The Good Thief by James Buchanan

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The Good Thief by James Buchanan

I thought I had read this book already but discovered I had in fact confused it with another book. So once again I’m reading off the backlist.

Blurb:


Working construction provides Caesar with a great way to cover up his real job; stealing whatever he can get his hands on. Which is why the guy he has a fling with could be really bad for business. Nate is a cop, and Caesar worries that he might be tempting fate if he sees Nate again, even if he wants to.

When Caesar discovers something far worse than some petty thievery on one of his jobs, though, he knows he has to report it to Nate, and the two of them try to find a way to keep Caesar safe until he can testify, even as the sparks fly between them. Can Nate protect Caesar and teach him that there are ways to be a good guy as well as a thief?



Review:

Caesar and Nate meet at an industry party in Hollywood and end up having a drunken, steamy one-night stand. While the sex was smoking hot, neither man reacts especially well the next morning, waking up hung over and disoriented. In his dash out of Nate’s apartment, Caesar discovers a picture of Nate in his police academy uniform and is horrified at his incredible bad luck; police are something he actively avoids. Although both men put the encounter off as a great night / bad morning memory, typically fate throws them together several more times with sizzling results. So when Caesar is rattled by the discovery of some lewd and heinous photographs in the current house he’s robbing, he flees to Nate for help. This sets off a chain of reactions from within the police force and for Nate and Caesar especially.

Caesar is a career thief. He’s described as Hispanic, sexy, confident, intelligent, and living in a bad neighborhood and due to his criminal record, can’t do much else beside day labor and night thievery. Although this could read like a bad stereotype, Buchanan does a good job of humanizing Caesar and tempering the character with sympathy and humor. Caesar comes across as an eminently likable character, for all his criminal and illegal tendencies. He’s hot, smart, sexy and masculine enough that his frou-frou dog doesn’t throw him into a stereotype.

Nate is a straight-laced cop, except well, he’s not so straight. More accurately, he’s a by-the-book second generation cop that almost naively believes in the institution. Although he’s not in the closet regarding his sexuality, he’s careful in his actions. He’s smart, cute with blond hair and green eyes, but more so intelligent with a deep sense of right and wrong. An interesting contradiction especially since Nate openly admits he works out and stays fit partly to ward off any potential problems he could encounter with his homosexuality. So while willfully naïve, Nate does acknowledge not everyone goes by his standards.

The mystery of the photographs that Caesar finds and turns over to Nate has potential. It starts with a hard hitting punch and Caesar’s all too human but noble response was wonderful. Nate’s predictable hard edged cop line helped setup what seemed to be an interesting and complex storyline. Unfortunately the threads of the mystery were unfinished and thinly woven to further the romance of the opposite personalities. While there were moments that showed excellence regarding the mystery, it fell behind in advancing the relationship between the two men. It was unfortunate that the resolution, while believable, felt rushed and unimportant in the scale of comparison to Nate and Caesar’s resolution.

Now, for all the mystery that appeared to be a vehicle to further the relationship without much depth, the men themselves and their interactions were steamy, fun, and delightful. Even though the subplot left something to be desired, the relationship between Nate and Caesar was great to read. I wavered between wanting more depth and attention paid to the mystery portion and wanting the author to focus on the strength of the book so far, the men. Nate is confident and has a single minded belief in humanity and people that would give an innocent naïveté to most but works on Nate. His stalwart support of Caesar and confidence in himself are attractive and give complexity to the big and buff blonde, who is a determined and happy bottom in sex. Both men are charming with their flaws and quirks and work together well, giving a fresh take on the thief and cop idea.

I’m a fan of Buchanan’s work. I tend to like what he writes and this was no exception. This was a well written story focusing primarily on giving a thief and a cop a fun and sexy edge with depth and flavor. While the mystery didn’t completely work for me, the men did and they were fun to read. I can see why this is a particular fan favorite of the author’s.

 Get it HERE!

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