Barrel Proof, by Layla Reyne
Series: Agents Irish and Whiskey, Book 3
Publisher: Carina Press
Release Date: August 7, 2017
FBI agents Aidan “Irish” Talley and Jameson “Whiskey” Walker can’t get a moment’s peace. Their hunt for the terrorist Renaud seems to be nearing an end, until a fire allows him to slip through their fingers—and puts Jamie’s life in danger. When Jamie is nearly killed, Aidan learns how many forms loss can take.
Aidan says I love you just moments before learning that Jamie’s been keeping a devastating secret about Aidan’s late husband. How quickly trust and love can go up in flames. When Aidan requests a solo undercover assignment, Jamie hopes Aidan will find a way to forgive him.
But the explosions are far from over. Aidan’s cover lands him in the heart of the terrorist’s conspiracy, and Jamie will have to put his life, his career and his freedom on the line to save the man who has become his entire world. Partners, always is a promise he intends to keep.
Law Enforcement/FBI Agents
Note: This book is not a standalone, so if you don’t want to be spoiled, stop now!
“I can’t, Whiskey.” I can’t do this.”
Say it ain’t so, Irish!
After a superbly exciting, action-packed opening chapter – that starts almost immediately after the events of Cask Strength – our favourite agents in love, Aidan “Irish” Talley and Jameson “Whiskey” Walker, are on the outs. Aidan has discovered that not only has his best friend, Mel, been keeping secrets from him, so has his lover and partner, Jamie – the man he trust above everyone else.
After finally getting his act together and declaring his love for Jamie, this revelation understandably rocks Aidan on his heels. Even after almost losing Jamie while pursuing the mysterious Renaud, Aidan is desperate to put some much needed time and space between him and the man he loves, looking to get a hold of his feelings of anger and betrayal before he reaches the point of no return.
Cradling his face, Jamie swiped a thumb over the corner of his grim smile. “I love you too, I know your kiss, and I know what goodbye tastes like.”
Aidan framed his face in both hands. “As much as I love you, I’m angry as hell. At you, at Mel, at Gabe, I need to get away from everything for a while. I want to be able to come home to you,” he said. “If I stay, my anger will ruin this.”
Temporarily separated, Jamie stays back to continue his investigation of Renaud and recover from a broken leg, while Aidan is offered the chance to go undercover as a Legal Compliance Officer for an investment firm, looking into possible investor fraud. But six weeks into his stint, both Jamie and Aidan are shocked to learn that Renaud may be a lot to closer to them than they think – and he’s headed straight for Aidan.
Barrel Proof was probably the most emotional book in the series, with both men coming to terms not only with the secrets that have been hidden and withheld, but what it means to truly be partners. Along with this comes the realization that the dangerous Renaud will stop at nothing to ensure his end-game is successful, even if it means that no one is truly safe until he can be stopped.
I loved everything about this book. Not only was it fast-paced and action-packed, it finally gets to the bottom of Aidan’s late husband’s involvement with Renaud and how it spun out of control to include both Aidan’s former partner, and Aidan himself. In addition, the emotional element I mentioned above provides a truly lovely and fitting HEA for Jamie and Aidan, something we’ve all been looking forward to since their first dance at the Tavern.
All in all, this was a very satisfying conclusion to the Irish & Whiskey series. Maybe, if we’re lucky, we’ll see a little more of these guys when the author writes that Cam and Nic book I desperately want (yes, I’m looking at you Layla Reyne!).
2016 RWA® Golden Heart® Finalist, Layla Reyne, was raised in North Carolina but now calls San Francisco home. She enjoys weaving her bi-coastal experiences into her stories, along with adrenaline fueled suspense and heart pounding romance. When she’s not writing stories to excite her readers, she downloads too many books, watches too much television, and cooks too much food with her scientist husband, much to the delight of their smushed-face, leftover-loving dogs.
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I received an advanced copy of this novel in exchange for a fair and honest review.