Laying Ghosts by James Buchanan

Laying GhostsLaying Ghosts by James Buchanan
Reviewer:  Tj
Publisher:  MLR Press, LLC
Novel:  123,000 Words
Purchase at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and Smashwords
Roses:  5

Some families are haunted by tragedy. Some people are haunted by their pasts. Some men are haunted by who they are. Joe Peterson is haunted by all three. His parents’ return from their mission, combined with a family reunion, forces Joe’s kin to deal with his new life: out of the Mormon Church, out of the closet, and living with his lover Kabe. When a decades-old murder of a child lands on Joe’s desk, digging into it dredges up long buried truths and festering secrets about folks Joe thought he knew — including Kabe. Joe and Kabe must lay the ghosts of the past and bring closure to a family scarred by loss to move forward in their life together.


This is a continuation of the series Deputy Joe.  Kabe and Joe are settling in to their relationship and still working out the little kinks.  Joe has been assigned desk duty while his knee is still not up to regular patrol.  He is also trying to work with the new lieutenant that has replaced him.  Joe has been assigned to input all the old case files into the database while on desk duty.  While he is doing this he runs across a file for his deceased sister who he was always told drowned and finds that isn’t the whole story.  Joe is faced with this, telling his parents he is gay and living with another man, and lastly bad news about his mother.  On top of this he must face the “kinky” sex he and Kabe have and if it is too much for him.

I have enjoyed this series and how Joe, a devote Mormon, deals with finding the man for him and his excommunication from his church.  Joe dealing with the drama of telling his parents adds another intriguing level to the story.

Joe’s personality is still the same.  He still has to be pretty much forced out of the closet each time.  He would put that kind of news off forever if he could.  He loves his family so much and it really hits home that he may be spurned by his parents because of his sexuality.

Kabe is forever pushing against Joe’s boundaries.  It is the reverse of what you usually see in stories of a Ds relationship.  It is usually the Dom that pushes the Sub.  Joe though fears his own needs and Kabe’s lack of boundaries.  Kabe and he must reconcile that in their relationship to move forward.

I love the interaction between Joe and Kabe.  The two men play well off each other.  They are so opposite and yet to see them work together is the perfection of how two opposites can form a very loving relationship.

The writing in this story is superb.  I think the author has done a very good job of showing so many dynamics in this complicated relationship and Joe’s other relationships.  I enjoyed getting to see more of Joe’s family.  They are a very complex group that show how one family can raise up very individual people.  I think the only issue I had with the writing was the language used.  At times the use of the incorrect language and words by the characters got a little heavy for me.  Even in the narrative it was used and it became, at times, a little hard to follow and repetitious.

This is a very solid read that I would recommend to almost anyone.  I have to give some leeway to those that don’t care for the “rough” sex, though I didn’t think it was too heavy others may disagree.  If you don’t mind a LITTLE kink in your sex I would recommend reading the whole of the series, I don’t think you will be disappointed.



About bluesmokey

I'm a plain Jane who longs to put her imagination to work. I'm not a writer but I like to read.

Posted on Sunday, December 8th, 2013, in Book Review, Contemporary, Five Roses, M/M Romance, Novel: 150 pages and above, TJ and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.


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