TW: homophobia, internal homophobia, machoism (especially in relation to effeminate men), racism, sexual assault, misogyny, forced outing
I'm starting the second book in this series today, so decided to skim through the first book as it's been over a year since I read it. I've added some trigger warnings.
This is not a romance book, so anyone looking for that should go into it knowing that. It is a very well-written cop procedural murder mystery. Kimo makes some questionable decisions during the course of the investigation that I would normally have little patience for, but as he's in the middle of an existential crisis, I can cut him some slack.
This was a thoughtful portrayal of a closeted gay cop in Hawaii forced to come out when a case hits a little too close to home, and all the various consequences of that. There's also background dropped that will be carried forward through the rest of the series, such as the various family connections between the cops and the gangsters, and Kimo's previous encounter with a surf competitor. I found all the reactions to Kimo coming out to be believable. This isn't sugar-coated like you'd read in other stories, but it's not all dire either. Some are okay with it, some are not, others just don't understand or care. The case itself was sufficiently involved to hold my attention without being overly complicated. I'm looking forward to continuing with the series.