I admit to being disheartened at first when this story wasn't a direct follow up to Nick and Anthony from the first book in this series. While we do get some glimpses and hints of their continuing story, the focus here is on fellow cop Brian and his boyfriend James, who is not all that he appears to be.
I figured out the whodunit part pretty quickly, but even then it wasn't a case of "it's so obvious how are these people not figuring it out for another 20 chapters" and more a case of I'm just that suspicious and jaded that's where my brain instantly went and nothing that happened after that convinced me to change my mind. The author did manage to trick me about another reveal, but I don't want to say too much more about that so as not to spoil anything.
As for Brian and James, I had a real hard time getting into that aspect of it. Because, well, I'm just that suspicious and jaded. :P I'm not the most trusting person, and I'd have been questioning James's motives for getting involved with Brian the instant we found out who he actually was, and yet Brian never does that. I also had a hard time buying that Brian was about to dump James because of James constantly stringing him along, yet the instant he finds out about James's involvement in the case, that gets put on the back burner. Because all of a sudden finding out he's a drug dealer, a gambling addict and a murder suspect makes him a keeper? Nah-huh. I'd have cut him loose so quick, he'd have gotten whiplash. I did think Brian's guilt and conflict in regards to James and their relationship and the case were very well-written and among the best scenes in the book, but I was just never really convinced why Brian would put his neck out there like he did. Great sex can't really be that important can it? I don't get it.
So why four stars? I just really enjoyed it. It was good, angsty fun, if frustrating at times.