Kitson Sherman may be his pimp’s top earner, but that hasn’t done him any favors. He has few freedoms and, while he lives in relative safety, it’s hardly someplace to call home. And then he meets Sullivan “Sully” Matthews, a secretive and dangerous man who offers Kit a home of his own and more money than he’s ever seen to help with certain undercover operations. Kit decides the work can’t be any worse than what he does now and agrees to join Sully, despite the fact the man is so desperate to keep things impersonal that he often refers to Kit as “bait.”
Sully had a lot of good intentions, but the cute and sexy Kit unravels them all. He can’t help his attraction to the man or his desire to protect him. Yet in doing so, Sully strips Kit of his autonomy and independence. As danger threatens them both, Kit and Sully must learn to trust one another if they have any hope of surviving long enough to consider a future together.
Lure is the first a new series, Hitman’s Bait, which covers the relationship between a mafia enforcer and his lover. Lure starts strong, but tends to go off the rails mid-novel before finally pulling itself back together.
I liked Sully and Kit. Both read as a fairly well developed and layered. They work better together than they do as individuals, though Sully’s protective/dominant streak does read as overly caveman-like at times, but not in a fun way. The two engage in kitten play, which is just like puppy play, only, you know, cats. It’s a particular kink I really don’t understand the appeal of and, as a result, these scenes were rather lost on me, but to each their own. Some readers will like and enjoy this aspect and I would say this is integral to Kit and Sully’s couplehood. Kit and Sully’s evolution from employer/employee to lovers is a bit quick and doesn’t make the most sense. I would have preferred a bit more development in this area to make the transition in their relationship more believable.
Lure stumbles about halfway through the book. The plot begins to ramble and loses its focus. I think part of this comes from the discordance that develops between Kit and Sully. The overall pacing slows as well and the book meanders its way through some rather flat relationship conflicts and nearly distances itself from Sully’s work altogether. It almost read like a different novel at this point and struggled to maintain its identity. Thankfully, Lure recovers and offers a satisfyingly tense, if somewhat predictable ending.
Lure was uneven, but ultimately still enjoyable and I found myself appreciating the relationship between Kit and Sully. I’m not sure they’ll ever be a favorite couple, but I still enjoyed their journey. The latter half of the book struggles to keep itself together and it ends up leaving Lure as something of a mixed bag. It will be interesting to see where the series goes from here and what sort of changes might be on the horizon for Sully and Kit.