Author: Layla Reyne
Publisher: Carina Press
Rating: 4 stars
Received from Publisher
Blurb: Eight months after the car crash that changed everything, FBI agent Aidan Talley is back at work. New department, new case and a new partner. Smart, athletic and handsome, Jameson Walker is twelve years his junior. Even if Aidan was ready to move on—and he’s not—Jamie is off-limits.
Jamie’s lusted after Aidan for three years, and the chance to work with San Francisco’s top agent directly is too good to pass up. Aidan is prickly—to put it mildly—but a growing cyber threat soon proves Jamie’s skills invaluable.
Jamie’s talents paint a target on his back, and Aidan is determined to protect him. But with hack after hack threatening a high-security biocontainment facility, time is running out to thwart a deadly terrorist attack. They’ll have to filter out distractions, on the case and in their partnership, to identify the real enemy, solve the case and save thousands of lives, including their own.
Review: Aiden Talley has healed enough to go back out into the world and resume his job. His husband and his partner are both dead, but the world hasn’t stopped and Aiden is still on it. He’s dealt a new blow when he finds out the accident that killed his husband and partner wasn’t an accident. He enlists his new partner, Jameson Walker, as help. “Whiskey” Walker can hack anything. He’s also a former NBA star who left due to a career ending injury. Whiskey wanted Aiden from the moment he first saw him. As a recent widower Aiden is just as untouchable as he was married. It doesn’t take long for Aiden to realize Whiskey is an incredibly talented agent. When they’re sent to an investigation in Texas Aiden is forced to deal with the fact he is beginning to feel something more than respect and friendship for his new partner. During their investigation they are in a car accident. Like the accident that killed Aiden’s husband and partner, this one isn’t an accident. Aiden realizes he’s not ready to let himself be vulnerable.
This series has potential to be crack. There’s delicious suspense, mysterious baddies, reluctant heroes, heartache, and more. Okay, before I get too excited, I did say there is potential to be crack. This book had some pretty cheesy moments and some highly implausible moments. In terms of relationship development there was a lot of telling. As much as I am hooked on the relationship between these guys, I feel the strength of this book is really in the mystery. There are two intertwined mysteries in Single Malt. Who orchestrated the car crash that killed Aiden’s husband and partner, and who is responsible for the hacks at a bio-research facility. I was pleasantly surprised with how the mystery of the hacks progressed. There was a good mix of things I didn’t see coming and things I could easily figure out. My need to know about the mystery of the car crash is ongoing. It is also a hook sunk deeply into my flesh, slowly reeling me in. I need to know who, how, what, when, where, and why that crash was set in motion.
I’m not usually someone who chooses a main character over another, but in this case I believe I can better “see” what Whiskey is going through. Whiskey is subjected to constant slights and reminders of what he sees as his own inadequacies. Whiskey is hurt. We know Aiden feels guilt and fear because he tells us. I don’t know if it’s my own perception we’re being shown Whiskey and told Aiden, a rhetorical device, or what. It’s not horrible, but as I’ve said numerous times, my preference is for showing.
This is definitely a book to pick up. Not only pick up, I’d say move it towards the top of your TBR. I’m very eager for the next one. Thankfully it’s only a couple of months away.