Rating: 4.75 🌈
Temporary Partner by Nicky James is an excellent law enforcement mystery that’s has elements of a romance to it. It’s the first of a two part series, Valor and Doyle, featuring Ontario detectives from different departments, often units that see each other as departmental rivals.
Quaid Valor is a Detective with the MPU, that’s missing persons. He’s following the career path of his recently retired father, a decorated detective from the same unit. The tight-knit Valor family of two is a knot of familial love, ingrained police laws and regulations, and a sadness that’s explained as the storylines enlarge.
Quaid himself is full of complications, lonely, burdened, consumed by job and family. He’s undeniably an incredible character.
Aslan Doyle is his counterpart. A excellent detective but in Homicides. Both men queer and out at work but Aslan’s ,bi , very casual outlook on sexuality as opposed to Quaid’s , who’s gay, ongoing issues with his ex make them diametrically opposed. Especially when Aslan’s attitude carries over into work.
They’ve worked together before, successfully professionally. Privately? That harder.
But a shortage of personal , a heartbreaking case with a tight time frame to close it, and a order from their superiors brings them together.
James creates a truly puzzling, heartbreaking case. That of a stolen infant, then proceeds to build a huge investigation around it, with a ticking clock. There’s superb and tedious leg work, lines of questioning that appears to have no results, more data to analyze, small victories that fade, and a fantastic, mesmerizing relationship that’s trying to establish itself between two prickly, damaged men who have trust issues.
The POV alternate’s between Quaid and Aslan, often as the men despair, feel they have it, only to realize, they need another direction. It all feels raw, anxious, heartbreaking, and painful.
Even the ending, when it arrives, is not without, some realistic elements, that have you really looking at everything that’s happened here. There’s no HFN even. But there’s a solution to this case. It’s solved.
It’s up to the reader as to how you think about it.
As to Aslan and Quaid? Book 2 , Elusive Relations, is due out July 25, 2022.
I’m eagerly awaiting their return and the new case that will surely bring them back together again.
This is a wonderful story. If you love mysteries, law enforcement tales, with the promise of a romance, grab this right up.
Outstanding characters, fantastic storylines, and a realistic ending.
Valor and Doyle:
🔹Department Rivals: A Valor and Doyle Prequel #0.5
🔹Temporary Partner #1
🔹Elusive Relations #2
Can two rivals work together to solve a case?
When an infant is taken from his carriage in broad daylight, missing persons detective, Quaid Valor, must race against the clock to find the child and bring him safely home to his family. Unfortunately, Quaid’s partner isn’t available, and his team is spread thin. Begrudgingly, Quaid must accept the help from his rival, homicide detective Aslan Doyle, if he wants to get the job done.
Aslan is Quaid’s opposite in every way. He’s bold, outspoken, arrogant, and the office playboy. And much to Quaid’s chagrin, Aslan seems to have set his sights on Quaid as his next conquest.
Quaid doesn’t have time to deal with Aslan’s flirty behavior when he’s trying to solve a case and juggle his cheating ex’s incessant interruptions.
It doesn’t matter how attractive Aslan is or the undeniable chemistry they seem to have. Getting involved with Aslan would be a huge mistake.
But as tension with the case builds, Quaid keeps forgetting he’s supposed to hate this new partner. Maybe Aslan is exactly the kind of distraction he needs.
Temporarily at least.
**Temporary Partner is the first in the Valor and Doyle Mysteries. Please view any trigger warnings by using the Look Inside feature**