Reviewed by Dan
TITLE: Ben and Shiloh
SERIES: The Belladonna Arms #4
AUTHOR: John Inman
PUBLISHER: Dreamspinner Press
LENGTH: 216 Pages
RELEASE DATE: October 10, 2016
Shiloh Smart is alone and looking for a fresh start. Convinced he’s finished with love forever, he signs a lease at the Belladonna Arms, a tacky, run-down apartment building situated high on a hill in downtown San Diego.
Determined to turn his back on romance, Shiloh works hard at carving out a life for himself where love doesn’t stand a chance and staying single is all that matters.
Then his drag queen landlord’s nephew, Ben Moss, moves in. Thanks to a rumor Ben has heard since childhood of a fifty-year-old crime and a fortune in stolen money, he sets out to find the loot supposedly hidden decades ago in his uncle’s apartment building.
The minute Ben spots a kilted Shiloh toddling off to work at the Scottish restaurant up the street where he waits tables, he falls hard and fast for the aloof young redhead. Even a hidden treasure can’t compete in Ben’s eyes with the beautiful waiter with the fiery copper hair.
But even while he diligently works to break down Shiloh’s defenses, Ben doesn’t give up his quest for buried treasure. Soon, as their friendship deepens, the two young men join forces in a search for the stolen cash.
As the treasure hunt gathers steam and all the tenants get involved, Ben and Shiloh come to realize the greatest treasure isn’t buried in the Belladonna Arms at all. It’s buried far deeper—in each other’s hearts!
If you follow my reviews, you will know that I just reviewed the first three books in this series last Friday in a Flashback Friday Series Review. If you missed that post, click Here to see those reviews. I really liked those previous stories, but I have to tell you that this current installment is my favorite in the series so far.
We are back at the Belladonna Arms Apartments in San Diego to join the madcap band of characters that Mr. Inman introduced us to in the previous books and to focus on a new couple. Shiloh Smart has been dumped by his boyfriend and is looking for a home. He is Jewish, and had to move all his stuff to his stereotypical Jewish mother’s house when he was dumped. He is quite desperate to find a place, and is happy to find an opening at the Belladonna Arms.
The owner of the building, Arthur, tells him about the love pollen in the air and how everyone seems to end up in a relationship once they move into the building, but Shiloh isn’t having anything to do with that. He is single, hurt, and licking his wounds. No more relationships for him.
But then a big, muscle bound, blond, and hairy young man named Ben from Indiana moves in next door. It is Arthur’s gay nephew come to live somewhere besides the gay intolerant place he grew up. It isn’t long before both young men are smitten with each other, and the story goes on from there.
Before I forget…there is also a treasure hunt going on. A DJ robbed a disco back in the 1970’s when he lived in the building, but was killed days later and the money has never been found. Can the tenants find it? I kept telling the darn characters where the treasure was, but they of course couldn’t hear me…which was very frustrating!
I really liked this book. I highly recommend this installment and its predecessors. They are all feel good, sweet, HEA type books…and the bedroom scenes are realistic from this gay man’s point of view, so I enjoyed them! If you’re looking for a non-angsty read, The Belladonna Arms series will fit the bill.