Read All or Nothing by James Buchanan Online

all-or-nothing

Blundering his way forward in his relationship with Nevada Agent Nick O'Malley, Riverside Detective Brandon Carr brings his daughter, Shayna, to Las Vegas to meet Nick. Nick has his own reasons for pushing Brandon toward a deeper commitment. But when the unthinkable happens, what every cop knows ends in tragedy, can Brandon hold it together long enough to solve the crime?Blundering his way forward in his relationship with Nevada Agent Nick O'Malley, Riverside Detective Brandon Carr brings his daughter, Shayna, to Las Vegas to meet Nick. Nick has his own reasons for pushing Brandon toward a deeper commitment. But when the unthinkable happens, what every cop knows ends in tragedy, can Brandon hold it together long enough to solve the crime? As Brandon spirals into the hell of being a cop and a distraught parent will his love of Nick, and Nick's love for him, be enough to see them through? It's all or nothing and they can't afford to lose....

Title : All or Nothing
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9781608201501
Format Type : ebook
Number of Pages : 350 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

All or Nothing Reviews

  • Rosa, really
    2019-06-03 19:49

    Another book I finished 1,046 years ago. Um...hm. Okay, I really liked the way Buchanan wrote this one. Brandon really grew as a character and I ended up feeling good about his relationship with Nicky.Excellent wrap up to the trilogy.

  • Lauraadriana
    2019-06-17 17:54

    3.5 StarsThis was the last installment of the Taking the Odds series. Brandon and Nicky (mostly Brandon since Nicky has been on board with that plan since Book #1) are trying to become more serious in their relationship and VERY SLOWLY Brandon is warming up to the idea of commitment. Since he was outed in the force, and the world didn't end he is contemplating honesty for a change.At Nicky's encouragement he takes a big step by reconnecting with his daughter Shayna, and brings her to Vegas to spend a week with him and his best friend Nicky.Brandon struggles with having Shayna and Nicky together, but is taking baby steps. Suddenly something terrible happens and Brandon's life descends into a HUGE nightmare. This crisis pushes Nicky and Brandon to the brink. With family around, it gets harder and harder to hide what they are to each other and as always Brandon's first instinct is to lie and freak out, even if he does love Nicky as much as he does.The mystery in this novel was intersting, it was kind of predictable, but good. My issue was that it completely absorbed the story, after two books of Brandon shuffling between what he felt, and all his baggage I expected this book to have a lot more of them reaching a balanced place in their relationship. That happened in some ways, but the situation was so FUCKING MIND BENDINGLY stressful, it was NO FUN.So overall I think this is a good series, Brandon, and specially Nicky, are really great characters, I just wanted a little less drama in this last book, so that I could have some resolution. I guess there is "resolution" in some ways, but I'm a greedy bitch, and I like to actually SEE the picket fences and romantic evenings in front of the fireplace after two books of "Hot and Cold", 'in the closet' drama...Is that too much to ask DAMMIT?!I still recommend though, it's good. I just wanted a bit more happy.

  • R * A Reader Obsessed *
    2019-06-07 20:33

    At the center of this series, it has always been about Brandon and his fear of revealing his true self - and how that affects every aspect of his life, especially his relationship with Nick. Despite his best efforts at resisting, Brandon has survived several reveals, and to his surprise, his world did not implode into utter devastation. However when his worst nightmare comes true, will he and Nick be strong enough to withstand the possible horrible outcome?Understandably, due to the serious situation of this entry, the gratuitous smex takes a backseat. In turn, a spotlight shines on how much these two click out of the bedroom that makes it just work everywhere else, especially as they wrestle with their own guilt, terror, and doubts. Because of that, despite being pushed to their very limits, they do weather the horror and come out stronger.Overall this was a decent series with a mixed bag of crime solving mystery, suspenseful action, eyebrow raising hot smex (with some bdsm that's heavy on the B), and lurve. One of these things should catch your interest, if not all of them.Ingela, Otila, Rosa, Sofia, and Taintedskyee - loved the company as always!!

