Dancing Men


review master
Title: Dancing Men: Hunter Dane Investigation 2 (Hunt&Cam4Ever, #3)
Author: Adira August
Publisher: Self-Published
Release Date: November 1, 2017
Genre(s): Contemporary Romance, Murder/Mystery
Page Count: 384 pages
Reviewed by: NeRdyWYRM
Heat Level: 4 flames out of 5
Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5

Blurb:

An ancient burial urn, empty for millennia, is suddenly not so empty.

When Detective Lieutenant Hunter Dane probes the murder at Natural History Museum, it’s his own past that haunts him. To solve the complex case, Hunter needs the talents of Camden Snow, the brilliant, beautiful, “no limits” Dom who’d helped him unravel a very peculiar, and very personal, murder.

But now, Cam’s ready to kill Hunt, himself! Their high-intensity D/s relationship that began in a playroom, ended in an emergency room.

Detective Dane is about to discover that history does, indeed, repeat itself. And his brain and body—humming with suspect information and sensual anticipation—want so much more than a killer behind bars.


Put Your Dancing Shoes On!

I am still in love with this series. Was this my favorite book so far? No. That distinction still belongs to Matchstick Men because that book, is incomparable—so far this year—as far as I’m concerned. I gave it 5 stars and it was a hard act to follow. So why only 4.5 stars on this one? I’m not really sure I can put my finger on it, but I’ll give it a shot.

I’m still enjoying the MCs. I was glad that Hunter didn’t stay too far in his head for too long. The same thing goes for Cam when secrets were revealed and he struggled with … well, what he was struggling with. I won’t spoil it. The mystery was good, but it didn’t captivate me like last time. I never really understood why The Big Bad did it. I’m not sure we got an explanation beyond “So and so did it and this is how.”

headscratcher

There were enough twists and turns and surprises to keep it interesting and it was never boring or predictable, so I guess I just wanted more on the motive(s) and how/why this person became privy to the information that started the whole thing. What can I say? I’m a Criminal Minds fangirl nutball. I want to know why the crazies do what they do.

I think I’m disappointed that we didn’t get a little more relationship progression. I feel like the plot took too much of a front seat here and the relationship part was like white noise in the background. Don’t get me wrong! There was some character and relationship development, but it seemed static, like it was more of an acknowledgment of what readers already knew after book one and not something that actually moved things between Cam and Hunter measurably forward.

static

I’m also not real enamored of their current sexual dynamic or the fact that we didn’t get to see much of it this time. I have a hard time believing that there aren’t exclusively committed D/s and/or BDSM relationships between two and/or more people. Maybe wanting to see that with Hunt and Cam makes me old and boring, I don’t know, but my heart is telling me these guys deserve to experience that, both individually and together. In short, I’m not sure where the author is headed with these guys and I’m a little disillusioned about how things stand now. Just a teensy bit, because I’m still in luuuurve with this couple and this series.

P.S. I’m no expert on D/s and/or BDSM so please take my words with a grain of salt. If I’m wrong or misinformed in my understanding of the commitment aspects of the aforementioned ‘lifestyles’, please message me. I like to learn knew things as opposed to spewing personal opinions with no basis in fact or practice. I don’t take constructive criticism personally and prefer knowing over any sting I (won’t) feel over being wrong about something!

That said, would any of that keep me from reading this book in the first place if I could wind the clock back? No. Would it keep me from reading it again in anticipation of the next book? No. I am still fascinated by how Hunter’s mind works and by Cam’s intuitive responses to what Hunter needs as well as his own self-awareness. Objectively speaking, I didn’t expect any insta-fixes for these guys, so in that respect I’m satisfied. I just hope there’s some tangible progress in their relationship going forward even if it doesn’t look conform to my personal expectations.

premeditated resentments valid jpg

This is not a romance, but it is a love story. However, even given that little bit of perspective, I’m still just not sure that what is occurring between Hunter and (especially) Cam meshes with my perception of the characters as they’ve been written so far. I’m feeling a disconnect there that, arguably, may not exist anywhere but in my head. That’s why, this time, I couldn’t give the latest installment of the Hunter Dane Investigation series 5 stars. It did earn a solid 4+ but I was hoping for more.

Put your dancing shoes on people and get to steppin’ with Adira August’s Dancing Men. Despite my grumbling, I am still enamored of Hunt and Cam, still in love with the series, and I absolutely adore the writing style, the dialogues, the plots, the ideas and the overall story arc. I’m a firm believer that you can’t win them all, so while this book ended up being first runner-up to the last, I will, without a single shred of doubt, be tap-tap-tapping my toes while waiting for the next book to come out. I maintain a compulsive need to see what happens with this couple. That won’t change.

This review cross-posted at Goodreads.
Other reviews by NeRdyWYRM can be read here.

Images (when present) may be subject to copyright.

Hunter Dane Investigation Series


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Advanced Review Copy

Galley copy of Dancing Men: Hunter Dane Investigation 2 (Hunt&Cam4Ever, #3) provided by Adira August in exchange of an honest review.

Author

I am a life-long reader and an avid learner. I remember reading books without pictures when I was about four, and raided every title on my parents’ full and intimidating book shelves—well, the ones they would let me read, anyway—from then on. Characters written by authors like Isaac Asimov, Carl Sagan, Robert Jordan, David Eddings, Terry Brooks, Anne Rice, Stephen King, Raymond E. Feist, Mercedes Lackey, Margaret Weis & Tracy Hickman, and Anne McCaffrey were my childhood playmates.

Back then, I went nowhere unless I had a book in my hand. While the rest of my generation was shifting from cassettes to CDs and from Atari to Nintendo, Sega, and Playstation, I spent my allowance on Myth & Magic pewter figurines and on books at the Stars and Stripes bookstore. These days I don’t have a book in my hand anymore, at least not the printed variety. Instead, it’s any device with a Kindle app.

I stubbornly held on to the printed page until a military move weighed my book collection in at over a ton. Oops. Sorry-not-sorry, but I did have to exercise some pragmatism in that area, unfortunately. Now I only buy hardbacks from my favorite authors, the classics, or long-running series. Otherwise, I’ve surrendered to the times and our weight allowance and have gone all digital.

I stay strictly on the fiction side of the fence because non-fiction is generally too dry to hold my interest. I was always a scholar, and so have read enough textbook-like titles and required reading for school and college to last me a lifetime, thank you very much. So, non-fiction? No, thanks. However, barring non-fiction and biographies (ewww people), there’s not much out there I won’t read.

I have loved romance novels since I was prepubescent. Something about historicals and anything with horses, i.e., Native American inspired romances just did it for me. My grandmother was appalled that my parents let me read that ‘smut’ as she called it. I’d already justified my position on being allowed to read those controversial titles with a logical argument that there were a lot of historical facts in those books that couldn’t be learned in the classroom alone. And to this day, I maintain that stance. I have learned more from books, specifically romance and fantasy novels, than I ever did in a classroom.

~~wink-wink~~

My dad always said I was too smart for my own good. Looking back, he was probably right! I could logically talk my way into and out of just about anything. It’s served me well, but caused me no end of problems, too. That said, despite my love for the romance genre in general and the m/m romance genre in particular, there is little chance that a decent book of any kind will fail to catch my interest, and there’s nothing at all I’m unwilling to learn. So bring it on. I hope you enjoy my reviews.

2 comments

  • I’m glad! They are absolutely worth reading. A suggestion, though, if I may? I would start from the beginning with On His Knees and Matchstick Men. You probably could read them in isolation as standalones but I really wouldn’t. There’s a lot of context that really makes a difference to the relationship and the plot. Happy reading.

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