Roses in the Devil’s Garden (Maya’s Review)

Title: Roses in the Devil’s Garden (Fallen Rose #1)
Author: Charlie Cochet
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: April 6, 2018
Genre(s): Historical
Page Count: 67
Reviewed by: Maya
Heat Level: 2 flames out of 5
Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5

Working for the Bureau of Prohibition means facing dangerous criminals, desperate gangsters, speakeasies springing up overnight, a city controlled by corruption, and an employer that can’t be trusted. If that’s not enough, best friends and lovers Harlan Mackay and Nathan Reilly still bear the scars—both seen and unseen—that they earned fighting in the First World War. When a ghost from the past resurfaces to destroy everything they hold dear, it might be the last straw for Harlan and Nathan.

New York City is a war zone, the government is in the pocket of organized crime, and the exposure of their illicit romance is a constant danger. For Harlan and Nathan, it’s not a question of whether they’ll escape unscathed, but of which enemy will get them first….

Second Edition

First Edition published by Charlie Cochet, May 2012.

The book starts with Nathan and Harlan sitting in a dive bar trying to get enough information to close it down. Yep, the story is set in time of prohibition. I have somewhat romanticized view of time, what with glamorous ladies in pretty dresses, slick criminals in expensive suits and all that jazz.

Banter between two men is both charming and sweet. It gives us a glimpse into their characters and their relationship which encouraged me to keep reading.
Both men have been to war and their bond grows stronger with each day now they are back on home soil. They are friends and lovers in time which was not always kind toward men like them. They still managed to carve a tiny bit of that world for himself. They have each other and that seems to be enough.

In the next chapter, however, Danny shows up and Harlan’s happy world develops some cracks. It’s a painful twist after happy and reckless first chapter. Danny is Nathan’s childhood friend and ex and Harlan is suddenly not sure where he and Nathan stand. Danny also happens to be a new agent put in charge of their case so now both his professional and personal lives are in turmoil.
The book has some very interesting turns of phrase which add to the story atmosphere (and there is glossary of slang at the end of the book!)

The only reason the story isn’t a 5 stars read is because it ends abruptly. It feels more like first book in series. It’s republished old work, so I don’t know if author plans on continuing Nathan’s and Harlan’s adventures but it’s certainly worth reading by itself.

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Advanced Review Copy

Galley copy of Roses in the Devil’s Garden provided by Publisher in exchange of an honest review.

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