Note: I’m going to come right out and say it. I’ve reviewed Lyn Gala before—because she’s absolutely phenomenal. So this review is going to be totally bias. You’ve been warned. (Okay, I’m sort of joking about this review being a complete fangirl moment. Sort of.)
Detective Miguel Rassin, the precinct’s biggest troublemaker, knows he’s being punished when he gets paired with the precinct’s biggest asshole, Detective Rob Jackson. In an act of either complete brilliance or desperation (or both), the captain blesses the duo with the most sensitive case in this part of New York. Kids are missing and presumed dead, the streets aren’t safe, and you could cut the tension between the residents and the cops with a knife. Not only that, but the captain’s friend, a local shaman, is involved. Nikolai Adelman is the only lead anyone has concerning the missing kids, but he’s not talking. At least, not in a language that Rassin or Jackson can understand. In order to solve this case, and with Jackson guarding his back, Rassin allows himself to get sucked into Adelman’s mysticism, and his better understanding of the shaman changes their lives forever.
This is technically a Mystery, but rather than being a good old fashioned who-done-it, it’s more of the X-Files sort of mystery. The plot isn’t convoluted, but the spiritual odyssey and transformation of the characters are fascinating. My favorite parts concerned the character development. Rassin really grows as a person, and each character was so unique and interesting and believable. They felt real to me. Their joy was my joy. Their pain was my pain.
I’ve mentioned that this was a Gay Urban Paranormal. I didn’t say anything about romance, and I didn’t mention it was explicit. But it is both romantic and slightly explicit, so if you’re into that, no worries. But if you’re not into explicit romances, then I think you’d still enjoy this book. The plot would have remained unchanged if there wasn’t any romantic chemistry between Rassin and Adelman, and the explicit scene isn’t overpowering in any way. I classified it as gay, because while gayness isn’t a super huge part of the novel, there are a few contemporary gay issues explored. Rassin is closeted, but he’s not fooling anyone, and he works on shedding some of his hangups and issues over this throughout the novel.
Check it out, and check out some of Gala’s other works too. Gala has something for everyone. You can’t go wrong.
Goodreads link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/7859755-urban-shaman
B. A. Brock is a reviewer for DSP and QSF. He enjoys reading, writing, running, family and food, and fills his life with bent bunk. He especially loves to discuss LGBTQ+ literature. His website is http://www.babrockbooks.com. You can find him on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/BethBrockBooks.
Dreamspinner Press–Where Dreams Come True… International publishers of quality gay romantic fiction since 2007. http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com
DSP Publications–Off the Beaten Path. Worth the Journey. http://www.dsppublications.com
Harmony Ink Press–LGBTQ+ Young Adult Fiction. http://www.harmonyinkpress.com