Brian Kerr and Nick Rugo have finally achieved a tentative moment of quiet peace in their relationship. Brian’s brother, Damon, is in the wind and his heavily pregnant sister, Lori, is, for once, sticking to the straight and narrow. Brian has found joy in working for a local farmer and only Nick is at odds. The man is a cop at heart, but with his law enforcement bridges burned, Nick is struggling to find his new normal. When local vandalism starts hitting close to home, Nick’s instincts kick into gear and he finds himself in the thick of the investigation, despite Brian’s concerns. Now, with a dangerous enemy terrorizing the town and an old enemy threatening their happily ever after, Brian and Nick must lean on their friends and fight for the place they’ve come to call home.
Choices is the third in the Tracefinder series and these books must be read in order. There are too many connecting relationships and events to try and read this one as a standalone. Choices is another great addition to Kaje Harper’s repertoire, though I did feel it was slightly weaker than the others in the series.
Brian and Nick remain a compelling couple and I think in Choices we see things finally settling in their relationship. Brian is no longer passive or quite as self-doubting and his willingness to challenge Nick when it matters represents huge growth for the character. As a couple, they seem more in tune with one another and there is a growing equality between them that felt believable as a reader. They aren’t a perfect a pairing, but that adds to the realism of their romance and I appreciate the imperfection nature of what they’ve created together. Brian’s joy at finally having a real home to call his own, one that he shares with Nick, is truly heartwarming and a moment I felt like cheering for.
My only real frustration with Choices is that it feels woefully unfinished. The last quarter of the book seemed rushed in comparison to the rest and almost out of sync. Characters have unresolved storylines and there’s just this sense that something is missing. And maybe the author plans another book in the series, but for the moment, I just felt there was more to the story and there is information that I wanted as a reader to wrap things up.
On the whole, Choices is another fairly strong read and, while it wasn’t the best of the Tracefinder series, it’s far from poorly done. There were answers I wanted and didn’t get and, as a reader, I found that frustrating. But hopefully that means the door is open for another in the series at some point down the road. Brian and Nick are fascinating characters and outside the ordinary. Their arc from start to finish has been one that I found involving and captivating. They’re definitely a couple to remember and one whose story doesn’t feel complete yet. For now though, I strongly encourage you to check the series out, starting with Contact. I suspect once you start it, you won’t be able to put it down.