Before Christian can end his relationship with a closeted cheater, he needs to see the evidence firsthand. He disguises himself and attends a masquerade ball escorted by a friend, in search of the Stranger in Black. When he finds him, he gets something entirely different—and much more erotic—than he expected.
Wearing a black-and-gold mask, Jarrod is on the hunt for Chris, the “other woman” his best friend’s fiancé is having an affair with. But a sexy vision in a white gown captures his attention and takes his breath away, which is strange, since he’s gay.
One by one, the pieces fall away, exposing their dual deception. After the masks—and the pants—are off, Christian and Jarrod must work together to support a friend… and maybe become something more than strangers.
Review by Elaine White
Book – Stranger in Black
Author – Devon Rhodes
Star rating – ★★★★★
No. of Pages – 69
Cover – Gorgeous!
POV – 3rd person, dual POV
Would I read it again – Yes.
Genre – LGBT, Contemporary, Romance
This was a great little short story. With a nicely balanced emotional impact, we were introduced to Christian, who is our first MC. In love with Carl since childhood and dating him, he discovers that he’s being cheated on and decides to end it, but to do that he needs to see the truth for himself and face it head on. So he goes to a fancy-dress ball, disguised as a woman, to see it through. There, he meets our other MC, Jarrod, who is there to fend off the “other woman” in Carl’s life.
With a few twists and turns along the way, the romance between Carl and Christian is explored only through thought and memory, which his great. There’s no real on-page cheating her. The romance between Jarrod and Christian is much more physical.
Personally, I contemplated knocking a star off my rating, just because things happen so fast, but I relented and kept the 5th star. It’s a short story – only 69 pages – so there are definite limitations there, with how much time can pass and in how much detail. Thankfully, weeks passed between first meetings and anything heavy, telling us they began “dating”, but I missed the “seeing” aspect, with the chemistry and the learning about each other. Sometimes that can be the best part.
However, I did love the mass of chemistry and emotional attachment Jarrod and Christian had with each other, right from the start. It made up for the loss of detailed time passing, which is why I left the final star in place. Together, those two were hot but also believable as a couple.
The added relationship between Mira and David – two best friends, who really kicked off proceedings – was a great bonus and something that was nicely handled, with just the right amount of balance, when compared to the story between Christian and Jarrod.
“I’m getting a bit worried about your orientation, bud. Should I be welcoming you to the dark side? We have cookies.”
Meet Devon Rhodes
I have always had my nose in a book and my head in the clouds! Now I’m finally doing what I love as a career. When I’m not lost in my imagination, you can find me in beautiful Oregon. After a draining career in hotel and healthcare management, I’ve been at home raising my girls for over twelve years. And during that time, I’ve rediscovered–quite accidentally–the art of romance, specifically erotic romance. One day my muse whispered an idea in my ear, and I sat down at the laptop to try to do it justice. As they say, the rest is history!
Where to find Devon Rhodes
My Turn To Write Blog: http://devonrhodes.blogspot.com/