Dante has struggled for years after his husband was presumed dead. Pain is an old friend to Dante, both physical and emotional, and it’s the physical pain he seeks out time and again. Dante never thought he would love again until Remi entered his life. After so much pain, Dante feels like he might have hope again with Remi by his side. But Dante’s past isn’t exactly dead and when a ghost from the past shows up, Dante is once again in a whirlwind of turmoil.
Things aren’t so easy for Remi either as he has another life, a life he was born into, and although it’s not his choice, it was chosen for him. There is also Kai, Remi’s long-time friend and submissive, who is desperately in love with Remi, although Kai is now engaged to Kyle. Kai and Remi will never be able to sever their ties and while Dante claims to be okay with it, he wants Remi all to himself. Dante’s past and present are on a collision course and every step and decision he makes will cut deep and alter the lives of everyone around him.
Intense. That is the main word I would use to describe Oasis. There are a lot of adjectives I could add on as once this book is opened, it will consume you until the final page. Oasis is a continuation of Clouded Hell in the Inferno series and I would not suggest trying to read this book on its own. I read Clouded Hell three years ago and it took me a few chapters to get back into all the details of this world again. It’s an all-consuming world, though, once you are immersed in it.
The blurb does not come right out and state what is going on, but I was able to figure it out and was then expecting the storyline to go in the direction that it did. But it is best not having it all explained out ahead of time, which then makes it difficult for me to talk about the details of the book.
Dante is still in pain from the disappearance of his husband five years ago, but he thinks he can finally move on after he meets Remi. The relationships in this book are complicated and co-dependent. Gray does an amazing job of carrying four different points of view during the course of the book and completely making it possible to understand each man. The men here are dominant and submissive and strong and vulnerable all at the same time depending on who they are with. Some men need to have a poly relationship, while others are okay with their partner’s needs and the play between each character off of the other is unbelievable to watch. The men are all intertwined and although Remi and Dante know they need each other, Kai is forever bound to Remi, and Dante has his past, which now becomes his present once again. Remi is also inundated with work, as the last thing he ever wanted has come to pass and being part of a crime family, even if he fought against it all of his life, remains his legacy.
This book is character driven and highly emotional and all of the men have powerful needs. They run, they lash out, they’re volatile with dark edges, and the heat between them remains through it all. They each have a lot to figure out and they don’t have all, and sometimes any, of the answers and although it is maddening, Gray shows why these men just can’t simply sit down and talk it all out. The words “it’s complicated” perfectly define what is going on here between all of these men.
There were many ways this book could have ended and it was a race for me to see how the author would wrap it all up. I wasn’t even trying to figure out where these guys would all land and was enthralled watching it play out. I would have liked to spend more time with the final resolution, as it was a little rushed for my tastes and there were a few areas where I would have liked more detail. J.R. Gray has a specific style that escalates with each new book and this is a prime example of the author doing some of his best work.