Tag Team Review: Risky Behavior (Bad Behavior #1) by L.A. Witt & Cari Z.

It’s day one of Darren Corliss’s career as a detective, and not only has he been assigned a notoriously difficult partner, but the guy might also be a pill-popping dirty cop. Internal Affairs needs proof, and Darren gets to be their eyes and ears whether he wants to or not.

Detective Andreas Ruffner doesn’t play by the rules, and he doesn’t play well with others. With bodies piling up and a list of suspects who are way above his pay grade, the last thing he needs is a wet-behind-the-ears kid for a partner. Or babysitter. Not even if that partner is easy on the eyes.

As Darren gains Andreas’s hard-won trust, they both realize there’s more than just mutual suspicion simmering beneath the surface. But their investigation is heating up as quickly as their relationship, and Darren has no choice but to go along with Andreas’s unorthodox—and borderline unethical—methods. As IA puts the squeeze on Darren to give up the man he’s falling for, he has to wonder—is Andreas the only cop left in this town who isn’t dirty?


Adam - 3 Hearts

For the first half of the book, I wasn’t really feeling it. But once the story picked up, I ended up quite liking ‘Risky Behavior.’

Darren Corliss is the typical boy next door - he plays by the rules, and tries not to rock the boat. It takes a while to get a read on him, but it’s obvious from the beginning that he’s got heart.

Andreas Ruffner is Darren’s complete opposite. He’s bombastic and delights in ruffling feathers. I wasn’t a fan of his unorthodox ways, but I can’t deny that the bad boy image does things for me.

The two very different men clash from the beginning. But the physical attraction between them is almost immediate. It’s an opposites-attract situation, with an undertone of enemies-to-lovers.

However, the romance takes the backseat for most of the book. This book is, first and foremost, a crime mystery. For the first half, there’s a lot of police procedural and background info.

The gist of the mystery is that Andreas suspects that some of the city’s highest officials are involved in a crime syndicate. Given the nature of his investigation, he’s wary of Darren. Those good looks could be hiding something sinister!

As the investigation heats up, Darren proves himself reliable, and Andreas slowly begins trusting him. Their relationship develops parallel to the mystery - as the stakes get more dangerous, Darren and Andreas find themselves falling for each other.

This isn’t a particularly steamy book. But the bit of sexytime that’s there is definitely hot. All of that UST was put to good use!

The crime mystery was fairly interesting. It wasn’t exactly unique material, but it kept me entertained.

The ending is a solid HFN. If I didn’t know there were sequels, I wouldn’t worry about Andreas and Darren making it in the long run. As it is, I’m looking forward to seeing where these two go next.

If you don’t mind your MM being more focused on the plot than on the romance, give ‘Risky Behavior’ a try.

Optimist ♰King's Wench♰ - 5 Hearts

This is what I love about buddy reads-different perspectives. While I don't wholly disagree with Adam, I had a completely different experience.

Almost immediately I was hooked into the story, this case and these characters. As Adam mentioned, it is primarily a cop procedural which is my JAM! I love the lingo, the acronyms, the ribbing, the bullpen, everything. Truth, I grew up watching these shows, reading these books so I was in hog heaven. And this is a good case, meaty case with lots of tendrils. I'm not going to talk about it because well, I'll talk your face off and spoil it. But trust me when I say, THIS CASE IS A BEAST! In all honesty, I wasn't expecting a a resolution at all, though I'm not entirely convinced its over.

Andreas could be labeled as a "dirty cop" I'll not dispute that, but to me those make the best characters. He uses unorthodox methods to be sure, unethical even, but I truly believe everything he does is for the greater good. He plays the long game, so at first glance it seems all kinds of fucked up, but if you can keep from jumping to conclusions and deal with his prickly personality you'll see his objective is to deal the killing blow to the whole organization, but he's not going to let anyone be hurt if he can help it. He'd sacrifice himself before he let that happen. To me that is what differentiates a "good" from a "bad" one.

ICYMI, I had some feels about Andreas, mostly because he's treated as the outcast of the precinct and it seems like everyone is trying to stick it to him which is petty and seems driven by jealousy since he's proven himself to be the best detective they've got time and time again. For the last 20 yrs!

Damn, people!

The authors did a good job of balancing the case with developing their relationship. Bear in mind that "their relationship" is firstly as partners. They have to trust each other and that doesn't come easy for Andreas. Plus, he does think he smarter than all the partners Hamilton has saddled him with not to mention most of the knuckleheads in his precinct, so he has a tendency towards assholishness. He also has a secret that he fears could be weaponized and used against him to potentially cost him his job, so... cagey AF.

I did think he maybe began trusting Darren rather quickly but Darren's puppy eyes must be hella powerful.

Take all my money & my car & my first born & whatever else you want.

Darren is his opposite in many ways; he's very likable, approachable and charismatic. There were several things I liked about him, but the fact that he isn't intimidated by Andreas' gruff nature is at the top of the list. I think that impresses Andreas more than anything and is what fosters the trust between them. Darren does emit trustworthy vibes that even I could feel through my kindle. He's exceedingly forthright, honest, great at reading people and at improvising. I think he and Andreas could reign supreme with the good cop/bad cop routine in the future.

Their romance is part of the equation, and its evolution felt authentic. There is a fairly significant age difference between them *squeals* and from the start they are really attracted to each other. Both try to ignore in the interest of "keeping things professional", but since we get both of their perspectives we know the dam is going to break at some point. The one sex scene is pretty intense AND it surprised me! I knew there was going to be rough sex, but I didn't see it going down the way it did. I ain't mad at it! At all!

However, if you're expecting lots of moony eyes, declarations of love and a romance that'll make you weak in the knees... wrong book. The slow evolution, consistent work on trusting one another, learning from their mistakes and having great chemistry lead me to believe in them as partners on the job with the potential for so much more, though I'm postive their road will be rocky.

There are some really great secondary characters that I'm hoping will turn up throughout the series. I'm looking at you, Mrs. Kramer.

The only quibble I have is the IA thing in the last 25%. It just didn't jive. But, as a plot device it did it's job so I'm going to ignore it, except for Hamilton. He quasi redeemed himself but he's still on my shit list. *stink eyes*

I, too, am really looking forward to the next one in this series and if you like crime drama/cop procedurals then you should pick up a copy of Risky Behavior.

ARCS were provided by NetGalley.

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