Monday, February 12, 2018

Book Review: Dex in Blue (Johnnies, #2) by Amy Lane

Dex in Blue (Johnnies, #2)
Ten years ago David Worral had plans to go to college and the potential for a beautiful future in front of him. One tragic accident later, he fled to California and reinvented himself as Dex, top porn model of Johnnies.

Dex’s life is a tangled mess now, but the guys he works with only see the man who makes them believe even porn stars can lead normal lives. When Kane, one of Dex’s coworkers, gets kicked out of his house, the least Dex can do is give him a place to stay. Kane may be a hyperactive muscle-bound psycho, but he’s also a really nice guy. What could be the harm?

Except nothing is simple—not sex, not love, and not the goofy kid with the big dick and bigger heart who moves his life into Dex’s guest room. When they start negotiating fractured pasts and broken friends, Dex wonders if Kane’s honest nature can untangle the sadness that stalled his once-promising future. With Kane by his side, Dex just might be able to reclaim the boy he once was—and if he can do that, he can give Kane the home and the family he deserves.

Jewel's rating:

The family drama is strong in this one!

While I preferred the angst and tension more in Chase in Shadow, I enjoyed Dex in Blue quite a lot. Dex is one of my favorite types of characters - a nurturer. Dex cares and it really shows in everything he does, from making sure the Johnnies models and employees have what they need and stay mentally and physically healthy to making schedules and generally organizing everything at Johnnies. But who takes care of Dex?

Kane was a perfectly nice guy who would do anything for those he cares about. He takes care of his ungrateful sister and her daughter. He pays for his niece's medical treatment, he takes in reptiles as pets because he can relate to them and he's a protector. He doesn't see himself as a smart guy, but Kane was damn perceptive. It was Kane who could "hear" Chase's silent screams in book 1 and it's Kane who really gets people - except himself, really. It took him ages to figure his own shit out.

I loved Dex and Kane, together, a lot. I thought their chemistry was great and they were just so happy once Kane figured out that maybe he wasn't as straight as he insisted. It did take him a bit longer than maybe it should have to figure out he was in a relationship, but I think that's mostly because he spent so much time observing others, that he didn't self-reflect.

What I love about this series, so far, is the real "family" connection the Johnnies guys have with each other (and with Kelsey). They take care of each other and are there for each other and that kind of camaraderie was tangible.

The only thing that really took away from my enjoyment of the story was it was saturated with family drama (from the bio-families) from all angles. The homophobia, I expect - though I hate it and it infuriates me that so many have to actually deal with it - but we also have domestic abuse issues with family members to deal with, and I think if it had been one or the other, I would have been ok, but both - on top of Dex's ex's stalking issues - got to be a bit much for me, especially at the end of the book.

Still, Dex in Blue is a fine addition to the Johnnies series, and I'm looking forward to the rest!

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Happy reading!

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