Rating: 4.5 🌈
Mountains That Move (Kings of Airlie #2) by Casey Cox is another excellent book in this series about a incredibly damaged family of kitesurfing champions known as the Kings of Airlie. The title is true as is the little known adrenaline rush of a sport.
What’s missing from the description is the information I believe certain readers should know prior to picking up this story. It has elements of self harm, a main character’s history of childhood sexual abuse, and other issues that may act as triggers.
It’s realistically described while occurring off page, and the character’s actions and dark emotional state to his decades of trauma are believable and devastating.
Troy King is a haunted, broken man. He’s half of the POV here. One of King family of kitesurfing champions, he’s the second oldest but has bourn the worst of everything his damning family dynamics has created. In silence.
The other perspective, except for one odd section at the end, is Kaide Thompson. Security, former love, long time friend, the man Troy loves and sends away time after time.
Kaide is a window into their past and gives us needed insight into Troy’s actions, wildly swinging emotional state. It makes their dynamics relatable when Troy is heavily into denial. Kaide is layered, and believable. But he’s always going to be not as powerful a personality next to the heart of the story which is broken Troy.
Added onto their highly unstable relations, there’s the increase in threats that pushes the issues as security/client. It also brings up a multitude of past events, eventually.
Cox was fantastic when working on the tormented Troy, his relationship with Kaide , and his family. This story is so full of pain, brutality , lies, all set against the high adrenaline sport of kitesurfing. Cox’s scenes of flying over the waters, and executing those jumps are thrilling.
Honestly, YouTube Kings of Airlie championships for some amazing footage.
The last fourth of the novel is packed with quickly mounting plot lines. Another POV is thrown in unexpectedly, carrying with it a huge amount of information about the family, and specific characters.
It’s who’s this? You’re doing what? They did what? Who’s all these people? What’s all this history? What’s going on? Why is this even being thrown in here? Really? You want me to believe that?
I’m starting to blink with narrative overload here. Because holes start to appear, and I’m asking myself why it’s all necessary to have this density now.
There’s another development that involves the villain, then one of our heroes that frankly makes zero sense.
And it all ends on a cliffhanger.
I’m sort of astonished.
This is a terrific book. It really didn’t need embellishments. Or whatever all that is at the end.
The story of one man’s devastating childhood and his ability to admit and ask for help. That’s beyond everything.
Cox had me at that. That’s why it’s gets the rating. That mess at the end almost had me dropping it.
So I’ll continue along because while it gave some sort of resolution to Troy , there’s still that cliffhanger.
Kings of Airlie Trilogy:
✓ Oceans that Swim #1
✓ Mountains that Move #2
Skies That Burn #3- release TBD
This season, I’ve got a lot to defend…
He’s known as ‘the angry one,’ the middle brother with a chip the size of an asteroid on his shoulders. Trouble seems to follow Troy King wherever he goes. What no one realizes is that Troy’s broody, angsty exterior masks a lifetime of pain, torment, and trauma––and a long-held secret that threatens to tear his already dysfunctional family even further apart.
The only place Troy feels in control is in the water, and this year, he’s determined to win his third world championship title. But that dream gets disrupted by a series of anonymous, online death threats. What’s even worse is that the person called in to protect him is the only man who brings him undone: Kaide Thompson.
Kaide’s mission is simple––keep Troy safe. But Kaide and Troy share a seven-year history. One that takes complicated and messy to a whole other level. Their chemistry is electrifying; their attraction undeniable; their dynamic as magnetic and destructive as ever. But they’ve been down this road before… Twice… And it always ends the same way.
Despite Troy doing everything he can to push him away, Kaide isn’t backing down this time. He’s prepared to do whatever it takes to not only keep Troy safe, but also help him find a way to deal with his pain. Even if it means he’ll have to walk away from the only man he’s ever loved.
To achieve his dream, Troy needs to double down and focus on winning the championship. But with his life in danger, the season spinning out of control, his family more dysfunctional than ever, and a lifetime of secrets simmering just below the surface, will Kaide be there for him when the horrific truth finally comes out?
Kings of Airlie is an exhilarating, action-packed MM romance sports trilogy about love, brotherhood and resilience––with a powerful message that dreams don’t die, they just sometimes change.
Each book in the series has a new love story with a happily ever after. With continuing family and competition plots, the books do need to be read in order.