Dealing In Death (Tosha’s Review)

Title: Dealing in Death (Death and The Devil 2.5)
Author: L J Hayward
Publisher: Self published
Release Date: August 30, 2019
Genre(s): Gay mystery/romance
Page Count: 176 pages
Reviewed by: Tosha
Heat Level: 3.5 flames out of 5
Rating: 5 stars out of 5


Ethan Blade—assassin extraordinaire, cold-blooded killer, heartless monster, and . . . retiree?

I’ve spent my whole life dealing in death, efficiently eliminating targets while fighting to preserve a sense of self and morality, to avoid becoming as detached and ruthless as my siblings. I thought I had succeeded. Then I met Jack Reardon—contrary, handsome, forgiving, and far too good for the likes of me—and my life was tipped upside down. When he asked me to move in with him, he didn’t specify that I had to quit my job, but I wanted to—for myself, not for him. I should have known it wouldn’t be that easy.

My old instincts—“Ethan Blade”—are soon tempted out of retirement by a job offer I can’t afford to refuse and by an old hook-up of Jack’s he’d be a fool to refuse. While falling prey to my own temptation, Jack struggles with his. Which is precisely when the true danger exposes itself—one of my siblings with no such sense of self or morality. Only pain. And he is prepared to rain it down on me and Jack, unless I can square the Ethan Blade I want to be with the one I need to be, in time to save us both.

What happens when a hired killer falls for his mark and can’t kill him? Even worse, what happens when “your brother” is the one who decides he will finish the job? This book is so full of action that if you blink then you will miss something very important. Now I will be honest and say that I have not read the previous books in this series but that did not matter. I was able to read this book as a stand-alone and not feel lost so that was a great thing. This was a very good read. I started it yesterday and I was able to finish it yesterday. So that will tell you that it was a good read!!

Ethan has been raised to be a trained killer. He takes his jobs and never really questions who his target is until he meets Jack. He met Jack while on a job to get close to him, to find out the information he may have, and then he is to kill him. But Ethan questions the reason for the hit because from the information he was able to gather, Jack has no information. Then add into the fact that Ethan starts to fall for the man, and this job is definitely a no go.

So when Ethan walks away from the hit, his “brother” does not take it well. Ethan knew that Two would not take it well him not completing the job. So Ethan decides to stay behind after he decides to make sure that Two will not follow up. As expected Two shows up and Ethan is able to convince him to leave the job and take it up with him personally. This does not end well for Ethan but he never expected it would.

Two is not really Ethan’s “brother” but a brother in arms for the group they work for. Two believes that because he taught Ethan most of what he knows, that Ethan is his property. So having Ethan fall for someone else is completely unacceptable.

Months after the fact Ethan has decided to quit and move in with Jack. Their relationship has progressed and Ethan wants a normal life with Jack. But this is not going to be as easy as he had hoped. Two has decided that it is time for Ethan to come back where he belongs, with him. And Two will get Ethan back no matter what it takes.

This obsession Two has is out of control. So much so that he is starting to come between Jack and Ethan. Two has been able to make Ethan doubt that he is good enough for Jack and that Jack is unfaithful to Ethan. What will Two do next and who will be caught in his cross hairs? Will Ethan and Jack be able to get over everything that Two is doing to come between them?

This book was such a good read with an element of danger at each turn. I really enjoyed this book and will be going back to read the previous books in this series. I will definitely be reading the next book in this series if there is one. Definitely a recommended read!!

Death and the Devil series

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Galley copy of Dealing In Death (Death and The Devil 2.5) provided by LJ Hayward in exchange of an honest review.


Hello, I am an avid reader of male/male books. I do not have a favorite genre when it comes to male/male books because I love all of them from romance, dark reads, paranormal, shifter, threesome, whatever I see that catches my eye at the time. I read books about rock stars, CEOs, military, cops, and just the original plain old good boy types of books. Basically when it comes to a book, I read whatever I am in the mood for at the time. So my tastes varies from day to day and sometimes even hour to hour.