4.00 of 5 Stars
For original review see The Prism Book Alliance Blog online
If you adore men behaving heroically and you love historical MM romance pick up a copy of Hunting the Spy by Tyler Flynn and buckle in for the ride.
Nathan Kennett is a proud but bitter and disillusioned man. The son of a wine merchant Nathan views all aristocracy as deceitful and untrustworthy. A view shaped as much by those who treated him with distain in his father’s warehouse and the Duke who first bedded him, then sent him away the morning afterwards with a penny for his trouble. Nathan is a spy catcher. He lives and works in a world of treachery and deceit. Nathan’s latest job is to identify the traitor who is passing English defence secrets to the French. Ensconced in the tiny Kentish fishing village of Deal the last thing Nathan expects is to find is his ex-lover, Sir Peter Ross, crouched over a dead body, holding a pistol in his hands.
Nathan and Peter had a short lived affair that didn’t end on the best of terms. Coming from two different classes Nathan struggled to reconcile his feelings about the aristocracy with how obsessed he was with Peter. He thought Peter was different but in the end Peter ended their relationship with an indifferent air and the cold and callous words “I don’t think there’s any point in our carrying on this relationship, is there?”
Did Peter murder the dead man? Peter claims he is innocent. Can Nathan believe Peter, a part of him wants to, a part of him doesn’t want to see Peter swinging from the end of a rope but can the two men work together to solve the murder. Can Peter be trusted?
Hunting the Spy is Tyler Flynn’s second book, and I loved it as much as his first, Chasing the Rebel. The story is intense from the word go, it’s action packed, full of glorious detail and it had more than enough plot twists to keep my head spinning around.
What I loved most of all though is the relationship between the Nathan and Peter. The story is told mainly through Nathan’s POV. It’s his feelings and emotions we see. What we know of Peter is through what he says and does. Nathan views all aristocracy as callow and untrustworthy, yet his job and his very life involves keeping the status quo as it is. Nathan finds his proximity to Peter difficult to handle. As Nathan spends more time with Peter he struggles to view him objectively. He’s losing his detachment and that could cost Nathan his life.
Peter comes across initially equally as angry and bitter, his flippant attitude hiding his real emotions. As the two men work together to identify the traitor and murderer their relationship, and how it ended, is gradually explained and what became obvious to me, if not to Nathan, is that Peter loves Nathan dearly, he just has no idea how to deal with his feelings or the man himself. Both men bring out the worst in each other, they taunt each other constantly with sarcastic statements and appear on the surface to barely tolerate each other, but it’s all a ruse to hide their true feelings. They are both drawn to each other like moths to a flame. It’s only when Peter is in danger than Nathan finally realizes what Peter means to him. “Only Peter mattered. Sir Peter Ross. Knight of the Realm. His Knight”
I loved Hunting the Spy enormously but the only thing that I couldn’t shake off was the impression that the plot was very similar to Chasing the Rebel. Same scenarios, same type of adversary, same plot twists, just a different situation with different characters, even the ending seemed the same type of ending. That wasn’t an issue for me as I loved Chasing the Rebel but it might become a niggle for some readers, it certainly won’t stop me soaking up more of Tyler Flynn’s work, he’s become an auto buy for me now.