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REVIEW: “Drawing the Devil” by Jon Keys

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ABOUT:

A heart can live a lifetime in eight seconds.

Ever since his father caught him with another boy and threw him out at the tender age of sixteen, Dustin Lewis has been fighting his way up the national bull-riding rankings. He’s on the brink of qualifying for the National Finals when he draws Diablo, a notoriously rank bull—and the ride goes bad.

When bullfighter Shane Rees frees Dustin from the rigging of the same bull that nearly destroyed his face, he comes dangerously close to dropping his guard. Shane knows the potential consequences of being gay in a sport loaded with testosterone-overdosed cowboys, and the resulting scars of mind and body have left him with little self-worth.

Their near-death-by-bull first meeting sparks an attraction that awakens every last one of their personal demons. Yet as the National Finals draws closer, so do they. But they’ll have to overcome emotional highs, near-tragic lows, and bone-crushing danger before love can bust out of the chute.

Warning: Contains man-on-man boot knocking, rawhide and raw emotions, badass cowboys and even badder-ass bulls. This ain’t your old man’s rodeo.

REVIEW:

I hate being disappointed by books.  For me it’s in the same category as buying a bad coffee.

Drawing the Devil has insta-lust, insta-connection, miscommunication, ample amounts of angst despite the characters being together, constant self-deprecating ruminations from both MCs and purple prose like I’ve never seen before.  There’s also robotic, short sentenced conversations – which is my absolute pet hate.

At one point there’s a scene with bloodshed.  Like, whatever – right?  but I can’t tell you how highly, HIGHLY offended I was by the following scene:

Even through the haze of pain, Shane knew Todd needed to be warned.  It wasn’t fair for him not to know the whole truth before he touched Shane’s bleeding wounds.  As Todd’s hand reached out, Shane said quietly.  “Hang on, Todd.  You need to know, I’m gay.  I’m fine.  I’ve been tested recently.  But I wanted you to know ’cause I’m bleeding everywhere.”

What the ever-loving-fuck?  I’m mortified that someone that reads/writes in our genre would even consider something as offensive.  I mean nobody should think that being gay requires an automatic status disclosure; that anyone would equate sexuality with HIV/AIDS is small minded and ignorant.  Ugh.  Now, I know that it could be coming from the character’s POV where he feels like the cowboys in the before-mentioned rodeo circuit are homophobic bigots, but really, he’s just perpetuating the stigma we’d all like to lose.

Other than that humdinger, most scenes unfold exactly as you’d expect and as for the ending – well, you guessed it – it’s OTT with a pretty little HEA.

RATING: 2 STARS

BOOK INFO:

23014983Title: Drawing the Devil
Author: Jon Keys
Publisher:  Samhain Publishing
Pages:  162
Release Date: February 3, 2015
Purchase Links:  Samhain, Amazon, Barnes and Noble

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This entry was posted on March 4, 2015 by in Contemporary, Cops / Cowboys / Military, Reviewer: Sue and tagged , , .

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