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Romance and other things


I wanted to enjoy it but writing got in a way

An Evidence of Magic - Kris Michaels, Patricia A. Knight
An Evidence of Magic—69K M/M procedural crime romance in an alternate reality.
Forty-year-old, hard bitten, foul-mouthed, homicide detective, Hiro Santos, suspects the owner of the art studio committed the gory killing. Too bad. There are other things he'd like to do to the gorgeous young man than book him for murder. Worse, his sexy suspect is certifiable. The nutcase claims he's some kind of high wizard from an alternate reality and needs Hiro's help to save their worlds.
While the striking Sable Campion appears a youthful twenty-five, he’s endured over two-hundred lonely years as guardian of the portal between Everlight and Elysium. None of those centuries offered him any experience finding a vicious killer. That's where Hiro Santos comes in; but convincing the virile detective to trust Sable will take all his persuasive skills...and perhaps a bit of magic.
The magic they find in each other's arms will rock each of their realities.
Dear Kris Michaels and Patricia A. Knight,
When this book was recommended at Amazon m/m board by several of my book buddies, I thought it sounded exactly like my cup of tea – magic, mystery and m/m romance. It sounded like great ingredients for the story. Alas, I ended up quite disappointed.
The beginning was so good. Actually, the very beginning was quite gruesome – we get to witness a gruesome murder amongst the theft gone wrong, but then things get interesting. Hiro arrives to investigate the strange murder where victim’s body parts are left all over the place; there are no finger prints, no nothing. When Sable, the owner of the place arrives, unfortunately Hiro is attracted to him, but even more unfortunate is that he sounds like a perfect suspect for the murder.  When Hiro questions the suspect at the police station Sable is trying to establish his alibi by explaining that during the time of the murder he was at the fortieth floor of the building which does not have a fortieth floor and that he entered the building from the closet which is really an entrance from another dimension. Oh and Sable helpfully explains that he is a High Wizard in that other parallel reality and one of the gatekeepers for the entrances to this dimension.
Of course not surprisingly Hiro thinks his suspect is preparing for future insanity defense when he will be charged with murder.  Their initial conversations were really amusing. Surprise! Sable really is a high wizard from another dimension which looks almost exactly like Everlight, but not quite and Sable has truth gears placed on him so he cannot actually when he answers questions.
Sable also needs Hiro’s help to investigate the murder/s – somebody is killing the people who are charged with opening and closing the gates to Hiro’s reality and also somebody is hunting the members of the governing body in Sable’s reality and it looks like all these murders are connected.
Of course first Sable needs to convince Hiro that he is speaking the truth and eventually he manages to do so and he manages to convince Hiro to help him even if Hiro really dislikes the people who govern Ellisium.
I could not wait to see what happens next. What happened unfortunately was not just extremely fast attraction between the guys (I don’t mind fast attraction, why not, just please let them develop something more not as fast).   I am not sure whether it was a day or day and a half, but policeman and former suspect managed to go from – I don’t do relationships at all, I do relationships but I had been burned before – to oh YAY, our souls merged after sex (blinding white light) and we became husbands/life partners forever.  Okay then.
And I really disliked the flowery language when sex was described. Here, some examples for you to decide on your own whether you would like the writing.
"The hard, pebbled flesh bloomed into a beautiful red bud and the man shook under the attack of Hiro's teeth and lips ..." (this is only part of the sentence).
“He pushed back inside that glorious warmth and rotated his hips, catching Sable's prostate, sending a shiver through the man."
"He rocked repeatedly into the hot confines of his wizard, sending his essence deep inside his man."
“His husband turned his glorious chocolate gaze toward him and grunted.”
"His husband bit and held Sable's upper lip for a heartbeat before releasing him and meeting him in a tongue - tangled kiss of erotic demand."
The mystery itself was a little strange – the group of people which killer was a part of was correctly suggested almost from the start, and I understood the motivations, but because we were not given any clues about those people’s identities (we mostly knew them as a group), I felt that the killer was chosen at random if that makes sense. I just don’t see how the reader could have guessed it.
I guess Hiro’s revelation was supposed to come as a bigger surprise? I am not sure.
When I was deciding whether to get this one I was also tempted by the promise of complex world building. Well, as I said ingredients were there, but I do not think it was a success.
Grade C-.