Matt is a lawyer who is about to turn 30. He’s fit, but he really wants to get into shape, so he joins a boot camp fitness course. On the first day of the class, Matt meets a very handsome man named Dale who gets his blood flowing…if you know what I mean. He and Dale get along nicely, and Matt can’t help but be attracted to him.
Dale is an American actor filming a British television show (think Criminal Minds meets CSI). He’s playing a serial killer, and he considers this to be the opportunity of a lifetime. He’s gay, but he’s not out. Dale has a son, so he wants to keep a low profile. He’s immediately attracted to Matt when they meet at the boot camp and he can’t stop thinking about him.
As the two begin a relationship, something awful is going on in the small town where the series films. A serial killer is on the loose, and the victims are all young gay men who are murdered in ways that seem to follow the script of the show. The residents of the town are frightened and start protesting outside the set. Now, the show’s writers and producers are determined to bring in the media to prove the production has nothing to do with the murders, but Matt and Dale are on the alert because one or both of them could be the next victim.
Closer By Morning was an excellent book and I devoured it in one sitting. Matt and Dale were written well. A lot of times, the MCs in a romance/murder mystery can be flat, but Dale and Matt were great…hot, sexy, smart, and vulnerable at the same time. I liked how even though their relationship began rather quickly, it didn’t feel like it was being shoved in my face. I’m a romantic at heart, and I firmly believe in love at first sight, so I was totally on board with this.
The background characters were some of the best I’ve read. There are a lot of them, but each one has a place and purpose in the story. There is nothing confusing about them. From Dale’s ex wife and son, to the production assistant, to the gossip columnist, they’re as fleshed out as Matt and Dale.
The mystery was incredible! It’s obvious Thom Collins planned it out meticulously. I was caught up in it right away, and it kept me guessing. I thought I knew who the killer was, and I was wrong. Then, I thought I knew again, but I was still wrong! By the time I figured it out, the story was at its climax and things were happening at a rapid pace. I was shocked and amazed at the same time. It was well done. Very well done. (notice there are no spoilers?)
I have to talk about the sex for a moment because it was great sex. Really, really, really great sex. Matt and Dale are made for each other. Their bodies fit so well together. The scenes were smoking hot, but there was romance and tenderness included. The perfect mix was achieved, and I was thrilled with that.
Closer By Morning is excellent. I enjoyed the hell out of it. It’s definitely going into my “read again” file on the Kindle. It has something for everyone, and I highly recommend it.