Gods of VengeanceRating: 3 stars
Buy Link:
Amazon | iBooks | Amazon UK
Length: Short Story

The day Owen Hazard was put into the ground, it rained. At 33 years of age, death came too soon for the young farmer and his murder left behind a wife and three kids. It also left behind Owen’s best friend, Riley, and Owen’s older brother, Mark.

Riley and Owen worshipped Mark when they were kids, but Mark enlisted in the service and he has been gone for ten years. When Mark returns for the funeral, he learns of the circumstances surrounding Owen’s death and he also learns that the local police are doing nothing. Riley and Mark have a spark and long held passion takes over as they embark on a dangerous quest for vengeance for Owen.

Gods of Vengeance is the first book I have read from Thom Collins and when the story opened, I was captivated by the author’s voice. When Riley and Mark see each other again as grown men their connection is immediate.

Mark’s opaque eyes stared into his. Time seemed frozen as they held each other. It was a devastating moment. …He knew something with chilling certainty?Mark Hazard was the man who could change everything. No?would change everything.

The story shows Riley having knowledge of what happened to Owen and then Mark taking steps to avenge his brother’s death. The sense of time and place in this story were at odds with each other for me. Some of the descriptions and the language had me thinking that this was a story that was not set in present day, but then Facebook is mentioned. The best clues I was given lead me to think that this took place in a small village in England, but there were areas that weren’t quite clear.

Mark is mostly a mystery throughout the entire story. We are given mere glimpses of his past in a limited and factual manner with no further exploration. The attraction between the men is apparent, but it’s worked into the larger story of Mark taking the law into his own hands. Then, when Mark sets his plans in motion, the reader is kept in the dark as much as Riley is and for a book based on vengeance, there was too much that was off page.

The story ends at 80% on the Kindle and it reads as unfinished. The scene just ends and there isn’t even enough given to be able to let your own mind wander as to what’s next for either of these men. There is not enough offered to give any type of closure to the story or to their relationship, if they are even having a relationship. The writing itself was descriptive as the story opened, but in the end there wasn’t enough story or detail to have made it worth my time.

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