This is my second installment of all Josh Lanyon reads. The reason for this is simple, I love her style and when I find a good one I suddenly decide to binge read one after the other.
If you are a mystery reader and enjoy the M/M genre, Josh Lanyon is a must read. Dead serious. Must read.
The Mermaid Murders
The Art of Murder book #1
Genre: M/M Contemporary Mystery
Publication Date: August 1st, 2010
The Mermaid Murders was exactly what I look for in a Josh Lanyon mystery. The JL books I like are the ones that are true mysteries. I don’t mind if they read like old fashioned cozy mysteries like Holmes & Moriarity, or if they read more like FBI thrillers like All’s Fair. I just know that I want a good length of page, a solid mystery, and two super awesome main characters. I also need wit and humor, obviously. And Romance.
I got all of that in Mermaid Murders. In fact, this book probably had the strongest series start compared to the others. West and Kennedy had great chemistry that manifested itself first in antagonism. West is there to keep his eye on Kennedy, and therefore Kennedy won’t trust him right off the bat or accept his help. You can’t blame the guy, even though West seems nice.
The mystery was interesting, and it was one of the first JL books that I didn’t figure out the whodunit before the end. That’s not an insult, I tend to have a knack for picking out the bad guy early on. I even liked the open ending, knowing that there’s going to be a sequel. (One that I’m eagerly awaiting, btw.)
The only reason that I doubt The Art of Murder series will surpass Homes & Moriarity as my favorite JL series is simply because of the characters. I didn’t mind West and Kennedy, they were sweet, but I effing ADORE Kit and JX. (Tucker & Elliot come in second.) Perhaps that will change with the next book, The Monet Murders (releasing in 2017)…
Rating: = A
The Ghost Wore Yellow Socks Currently Standalone Genre: M/M Contemporary Mystery Publication Date: November 10th, 2014
I’m going to be honest, romantic books less than 200 pages aren’t really on my radar. Usually I need a lot more page time than that, so I generally discredit romance books so short. However, Josh Lanyon just told her fans that she would be working on a sequel for The Ghost Wore Yellow Socks, and that she was doing the sequel because this book won a poll for which book she should turn into a series, or something like that.
It won a poll. That means that a pretty large group of fans voted that this book was the one that should be continued, and that means that it should be pretty darn good and I should read it. So I did.
What can I say about this one… Well, to start, Jefferson Blythe is probably my least favorite Lanyon book but this one would be second to last. It’s not that it wasn’t good, because it was. It had an interesting plot. The setting was spooky, and the suspect list was full of oddballs that helped set the crooked mood. Nick and Perry were interesting characters, and I don’t have a problem with The Alpha and the Twink trope. (Too Stupid To Live is one of my favorites…)
I think the biggest setback I had was that Perry was waaay too innocent. There were far too many moments where Reno reflected on Perry’s youth, and calling him ‘kid’ and talking about how he looked like a child. It was so heavy that when things finally turned intimate between Perry and Reno I was actually turned off. It just felt wrong.
Still, I love Josh Lanyon enough that when this sequel is written I’ll be auto-buying and reading immediately.
Rating: = C
The Haunted Heart book #1
Genre: M/M Contemporary Mystery
Publication Date: May 5th, 2014
What Winter taught me is that I don’t actually want Josh Lanyon to step into the paranormal.
That’s not to say I didn’t like this book, because I did. It also doesn’t mean that she can’t write paranormal, because it was actually decently creepy. I think what I mean when I say I don’t want her to write paranormal is that she’s got such a niche already. Her mysteries are so good that she’s the only mystery author I read. I don’t think she should attempt to dive in with the other paranormal authors. I’m not sure her paranormal was so good that she could compete with other amazing M/M Paranormal authors like Jordan Castillo Price. I also don’t think I want two of my favorite authors competing like that.
It also could be that although there were scenes that were decently creepy, overall the plot of Winter felt weak. That’s rarely something I say about one of JL’s books. Usually the plot is as interesting as the romance. In this case I cared far more about Flynn and Kirk than I did about the ghost. Reading what Flynn was going through after Alan, how he felt, paired with Kirk’s PTSD, that was what made this book as good as it was.
Again, just like The Ghost Wore Yellow Socks the genre complaint isn’t going to prevent me from jumping all over the sequel, whenever it’s released.
Rating: = B-
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