Killian Marks is a third-generation hitman. After hunting monsters for over twenty years, he lives under no illusions of happily ever afters and fairy tales. Until he meets a man who threatens to disarm him, by giving him hope for a future and showing him there’s more to life than just death.
For Nick, living in shadows is second nature. He’s all too familiar with the dark side of humanity and knows how delicate life can be. Each new day is a gift, even though it means doing it alone. But he’ll risk his survival for the one man who awakens something deep within and leaves him yearning for more.
Nick wants to solve the mystery behind the dark, brooding man, while Killian craves the life and light emanating from Nick. They soon discover they have more in common than either could have anticipated. With both their lives and hearts at stake, they must confront the ghost from Nick’s past intent on tying up a loose end. Only then will they truly find peace, and discover the shades of life in between.
I survived. Barely.
Shades is an edge-of-your-seat kind of book that, despite the suspense and violence, never loses sight of the romance.
(It's also Jaime Reese's first standalone novel, and I hope not her last! I read an ARC of this book, and it was publication ready; no editing errors in sight.)
This is a story about a hitman with a conscience who sets his own rules and the one man who makes him want more.
When Nick, who works as a server at an Italian restaurant, asks Killian his name, Killian tells Nick to call him Ian. It's a half-truth, but, as Nick points out to Ian: You unknowingly revealed your biggest truth.
And the truth is Ian is tired of killing, tired of lying, tired of living half a life.
But Nick has something he's hiding too, something that could put Ian, and their relationship, at risk.
The first half of the book is slower paced but by no means boring. The men get to know one another and form an immediate connection. Despite the age difference (thirteen years), they have much in common: neither lived an ordinary life, and both are willing to sacrifice everything to keep what they found.
This is what life is about. Living, not survival. Connections. Not just breathing and getting through each day.