Felix and Lane have never been interested in the quiet life and somehow trouble always finds them — if they don’t go looking for it first. When some old acquaintances offer to pay the guys to retrieve an expensive watch from police custody, the men are excited for the adventure and the pay out that comes with it.
The job seems to be simple (aside from the whole stealing something from police custody problem), but it turns out to be just the tip of the iceberg. Before they know it, Felix and Lane are caught up in a squabble between two brothers that leads to kidnapping, attempted murder, safe stealing, pig napping, and Felix attempting to erotic dance. Once again, the men barely make it out with their lives, but the adventure just proves to them both how much they love and need one another.
Deception in Darkness is the third book in Alice Winters’ fabulous In Darkness series and reunites us with one of my favorite couples, Felix and Lane. While the characters carry over and one of the plot points has its roots in the second book, you can definiltey follow along with this story just jumping in. But I love this series so much and watching the relationship develop between the two men is definitely rewarding, so I’d tell you to start at the beginning.
If you read A Light in the Darkness, you may remember a watch that played a prominent role. And like me, you may have wondered what happened to it when the book was over. Well, that watch ends up kick starting a huge adventure for Felix and Lane in this story. Once again, Winters builds the pieces slowly and it seems like things are rolling along fine for the guys until suddenly they are in the midst of life and death craziness. The suspense end was exciting and interesting and kept me guessing all along as to what was really going on. Things aren’t quite as an intense as in the first two books where it really felt like things were hanging by a thread, but I still found the thriller aspect of the story really well done.
Where Winters most excels for me is the combination of humor and suspense in this series. The guys are full of banter and snark and get into all kinds of absurd situations. Even as they are being held at gunpoint, they are still chatting away and I love how the humor infuses the whole story. Things could really go off the rails and I am constantly impressed by how Winters walks that line between allowing Felix to be his outrageous self and having the men get into insane situations, but also keeping things from becoming too crazy and absurd (not that they aren’t a little crazy and absurd). Somehow these guys just end up in one insane predicament after another and it just all works. The banter and playful dynamic also carries over to Felix and Lane’s interactions with Lane’s family. I love this family dynamic because we see how loved Lane is and how close he is with his family, and also get to watch how Felix finally has people who love and care about him as well. Plus, they are often just as entertaining as Felix and Lane. Here is a quick scene after the group has been playing paintball:
“My question is, who was cruel enough to shoot the guy who can’t see?” I ask curiously.
Jenny raises both hands in the air, clearly proud of herself. “Woo-hoo! That would be me!” She seems to have enjoyed shooting Lane. She even does a little jig.
Lane points at his vest. “Do you know howmany times she shot me? Six. Six times.”
“Remember that one time it was my birthday party, and all my friends came over, and you told them that I have five-inch-long butt hairs?”
Lane grins, clearly fond of the memory. “You were like ten.”
“Remind me not to piss Jenny off,” I whisper to Tom, who grunts. Our conversational skills have become next level recently. Soon, I think he may start confessing his undying love for me. “Jenny, are your butt hairs still that long?”
Jenny stares at me with so much love and adoration hidden behind such a cruel glare.
“Longer,” Robbie says. “After we married, everything on that woman went to hell. Show them your legs.”
“Fine, I will.” She pulls up her pants to reveal a perfectly smooth-shaven leg.
“Pull them up another inch. She only shaves her ankles in case her pants get pulled up.”
Jenny glares at Robbie, who is still grinning. “I do not have to show them anything.” She aims her gun at Robbie. “Turn around and bend over.”
I tap Lane’s shoulder. “Oh man, that’s what I was telling you to do last night, Lane. Remember?”
A grin forms on his lips. “I remember.”
“Don’t want to hear it. Lalala!” Jenny says.
Janet is disappointed in us. It’s clear by the look on her face. I have disappointed my new mother, and for that, I am mortified.
“It wasn’t anything sexual,” I assure her. “I wanted him to pick the soap up… while in the shower. You know what? I love you, Janet.”
She smiles at me. “I love you too, sweetheart.”
I could commit a murder in front of this woman, and I believe she’d still love me.
At the heart of this series is the love shared between Felix and Lane, and as the books continue, we can feel that connection growing stronger. Clearly these men adore each other, that is obvious. But I just love the unbridled joy they have when they are together; it is almost palpable how happy these guys make each other. On the surface they are so different, but yet they fit together perfectly and I love that they celebrate that connection and so obviously would do anything for one another.
As a side note, I listened to the first two books in this series in audio, but I decided to read this one first rather than waiting for the audio release. I normally try to stick with one format when I start a series, so I wasn’t sure how it would be reading the book instead of listening, but I have to say, I totally loved this story in written format as well. What is funny, however, is I felt like at times I could almost hear narrator Joel Leslie performing the story as I read it. So I will definitely be eager to check this one out in audio too, but I can wholeheartedly recommended the book version as well.
So I am a huge fan of this series and if you enjoy humor and/or romantic suspense stories, you definitely need to be reading this one. I loved reconnecting with Lane and Felix and am eager for more of their adventures.