And so it Begins… cbr10bingo
So although I’m using this book as my “And so it begins” spot on cbr10 bingo, because it’s the first book in a series, I of course didn’t read it first. I read the second book in the series (reviewed below) first. I don’t what is wrong with me, but it happens like allll the time! Anyway, I’m going to review mostly the characters in these two books because they’re jumbling together in my brain (even though I just finished The Contractors last night), and a bit of the plot, but it’s all going to be together.
Jon Cantrell is the main character. He was a DEA agent, but got fired / blacklisted / whatever after having a dust up with another more powerful agent. We get an intro to his backstory in book 2 (Shadow Boys), but book 1 has the full story. It’s funny because I read the short intro to his backstory in book 2 first, then the whole thing in book 1 second, and I liked the order. I think knowing there was more to the story made it more interesting, even though I did it the wrong way.
So back to Jon – he’s kinda damaged, and so is his partner / sometimes GF / sometimes friend with benefits Piper. They’re each damaged in a different way though. We get a teeny bit into Piper’s backstory, but not much.
Both of these stories revolve around drugs, which I just realized makes sense because of the whole DEA thing! Wow, my intellect is stunning sometimes.
Anyway, in The Contractors, they’re trying to protect a witness who turned state’s evidence against a druglord from Mexico. Rival cartels are after her, contracted DEA agents (who are obvs bad guys) are after her, and even a sheriff. There’s a lot of switching alliances and shootouts in this book, and I’m not entirely sure I got it all straight, but it was at least interesting.
Shadow Boys is about a missing young man on the autism spectrum. There are more drugs, more dirty cops, more shifting alliances, and more Jon / Piper shenanigans.
What I like about these characters is that no matter what’s going on between Jon and Piper romantically (break ups, make ups, hate sex, whatever), they’ve always got each other’s back. It’s not the healthiest relationship, but at least they know they can count on each other to help them not die!
I think there’s another book or two in this series, and although they’re a little convoluted, I like the characters, so I’ll be back reading them again. I think I’d give The Contractors 3.5 stars, and Shadow Boys 4 stars.