An act of violence destroys his family and ends the life he knows. To escape his haunted past, he joins the military, where, as a sniper, he is trained to kill with precision and detachment. When a covert organization offers him a new purpose, he becomes Haven, an operative devoted to protecting the innocent when he can and avenging them when he cannot.
After ten years of battling the evil in the world, the life no longer holds the attraction or meaning it once had, and he’s ready to walk away. Then he meets Samuel, a young man forced from the age of twelve to work as a sex slave. If ever a man had a need for Haven, it is this one.
Yet nothing about this growing relationship is one-sided. Sammy gives Haven a stability he’s never known, and Haven becomes the rock upon which Sammy knows he can depend.
When Sammy reveals something about the enemy Haven has been hunting for months, Sammy fears it will destroy what they’ve built and he’ll lose his home in Haven’s heart.
Haven is a sniper. His past has led him to a place where he coldly eliminates humans who somehow rise above the legal system but who deserve justice. At this point he doesn’t know if he even has a soul left to save.
Samuel is a young man who for the last decade has been forced to act as a sex slave for a depraved woman’s plans. Somehow, though, he hasn’t lost his will or his strength.
When Haven rescues Sammy the two fall instantly for the other. Though it takes time for them to act on these feelings, the chemistry is there at the start. Haven doesn’t want to “abuse” his trust with Sammy but Sammy has no compunction about that at all.
Haven also worries that Sammy will be put off by the jobs Haven must finish and those in his future. What he doesn’t know is that Sammy supports these jobs 110%.
This is a fascinating book in that Haven is – almost – unrepentantly a “bad guy” in that he murders people in cold blood. They deserve it, no question, but the ethics of his vigilante acts are questionable. Haven himself questions his own code of ethics.
Sammy never questions Haven’s ethics and in fact helps Haven to come to grips with it better than anyone ever could.
There’s no question that Sammy and Haven are great together and surprisingly it’s Sammy who is the dominant force in the relationship. Providing that anchor Haven needs.
I loved the willingness to go to the dark and unexpected in this book – it does not play out at all like you’d expect and that is very refreshing. However, when some of these lines get crossed and boundaries pushed, I’m not sure there’s support enough for some of the character’s actions.
I didn’t have trouble with Sammy being toppy and dominant – in fact I loved it – but I did wonder at his capacity to ignore 10 years of degradation and humiliation and his apparent “healing” that occurred in such a small time frame.
Haven’s self doubt and apparent 180 degree turn didn’t bother me, but his team’s willingness to listen to Sammy did bother me. These guys are supposed to be cold-blooded professionals and it seemed like listening to Sammy wouldn’t be something they’d do.
So – all in all I loved the play on the dark side we get with these characters and the ability to let go of all preconceived notions and just look at things through some very “dirty” lenses. Though I didn’t always agree with some plot/character points it was still an amazingly entertaining and interesting book that I highly recommend.
4 of 5 stars
Copy Generously Provided by Author for Honest Review