A Lila Review: Object of Desire by Dal Maclean

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Disclaimer: If promiscuity, open relationships, or perceived cheating are deal breakers for you, this isn’t your book. 

Rating: 4 stars out of 5

Tom Gray is one of the world’s top models–an effortless object of desire.

Self-contained, elusive and always in control, he’s accustomed to living life entirely on his own terms.

But when Tom comes under suspicion in the gory death of his employer, his world spirals into chaos.

Someone’s framing him. Someone’s stalking him.

And as old secrets come to light, Tom finds his adversary always one step ahead.

Will Foster is the only man Tom trusts to help. But Tom brutally burned all bridges between them two years before, and Will paid a bitter price.

If he wants to survive, Tom must prove his innocence to Will–and to the world.

Object of Desire should not be confused with a romance novel. It is a well-written mix of police procedural and a thriller with romantic undertones. I used the same disclaimer than above when reviewing Bitter Legacy and it applies here quite well. By the way, I didn’t make the connection between the two books until I was done reading. And to be clear, there’s no need to read them one after the other. They just complemented each other.

In this story, we don’t get to see Will and Tom falling in love and having a fairytale HEA. We get to accompany them in their search to uncover the reasons behind the collapse of Tom’s life and are witnesses to all the machinations and actions that resulted in a new path to their worlds. There’s a lot of exposure at the beginning of the story and it doesn’t stop until the end. I would have been happy with a bittersweet ending too.

Dal Maclean knitted a wonderful set of characters with deep backgrounds and interrelations. We are given enough information to make our own conclusions and to switch those conclusions with every new piece of information presented. There’s not one single suspect or lead to followed. It is a complex web of possibilities that keeps the reader guessing until the last minute. Only to have them question if they arrived at the right conclusion.

The plot leads change often enough to make the story engaging. The reader is always trying to figure out if they have the right players and set of events right, or if they have been misled. Trying to figure out the end gets harder with each page, and there’s no way to know until the last part of the story. Anything before that would be wrong, and even then, it’s hard to know if you are correct.

All the descriptions, from clothing, decorations, smells, locations, food, etc. added to the flavor of the story. Cars, traffic, day & time, weather, and many other items make Object of Desire more than a tale and more of an experience. I’m glad to see the author didn’t Americanize this book either. There’s no need to provided comparisons about the two country systems or explain terms or phrases. It makes the whole package credible and authentic. I would love to hear the audiobook to be further submerged in this world.

The characters were marvelous, sophisticated, and intricate.  I do have a sweet spot for Nick and I need to accept is due to the great work the author did to bring him to life. He’s definitely my favorite. At the same time, it was hard for me to warm up to Tom. Which is also due to a great characterization by the author. Unfortunately, it’s the reason why this is not a perfect five stars’ book for me; even if the overall book is stellar. Every other character in between has a purpose, a story, and is more than a generic name on a page. I’m still impartial about Will.

If you are not used to complex books with intense psychological turns, this book can be overwhelming. But, at the same time, it’s rewarding to get to the end to understand how everything comes together. It would definitely make a great TV movie or show. It has the potential to be more than a once read.

The cover by KaNaXa matches the previous book by this author and it has the same issue. At first glance, it’s hard to understand the content of the cover. Especially if looking at a thumbprint. When taking the time, all the elements are present in the story.

Sale Links: Blind Eye | Amazon | Nook 

ebook, 396 pages
Published: May 22, 2018, by Blind Eye Books
ISBN: 1935560549 (ISBN13: 9781935560548)
Edition Language: English

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