Under the Skin by Nicki Bennett and Ariel Tachna

Title: Under the Skin

Author: Nicki Bennett & Ariel Tachna

Genre: Mystery/Suspense

Length: Novel (196pgs)

Publisher: Dreamspinner Press (5th September 2011)

Heat Level: Scorching/ Explicit

Heart Rating:  ♥♥♥♥4Hearts

Reviewer: Pixie

Blurb: Police detective Patrick Flaherty has no illusions about Russian mobster Alexei Boczar, but that doesn’t stop his fascination with the bodyguard to one of the most ruthless families in Chicago’s growing Eastern European crime community. From the moment Patrick meets Alexei’s eyes over the body of another Russian mobster, Alexei is a thorn in Patrick’s side, refusing to cooperate with the police and turning all of Patrick’s questions back on him. Alexei’s hard-as-nails persona whets Patrick’s professional determination to get the information he’s sure the gangster is hiding, while personally Patrick just wants to get his hands on Alexei’s hard body.

The tattoos marking Alexei’s skin tell the story of his criminal past, but the more Patrick learns about Alexei, the more he wants to know, until he finds himself over his head in a relationship that might cost him his job and could well cost Alexei his life. Alexei is equally fascinated by Patrick’s willingness to overlook his past and even his present associations, but he has secrets of his own that could drive a wedge between them forever.

Review: Patrick is a detective who has done something incredibly stupid…he’s fallen for a mobster.   If anyone ever found out it wouldn’t be just his job in jeopardy, it could also mean his life. Alexei lives his life in shadows, secrets and purpose but now a police detective is cracking his shell.

I thought this book was brilliant, the chemistry between these two men was off the charts; they can’t stay together but they can’t stay apart; both of them wishing for something that can never happen because no matter what, one will always be police, the other vor (Russian mobster). The twist and turns of this book was fascinating, the storyline rock solid and the characters were well put together, we get brief glimpses of Alexei’s past and it is not pretty but we do get to understand what is driving the Russian. Even though Patrick is in love with the big lug he does not compromise his work ethic, he might bend it but not break it.

There are hot and plentiful sex scenes, there is danger, mystery and suspense, and there is soul searching, heart break and doubts.  There is joy, love and happiness and most of all you sit there and wonder how, how can these two men from such opposite sides make this work.   How can they overcome the obstacles between them to be together? and even when you start to feel hope as secrets come out you know that nothing for these two men will be easy.

So what would I recommend….hot sex, mystery, danger, suspense….do I really need to go on, this is a must read book.