Sunday, March 25, 2018

ARC Review: Guns n' Boys: Gilded Agony (Guns n' Boys, #7) by K.A. Merikan

Guns n' Boys: Gilded Agony (Guns n' Boys, #7)
“We are two halves of the same rotten apple.”

Deep in the Amazonian jungle, there is a mansion with a rose garden and a hen house where juicy tomatoes are the perfect shade of red, and marble countertops glisten. Inside, where even the shadows don’t reach, something is rotting, and the perfect facade can only hold the stench for so long.

Domenico promised his husband that he would keep him safe, keep him away from the bloodshed and the brutal world of cartel violence. But when a guest arrives to help retrieve a stolen transport of guns, something sinister sneaks into his home, something more dangerous than his enemies. Or has it been there all along, and he just hasn’t noticed?

Seth’s life is what others dream of. Endless leisure time filled with cocktails, a kitchen stocked with anything he wishes for, and a private pool in the sunshine. What’s missing is the man he shares it with, the man he fell in love with. If being cut off from the mafia business was what he wanted, then why is it so painfully lonely in paradise?

Desperate to be the supportive husband Domenico needs, Seth buries his rage, his violent urges, and the anger that simmers inside of him. But he can only hide in plain sight for so long, and when a guest invites him to play with fire, one misstep, one wrong move, could burn their safe haven to the ground.

Themes: mafia, cartel, assassin, organized crime, family ties, domestic violence, inequality, betrayal, revenge

Genre: Dark, twisted M/M romance / crime thriller

Length: ~92,000 words (Book 7 in the series)

WARNING: Adult content. If you are easily offended, this book is not for you. ‘Guns n’ Boys’ is a gritty story of extreme violence, offensive language, abuse, and morally ambiguous protagonists as well as scorching hot, explicit love scenes. Behind the morbid facade, there is a splash of inappropriate dark humor, and a love story that will crawl under your skin.

Jewel's rating:

​Even a gilded cage is still a cage...​

​​​​Guns n' Boys: Gilded Agony is the seventh book in one of my all-time favorite series. If you love stories with morally ambiguous characters and plot-lines, along with blood and violence, then this series is for you​!​ Go read it​!​

​“We’re two halves of the same rotten apple.”

There is a lot of angst in this one! ​And it's my favorite food-group type, too -- relationship angst. I eat that stuff up like a favorite desert! ​Dom and Seth aren't in sync for most of the book and ​though ​it broke my heart to see them at odds​, I loved every moment​. Never fear, though, they do end up in a good place.

​Guns n' Boys: Gilded Agony picks up 2 years after​​ ​Guns n' Boys: Bloodbath left off. Dom is "Toro" and Seth is his sheltered husband. Seth is bored and craves more freedom than he has. He doesn't speak the language and can go no where ​unescorted and he feels caged. ​Bored​ isn't a good look on Seth, who needs to be social and needs to feel included. But after the events of ​ ​ ​Guns n' Boys: Bloodbath he needed a break from the violence and stress, so here we are​ - with a bored Seth who is prone to getting in over his head. ​

​"There is no me without you." ​

Dom is also in a role he never thought he'd have - everything rests on his shoulders. Seth's safety and happiness, the business, ​a family of his own -- ​so much pressure. He works increasingly long hours and, as Dom has a tendency to do, his obsessiveness and focus makes it hard for him to see the forest for the trees. Dom gets caught up in whatever life he is leading and sometimes he forgets his way. Seth has been his anchor for years, but things are not as they once were.

​"You're mine." ​

​​ ​​Guns n' Boys: Gilded Agony ticked so many boxes for me - tons of relationship angst, completely messed up morality, an overbearing Dom, a crafty Seth, a headstrong Mark, violence, sex, perceived betrayal (oh, the angst!), family, as unconventional as it is, and an ending that leaves our guys in a good place.

This was an intense read​, and I loved every moment. ​Mark plays a big role ​in this story, ​too, ​and he always feels like he has something to prove. Unfortunately, he gets himself in trouble a fair amount because he doesn't think things through. Ah...youth.​ Mark's book is next and I pretty much can say I need it yesterday. ​He's been through so much since he was introduced in this series, and I'm looking forward to him getting a happy of his own.

So bring it on!


ARC of Guns n' Boys: Gilded Agony was generously provided by the authors, in exchange for an honest review.

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