  • DaisyGirl
    2019-05-29 20:57

    4.0 StarsHoly toledo. This one was intense. I loved it, but it was stressful. A good GR buddy of mine was kind enough to warn me ahead of time that this book dealt with (view spoiler)[child abduction (hide spoiler)]. Whoa. That is some heavy sh*t. I can't imagine a worse nightmare for a parent. That theme has the subtlety of a huge, wet, stinky blanket. The positive: the gloves and masks come off. No more pretenses. Who has the time? Or the energy? The negative: ugh, I can't imagine a lower low. Everything is surreal and the decisions one makes during such a stressful time can be ... well, off. I can't say more without giving stuff away but suffice it to say that JB tackles another SUPER HEAVY topic. The whole made for a toilsome and - frankly, at times - depressing tale. True to form, however, JB delivers the goods in the end!Bottom line: a stressful and ominous tale but oh, so very worth it.

  • Nichole (DirrtyH)
    2019-05-20 20:57

    Per my agreement with James Buchanan, which was implicit when she started to write books that I could not put down, she is contractually obligated to continue writing this series until she dies of a record breaking old age.This book was definitely not without its flaws, not the least of which being that the "whodunnit" was glaringly obvious before anything was even "dun". There were also things near the beginning that had me rolling my eyes, although I could not tell you what they were now. I was completely sucked in to this story.I adore Nicky and Brandon and this story, while totally gut wrenching and even, in places, nearly tear inducing (which for me and my stone cold heart means most people will probably be sobbing), was a really great installment in the progression of their relationship. I have never read another story where the word "bitch" was such a heartwarming term of endearment.And oh my gosh, I love Brandon's stepmom! He always made her sound so awful but she's wonderful. If I didn't already have a mom I'm perfectly satisfied with, I'd want her.So basically, while I don't have empirical proof, I can only assume JB intends to write at least another book in this series because I feel like Nicky and Brandon are just getting started. I will be waiting for it very impatiently.

  • Nikyta *Miss Forgetful*
    2019-05-30 18:44

    Hands down, the best out of the series, IMO. While I loved the first two and how Brandon was working through his problems with being in the closet, they just had too much sex for my liking. This one, though, this one had just the right amount of hot, rope tying sex but also more suspense to it than the others. I loved it. Brandon, while still an asshole at times (but, you know, who can blame him? His daughter was just kidnapped!), he didn't act like the douche bag he was in the previous two books because he's more or less out in this one and he just doesn't give a shit anymore because what's there to live for if his daughter is dead? Nicky, sweet Nicky *sigh* I still love him. You see a kind of whole new side to him in this one with him trying to appease Brandon and get him to start thinking clearly and everything. He gets thrust into having his house invaded by Brandon's family so he has to be on his best behavior but also because Brandon puts him into certain situations that make Nicky evaluate what Brandon is to him and instead of leave Brandon like anyone else probably would, he stays and helps Brandon get over his temporary insanity.I pretty much knew who the kidnapper was from the beginning but I wasn't absolutely positive until about the 60% mark. There were a few WTF moments of me screaming at my kindle asking it why they didn't just do it this way or that way but that's pretty much the norm for me when it comes to suspenseful mysteries. Other than that, I immensely enjoyed it and I hope there will be more of Brandon and Nicky to come especially since I'm curious as to whether the rift between Brandon and his dad will ever get settled and how Shayna does months down the road after her kidnapping to see if she's healing or not and how Brandon and Nicky are settling in as a live-in couple. I definitely recommend this series.

  • Jenre
    2019-06-04 21:01

    This is the third book in James Buchanan's Taking the Odds series. A word of warning: You could probably read this book as a stand-a-lone, but to get the full benefit of the character development and an understanding of the situation the two heroes are in, you really ought to read the first two books in the series, Cheating Chance and Inland Empire.All or Nothing opens a short time after the previous book. Brandon and Nicky have been continuing their long distance relationship and seeing each other every couple of months. It's coming up to the new year and Brandon has made the journey from So Cal to Las Vegas to see Nicky. However, this time he's brought his daughter, Shayna, along with him to meet Nicky. Brandon is still in the closet and so there's immediate tension between the two men as Nicky has to pretend to be Brandon's friend, rather than his lover. When tragedy strikes, Nicky finds himself with an increasingly unstable Brandon and a house full of unwanted guests, plus the constant guilt that he is to blame for the misfortune.As with the previous book, the mystery plot here is secondary as the focus is very much on the relationship between Brandon and Nicky, firstly as they have to make some hard decisions as to where their relationship is going and secondly as they deal with the aftermath of the tragedy. In fact, the villain of the piece was very easy to identify, deliberately so, I think, as that meant the mystery was more concentrated on when Brandon and Nicky would twig as to what was happening, rather than the discovery of the culprit. As with all the books in the series the narrative shifts between Brandon and Nicky. I found that my sympathies veered between the two men during different points in the book. It was hard not to feel sorry for Brandon, to share in his pain, and the understand how the stress of events lead to him starting to lose the plot. Before the tragedy, Nicky puts pressure on Brandon to make some hard decisions about them, and whilst I could understand why Nicky did this, I also felt Brandon's fear of moving too quickly, and of coming out to his family. When the tragedy happens, that additional pressure gets mixed in with Brandon's worries leading to some painful moments for both men. I felt that the way that Brandon feelings were shown: How he veered between needing to be strong and keep a stoic front for the benefit of his family, and the jumble and chaos of his internal thoughts as guilt and remorse crashed through him, was realistically done and at times heartbreaking.Having said that, I also sympathised with Nicky, who I have a great fondness for with his ostentatious dress and his slightly dramatic temperament. He's trying hard to be a part of Brandon's life and yet has to be content to remain quiet about their relationship. He's willing to give up his job, his house and his friends to be with Brandon, but knows that Brandon may not be able to make the same commitment to him. He has to put up with an awful lot in the book: meeting Brandon's daughter; supporting Brandon when the tragedy happens and dealing with his increasingly erratic behaviour; coping with the police invading his house and having his sex life laid bare to strangers; dealing with Brandon's ex-wife and his stepmother who not only stay in his house and sleep in his bed, but also snoop about - then getting the blame from Brandon because he did hide things well enough - and criticise his taste in furnishings. As well as this he has his own guilt to deal with, but he has no-one to talk to, to confide in because everyone else in the house is suffering more than he is and he feels he can't add to that. One of the most emotionally satisfying scenes in the book was when Nicky eventually found someone with whom he could share his worries, as was the tentative friendship he develops with one of his work colleagues, Ada.Like Ada, the other secondary characters were also well drawn, especially Brandon's stepmother, Edith. Even Diane, Brandon's ex-wife, became more than she at first appeared as the book progressed. We also reconnect with Orozco, the detective from the first book and find out more about his past, which I felt was a nice touch and added greatly to the overall complexity of the novel and the characters within it. The scenes where Brandon struggles to connect with his daughter were often highly amusing and the scene where he takes her to a pre-teen beauty parlour was just priceless.As you can probably guess from what I've written above, this is a highly emotional book. However, it's not overwrought. Much of the intensity of the book comes from the characters having to deal with the frustration of circumstances beyond their control, as well as interact with one another. Nicky finds this most difficult of all, as he is a relative stranger to many of the people in the book and feels disconnected and pushed out by the fact that Brandon won't acknowledge that he is more than a friend. The book ends with a large number of loose ends, from this book and the series, mostly tied up. I'm not sure whether this is the final book in the series or not. Part of me thinks that I am happy with the end andwould be content to leave this as a final book, and part of me loves Brandon and Nicky so much that I'm reluctant to leave them to their happy ending.If you've read the previous books in the series, then this is a must read. There is so much in terms of character development, especially with Brandon, in the book, that fans of the series will be delighted. I enjoyed it a great deal, more than the previous two books, and I highly recommend it.

