Title: Double Blind by Heidi Cullinan
Special Delivery Series Book Two
Publisher: Samhain Publishing, Ltd
Genre: Contemporary, M/M, Romance, Red Hots!!, Kink/BDSM
Length: Plus Novel
Book Rating: B
Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Author
Know when to show your hand…and when to hedge your bets.
Special Delivery, Book 2
Randy Jensen can’t stand to just sit by and watch as a mysterious man throws money away on the roulette wheel, especially since Randy’s got his own bet going as to the reason this guy is making every play like it’s his last day on earth. The man’s dark desperation hits Randy right in the gut. Half of him warns that getting involved is a sucker’s bet, and the other half scrambles for a reason—any reason—to save the man’s soul.
Ethan Ellison has no idea what he’s going to do with himself once his last dollar is gone—until Randy whirls into his life with a heart-stealing smile and a poker player’s gaze that sees too much.
Randy draws Ethan into a series of wagers that leads to a scorching kiss by midnight, but he isn’t the only one with an interest in Ethan’s vulnerability. Soon they’re both taking risks that not only play fast and loose with the law, but with the biggest prize of all: their hearts.
This book has been previously published and has been revised from its original release.
Product Warnings: This story contains high-stakes poker, gangsters with a weakness for kittens, foursomes, and kinky consensual sex.
Set amongst the bright lights and sheer decadence of Las Vegas, Heidi Cullinan’s Double Blind is a captivating story of redemption for lead protagonists Randy Jensen and Ethan Ellison. It is also a breathtaking love story that is full of down and dirty sex and surprisingly tender emotions between our two über stoic heroes.
This second installment in the Special Delivery series begins about two years after the first book ends and this time, it is Randy’s turn to find love. Randy is an expert poker player but it is his uncanny ability to read people that is the true secret to his success. Accepting a bet from his friend (and former gangster), Crabtree, Randy approaches Ethan just as he loses the rest of his money on the roulette wheel and when these two make a wager between them, they set off for a little fun, a la Vegas style which of course includes innocent sightseeing, LOTS of booze, gambling and if they’re very lucky, some seriously hot sex.
Ethan is coming off a bad break up that did a real number on him emotionally and financially. With literally nothing left to lose, he accepts Randy’s offer to stay with him while he figures out what he is going to do next. He veers between the highest of highs and lowest of lows, and Randy is unexpectedly good at helping Ethan find middle ground. With Randy’s (unwitting) help, Ethan receives a job offer from Crabtree to help bring Herod’s (the casino where he and Randy met), back from the brink of financial ruin.
Surprisingly enough, Randy is the bigger mess of the two men and he is going to have to get up close and personal with his own demons if their relationship is going to have a chance of surviving. Mitch and Sam come back into his life for an extended period and while their appearance certainly complicates things, they also help Randy get his head on straight on more than one occasion.
The sexual attraction between Ethan and Randy is pretty darn hot right from the start and their first kiss is over the top SEXY. While their sex scenes are undeniably erotic, Double Blind is nowhere near as kinky as Special Delivery. There are a few light scenes with BDSM elements and of course Sam and Mitch are always ready for a little group lovin’, but a lot of their scenes fade to black or take place behind closed doors. But somehow less sex really works in the story and I really felt the emotional connection between all of the characters, not just Ethan and Randy.
Superb location, fascinating characters and super steamy sex scenes make Double Blind an outstanding read. All of the characters grow and mature and become more at peace with their pasts. Heidi Cullinan takes everyone (including the readers) on a bit of an emotional roller coaster but in the end, it is completely worth all of the turmoil.