Nelson Graves has more money than a man should and a black market empire large enough to ensure the money keeps rolling in. He also has enemies and some of them seem determined to bring him down, regardless of the consequences. That doesn’t keep Nelson from living his life and this includes driving fast cars and supporting his friends. When Nelson nearly kills Nick Erickson with a sports car, he has no idea how the man will change his entire world.
With the guilt of an unimaginable tragedy and a prison stint on his shoulders, Nick didn’t have much except his job. And now he doesn’t even have that. When Nelson Graves blows into his life, Nick isn’t sure what to think of the man. He’s dangerous, that’s clear, but he’s also incredibly loyal and sexy as hell. Nick finds himself swept up in Nelson’s wake and while that might mean finding the love of a lifetime, it could also see him dead.
The Boss was an interesting, if somewhat uneven, action and character driven story about two men who seem made for one another.
Nelson Graves isn’t a particularly good man and that made him difficult to like at times. He’s an international weapons and drug dealer and associates with some pretty nasty people. So I struggled to really connect with him. But his devotion to the family he’s made is admirable and ultimately what made him relatable. Nick was harder to grasp. He wasn’t a bad guy. He did a terrible thing certainly, but beyond that it was hard to actually understand who he was. He just didn’t feel fully developed as a character. Despite this, he and Nelson worked well together and they made a sweet couple in their own way. There’s a connection between and while they aren’t the best communicators, they read as realistic.
One of my biggest issues with The Boss was the amount of on page drug use that occurred. Normally, I could care less about this sort of thing and I was surprised to find myself annoyed by it while reading. But it happens so often it began to feel like a one note hack for the character. Nelson is addicted to opium and frequently talks about needing to have a clear head, but he’s so perpetually stoned, I’m not sure how he manages to run his business. It just felt like the character didn’t have much development beyond his drug use and that got tiring as a reader. Additionally, I felt like the the ending to the story was far too abrupt and rushed. Given the pacing of the rest of The Boss, the last few chapters felt off balance and awkward.
The Boss is both good and bad. The story is generally interesting and while Nick and Nelson don’t have the most depth or development, they still make a good couple. I felt like Nelson’s drug use became a crutch rather than a valid part of the story. I think if you like stories with morally ambiguous leads, The Boss might be to your liking.