Saturday, December 31, 2016

Dark and Dazzling by Elizabeth Varlet

Dark & Dazzling
by Elizabeth Varlet

My rating: 3 stars

Publisher: Carina Press (November 1, 2016)
Publication Date: November 7, 2016
Genre: Gay Romance
Print Length: 261 pages
Available from: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Z doesn't need a hero…

Azariah "Z" Hayes is a diamond. Equal parts strength and sparkle, he's more than capable of standing on his own stilettos. So if waiting tables and stripping at The Vibe are what it takes to keep a roof over his head, well, there are worse ways to earn a living.

Connelly is a white knight with a badge…

For NYPD detective Connelly Reid, to serve and protect is just another day at the office—even if that means protecting himself from his own true desires. He's been curious about Z, his waiter, for months, but it's not until he sees him in his makeup and heels that the curiosity becomes a fierce attraction. Z, despite all his over-the-top dazzle, might just be the man Connelly has been waiting for his entire life.

But when Connelly investigates underground porn and drug activity with ties to The Vibe, one thing becomes very clear—acting on what he knows is going to hurt Z, financially and emotionally. And though Connelly would love nothing more than to fix all of Z's problems, no amount of mind-blowing sex can make Z comfortable becoming dependent on his lover. Yet if there's one thing Connelly knows from his years on the force, it's this: when things go bad, you n
eed a trusted partner to have your back.  

Dark and Dazzling by Elizabeth Varlet

Dark & Dazzling (Sassy Boyz, #2)Z has grown up in the school of hard knocks. He will do what he needs to to survive. More comfortable dressed in heels and full make up, he is flamboyant, flashy and tough. Stripping by night and waiting tables by day, he found himself attracted to one of the regulars at lunch time.
Connelly is a detective, a knight with a gold badge, rugged, tough and few know he is gay. He makes a point of eating lunch at the same restaurant just to see the waiter who seems to light up the room whenever he is there. A tri to a gay bar shocks both his heart and his libido when he sees Z on stage, in full make up oozing sexuality.
Elizabeth Varley has created a true romance. It doesn’t matter if the characters are both male, they have a connection that rarely comes around for anyone. Z also has baggage, tons of baggage and refuses to believe that Connelly, all things masculine on the outside could really want him. Will they get off the merry-go-round they are riding with their dizzying romance? Can Connelly convince Z they are meant for each other?

DARK & DAZZLING is a wonderful romance, erotic scenes are filled with the feeling of passion between Z and Connelly. Z is like a kaleidoscope of both personality and color, but he is damaged. Connelly seems tentative to risk his heart openly, but determined to save another soul. For me, the romance is very well-written, very emotional, but I some trouble with Z’s character, why did he feel more himself in makeup and heels? He was a strong character and his dress seemed out of place to me. Also, his relationship and falling into the beta role with Connelly didn’t ring true to me. Yes, Connelly has a very alpha personality, but Z seemed the stronger of the two. In the end, Ms. Varlet’s romantic writing is wonderful, but the characters fell just shy of the perfect couple and Z seemed to be a cliche.

I received this copy from Carina Press in exchange for my honest review.

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