in a murder mystery but if anyone can it would be the Sinner’s Gin bandmates. This book gives me chills, a lot of times they are creepy “WTF just happened?” chills, and sometimes I maybe could have done without certain vivid descriptions… At times I was hoping for a little more mushy stuff, a bit more of Sionn’s backstory and a little bit less of the killer, but that would change the tone of the story and that’s not quite Ford’s style! Overall the book was exactly the kind of thrill I expect from the Sinners!
*****Spoilery Trigger Warning: Without going into too much detail I do want to say that those with sensitivities to violence will want to be prepared. The villain in this story is one of the most complexly evil characters I’ve read in years and his depravity is described with some graphic detail. For many readers this may be disturbing, but it is done to further the story.*****
Reviewed by Jules