Books · MM romance

REVIEW: Out Of The Ashes

The Official Description: Alex Porter’s life goes up in flames the night his tiny bookstore catches fire. Powerless to stop it, he can do nothing but stand by and watch as the only thing he’s ever loved is taken from him.

Fire sergeant Matt Fields is ordered to Cliffside, Maine by the privileged Porter family, which doesn’t mix well with his quick temper, to investigate exactly what happened. When he meets Alex, he can almost taste the sexual tension hanging between them and fights to focus on his job to find out what started the blaze.

Once Matt discovers arson, a simple case of accidental fire becomes much more dangerous, and Alex’s life is suddenly at risk. Someone is out to get him…and Matt wants to know who. As he digs deeper to find the person who torched the shop, he and Alex finally give in to the wild heat between them. From hot as hell phone sex to even hotter face-to-face encounters, they grow closer together as the case spins out of control.

In the end, their newfound love will be put to the test when secrets come to light and arson turns to murder.

Just the facts: M/M contemporary suspense romance, fire investigator, insta-love

Alex’s life is burned to the ground… literally… but maybe Matt can help while he’s investigating. – Kinzie Things

My thoughts bit:  This story begins with Alex discovering that his bookstore has been destroyed by a fire. I really felt for Alex as he was dealing with the loss of his dream. He was fighting where he came from… a wealthy family and had put his best effort into creating an independent life for himself. In one evening… that life is gone.

Still recovering from the loss of his fiance who cheated on him, Alex suddenly finds himself as the main suspect in the fire that destroyed his bookstore. The good thing is that this brings Matt into Alex’s life. This was the part at which things got a little rocky for me. The moment that Alex and Matt saw each other they were both completely obsessed with one another. It only took a couple of days for them to get together and, it seemed, about a week for them to be declaring their feelings. If insta-love is your thing, then this will probably work really well for you!

I found there wasn’t much distinction between the voice of Alex and the voice of Matt… I had a little trouble sometimes remembering which character was which. Most of the character’s thoughts seem to be focussed on sex rather than any of the other qualities each of the men share. it didn’t read as very authentic to me.

There is a LOT of sex in this story. There’s much more sex than there is plot. Depending on what you’re looking for that could be a selling point! Just don’t go into this thinking that it is plot-heavy. There’s an underlying suspense plot… who is trying to hurt Alex? What happened in his past? But, most of the reveals are spread out in between the sex scenes. I would definitely give this author another try later on as this is their first novel.

This is a fast read and I’m sure there’s an audience for this type of book! 2 stars from me.

Things You May Want To Know: Please be aware, I’m by no means an expert on what may or may not have the potential to disturb people. I simply list things that I think a reader might want to be aware of. In this book: (SPOILERS) Description of the remains of huge fire, suicidal ideation, discussion of murder, attempted murder.

Readalikes: Other stories with similar topics/characters.

Links: Goodreads // The Author // The Publisher

I received an ARC of Out of the Ashes by M.J. James from NineStar Press via NetGalley in exchange for an unbiased review.

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