Title: Love & Loyalty
Author: Tere Michaels
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Pages/Word Count: 200 Pages
Rating: 4.5 Stars
Blurb: 2nd Edition – Faith, Love, & Devotion: Book Two
Seattle Homicide Detective Jim Shea never takes work home with him—until now. A judge banged his gavel, declared a defendant not guilty, and laid waste to a family. The emotional fallout of the trial leaves Jim vulnerable and duty-bound to the victim’s dying father.
It’s that man’s story that screenwriter Griffin Drake and his best friend, actress Daisy Baylor, see as their ticket out of action blockbusters and into more serious fare. But to get the juicy details, Griffin needs to win over the stoic and protective Detective Shea. Their attraction is immediate, and Daisy encourages Griffin to use it to their advantage: secure the man, secure the story. Neither man has had much luck when it comes to love, and when their one night together evolves into a long weekend of rapidly intensifying feelings, both Griffin’s fierce loyalty to Daisy and his very career is put to the test.
Because the more Griffin is drawn into a new life with Jim, the more his Hollywood life falls apart. Secrets and broken trust threaten Griffin’s relationships, and he’ll have to choose between telling the truth or writing a Hollywood ending.
Review: Love & Loyalty is the second book in the Faith, Love & Devotion series. Now, while I wouldn’t say you have to read the first one before reading this, I strongly recommend doing so. There are characters from the first book that show up in this one, albeit very briefly.
This story opens up at the ending of a murder trial in which the murderer goes free. Jim, the main character, is a detective. He’s grown very close to the victims parents, and when the verdict is read, he’s devastated. That right there tells me the kind of person this character is going to be: kind, thoughtful and truly affected by the crime he sees every day on the job.
Enter Griffin. He’s a screenwriter from Hollywood wanting to do a movie about the victim and her family. When we see his first meeting with Jim, it was hard for me to wrap my mind around him being a love interest. Jim lives in Seattle, he’s a workaholic and keeps pretty much to himself. I just couldn’t see him with a party-goer from Hollywood, but this author made it work.
I really enjoyed the way these two characters were brought together. Neither one was looking for romance and they both have some issues that were needing to be worked out. For Griffin it was trying to go out on his own and sever the ties that were holding him back. For Jim, it was just to loosen up a little bit and let himself love someone. I loved how the author made the two men slowly come to grips with what was actually happening. It was interesting to see Jim argue with himself about what he was feeling for Griffin and coming to the realization that this was it, Griffin was the one for him.
I was also happy the author showed us the personal growth Jim and Griffin made during this book. Griffin was going through some pretty serious issues, and instead of taking the easy way out and giving up, he fought and did what he thought was the right thing to do. And he did it all by himself. Jim on the other hand, realizes there’s more to life than just work. He makes a life changing decision to actually enjoy life. These two were not the same characters from the beginning of this story. They were so much better, for themselves and each other. We see both characters grow during this story and figuring out what works for them. The dialog between them was realistic in the sense that it wasn’t forced or boring and every word uttered meant something. It was pleasure seeing this, and kudos to the author for keeping it real.
The secondary characters in this story really made it possible for the this story to flow with ease. Ed, the victim’s father, was a very sweet character, but so sad. Jim’s partner Terry, and his wife, Griffin’s bestie Daisy, among others, they all made great contributions to Jim and Griffin’s story and made it much more real.
Overall, this was an amazing addition to Tere Michaels’ Faith, Love & Devotion series. I look forward to reading many more books by this author. Highly recommended.
You can buy Love & Loyalty here: