James is grateful he has a safe place to live after his parents died. After several unsuccessful foster homes, he came to stay with David and Michelle, who adopted him. The family regularly takes in foster kids, and it’s sometimes difficult as traumatized kids come into the home and then leave again. But James is determined to make his new parents proud and he works hard and tries to ease the fears of the kids who come into his house. This is how he meets Jackie, who is placed with James’ family temporarily, and the connection they will soon have will last a lifetime.
Issac is desperately trying to make a safe life for his sister through any means possible. His life as a criminal is a means to an end and as long as his sister, Jackie, is safe, Isaac doesn’t need much of anything else, until he meets James. Well, he kind of met James years ago when he held him up at gunpoint, but now James is best friends with his sister. The attraction between the men is instant, but Isaac knows there is absolutely nothing he can offer James. Isaac can’t even stand to be touched and the men have one encounter before Isaac and Jackie take off in the night.
Years go by and the group runs into each other again and Jackie knows that the men are perfect for each other. Although, Isaac has solidified his place with a crime family and James has become a cop. Being together has never been more impossible or more dangerous.
When this book opened, the writing pulled me in, as did the story of James. His parents died and although he has been adopted, the trauma and uncertainty still keep him on his toes. It’s not that this book unraveled, but more that there was never a cohesiveness to pull it together. There is a lot of story and many threads are started and then dropped or there are vital details missing.
James’ parents died and the story is never fully given. He then calls his new adoptive parents mom and dad and there is never anything spoken about James’ feelings on all of this. While we are told he suffers from nightmares, he just has a new mom and dad and refers to them as such.
The title of the book is called out earlier on as James has a tendency to be in the wrong place at the wrong time, but then that is dropped. As a teen, James first meets Isaac when Isaac holds up James and an elderly couple at gunpoint. While James knows it’s a little off, he finds the man holding the gun hot. And, even as the years go by, James makes concessions for Isaac and never fully acknowledges his crimes. And Isaac has a long list of crimes that even as James becomes a cop, he overlooks and tells Isaac that he can be “forgetful.” And, James as a cop is fairly ridiculous as he became one to make his father proud, but he runs into dangerous situations without remembering to draw his weapon and puts himself constantly in danger and gets himself hurt.
There is also a storyline involving Isaac’s father and at one point Isaac is afraid of his father finding him or Jackie, but then there is no resolution at all. The book is told in alternating POV and it’s clear when we are with James or Isaac, but there is also a narrator that comes in at certain points that is looking down at the story and that was inconsistent. The book also had an increasing number of typos as the story went on, giving the feel that the second half of editing wasn’t given as much consideration as the first. The characters also did an incredible amount of smirking and that was their main facial expression throughout the book.
My thoughts in this review move from one thing to the next because that’s how the book itself is presented. As much as I liked the style in the beginning of this book, the storyline tried to take on too much and not all the threads were well connected. There were loose ends not finished by the end and the relationship between the men was mostly based on attraction and the deep need they were said to have for each other didn’t come off the page. There were certain areas I did like, but ultimately there was too much that would have to be overlooked to give this a solid recommendation.