Monday, December 7, 2015

Novella Review: Leveled by Jay Crownover

Leveled by Jay Crownover
(Saints of Denver #0.5)
November 2, 2015
Genre: Contemporary Romance 18+
Contains: M/M sexual content, language
Source: Personal purchase

We all need a hero...let the Saints of Denver begin

Orlando Frederick knows what it is to be leveled by pain. Instead of focusing on his own, he’s made it his mission to help others: sports stars, wounded war vets, survivors of all kinds. But when Dom, a rugged, damaged, sinfully attractive cop, makes his way into Lando’s physical therapy practice, he might be the biggest challenge yet. Lando loved one stubborn man before and barely survived the fallout. He’s not sure he can do it again.

Dominic Voss is a protector. The police badge he wears is not only his job, it’s his identity, so when he’s sidelined because of an injury, the only thing he cares about is getting back on the force. He expects Lando to mend his body, he just doesn’t realize the trainer will also have him working toward a hell of a lot more. As attraction simmers and flares, Dom sees that Lando needs repair of his own...if only the man will let him close enough to mend what's broken.

'Leveled' is a crossover novella between the end of the 'Marked Men' series and the beginning of the 'Saints of Denver' series. The main feature is the relationship between Orlando Frederick and Dominic Voss, both of whom were introduced and played small but memorable roles in a few of the Marked Men books. But this is the first time these boys are meeting. What makes this a crossover book is that we get cameos from many of the couples from the Marked Men series, but also a final glimpse at Sayer and Zeb who will be featured in the first Saints of Denver book. But 'Leveled' can be read as a standalone.

I really enjoyed 'Leveled'. Now I will admit, the M/M romance genre is not my thing. I would not have read this if I hadn't already been a huge fan of the 'Marked Men' series and Jay Crownover. With that said, I will be honest and say that I skimmed or skipped the sexier portions of the book. But this did not diminish the story for me. I genuinely liked Lando and Dom. I liked how the difficulties in their personal lives were explored and dealt with (which in Lando's case was quite welcome, as it was a long time in coming). I liked getting to know them. I felt their connection and chemistry to be genuine. And despite being a novella, I still felt that I got the complete picture of this love story between Dom and Lando. And the bonus was seeing many of the past characters and a glimpse of the future. I was initially hesitant on reading 'Leveled,' but I'm glad I took a chance on it. Now I'm definitely looking forward to the 'Saints of Denver' series.

The Marked Men Series:
Rule (#1) AmazonMy Review
Jet (#2) AmazonMy Review
Rome (#3) AmazonMy Review
Nash (#4) AmazonMy Review
Rowdy (#5) AmazonMy Review
Asa (#6) Amazon ~ My Review

The Saints of Denver Series:
Leveled (#0.5) Amazon * My Review
Built (#1) Pre-Order Amazon
coming January 5, 2016
Charged (#2) Pre-Order Amazon
coming May 24, 2016

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