Reviewed by Kat
TITLE: Open Case
SERIES: Open (book #3)
AUTHOR: Mickie B. Ashling
PUBLISHER: Dreamspinner Press
LENGTH: 200 pages
RELEASE DATE: February 3, 2017
Sequel to Open House.
Seth Wilder and Bryce McFarland deal with the aftermath of Owen Lightfoot’s destructive rampage. Once again, the insurance company denies the life insurance benefit despite the compelling evidence regarding the underlying cause of Mark’s death. However, they acknowledge their former employee’s complicity in the multiple crimes that have blindsided Seth and Bryce. They settle to keep their name out of the news, offering the couple a million dollars apiece, which they accept.
Owen learns of the big payoff and is determined to get his cut. Just when Bryce and Seth think it is all over, Owen reappears, and what follows tests the very limits of their endurance. Through the help of friends and relatives, Seth and Bryce find the strength to keep their relationship intact while seeking out the best way to stop Owen once and for all.
I have been waiting to see where this series went next. I knew that Bryce’s ex, the scum that he is, couldn’t possibly leave our two lovers alone and I was right.
Seth and Bryce escaped with their lives in “Open House” but Owen getting away with arson, twice, and escaping the police wasn’t enough for the low life. He believes that he had his life ripped from under him when he didn’t get the big payoff that he expected. Now he was on the lam and those two have to pay. He is so arrogant that he just expects the men to roll over for him. What he didn’t expect was for his ex-college lover to settle down with the love of his life and fight back. He also didn’t expect the wimpy little romance author to step up to the plate when challenged. But Bryce and Seth have had enough of the city life and Owen’s threats. They want to move to the peace and quiet of South Bend, Indiana to be closer to Bryce’s sister and her family and safe from the crazy lunatic that is stalking them. But Owen just won’t give up! “Open Case”, next book in the series, deals with how these two brave lovers band together and fight back for the sake of love.
I knew that Owen was deranged and a psychopath but I didn’t see him resorting to the level of violence that he did in this book. He is brutal, deadly and self-serving at anyone’s expense. The problem was that I was getting a bit tired of him and wanted more of Seth and Bryce’s story and future. The trouble with Owen was that he took up a huge portion of this book and I wanted, no needed, more of the men and their budding relationship development. This particular book in the series was pretty rough and gory in parts.
I was thrilled to see Seth continuing to grow and explore the person that he could be and the personality that had been stifled by his dead husband Mark. He has become stronger and more decisive in both his actions and his sexuality. I love that he and Bryce both encouraged his cross dressing in lingerie. He also became a bit more aggressive and commanding in the bedroom. Something I never saw coming.
I did love the interaction between both men and Bryce’s nephew Kyle. Kyle is a football player at Norte Dame and is questioning his sexual orientation. It was good to see Bryce step up for his family. And Bryce’s sister, Kate, was a very special part of this book.
I had not realized that this is a spin-off series from the Horizon’s series until names started popping up at the post Thanksgiving dinner. I don’t think it is necessary that you read that series, because I have read this full series and was not in the least confused, but I am going to check it out next.
I have to say that the Epilogue redeemed this book for me. I’m not going to say what happened, but it was wonderful. I am just hoping that this is book is not the end of the series because I felt like there were way to many things left in the air. Not my favorite in this series but a good read. Just expect some rough scenes.