Title: Hunter and Hunted
Author: Tricia Owens
Publisher: Loose Id
Pages/Word Count: 123 Pages
Rating: 4 Stars
Blurb: Hunter’s a professional hit man trying to get out of the life. One last job, and if he doesn’t get sloppy, he’s done for good. Then he can have a normal life with friends, a lover, maybe even a dog–instead of feeling like a piece of meat up for auction at the gay resort where he’s waiting for his target to arrive. The waiting’s not exactly unpleasant between the great views and the even better mouth of his room service waiter, Daniel, but there are several attempts on his life, and Hunter’s forced to consider that Daniel may be out to get him.
Hunter’s not wrong that Daniel’s out to get him. Hunter’s the subject of an intense, focused, and determined manhunt. But to have him, not kill him. Daniel knows Hunter likes what he’s offering. Now if only he can convince Hunter that he’s not out to kill him.
Review: Hunter and Hunted follows the journey of Hunter and Daniel. We meet Hunter, an assassin for hire, on his last job. From the moment we meet him, we learn Hunter is torn, struggling with the life he’s led and wanting to be able to slip away and live a life free from the stress and pain of his mercenary work.
Daniel isn’t all that he appears to be to Hunter. We learn early on that he knows who Hunter is and has his own agenda, although what that agenda is remains elusive and only slowly unwinds as the story progresses.
This story was an exciting read, filled with suspense, hot sex, and strong emotions. The journey was fast-paced and heated. I found myself intrigued by the connection between the two men and the internal warring emotions they struggled against. Although both men had reasons for being at the resort where Hunter was to carry out his last job, their feelings for each other made it difficult for them to focus on anything but the heat bonding them together.
What prevented me from giving this 5 stars was the speed with which the two characters connected. The story takes place over a few days and in that time, emotions run so hot and high that their connection is forged as if in steel. Yet, given the fact both men were somewhat mercenary, it seemed unrealistic that they would allow their feelings to cloud their shrewder senses. Also, not knowing each other, they had an awful lot of unprotected sex without even acknowledging the wisdom of the act. While sexy, this too seemed a bit unrealistic.
Ms. Owens did a marvelous job of drawing the reader in, her use of language was immediate and sensory. There was never a point when I felt like the author was inserting herself into the story. It unraveled from a deep dive into the two main characters and their experiences, which made for an intense read.
Definitely a recommended read.
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