Series: The Will Darling Adventures Book 1
Author: KJ Charles
Publication date: May 13, 2020
Length: 215 pages
Reviewed by Sammy
Will Darling came back from the Great War with a few scars, a lot of medals, and no idea what to do next. Inheriting his uncle’s chaotic second-hand bookshop is a blessing...until strange visitors start making threats. First a criminal gang, then the War Office, both telling Will to give them the information they want, or else.
Will has no idea what that information is, and nobody to turn to, until Kim Secretan—charming, cultured, oddly attractive—steps in to offer help. As Kim and Will try to find answers and outrun trouble, mutual desire grows along with the danger.
And then Will discovers the truth about Kim. His identity, his past, his real intentions. Enraged and betrayed, Will never wants to see him again.
But Will possesses knowledge that could cost thousands of lives. Enemies are closing in on him from all sides—and Kim is the only man who can help.
A 1920s m/m romance trilogy in the spirit of Golden Age pulp fiction.
After coming home from the war, Will Darling tries to find a job but to no avail—it’s as if his country is no longer interested in her finest and brave once they’ve served their duty. Desperate, Will takes a friend’s advice and contacts an uncle he’s never met only to be received warmly and given both a place to stay and a job in the bookstore his relative owns. A short time later, his uncle dies and leaves everything to Will. Determined to eventually clean out the endless stacks of boxes and books and make a success of the shop he now owns, Will begins the process of going through mountains of papers in an effort to clean house. When some shady visitors begin to make threats and demand Will turn over the papers he has no idea he even has Will turns to a stranger, Kim Secretan, for help. But lies abound and mystery surrounds both the papers bearing some sort of formula for a deadly weapon and Kim, himself. If only Will weren’t attracted to the man—perhaps them he would stop being duped by the stranger who is rapidly worming his way under Will’s normal reserve.
With more twists and turns and fast paced action than I can ever recall reading before, KJ Charles has released their first book in a new series called, Slippery Creatures. This novel starts with a bang and never lets up. Set in the 1900’s in England, Will Darling has just returned home from serving in the war. He is determined to survive and stepping into his Uncle’s shoes as a bookstore proprietor may not have been his first choice but he gives the job his all. Unfortunately his uncle seemed to have been corresponding with a man named Draven—a scientist who has concocted a deadly weapon—a plague capable of being weaponized and killing millions. When the war office comes demanding the formula—citing the country’s safety as its goal—will is reluctant to turn over papers he has no idea where to find without knowing more about them. Then a man named Libra, who has connections to a shady group called Zodiac who are determined to get the formula and use it to reset the world structure (i.e., wipe out mankind) begins to threaten Will. And demand the papers. Without a clue as to what he is searching for, Will turns to a virtual stranger, Kim Secretan who offers to help. Kim is an enigma—a sexy one, no doubt, but still a man with lots of secrets.
Poor Will now faces multiple break-ins and threats to his life, kidnapping, torture and more while never really knowing who he can trust or what to do about the hand written hieroglyphics that serve as the key to a deadly weapon. With both incredible bravery and heaps of foolhardiness and obstinance, Will manages to avoid death while coming close multiple times. But as things heat up both with those pursuing him and with Kim in the bedroom, Will is not sure what to do about the papers—hand them over to the war office or destroy them.
This story was magnificent in the way it kept one guessing who was the real bad guy to the very end—the novel makes a case for more than one enemy here—even dragging Kim into the mix. While there is no real HEA or even a HFN ending it still leaves you with the idea that Kim and Will are going to make an attempt to be honest with each other and pursue a relationship—as much as one can in that time era. There is a sizzling sense of chemistry between Kim and Will and even though Kim has been less than honest, Will still is drawn to the man. Of note, there are also two side characters-both females-who I hope to see more of—they are delightfully shrewd yet seemingly innocent and make great companions to the two men. There are two more books slated in this series and I am happily onboard for them all. If you love exciting mysteries with a dash of romance then look no farther than KJ Charles new Will Darling Adventure series.
Enter the monthly review giveaway
Contest ends May 31st
a Rafflecopter giveaway