A VVivacious Release Day Review: Coin of the Realm by Michael Murphy

Rating: 3 Stars out of 5
Coin of the RealmTimothy is struggling to make ends meet as he tries to put himself through college. When one after the other jobs don’t pan out, Timothy ends up becoming an escort.
Then one day he gets called on to service a high profile guy. But just how powerful is this guy? Timothy is just about to find out how much…
Timothy finds himself in a fairy tale only to realise that every good fairy tale has behind it an equally evil villain.
Coin of the Realm is a pretty straightforward story. It is also quite predictable only because two-thirds of the book is revealed in the blurb itself. The first hundred plus pages of this book basically rehashes everything that you already know if you have read the blurb.
This book is extremely well written and well planned. Time is devoted to every aspect of the story but since a lot of the story progression is revealed in the blurb, it takes some time before the story becomes less predictable and more interesting.
What I liked about this book were its characters Jared, Timothy and Agent Robinson. The characters are fleshed out and since the story spends quite a bit of pages developing the main relationship, it doesn’t feel rushed or implausible. Personally the characters are the best part of this book.
Because of the circumstances most of Jared and Timothy’s relationship is mediated by way of Agent Robinson and Agent Robinson kind of out-shines the MCs at points in this story. I loved Robinson and I loved how hard he works to get Jared and Timothy’s relationship back on track and how he ran interference for these two.
I would have liked a bit more focus on the element of power which was introduced in this story. We are talking about the most powerful man in the free world and he never, even once, wonders if his lover loves him just because of his power. I mean you can view it from a million angles but you can’t just ignore the appeal of power, the fact that power makes people infinitely more desirable than they may be.
During their first encounter there is this palpable air of power that permeates the atmosphere but it is subsequently unrealistically toned down.  I mean I would have liked more awe, much more awe and it would have been nice to see people, kind of, making, a bit of, a fool of themselves around someone with that much power. I mean a little sycophantic behaviour was a definite requirement.
But for the most part of this book the power element is sorely lacking till the person in question ends up feeling just like everyone else, which I agree he is, but it would have been nice to see the reactions of new people meeting him contrasted with the reactions of those who were closer to him. Basically everyone ends up him treating him like just another person and not the most powerful man in the free world.
This absence of power would have been completely okay except for the fact that this book kind of hinges on Jared’s power. Also the fact that Jared is such an admirable human being maybe makes it harder for him to exercise such great power without appearing at least a bit evil. So in other words the author sacrifices power in lieu of Jared’s character development. But truthfully if this element had been explored more this book could have been one of a kind.
I feel like this book has a lot of elements and if justice had been done to at least a few crucial elements this book would have been amazing instead of the sweet one time read it turns out to be.
Cover Art by Paul Richmond. It is a good cover that fits the story.

Sales Links

Book Details:
ebook, 210 pages
Expected publication: August 15th 2016 by Dreamspinner Press
ISBN 1634775325 (ISBN13: 9781634775328)
Edition LanguageEnglish

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