Title: Spring Break (Accidental Roots: Book Three)
Author: Elle Keaton
Length: 258 Pages
Category: Contemporary, Mystery/Suspense
At a Glance: Elle Keaton brings the characters of Skagit to life, and shows the support, love and humor that this small town shares.
Reviewed By: Maryann
Blurb: Sometimes a guy needs a break. Carroll Weir got one–but it wasn’t what he expected.
All he dreams of is escaping dreary, damp Skagit, WA, for a warmer climate. Instead, Federal Investigator Carroll Weir is assigned to a cross-agency case involving geoduck smugglers and a very dead Fish and Wildlife Detective.
Sterling Bailey, the regular bartender at the Loft, likes to think of his customers and employees as family since he doesn’t have one of his own. Exhausted and tense, Carroll Weir wanders in one night and one thing leads to another. All in a night’s work, right?
Who murdered Fish and Wildlife Detective Peter Krystad? Does the killer have Weir in his sights? Things begin to heat up between them but Sterling and Weir will have to move past their personal history in order to change the course of their future.
The spark burning between them is hot enough to scald unless they’re careful somebody’s going to get burned.
Review: Carroll Weir, federal agent, is packed and ready to leave the boring life of Skagit for sand, sun and surf. Well, almost… His boss, Mohammad Azaya, calls and tells Carroll to go undercover for the Department of Fish and Wildlife after Peter Krystad, a detective, was murdered. Carroll is teamed up with Krystad’s partner, Thomas Poole, who was working on a case of geoduck smuggling. There’s lots of investigating and late hours in the patrol boat with Poole, as Weir gets wrapped up in his cases—this one isn’t any different—and he forgets to take care of himself.
Wanting time to himself, but not having many places in Skagit where a gay man can go to hook up, Weir finds himself heading to The Loft. The one doubt Weir has about going there, though, is Sterling Bailey. He and Sterling have seen each other around, and talked briefly but never seemed to hit it off.
It’s The Loft’s tenth anniversary, plus Valentine’s Day; Sterling is slammed, and people just keep pouring in. Sterling waits on Weir, and after a while notices that Weir is having a problem. The crowd and noise level has sent Weir into a panic attack, so with the help of his bouncer, Sterling gets Weir to his office where they have a brief encounter. It’s nothing major to either man, but now Sterling has broken one of his rules—no hookups with customers. Days later, returning to The Loft, Weir is not looking all that great to Sterling. He gets Weir fed and Weir shares some personal information about his life.
When Weir is almost killed, it starts a crazy chain of events. Weir thinks Sterling found him at the scene, but Sterling hides a secret. Before Weir is taken to the hospital, he tells Sterling to call Adam Klay. Adam is not a happy camper, being called back to Skagit. He’s still trying to get some time alone with Micah. Thanks to Joey, Sterling has all of a sudden become Weir’s boyfriend, in order to see him. Weir’s going to need someone to take care of him when he gets out of the hospital, and Adam and Micah come up with the perfect solution for them, but not necessarily for Weir and Sterling.
As Weir is recovering, Sterling has to do some serious juggling, and deal with some major family issues. Putting Weir and Sterling together has both men sharing what their lives were like when they were young, and it’s a roller coaster ride of emotions. As the danger escalates for both Sterling and Weir, their perception of the events are looked at differently. When the time comes, both men have to decide if being alone is what they really want.
Spring Break is a very emotional story of two men—one who carries the burden of fault for losing family, and the other who feels he can survive without companionship. Carroll Weir has been a favorite character since the beginning of the Accidental Roots series, and this story really brings out his entire personality. Sterling was a surprise; he’s really nurturing and knows how to take care of Weir.
Elle Keaton brings the characters of Skagit to life, and shows the support, love and humor that this small town shares. The plot itself has danger, action, mystery, money laundering, kidnapping and makes for a page-turner. With each installment, this series has gotten better and better. There are some new investigators who have come on the scene, and a few interesting surprises in the Epilogue-ish final bit of the book. The author has left me curious, as well—I don’t have any idea who will be featured in the next installment.
If you want get to know all the citizens of Skagit start with Storm Season and then No Pressure. And, I absolutely like the cover on this one!
You can buy Spring Break here: