Review: Fair Game by Josh Lanyon

Format: Ebook
Publisher: Carina
FTC: Received for review from publisher via Netgalley
M/M Romantic Suspense

The Blurb:
A crippling knee injury forced Elliot Mills to trade in his FBI badge for dusty chalkboards and bored college students. Now a history professor at Puget Sound university, the former agent has put his old life behind him—but it seems his old life isn't finished with him.
A young man has gone missing from campus—and as a favor to a family friend, Elliot agrees to do a little sniffing around. His investigations bring him face-to-face with his former lover, Tucker Lance, the special agent handling the case.
Things ended badly with Tucker, and neither man is ready to back down on the fight that drove them apart. But they have to figure out a way to move beyond their past and work together as more men go missing and Elliot becomes the target in a killer's obsessive game...
When I think of a Josh Lanyon book, I think of two things: terrific characters and a quirky sense of humor. Fair Game has both--as well as a fantastic suspense story.

Elliot Mills is on the road to physical and emotional recovery following the major life changes foisted upon him. Teaching at the local university may not be as thrilling as field work as an FBI agent, but he's adjusted to the slower pace. And only occasionally pines for his old life and his old love.

I love that Elliot is so mature. He's past the pity stage and is content if not happy with his new life. He has a close relationship with his dad--a very liberal retired professor who disapproved of his law enforcement career and is happy to watch his son settle down into academia. He does not really have a social life, though. He's still more than a little hung up on his ex...an FBI agent named Tucker Lance. [Am I the only one immature enough to giggle at that name?]

Both Elliot and Tucker are less abrasive than typical Lanyon characters. I don't know if he's toned these two down for a different publisher, but normally his leads are less...likable. Not that I mind, since that's also where most of the humor comes from, but it seems different for this author.

At times, I felt a little like I was watching an episode of Criminal Minds. Lingo and behavioral analysis just kept that show at the front of my mind. [Hmm...Maybe I watch too much tv if the mention of Unsubs immediately reminds me of that show.]

The humor in this book is much more subtle than in other books by Lanyon that I have read. Like the way Elliot thinks of his students, last name first: Mracheck, Leslie. It's something I know teachers do (since that's how the school rosters list them), so I found that funny. Others may not get the humor at all.

There was a weird disconnect for me at the crime scenes. They seemed kind of glossed over. Maybe I'm used to getting the gory details in romantic suspense, because I just didn't see any real depth to those scenes that helped me visualize what happened. Maybe it was edited out to avoid being too gross (or edited out for length) but I'm used to my mysteries and suspenses giving me those details.

The only thing that bothered me was a bit of a pacing problem somewhere near the middle. I ended up skimming a few pages to get back into the groove of the story. And there were some serious choppiness issues for me--mostly when Elliot was on campus. My only other complaint is the amount of humor. There was some, but I wished we had just a little bit more of it.

My Grade: B

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