Thursday, January 17, 2019

Review: Badlands by Morgan Brice

(Badlands #1)
Morgan Brice
Release: June 26, 2018
Goodreads Amazon
Medium and clairvoyant Simon Kincaide owns a Myrtle Beach boardwalk shop where he runs ghost tours, holds séances, and offers private psychic readings, making a fresh start after his abilities cost him his lover and his job as a folklore professor. Jaded cop Vic D’Amato saw something supernatural he couldn’t explain during a shootout several years ago in Pittsburgh and relocated to Myrtle Beach to leave the past behind, still skeptical about the paranormal. But when the search for a serial killer hits a dead end, Vic battles his skepticism to ask Simon for help. As the body count rises, Simon’s involvement makes him a target, and a suspect. But Simon can’t say no, even if it costs him his life and heart.

You know when Amazon recommends you a Kindle book based on your past purchases and it looks interesting and has good reviews so you buy it and then kind of forget you bought it. Then you stumble upon it again as you're scrolling through your kindle app looking for your next read so you pick it up and end up loving it. That was my experience with Badlands. I'm kicking myself for waiting to read this. I never knew I needed a jaded cop and psychic team up paranormal romance in my life. Add in the fact that it's a queer romance and it just made this book even better!

Simon is a medium that has carved out a life for himself as a ghost tour guide and mentor to psychics in need. Vic on the other hand, has fled from his previous life due to being ridiculed for his brush with the paranormal and is now going through the motions of being a homicide detective, without making any meaningful connections to his new home. I didn't really read the synopsis besides seeing that it was about a psychic. So I went into this thinking it was going to be an urban fantasy book and found myself delighted to find that it really was a paranormal romance.

I loved that the book starts with the mystery of the killer before we even get the meet cute between the main characters. And speaking of meet cutes, what an adorable meet cute it was. Sadly, all the psychic stuff and murder complicates things things between the main characters quickly. I think the reason this book was so good was that the narration switched between both main characters so we were discovering things as they did. The downside is that you kind of end up yelling at the kindle for all the stupid decisions the characters are making. I wanted to tell Simon to stop being so damned independent and I wanted to yell at Vic for thinking that being a jerk is a good idea.

The characters in this book are phenomenal but the death, ghosts and mystery are really what makes this book such a delightfully dark tale. I don't say this often because I love me a good romance but I was so interested in the mystery aspect of this book that I found myself thinking during the romance bits that the author needed to get back to the mystery and leave the sex for later. Don't get me wrong. I loved the romance between Vic and Simon! But in this case, the mystery had most of my interest. About halfway through the book, I started to get excited about all the possible adventures that Simon and Vic could have in the future if they survived this case and started to work together as partners. The possibilities are endless and I just need more Vic and Simon and their friends in my life!

I loved this book so much! It ticked all of my boxes and was a great fit for my Romancepoly challenge pick. This book was what I've been looking for when it comes to PNR/UF m/m romance books. I need more so I was very excited to learn that this is the first book in a series and that we are indeed going to get more Simon and Vic adventures. Bring them them on!

Note: I discovered while buying the other books Morgan Brice (aka Gail Z. Martin. Brice is her m/m PNR penname.) has written that this series is actually one of several companion series written under her Morgan Brice penname and as Gail Z. Martin. I'm super intrigued to see where she takes this world and how the series are going to overlap. I'm in the middle of binge reading her other Morgan Brice series, Witchbane, and it's glorious so far. Just give me all the m/m paranormal romance books, please!

  4.5/5 Stars

Book 1/30

Book 1- Freedom Friars Challenge

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