Kiss Me by Scarlet Blackwell

Title : Kiss Me                Word Count : 73,817

Genre : Contemporary Gay Romance

Blurb : Dexter is a rent boy falling for his new client. Logan is a homicide cop falling for his rent boy. Now madly in love, Logan discovers Dexter is dangerously in thrall to a gangster whose clutches he can’t escape. When the gangster finds out about the two of them, he targets Dexter’s friend in revenge. The quickest answer is a safe house, but how long will it be safe?

My Review : There are some relationships that are just destined to fail from the very beginning. From the moment Dexter Anderson first met Logan Maden he knew he was in trouble. Dexter has made his living and become somewhat successful by being a high class prostitute. He has his own website and a nice clean hotel room he rents from his friend Michael. Logan is a cop, a detective in fact who seems to have intimacy issues. Dexter is very wary at first, having this illicit illegal arrangement with an officer of the law. 

Dexter soon realized that Logan is everything that he could have wanted and then some. There is a certain innocence and naiveté surrounding Logan and this is endearing to Dexter. Dexter is very attracted to Logan, more than he’s ever been to any of his customers. He finds himself wanting things from Logan, that someone in his profession has no hope at attaining. Logan is very hesitant and distant in their interactions,  but after a few months he starts to open up. Dexter is weak and always so turned on with Logan that he ends up breaking one of his cardinal rules, no kissing. The first time they kiss , Dexter feels himself plunging into the unknown. He tries to keep himself aloof and jaded, but Logan’s kisses rejuvenates a part of him  that has been dormant.

Logan starts pushing for a relationship  and Dexter keeps on pulling back. He is afraid that his life of prostitution will sully Logan’s innocence. Also, there are unsavoury characters in his life that promises to hurt the people who Dexter loves the most. Dexter’s friends beg him to seek help from Logan when Ivan a known hit man continuously hurts him physically. He doesn’t heed the warnings and then it becomes too late.

A tragic story unfolds when Ivan goes to Dexter’s house in a jealous rage and Ivan kills Ennis, his best friend’s fiancé. It is such a heartwrenching set of events and  Dexter shoulders the blame, as well as he should after so many repeated warnings. His best friend Daron who is out of his mind with grief blames him. Logan does some finger pointing of his own, while tampering with evidence so that Ivan can be put away for life. Logan knows that a person’s lifestyle plays a big part in how they are seen by the jury. He is trying to make sure that Dexter’s prostitution doesn’t cause any further repercussions. 

After a hit is put out on Dexter and Daron, they are moved to a safe house. Logan becomes embroiled in the case after he kills a dirty cop to protect  Dexter. His innocence is under the microscope and everybody’s life is turned upside down with no hope of a happy ending. The evidence is looking very dismal for Logan’s  plight when the trial starts. He becomes very bitter when he is left standing by himself with harsh accusations being thrown at his character. Logan starts doubting their love and outright blames Dexter for the whole mess.

Some relationships are too toxic to survive. So many lives have been irrevocably changed and there is no coming back from certain actions. Logan ended up killing Ivan , because of his love for Dexter. Is it really love though, when it destroys someone so completely? Logan ended up in prison and Dexter did a stint  in a mental institution. 

 It’s twelve years after the fact and everyone is still standing like stagnant putrid water. Daron is still grieving Ennis, Dexter hasn’t had the will to move on with his life or become attached to anyone. He is a shell of his former self. When Daron reveals to Dexter that Logan is getting out, he has a bit of a downward spiral. So much loneliness,  desolation and regrets make for a bittersweet reunion for the two men. They have a lot of soul deep purging of anguish and broken dreams that they need to get out. They have a happily ever after. 

I’m not sure how to feel about this one, because I don’t believe that love can conquer all. As bad as I feel for Dexter, I really do believe that he was at the root of all this chaos which ensued and reigned over so many lives.  I think that the others payed a far higher price for his mistakes and to me that is not forgivable. I give this my ratings of 4 – because there are truly flawed characters in real life and even though I don’t believe in their everlasting love,  it’s enough that they believe. 

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