  • Sofia
    2019-06-01 20:40

    3.5 starsA good conclusion to this series. I like the character growth over the whole series. (view spoiler)[Brandon has really come a long way and even Nick I think. (hide spoiler)]BR thanks for the company girls, needed it to complete the series :D

  • Taintedskyee (Books Books&More Books)
    2019-06-13 14:31

    BR 2nd October

  • Lori
    2019-05-23 15:52

    This was my favorite of the series so far...I hope there are more. I love Nicky and Brandon and this book really stretched them both as characters. There was a lot of angst in this book and if you're a parent, even more so. I worried to the end about how it was going to work out. My only complaint, and it's a very small one, is that Brandon can't seem to find his authentic "voice". Sometimes he uses poor grammar and sometimes he doesn't. It was inconsistent enough and so in contrast with his upbringing, that it pulled me out of the story every time.

  • Heather C
    2019-06-10 16:59

    I don't think I can finish this book.  Its been sitting on my "currently reading" shelf for several months and I've finally decided to kick it off.  Every time I start reading it, I want to throw my Kindle against the wall after the first few words. I mean, I really like this series and I like Nicky and I kinda like Brandon, even though Brandon is a total idiot most of the time and almost always treating Nicky like shit.  To be honest, the sex and the relationship are hot but the mysteries have been kinda boring.  And this mystery is way over the top and ridiculous!  Plus, I think its way too obvious who the bad guy is...although that has yet to be revealed. And then the Kid is just too annoying (view spoiler)[I don't really care if they are able to save her from her kidnapper or not; I dislike her that much. (hide spoiler)] Anyway, I hope Nicky and Brandon's story is finished, or else I will have to figure out someway to finish this book.

  • Lily
    2019-06-11 17:35

    Nicky and Brandon are one of my favorite M/M couples and despite the mystery aspect of the story being a bit weak I loved this book. These guys have been through a lot in the previous two books and are once again put through the wringer in this one. Very well-written and with a wonderfully varied cast of characters this mystery/suspense story is also emotional and super hot. I love the dynamics of Nicky and Brandon's relationship and I'll miss them. However I was very happy with the way the story ended and there was a big smile on my face when I read the last line of the book. Highly recommended!!

  • Chris
    2019-05-18 18:33

    Very good m/m romantic suspense, being the continuing adventures of Nicky and Brandon. With a beloved series, I always worry that a new release won't live up to the previous books, but I should've known better. So go. Go get the first book, Cheating Chance, and read it. I'll wait. :)

  • Kristin Sullivan
    2019-05-22 14:41

    I liked this book but I don't think it was a any where near as good as the laast two in the series. The story felt choppy. The scenes jumped from point to point and niether Nicky nor Brandon had the same "feel" as in the last two books. Nicky came off as bratty and actually a little stupid. I mean seriously, I had the villon figured out practically from the beginning and I was waiting for all the characters to catch up. Brandon completely falling apart like that and the really stupid more in the kitchen just felt contrived. Dian and Brandon's dad were like total stereotypes. I enjoyed Brandon's stepmom but seriously, she found an album with BDSM nude picks of her stepson and was OK with it and actually though they were beautiful before shutting the book quickly?? Nicky has an outburst in a police interview about his BDSM relationship with Brandon explicitly explaining that Brandon is the bottom and this doesn't make the rounds of the law enforcement community? I have never read a James Buchanan book before that I didn't love. I think I would have enjoyed this book more if I wasn't comparing it to James's other work and if I didn't already care much in Nicky and Brandon. James seemed to want to illustrate the pressures that LEO's face in this country and I liked the mention of a realbook that deals with these issues. I applaud the intent but wish more attention was paid to the story and characters than the issue.

  • Karen K
    2019-06-05 21:33

    James is one of my fave authors at the moment. I devoured this ebook in two nights - just had to keep reading to see what happened. I loved how Nicky stayed true to himself, but still managed to be exactly the support that Brandon needed. The story was sexy, angsty, beautiful and kept me wanting more. I didn't think I could be in love with Nicky and the series more than I was before, but I am.

  • Lisa
    2019-05-24 22:44

    OK. I admit it. I am a bad person. I really did not care about the abduction of Shayna, I guessed even before it happened who did it.However, I did like the development of Brandon and Nicky.Brandon's collapse after the kidnapping, his thoughts of suicide, and the eventual ending were really well written. I enjoyed this final instalment into the lives of the 2 men.

  • Jordie.R
    2019-05-25 21:36

    I loved this book. This was a lose sleep kind of book for me, but it was so worth the time I spent finishing it instead of going to sleep! I'm glad to know Brandon and Nicky got their HEA, but I would still love to read more about them.

  •  Joyce
    2019-05-25 18:46

    Once I started this series I couldn’t put it down. I loved the characters, except the ex wife and child, total whiney bitches, but hopefully after this book the will get better.

  • Karel
    2019-06-12 22:45

    This book reminds me of Steinback and that famous quote of his: "I've done my damndest to rip a reader's nerves to rags."Well congratulations, book. You've ripped my nerves into shreds and set them on fire and rolled up the remains into a burrito and ate it for lunch and shitted it out. That's how ragged my nerves were the entire journey of this book. Consider the mystery, which is no mystery at all. Here we have Velma - so obviously the criminal that she might as well have it tattooed on her forehead with red ink, trailing breadcrumbs the size of Texas everywhere, and what does everyone do? Freak out. I mean, come on: someone disappears; you get a package that links you to said disappearance, a stalkerish package, and then coincidentally you had a stalker that stalked you everywhere, and then COINCIDENTALLY some woman shows up to be stalkery on your yard. You don't think you might be on to something here? Whadya need, a sign?So what am I supposed to do now that I've solved the mystery the moment the Velma's mentioned? Freak out, I guess. Which I did a lot the entire book. At one point everyone was standing around in the kitchen freaking out, and I was there right there freaking out with them. That's the (pick one:) high/low point of the book.Everyone is screaming and crying and being messed up and THERE'S JUST SO MUCH FEELS that I simultaneously wanted to puncture everyone's kidneys with a blunt object and shake them and tell them to man up and cry with them and maybe have a couple of mental breakdowns together over scones and I just can'tSo yeah. I had to skip stuff because I just can't handle description of someone getting off their bike or having sex or watching TV when there's SO MANY THINGS WAITING TO HAPPEN. The whole time I was waiting for Nicky to be abducted and terrorized. Or for them to find some bones. Or for shit to explode. ANYTHING. But by the time anything finally happened, it was close to the last 10% of the book. My nerves are frayed. The pacing's all wrong. Nothing climatic can ever live up to my expectations now. And because it's been such a hell of a roller coaster, I can't even bring myself to enjoy the ending of the journey with these two characters because I'm too busy putting myself back together like a game of Tetris. In that regards? It's a great book. Not great in any other sense, because it lagged and hmm-hawed some bits, and it felt like there's too little focus on their relationship - with a mystery that's not at all mysterious as a trade-off. Only the last 5% or so is about their relationship, and it feels like they just picked up on a conversation that strayed into the weather a while. The ordeal didn't make them stronger, or weaker - it was just an intermission that got in the way. But in the sense that it made me care about the two MCs enough that I risked public embarrassment just to shout at them through my phone? In the sense that the whole time I was reading it I had to clutch the seat of my chair just to stop myself from hurting someone? It succeeded. Thanks for ripping me into shreds.What else is there to be said? The writing for the entire series is extremely functional; nothing special and nothing awful. The mysteries in the first two books aren't mysteries, and the mystery in this one is -- let's not get me started. The characters were great, if terribly unlikable at times. The sex, appreciated even by an asexual. Why don't I just describe what it isn't instead?If you need a light, fluffy read, this isn't it. If you need a mystery, this isn't it. If you need lots of feels and romance, this isn't it. If you need to be happy, relaxed, and calm, this isn't it either.If you need anger issues, this is it.

