Former Navy SEAL Axel Blaze lives a solitary life. He doesn’t do emotions, and he doesn’t do babysitting. Used to being on his own, his job consists of Wetwork (a charming term coined by the KGB) for his former Master Chief, Mac. When an out-of-the-ordinary job lands on his doorstep, Axel heads down a path that includes a famous heavy metal rock band and one quiet, vulnerable, guitar-shredding virtuoso named Gareth Wolf.
Gareth Wolf’s life changed in an instant when a car he was a passenger in crashed, hurting his brother’s best friend and the band’s lead guitarist. They created the band, Skull Blasters, as kids. Gareth had always been happy in the background, playing roadie. With the lead guitarist’s injury, Gareth is suddenly thrust into the limelight and into a frenzied life he never imagined for himself. Finally fed up with living a lie, Gareth comes out as gay in a newspaper interview and finds himself in the bulls-eye of a crazed stalker. Somebody wants Gareth hurt – or worse – and Mac has been hired to be sure that doesn’t happen. Babysitting duty is NOT Axel’s strong suit, but Mac won’t be budged.
Enter Axel Blaze. Against his better judgment, the big man takes the job to protect the shy musician. The more time he spends with Gareth Wolf, the more he admires the man. Where’s a simple assassination when you need one? The situation becomes more volatile for each man as the attempts on Gareth escalate just as Axel finds himself falling for the quiet lead guitarist.
Strong, funny, smart-ass — and kinda sweet Axel is everything Gareth has ever wanted in a man. Too bad he’s off limits. As the stalker grows bolder, Gareth and Axel move closer emotionally – but is it too late? All Axel knows is that they don’t stand a chance if he can’t find the maniac trying to kill the man he’s come to care about. A lot.
Everyone knows that relationships that begin in pressured or volatile situations eventually fizzle out. Or do they?
Gareth and his brother have been beaten down by life, but came up swinging. They formed a band and have hit the top after touring with Black Ice and Ivory Tower (from Ann Lister’s Rock God Series). Now Gareth wants to come out and live honestly (and quit having sex with women and start having sex with men!) When he does come out a crazy stalker keeps trying to hurt him, so the band hires a bodyguard, Axel Blaze to protect him.
Axel is a tough ex-Seal, gay, but doesn’t “do” relationships. He has a hard time letting anyone touch him beyond the basic necessities and an even harder time opening up emotionally.
At first Gareth resents the need for Axel and Axel doesn’t make it easy for him. But the constant stream of near misses proves Axel’s importance and skill at life saving and the constant time spent together shows the two how much more they could have if they just let it happen.
This was a tremendously sweet, sexy and fun story. There are a few areas where I didn’t exactly follow the logic of the “stalker”, but in the end that really didn’t matter.
The smexy times and chemistry between Axel and Gareth is wonderful and the slow burn to the final coming together was well worth the wait.
I loved the HEA and really enjoyed all the parts leading up to it. The low angst, high steam is just what I was craving and I highly recommend it.
I’m really looking forward to more in this series.
4.5 of 5 stars
(Copy purchased for review)
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