Reviewed by Alexander
TITLE: Hell on Wheels
SERIES: Bluewater Bay series book 3
AUTHOR: Z.A. Maxfield
PUBLISHER: Riptide Publishing
LENGTH: 6 hours, 55 minutes
NARRATOR: Nick J Russo
Nash is the reliable one in the Holly family, the guy everyone counts on to keep things going. His genius twin brother is off at university, so Nash runs the family’s auto repair business and cares for his partially-paralyzed little sister while his crackpot father invents. His life seems mapped out for the foreseeable future, however much that might chafe.
So when Wolf’s Landing actor Spencer Kepler-Constantine lands in his life, Nash is ready for a diversion. Spencer is in the middle of a very painful, very public divorce and isn’t ready for a relationship – not that Nash wants one. But they both need a friend, especially one with benefits.
As they grow closer, Nash starts to see his family in a whole new light. Do they really need him so badly? Or does he simply need to be needed? Then Spencer’s ex reappears with a grand romantic gesture, and Nash has to figure out what he wants – and how to get it – before Spencer’s gone for good.
Two books in and I am hooked on the Bluewater bay stories. They are all standalone novels set in the Pacific Northwest, and can definitely be read in any order.
I really liked Spence and Nash, they had chemistry and fit together really well. Their relationship began innocently enough, and developed at a natural pace, fraught with challenges such as the paparazzi, and Nash’s devotion to his family. It came as no surprise to me that Nash and Spencer weather these outside forces simply because their characters were well developed. As a key part of that very development is the fact that they were far from perfect, each exhibiting flaws and moments of bad judgement, just like you and me.
It is easy for a large cast of secondary characters to take over a story, simply by virtue of there being so many of them, like Ace, Bast, Tick, and so on, but here was a case where the secondary characters did their part to support the MCs and advance the plot without being a distraction.
As good as Russo was in the first two books, he truly excelled in Hell on wheels. His vocal characterization a were diverse, consistent, and believable and because of that, my enjoyment of the story was propelled higher than I anticipated. Russo’s portrayal of Spencer’s British accent was well done, he portrayed Nash perfectly, bringing out the funny, devoted, sensual, and sometimes hurt that Maxfield was aiming for. The many secondary characters were also performed with skill and as a result, I couldn’t imagine Hell on Wheels without Russo at the helm.