  • orannia
    2019-06-16 17:45

    *SIGH* I can't believe this series is over. That was one of the reasons why I was hesitant to read this book...I didn't want my time with Nicky & Brandon to end. However, I saw in an interview that James Buchanan hasn't completely shut the door to a fourth book. *madly crossing fingers* I do hope there is a fourth book...and I think there is a place for it. There are so many things I still want to know - how do Nicky & Brandon cope living in the same city? Will they live together? Nicky's new job will be so different from his current one - will he like it? How will Brandon's colleagues react? Will Brandon's father come around and accept his son for exactly who he is? See, lots of questions :)This book for me was quite like the first in that the main focus was the mystery and how the characters worked through it whereas in the second book the focus was more on the relationship and less on the suspense. Both worked, I just found All or Nothing more suspense-focused, although it was fascinating to see how Nicky & Brandon coped with the trauma. Particularly Brandon. That scene halfway through the book...in the kitchen...with the gun. The thing that struck me the most was all the swirling emotions in that scene - it wasn't mechanical or distant. James Buchanan wrote Brandon's emotions in vivid colour and they leapt off the page. I could feel...Brandon's desperation to stop thinking/feeling...just stop. Completely put me through the wringer, but that's the hallmark of a great author IMHO. Plus...I love that the characters feel real. They make mistakes, don't communicate, say and do the wrong thing. They aren't perfect...but they are perfect for each other :) *pull out tissue*And while waiting for another Nicky & Brandon book *still madly crossing fingers* I have Hard Fall to read :) And I believe Hard Fall will have not one but two sequels!

  • Melissa
    2019-06-06 17:31

    Wow........This book deals with a very devastating theme. But I felt that it was handled appropriately. We live it with Nicky and Brandon.....I felt like I was right there with them. I thought each character handled the situation in a very realistic way. Brandon's daughter....they call her Princess, well that was their first mistake! She is spoiled horribly and acts like a bitchy teenager not a 8 yr old! She is whiny and irritating.We got to meet Brandon's ex-wife (bitch)His Dad (asshole)His stepmom (saint)The ex-wife's husband, who is called Daddy by Princess, is NEVER seen on page....that was weird.....if he was called Daddy we should have met him on page!Yes, it was easy to figure out the bad guy....but that's ok. So I am giving this one 5 stars and putting it on my Favorite list! It just worked for me!

  • Lady*M
    2019-06-17 15:42

    I really love this book, although the mystery was written in the way that pretty makes the villain obvious. But, it's the emotional roller coaster and the guys are stronger for living through all this drama. The secondary characters are well developed and I really liked that Manny Orozco made another appearance. I am happy with how the series ended. I won't lie, I would welcome another book - I think that it would be wonderful to revisit Nicky and Brandon and tie all those pesky loose ends. James, as a writer, has come a long way and I can't imagine what he would be able to do now with these two now - almost four years after this book was released.Reading this made me want to reread all my old favorites.

  • Barb ~rede-2-read~
    2019-05-29 21:41

    I now have another favorite couple - Nicky and Brandon. I loved this last story. It was very intense emotionally, showcasing Brandon's darkest thoughts based on past experiences when his daughter is kidnapped while both were visiting Nicky. Both MC's were very believeable, even though it did not show Brandon in a favorable light. To me, that's good writing. As others have said, I knew the villian early on, however that did not detract from the emotional drama that unfolded. I'm glad the guys got a happy ending and I like the way it ended, leaving room for more future storyline if the author decides to revisit them.

  • Kaje Harper
    2019-05-28 22:44

    This book doesn't quite measure up to the other two in the series. The mystery part is pretty obvious, and it also feels a little over the top and unnecessary. Nicky moving into the parts of Brandon's life that involve his daughter and ex-wife would be difficult and emotional enough without such an over-the-top reason to bring them all together. In fact, I thought the mystery detracted from the ongoing story of the two men because it put them in such a highly-charged situation that it didn't feel quite real. I like this series, though, and I hope there's a fourth book where the two men can work on what being partners and parent(s) and out at work entails without the melodrama.

  • Nic
    2019-05-19 15:37

    The third instalment in the story of Nick and Brandon."Despite all the differences - out and not quite out, biker Goth vs. vampire-Victorian Goth, cop and gaming control - he and Nicky just meshed."Follows the same formula as previous books, solving a crime (this one a very personal one) and addressing personal issues in their relationship. Sex with bondage thrown in. Quite an entertaining story but did have some heavy emotional elements.

  • Nicci
    2019-06-17 15:56

    Of the three book in the series, I like All or Nothing above all. Yes, I did make the right call on the suspect. What was more interesting was how it played out in the story and the reason why the suspect did what they did.I like Brandon a hell of a lot better in this book than the two previous books. In this book Brandon begins to recognize what is really important in his life.

  • Staceyr
    2019-05-30 15:58

    Not my fave in this series, but I couldn't put it down. Here's hoping there'll be a fourth book in the series.

  • Jazzy
    2019-06-01 21:59

    All or Nothing the final book in the Taking The Odds trilogy was hard to rate. Nicky did grow on me and didn’t aggravate me nearly as much as he did in the 2nd installment Inland Empire. I’m still not sold on him in the toppy/dom department but whatever he and Brandon have going on – it seems to work for them. He didn’t exactly start off on the right foot with me, when Brandon arrived with his daughter Shayna for a visit – there were a couple of moments where it actually looked like Nick was jealous of a 9 year old and about to throw a hissy but luckily he reigned it in. (And then later on when the shit hit the fan – he truly did rise to the occasion). Brandon, at Nicky’s urging actually; is making an effort to re-connect with his daughter and deal with his commitment issues and move forward with Nicky. His ex. Wife having an impromptu week long training and needing an on the spot baby sitter presents the perfect opportunity for Brandon to spend some quality time with his daughter – and what better time to head out to Las Vegas and take the next step in his relationship – by letting her get to know Nicky. The beginning – with Nicky, Brandon and Shayna spending time together was OK – like 2 ½ stars OK. Nicky and Brandon do get their share of sexy times throughout the story. I’m not sure how I feel about the bondage aspect. I think I could warm up to it – but I’m sort of a "wham-bam" girl – so the lead up was kind of “For the Love of God, Get on with it already”!! I won’t lie though, Nicky calling Brandon “Bitch” during sex was hot. Then the unthinkable happens – which isn’t a spoiler because it’s referenced in the official blurb as “ the crime every cop knows ends in tragedy” and further queries if Brandon “the distraught parent” will “hold it together long enough to solve the crime". So in other words, Shayna gets snatched. This would have been hard for me to read if I had children, or probably any sort of maternal instinct towards human children. Since I don’t – it stayed at the 2 ½ stars level of interest with low angst. ( I will say the scenario around the snatching served to remind me of why I don’t allow anyone to watch my dog.) Shayna’s abduction sets the stage for Brandon’s ex. Wife Dian and his step mother Edith (sweet, strong, wonderful character) to descend upon Nicky’s home. As the hours drag on and turn into days, and we spend a lot of time talking about the getting through the basics of day to day life; the food that the Jewish Community Center sent home with the family, whether we want to have chili-cornbread casserole or cheese kugel or ziti, the fact that Edith can clearly tell that Nick is more than “just a friend” - and all the while it really isn’t clear to anyone that Brandon is slowly unraveling. Until he finally does unravel at 62%, and when he does…he does it spectacularly! And then things pick up and the remainder of the book was a definite 3 ½ stars for me. Part of me suspects because there is something heart wrenching-ly sexy about a completely tortured and broken Brandon (but that actually sounds a little sick) so I’m going with the fact that the plot picks up and things seem to start moving quicker from that point on.The ending is very satisfying. Brandon deals with his closet-case issues, and his commitment issues, the mystery is solved (wasn’t hard to figure, there really only could have been 1 perp), everybody’s happy (except for Brandon’s father who’s a bit of an ass) and my boys got their HEA. Nicky however did get points deducted for clearly not being a dog lover.

