Sunday, November 15, 2015

Review - Designed for Murder by Avery Flynn

Designed for Murder
by Avery Flynn
Series: Killer Style, #4
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Release Date: November 9, 2015

Devastated after he discovers the woman he loved and his partner in the role-playing game, Magic Battledome, was a psychotic killer, Maltese Security's resident computer genius, SciFi fan and geek-about-town Carlos Castillo retreats into his work. Tossing aside all ties to the Magic Battledome community, he eats, sleeps and breaths investigations. He's determined to prove to the rest of the team—and himself—that he's not all book smart and street stupid. He pleads for a case and finally gets one the boss thinks is right up his alley. Someone is targeting a Live Action Role Playing (LARP) Magic Battledome team, delivering vicious beatings before robbing them of their costumes. To solve the case, Carlos has to dive back into the world he'd abandoned.

Mika Ito loves creativity in all its forms. As a textile designer and a LARPer, she combines her two favorite things by creating costumes for her fellow Magic Battledome elves. But when someone starts targeting her fellow LARPers and the police don't seem to be much help, she hires Maltese Security to solve the case. If a reformed sinner is the most devoted, then a former LARPer is the most rudely dismissive and Carlos Castillo fits the bill. But when they discover that the material she's been using for the costumes has been soaked in liquid cocaine by someone in her supply chain, they must work together to solve the case. Especially now that the bad guy is doing whatever it takes to retrieve the tainted material—including having lethal designs on Mika's life.

Another fast-paced, sexy romance with action and suspense, that also has the trademark snark of Avery Flynn and throws in a bit of dirty talk with the sexy times…all of which make this a great read!

I’ve loved Carlos since the first book in the series – High-Heeled Wonder – and was so excited to finally read his story. He’s not the same man since the events that unfolded in that book, turning his back on his LARP and gaming days and trying to prove himself to the Maltese team that he can contribute more than just being the computer geek they rely on. He’s carrying some major guilt and trust issues around, and when fate lands him back in his former world, you can see his struggle with not allowing himself to get caught up in things and dragged back into that world – a world in which caused him to make a serious error in judgement. Of course his attraction to Mika makes that struggle even harder…

Mika was a great heroine. She’s a spitfire that is hell-bent on protecting those she considers family. She’s fierce and strong, is building her own business, and is very self-reliant. She’s also carrying around a boatload of guilt and self-doubt since she blames herself for what happened to her sister. She seemed to me to be a bit na├»ve at times when it came to trusting others, which surprised me since I thought she would be a bit more jaded and suspicious of people after the incident with her sister.

Carlos and Mika together had some serious chemistry. For two geeks, they certainly could get their freak on when it came to what happened between the sheets, or on the couch, or up against the window. It didn’t take long for these two to give in to their desires – even though it made working the case for Carlos that much harder. And when suspicion is cast Mika’s way and Carlos’ past makes him question her motives, these two seemed destined to never find a happy ever after.

There was a great balance of the romance, heat, and suspense, and I loved the few twists that were thrown in to keep the mystery of the why and the who unclear until close to the end. The fashion backdrop in the world of Harbor City that Ms. Flynn has built is a wonderful backdrop to all of the stories in this series and I love the quotes she uses to head each chapter and seeing how they relate to what is happening in each part of the story.

Another great addition to the Killer Style series that I would recommend to not just romantic suspense fans, but anyone who loves a good mix of romance, mystery, fashion, and fun in their reads.

I received a copy of this book via NetGalley for an honest review.

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