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Sunday, February 28, 2016

Dex in Blue (Johnnies #2) [David "Dex" & Carlos "Kane"] by Amy Lane

Another emotional ride, but not as crushing as the previous one in the series. I liked both Dex and Kane in the previous installment and was happy to get to know them better in this one. I gotta say, these two together are not what you would expect, Dex is a smart guy and I'm not saying Kane is stupid (I might get hit by Dex ;)) but he is "slower" and he doesn't always get social clues (such as sarcasm). Yet they are actually perfect for one another, they somehow complete each other and while a lot of "smart people" look down on "less smart people" Dex isn't like that at all, he saw Kane for who he really is and appreciated his good qualities, dismissing his "bad" ones.. 

The first paragraph of the book got me really confused. But once you get that it's suppose to be so confusing it's okay :) David and Dex have been best friends forever, since they were small kids, but actually there was always something MORE between them. On the first and only occasion they act upon their mutual desire, Dex is killed leaving David shattered. Knowing there is NO WAY he could stay home with Dex's memory as well as the knowledge he is gay he moves as far away as he can and when opportunity strikes he starts working in gay pron at Johnnies. Giving a fake name comes naturally to him - "Dex", his lost best friend, almost lover, and the wild guy who went after the things he wanted unlike David who mostly followed his best friend. 

The story takes place 8 Years later when David (from here on known to us and referred to as Dex) does mostly work behind the camera, editing, using his economics degree (well, almost degree.. he hasn't actually finished his studies..) to make more of Johnnies. Right from the start he and John (the manager of Johnnies) formed a rather close friendship but at the moment they are farther apart as John finds himself addicted to drugs and makes too many mistakes for Dex to accept.. It was interesting getting more about John, I can't wait to get HIS story. On the one hand he built a very special sort of company that though sells, well, PORN, it has a big conscience. I liked that. Yet, the way he has been behaving lately and especially closer to the end of the book puts him on a totally different lighting.. a very gloom and dark one. 

Before I get more into the plot I have a HUGE warning. Have you read the previous installment "Chase in Shadow"? if the answer to that is NO - don't you DARE start reading this book. The story's timeline starts with an interlude to David's past and them moves to the present which is close to the ending of the first installment, meaning you'll get WAY too many spoilers and other points of view you really shouldn't be getting and frankly, it would destroy the book for you because the whole buildup of Tommy and Chase's relationship and how it was formed will be ruined. 

Right around the time "the shit hit the fan" with Chase, it seems that wherever Dex is, Kane appears as well, I didn't really think about it back then and considering neither did the guys I feel better about it ;) Kane have been supporting his sister and his baby niece for a while now, actually though he got into porn for other reasons (better a well paid man-whore than just being used because he is considered one..) but after his niece got diagnosed with cancer it was the best way to keep funding the huge medical bills. Yet once Kane confesses to his sister how he got all the money she kicks him out of his OWN HOUSE. Yeah.. totally doesn't make any sense.. but Kane (his real name is Carlos) wanting his sister and his niece to be as far away as possible from her abusive husband rather keep them in his house and find another place to live, at least temporarily.. The one he goes to is Dex. 

Kane comes with his request at a very stressful night for Dex, the same night he tries to tell Scott (his "ex") they are truly and finally DONE! While helping Dex deal with the situation Kane finds himself staying the night as it is and in the morning Dex has no reason to deny Kane even if it means they will be sleeping together since Kane's reptilian friends take ALL of the spare bedroom, or rather, they take so much the bed had to be taken out..

Carlos never had a girlfriend before, he only had meaningless relationship, mostly "encounters" so he doesn't actually know what to call the sort of relationship he forms with Dex and he sort of misses out all of the clues of Dex falling for him (or HIMSELF falling for Dex..). But Dex, poor sweet Dex, finds himself, AGAIN, in love with someone who doesn't want to be in a gay relationship and yet he can't kick Kane out for too many reasons.. Carlos is the sweetest man! Yeah he isn't that smart, but he compensates for that in how caring he is, especially to Dex. Dealing with Chase and Tommy through their crisis is draining, not to mention everything that is going on in Johnnies, with the secretary as well as John being high way too much for Dex's comfort. Though all of that Kane is there and even though Kane makes a few mistakes along the way, I think that deep down inside Dex doesn't reject him because though he says nothing his actions show just how much he cares about Dex. 

The plot thickens when Dex has to visit his family for Christmas. He is unwilling to leave Kane behind but he also knows that bringing him means either lying or making a scene that will end poorly for him. Carlos makes it easier on Dex when he says - as long as they sleep in the same bed it's going to be okay. So though it wasn't really (okay), it was. I liked how it played, yeah we could have gotten a better "happy ending" with his family, but it was more realistic this way. I think Dex needed this closure and we couldn't have gotten Kane and Dex's story without this piece.   

Dealing with Dex's family isn't enough.. we also get a closure with Carlos' family. I think I knew this is what's going to happen from the start, it was somehow obvious and not only because we got a hint to that through the previous novel (I don't want to say more than that - it's enough as it is..) so though it's a bit strange it was somehow "right" to end this part the way it did. 

Another thing that got addressed which I actually appreciated was what comes next for Dex and Carlos as well as other employees at Johnnies, mostly the ones who are out or are looking for a way out. It was really nice and I can't wait to see how Dex's ideas play out in the next installments.

I really enjoyed this one, truthfully it dealt with a bit TOO much stuff, I would have been okay with a shorter book but I guess the things that Kane and Dex dealt with NEEDED to be addressed so I can't really complain. We got more about Ethan in this book and I really can't wait to get his story he sound like SUCH a sweetheart! :)

Additional Details: Kindle Ebook, 320 pages, 25-27 February 2016 / On GoodReads

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