  • Elisa Rolle
    2019-05-21 18:48

    As in all the real relationships there are different stage to reach, and in this third enstalment in the Nicky and Brandon’s story they have reach a very important level: in book 1 they met, in book 2 they established the basis for a long-term relationship and now in book 3 they need to test it. Nicky and Brandon are not exactly family guys, or at least Nicky isn’t. Brandon has an ex-wife and a daughter, but he has never played the role of “daddy”, indead his daughter calls daddy her stepfather. But maybe due to the fact that his relationship with Nicky is moving from dating to living together, Brandon wants for his daughter to meet Nicky; it’s strange since his relationship with Nicky is far from being ordinary family stuff, but it seems than Brandon is taking it as a second chance to be a father. Sincerely they are not exactly skilled in dealing with a nine years old girl, and both of them adopt the tactics to grant her everything she wants, even if it’s not good for a little girl. Moreover, Shayna is a clever little girl, and Brandon trying to hide the true nature of his relationship with Nicky is not helping. Brandon is for sure paranoic and Nicky is right in telling him that more he tries to hide the true, more he is making it evident, but I didn’t feel as if he is doing something wrong; probably the only wrong thing he did was to come to visit Nicky after weeks they didn’t see each other with a little child tagging along, so that it was impossible for them to steam off the pent-up desire they built. And indead Brandon’s insistence in staying in the closet with his family and at work is growing old, he should stop and think twice on his priorities in life. Nicky at first is the voice of reason, and his advices to Brandon are right; maybe he is spoiling a bit Shayna, trying to buy her off, but nothing too much. Problem is that Nicky the boyfriend wins over uncle Nicky, and he convinces Brandon to let Shayna with a friend; of course when she gets missed at their friend’s home while they are having sex at home, Brandon’s guilt is something almost unbearable. The two female figures that enter the novel at this moment are exactly at the opposite: Brandon’s ex-wife, Dian, is the one who is feeding Brandon’s guilt, with remarks on how inadeguate he is, and basically she is pushing him away from Nicky; Brandon’s stepmother, Edith, is instead the one who is encouraging Brandon to share his trouble with Nicky. The author is good in giving to both of them a positive perspective, even Dian has indead her justifications for behaving as she does. Even if Taking the Odds is a thriller series, dealing with cops and criminals, this side of the story is really behind the scene, even more in this episode. http://www.amazon.com/dp/1608201473/?...

  • Samantha
    2019-05-31 17:53

    All or Nothing concludes the journey of Nicky and Brandon in the Taking the Odds series.It's holiday season, Christmas and New years just around the corner when Brandon visits Nicky for the first time in months, this time with a little something extra in toe; his nine-year-old daughter, Shayna. Following from the last book, Brandon is trying to bridge a gap he built between himself and his daughter and learn how to be a responsible father.In normal circumstances, that may not be easy, but when his daughter is kidnapped, normal goes out the window and everything spirals out of control. Together, Nicky and Brandon must deal with the grim reality of Shayna being taken, all the while trying to keep their relationship hidden from the prying eyes of Brandon's family and ex-wife. He was hollow. No other word could describe it. There was this big empty mess inside and every so often it heaved and threatened to swallow his sanity.Parts of this really got me. What Brandon went through, and the detail that it was written in, tore at my heartstrings. I didn't find it overly dramatic or wrong, as I felt it was quite realistic given the circumstances.Still, it wasn't my absolute favorite. It may have been where I stopped reading one day and picked up the next, but the ending didn't impact me much at all, and the mystery aspect of it was a complete flop. There was really no mystery, I knew pretty quickly who it was, which was a shame because true suspense would've further caused a lot of tension for the reader that was just missing.Also, I've noticed a few times that the "r" word was used, and it's a personal thing for me, but it just immediately tears me out of whatever else is going on. I think there are a lot of alternative words to use, but that was the one chosen, and it did bother me a bit.Nevertheless, this was a really great series that I enjoyed.