Wind and Dark Water Book Cover Wind and Dark Water
The Guernsey Series, Book 1
J.S. Cook
LGBT, Gay/Bisexual Romance
Dreamspinner Press
March 24, 2020

Disgraced detective Deiniol “Danny” Quirke returns to Guernsey, the Newfoundland fishing village of his youth, to bury his abusive grandfather and dispose of the old man’s empty house. Devastated by the recent death of his beloved wife and mired in an internal police investigation that will likely spell the end of his career, he’s in no mood to reminisce about Auld Lang Syne with the people who made his childhood a living hell.

Secrets Danny thought were buried forever rise violently to the surface when the bones of local boy Llewellyn Single, drowned thirty years before, wash up on the beach. Only two people truly know what happened: Danny Quirke and his former best friend—now bitter enemy—millionaire Tadhg Heaney.

Two things matter to Tadhg: money and his teenage daughter Lily, who is dying of advanced neuroblastoma. When Lily’s estranged mother returns to claim her, the only person Tadhg can turn to is Danny. And when Danny is accused of Llewellyn’s murder, he must ally with Tadhg, who he cannot help but desire, because those who believe he is responsible are looking for revenge.

Available at Amazon.

Reviewed by Xanthe

Member of The Paranormal Romance Guild Review Team

When we first meet Danny, and then Tadhg, it’s clear that there is quite a lot of despair and depression throughout their history. Tadhg was quite a hard character for me to connect to with how he treats others, except for his daughter, the one he would give the world to. The relationship between the two men is very tempestuous, I often found myself shouting at the book. You’re often not sure from one moment to the next how they feel about or will interact with each other. I ended up classing them as best friends to enemies to possible friends to lovers on a full rollercoaster of emotions…. That bring up past hurts and memories along with moments of fun, heat, and reliance on those that mean the most to you.

With regards to the murder mystery aspect of the plot, that really keeps you guessing and has some interesting twists as you work your way through the book. You’re left with the occasional cliffhanger at the end of a chapter which adds an air of tension to the story and between the characters.

There are a lot of secondary characters involved, both past and present. As we get quite a few moments where we go back in each man’s past we are introduced to a variety of people that influence them personally and on the plot of the story. My favorite is Lily, Tadgh’s daughter. With what she is going through, she seems to be dealing well but also has those quite normal bouts of teenage angst and rebellion which add a bit of realism to the story.

So, I found myself struggling with this story a little. Whilst the writing is good, and the author is great at describing the scenes throughout the story, I struggled with the many plot points that became entwined and the timeline jumps.

Overall, I was happy to have read the story, but it was, at times, hard to concentrate/follow with how it moved from one scene and/or timeline to the next. I enjoyed the mystery aspect as it was hard to pick up clues and made you think about the possibilities.