Fighting fires runs in Josh Brooks’ blood. Setting fires used to be Dylan Anderson’s claim to fame. Now the two men must work together to unravel a string of arsons before one of them gets burned. For sizzling passion and suspense, you won’t go wrong with The Arsonist’s Apprentice by India Harper, the latest addition to the Some Like It Hot Collection.
For Josh Brooks, firefighting is in his blood. Unfortunately for him, Dylan Anderson was working the other side of the fire, having served eight years in prison for arson. The two are thrown together against everyone’s better judgment when Josh’s role in the Philadelphia Fire Department’s Fire Investigation Unit and Dylan’s role as an insurance investigator bring them together to investigate a string of suspicious fires.
Despite Josh’s reservations and the long-held belief that firemen and arsonists shouldn’t mix, he can’t seem to keep out of Dylan’s bed. But just when Josh starts to overcome his preconceptions, he becomes Dylan’s prime suspect. Losing Dylan and his career are the least of Josh’s worries. If he can’t find the real culprit, he’ll be following in Dylan’s footsteps.
Review: This is a short story and is a M/M romance. Even though it was a short story, it was exciting, entertaining, and it left this reader feeling satisfied that the story was told succinctly.
I’ve never read India Harper before, but I would definitely read her work again. It wasn’t just her main characters that I enjoyed, but her secondary characters were entertaining as well. They had their part to play in the telling of the story and they each were rich with their own personalities and rich humor.
I loved Dylan; he was sexy, confident, he didn’t take no for an answer, but he wasn’t a pushy jerk about getting what he wanted. He was ok with his sexuality and had no reason to hide it from the world. He had dark secrets from his past that affect how he interacts with people in the here and now, but it doesn’t impede his relationships. His past makes him more aware of his surroundings, and how much he chooses to reveal about himself to other people. He’s accepted what he’s done in the past, he’s served his time, and he wants to use his knowledge of how an arsonist thinks, to help at his job at an insurance agency.
Josh was a hard working man that was trying to keep his work life and his sexuality separate from each other. He wasn’t ashamed of his sexuality, he just knew how some men in his line of work could be, and he didn’t want to deal with the fallout of that kind of “talk”. This happens quite a bit with characters in the M/M genre. It happens in real life as well and it’s not right. Who cares who you are attracted to or love, as long as you do your work to the best of your ability and work hard. Josh isn’t in the closet, and he doesn’t want to be there, he just wants to be noticed for his work and not for who he chooses to “be” with.
I think that both Josh and Dylan have to overcome what people perceive as the “truth” about them and make people see that they are more then just the label that society puts on them.
Don’t we all have to fight with “labels” that society puts on us weather they are good or bad? Labels seem to make people feel better about their perceptions of people, almost as if the label gives them permission to treat a person a certain way. It’s unfair, sometimes cruel, but it happens. I hope the reader enjoys this book for the sheer entertainment that the author provided with their work, and I hope that they spend several hours getting lost in another world. I always do. Enjoy reading.