Book Reviews

Floodgates by Mary Calmes at Dreamspinner Press

Genre Gay / Contemporary / Officers of the Law / Romance / Mystery/Suspense/Thriller
Reviewed by Christy Duke on 02-April-2014

Book Blurb

Tracy Brandt considers himself a lucky man. He has a wonderful family, good friends, and a dependable job. His love life, however, features a cheating ex who, though out of the house, is not yet out of the picture—with a past that just might get Tracy killed.

Homicide inspector Cord Nolan wants nothing more than to show his best friend’s little brother that he’s a reliable man, but to do that he’ll have to get Tracy to look past the player he used to be. It'll be a tough sell; reputation is everything, and Cord's is tarnished by his past indiscretions.

Tracy and Cord have spent five years trying to suffocate their fiery attraction under a blanket of grudging antagonism. When Tracy finds himself with a target on his back, Cord finally has the chance to ride to the rescue and break through the dam of Tracy's reserve. But he’d better be careful: if Cord is breaking the floodgates to wash away the past, he's going to have to hold tight to Tracy to make sure they're still standing when the tumult recedes.


Book Review

'Floodgates' begins with a bang. Literally. I'm not sure that I've ever met another main character who has so many people/problems/issues hanging on to them as Tracy Brandt. First there's his older brother, Alex, who is an agent with DEA. He's not a problem, per se, he's just an overprotective sibling. Second, there's Tracy’s business partner, Dahmir, who Alex swears is part of the Russian mob, but since Tracy does the books for their business he knows that isn't true. Third, there's his ex-boyfriend, Breckin, whom Tracy found having sex with another man, and they've been broken up for four months. And, last, but not least, there is Cord Nolan, Alex's former partner in the San Francisco police department, and bane of Tracy's life. Did you get all that? Whew. One of the many things that I enjoy, so much, about Mary Calmes’s writing is that I'm never bored. That must be part of the reason she is an auto-buy in my home.

As you can imagine from my introduction, Tracy has recently led a somewhat exciting life. Not by choice, however. After getting hit over the head with a baseball bat in a club bathroom, Cord shows up in the hospital to speak with him. Turns out that Cord, in the course of a homicide investigation, was just interviewing a woman, Celia, who experienced the exact same thing. Funny thing about that? When asked whom she thought might want to hurt her and her unborn child, she named Tracy. Why? Oh, this is classic. It would appear that the ex, Breckin, has been a busy boy, since he's the father of her child. Why am I telling you all of this? Well, it's funny. Not so much in a funny, Ha-Ha way, but more like a funny, oh holy crap way. And it shows how crazy weird Trace's world is right now. More importantly, though, it indicates a link between Tracy, this woman, and Cord's murder victim, straight back to Breckin. In a bizarre and weird twist of fate, Cord makes arrangements for himself, Tracy, Celia, and Breckin to all go and stay at Breckin's parents’ home in hopes of drawing out the killer/stalker. So now Cord and Tracy are placed in close quarters contact with Breckin and Celia masquerading as a married couple for Breckin's parents. If it weren’t so life threatening it would be a comedy skit.

Five years of dancing around their attraction is too long without some resolution between Cord and Tracy. Tracy has always viewed Cord as the one-night king, but he's changed and what he wanted then and what he wants now are two different things. Now he wants Tracy in his life, permanently, Cord just has to convince Tracy that he means it. It doesn't take long for Tracy to realize that the brush he painted Cord with all those years ago, and still does, is ready to be retired and put down. Tracy just has to be willing to make the leap and trust his heart.

"Yes, I had loved Breckin Alcott, and if he hadn't cheated the second time, I might even have forgiven him. The man had been a gift, someone I thought I'd never have being simply me, plain, ordinary Tracy Brandt. But the tucked-away dream, the one covered under layers of denial and banter and indifference, was this, was him: Cord Nolan."

Another wonderful story by the indomitable Mary Calmes. I really enjoyed the interaction between all of the characters and the author wrote some great dialogue. Besides the characters I've mentioned, there were other additional people, and if they'd not been there, the story wouldn't have been as good. I adored both Tracy and Cord and would love to see more of them. Thank you, Mary, for giving me another favorite to love.





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Additional Information

Format ebook, print and audio
Length Novel, 234 pages/71040 words
Heat Level
Publication Date 03-March-2014
Price $6.99 ebook, $14.99 paperback, $14.99 bundle, $19.95 audiobook
Buy Link