Review: A Dangerous Game by Rick R. Reed

2nd Edition

Sex can be a dangerous business. So can love.

On the worst day of his life, Wren Gallagher wants oblivion when he steps into Tricks for a drink. When a mysterious stranger steps up to pay his tab, he offers Wren the key to fulfilling his dreams of prosperity and true love.

But appearances are not always what they seem.

His savior owns the escort agency À Louer, and he wants the young and handsome Wren as part of his stable of men-for-hire. Down on his luck, Wren figures, why not? He needs the money. When he joins, though, he doesn’t count on meeting Rufus, another escort with whom he falls hopelessly in love.

But their love story will have to overcome the obstacles of not only trading love for money, but À Louer’s dark—and deadly—secrets.

1st Edition published as Rent by ManLove Romance Press, 2012.

I’m sad. This didn’t work for me, even though I really wanted it to. I’ve fallen in love with Mr. Reed’s writing style, and subject choices, but this completely missed the mark for me.

Wren is down on his luck, and while drowning his sorrows at Trick’s, a gay strip club, he meets a man who ‘sells love’. This predator is determined to get Wren on his payroll, and spins the job as some sort of love connection escort service, to try to lure Wren in. Even though Wren thinks the guy is creepy, life just keeps throwing him punches, and his desperation makes him call À Louer to sign up.

His first day, he meets Rufus, and it is instalove for Wren, although he doesn’t think Rufus feels the same way.

The instalove got me. Sometimes I don’t mind it, but in this particular story it irritated me. Wren appeared juvenile and clingy. I wanted to like him, but I didn’t. It’s not that I don’t think that people can’t form instant connections, I know they can. But it just didn’t come across as believable with Wren.

If it wasn’t for Wren, I think I would have loved this story. Which is too bad because he’s the MC. I liked Rufus. When his diary entries were the focus of the story I wanted it to be just about that. I was completely absorbed in Rufus’ struggles and could have read an entire 200 pages just about that. Mr. Reed has a skill with gritty and raw that I thoroughly enjoy.

The other plot points in the story worked for me. I enjoyed the mystery, and would have preferred more focus on that. I also think if the story was written more about the organisation, this would have been a better read for me.

Those who have no problem with instalove, may enjoy this more than I did. This story has a small mystery plot, and a hot exhibitionism/voyeurism scene. I enjoyed the main villain in this story. I would have liked more time with him, because I’m twisted that way.

While not a win for me, it has not put me off this author at all.

Recommended for those who enjoy rentboy stories. For those who are triggered by drug abuse, tread carefully. I wouldn’t call this a dark read, but there is some disturbing content.

A copy was provided by the Publisher in exchange for an honest review

Check out on Dreamspinner Press or Goodreads!

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