Dying is easy. New love is terrifying.
Avery Wagner quit ghostwalking when he lost his beloved anchor to cancer. Now teaching others who have the ability, he’s beginning to live again—but he’s not looking for another lover, not now, maybe not ever.
But then he meets Jameson… younger, talented, dedicated, almost perfect, even though his mouth sometimes opens ahead of his brain. And Jameson wants Avery desperately, though he’ll settle for friendship if he can’t have more.
When an emergency demands they work together in the field, Avery discovers just how perfect Jameson is. But he had a perfect love once before, and he’s scared to even consider that he might have a chance at another. Can he trust Jameson with his newly healing heart?
Hey there! I’m Kris T. Bethke, and I’m here to bring a little insight into my latest release, Somebody to Die For. The third book in the Requiem Inc. series and part of the Dreamspun Beyond line.
When I wrote the first book in the Requiem Inc. series, I didn’t actually know it was going to be a series. Writing that first book, though, gave me secondary characters who started screaming for their own story.
Avery Wagner was one character whose story needed to be told.
The challenge with a series is to make each book different. No one wants to read the same story twice, even if they have different MCs. So I needed to find a different angle. And really, once Jameson Parker came into the picture, I knew exactly what the story should be.
Avery had the One True Love. But that doesn’t mean he can’t love again. It doesn’t even mean that the new love isn’t as amazing as the first. But Avery has baggage, and he’s been through a lot. So he had to have a different kind of love this time around.
Ghostwalking is integral to Avery’s life. But he just doesn’t know how much until he’s forced to do it again. With Jameson at his side, the experience is different than when Avery ghostwalked with his anchor and bonded. Jameson is everything Avery needs at this stage in his life. And at the same time, Avery is everything Jameson needs.
I packed this book with some of my favorite tropes: hurt/comfort, age gap, friends to lovers, and new love after loss. But I only used them because they fit the characters I had created and the story that needed to be told. It’s not an easy journey, to be sure. There’s definitely a slow burn going on. And there has to be. Avery has healed a lot since he lost his bonded and husband. But that doesn’t mean he’s ready to jump in with both feet. He and Jameson get off to a rocky start, and it’s just the sort of push they need to get going. First as friends, and then as so much more.
For Jameson, the attraction is instant. He knows the moment he sees Avery that he wants him. For Avery, on the other hand, things progress much slower. He has to come to terms with his feelings for Jameson, and what that means for his heart.
I loved writing this story, and continuing in the world I created. I hope you get a chance to check it out. Somebody to Die For is out now!
Once again, I will say, as I said in the last two reviews I did of the books in this series…I don’t normally read these types of books. And yet, I have enjoyed the world of this series so much. The author created a parallel world to what we live in, giving us characters to care about, and ones to root for.
This one is a bit different than the last two books.
**Side note** In Kris’ guest post she talks about how writing this series, and writing all of the character’s with different stories was important. As I was reading this third book, I had actually been thinking how very different she had made the stories for each of these books. And I’m so glad she did!
This one is different because Avery doesn’t ghostwalk anymore, after his bonded love and anchor died of cancer. His grief was so all consuming the thought of doing it was just too much. Meanwhile, he was slowly falling in love with someone who was in training to be an anchor, with no ghostwalker as a match. Perfect scenario for Avery to freak out…again and again. And he did, and yet Jameson was so patient and loving with Avery, never giving up on him, even when Avery continued to push him away.
A couple things that I really appreciated about this book are often not portrayed in other books. The first…books often have the “I love you” before the end. Now, don’t get me wrong, I love that moment, it makes me so happy. But in the case of this book, it was so appropriate for Avery as he continued to deal with grief and guilt over moving on from his bonded, Luke. Even at the end, (and this is a tiny tiny spoiler) there is a comment about Jameson “staying” with Avery, versus living with him, purposefully so that Avery could get used to the idea. It was exactly what this relationship needed.
Second, the author didn’t write to pretend that Avery’s bonded hadn’t died, and there wasn’t still grief and fear. She wrote Avery as someone who fought against the idea of “replacing” Luke. Yet, the author created a world where it was okay to love again, even as you wonder and question. And it is. Humans need to love, and Avery found the chance again, despite all his efforts to the contrary. The time when Avery goes to his bonded’s cemetary…yeah…I was crying…on my way into work. I need to pick and choose the times when I am reading something I am sure will make me cry much better. 🙂
I highly recommend this series…even if you aren’t necessarily a paranormal fan. It is grounded in the real world, and in real life emotions, and at the heart of it is finding love in all its varieties.
4 pieces of eye candy
Kris T. Bethke has been a voracious reader for pretty much her entire life and has been writing stories for nearly as long. An avid and prolific daydreamer, she always has a story in her head. She spends most of her free time reading, writing, or knitting/crocheting her latest project. Her biggest desire is to find a way to accomplish all three tasks at one time. A classic muscle car will always turn her head, and naps on the weekend are one of her greatest guilty pleasures. She lives in a converted attic with a way too fluffy cat and the voices in her head. She’ll tell you she thinks that’s a pretty good deal. Kris believes that love is love, no matter the gender of people involved, and that all love deserves to be celebrated.
Find her on her site https://kristbethke.com Facebook https://www.facebook.com/people/Kris-T-Bethke/100014524539852 or on Twitter https://twitter.com/kristbethke