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REVIEW: Corkscrewed by M.J. O’Shea



Cary Talbot has found the perfect mark. Marigold Shelley is filthy rich, and her newly found grandson, Isaac Shelley, is poised to inherit her huge estate, complete with a priceless wine collection. Cary concocts a plan to con both of them into selling the crown jewel of that collection to him at a bargain price. Since Isaac is young, single, and gay, part of Cary’s scheme to get close to the Shelleys includes seduction.

But Isaac isn’t the sheep he appears to be. He isn’t even the grandson he appears to be. Isaac is, in fact, running quite the con of his own.

These two masters of the confidence game are pitted against each other, and both are after the ultimate prize—a chunk of the huge Shelley fortune. It’s only when a third cunning player comes in and is ready to outwit them both that they must band together and beat their opponent or see all they’ve worked for slip from their grasp one ruby-red drop at a time.


Where do I start? I had some serious ups and downs with this book. I liked it and then I would scratch my head at where it was going but then I liked it again and then, well I was lost.

The double con deal sucked me in from the blurb, it’s what made me want to read it. Well that, and I am a fan of the author and have loved everything she puts out. But the story, it was different and not in a good way. Frist, regardless of hair color, I saw Cary as John Cusak from Grosse Point Blank. He had that same kind of roughness and vulnerability that Martin Q. Blank possessed and I adored that about him.

Isaac, or whomever he really is, I had a hard time connecting with. I think because he played so young in his con that I was lost on how he could pull anything off as an adult. That was until he flipped roles a bit, and then I warmed up to him.

Usually, in a story that has a mystery or such as this, I am skimming through it to get to the romance, but this? I was so into the cons that I wasn’t feeling the connection between the boys and their hours of kissing and that is so not me. Once I got to the “good” stuff in this, and not the sex, I mean the cons and things being found out, I wanted to keep reading. The cons, they really are what made these boys come to life, even though I still could not connect to them. I just couldn’t connect and that bugs me. Both Isaac and Cary seemed very shallow, superficial and one dimensional. I want depth in my criminals I guess, is that odd?

This was good, but it’s not my favorite story from the author, as much as I hate saying that. Though I did a search and it wasn’t as many times as I felt like it was used; folks giggled way too much in this story. Giggling is okay but grown men doing it, that often? That doesn’t do it for me. The boys had a connection but it felt rushed and well, argh – rushed – I can’t put my finger on just what felt off, when it felt off… again, the ups and downs I was talking about were constant with this story. I had a theory about the big secret early on and was right about it. I thought it would be a huge deal and it wasn’t and then the end? I am feeling let down by it. I don’t know if there is more planned with these boys but the end left me cold. I wanted more, maybe an epilogue to let me know how things are but what I got, personally, wasn’t enough.

Corkscrewed, had great potential, but it just didn’t work for me.




CorkscrewedTitle: Corkscrewed
Author: M.J. O’Shea
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Pages: 200
Release Date: December 1, 2014
Purchase Links: Dreamspinner, ARe, Amazon, B&N

About Sara

I'm a runner, a reader and a vegan food eater. I practice yoga and meditation. I live in a house full of boys and rescue dogs. I really need a vacation.

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This entry was posted on January 3, 2015 by in Contemporary, Mystery / Suspense, Reviewer: Sara and tagged , , , .

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