Terrance Blackrose has a very public and well-recognized face. As the owner of Red Rose Security, he’s known as one of the best in the private security industry. His clients are elite and his reputation is renown. But his other work is darker and less publicized. Known only as Black in most circles, Terrance runs one of the most efficient assassination businesses around. If you want someone dead, you come to Black. This double life leaves its mark on Black, but it’s one he’s learned to live with. At least until Quill.
Quill Almeida was a barista when he witnessed something he shouldn’t have. Instead of killing him, Black hires him as a delivery guy and Quill doesn’t haven’t many qualms about the whole thing. His own past is darker than most and in Black, he finds a man he can flirt with and tease. But when Quill is attacked by a dangerous ex, Black steps in to resolve the situation. Quill is certain that Black will only make things worse, but he’ll have to find a way to trust the man if either of them hopes to survive.
From These Ashes is the fourth book in the Haven Hart series. While each book follows a different couple, there are enough reuniting characters and overlapping story threads that these books really need to be read in order.
We finally get to know more about Black, the mysterious businessman whose work in assassination has come up before. Quill describes him as a cross between Thor and Satan and aside from being amusing, the description seems apt. He’s dangerous and deadly, but like all the men in the Haven Hart series, he’s redeemable and relatable. Quill is the Everyman here, yet he seems to be a natural fit for Black. He isn’t cowed by the man or lessened and as a reader I enjoyed their sparring.
From These Ashes tended to be a slow, somewhat plodding story. While it was still enjoyable, it definitely suffered from some pacing issues. And towards the end when things finally pick up, the finale occurs rather abruptly. I just wasn’t thrilled with how the book ended or how quickly things seemed to get wrapped up. I felt Black and Quill deserved a bit more of a bang considering all they went through beforehand.
From These Ashes is a long-awaited reveal of Black and his private life and while he and Quill are an excellent match, the story has a pacing issue. It didn’t cripple the book by any means and fans of the Haven Hart series will still enjoy this one.