Title: Would I Lie to You?
Author: Brad Vance
Release: 24th April 2015
Genre: M/M (mystery/thriller)
Software billionaire Marc Julian’s orderly life is shattered one night by a cyber-intrusion into his company’s servers. He’s always surrounded himself with the best people, but finding the culprit behind this might require a real expert...and sometimes it takes a thief to catch a thief.
Jesse Winchester and his team of “grey hat” hackers are suddenly available to Marc. Marc doesn’t know if he should trust Jesse with the keys to his company’s kingdom. After all, Jesse’s a convicted felon, sent to prison for violating the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act. A felon sentenced to thirty-five years in prison, who mysteriously served only three years before being released.
Marc’s first company, his whole life, was shattered because he trusted the wrong person. This time there’s even more at stake, but few other options. Especially when his evil enemies, the billionaire industrialist Krom brothers, are revealed to be the source of the intrusion.
Is Jesse there to help Marc, or does he have his own history with the Kroms, his own score to settle? As Jesse and Marc spend more time together, their growing intimacy is at war with their need to win their respective battles. Soon the game they start to play with each other, against each other, becomes more exciting, more exquisitely frustrating…and more dangerous.
Life with the high rollers, where the stakes are high and the sex is hard. This was a great industrial espionage thriller and shows us at least the next war to come could quite well be a virtual one. Loved the whole idea of this story with many twists and turns that I can honestly say I didn’t see coming but well thought out and nicely connecting so I never got the feeling I was lost at any stage.
Marc is a billionaire and co-owner of a software company. This man is your typical alpha male as far a business is concerned, but what about the bedroom? Well, here he is a total sub and likes nothing more than being ordered around and told what to do. It is as though he can escape all his responsibilities and decision making from his real life and just change rolls and let someone else take the lead with him not having to think about anything. He pays an escort, one who is trustworthy and discreet, so although not in a relationship he trusts him, is able to talk to him and this means a lot to Marc.
His company is hacked and a lot of information is stolen so this is where Jessie enters the game with his team of experts in trying to find out the person and reason behind the hack. My goodness I never release how explosive virtual crime actually is. Brad's writing keeps the suspense going not only with the thriller side of things but also turns the heat up with Jessie and Marc. Jessie likes to dominate his men so when these two meet it could almost be a match made in heaven. However, at this level the stakes are high and the word "trust" becomes a big thing. Marc has already been badly burnt by someone using his trust, taking off and leaving him practically destitute.
They both have their secrets that they're keeping from each other which doesn't help matters a lot either. Jessie's past is by no means unblemished and Marc needs to keep a lid on some of his less favourable virtues. This obviously becomes paramount at the level these guys are playing at where anything can be used against you to bring you down and ruin you. At this level there are lot of people who would wish to do this. Jessie has his own hidden agenda and we find out more about this as we read about his past. Initially I thought what has this got to do with anything, but as I read further the pieces of the puzzle started to come together. There were a lot of surprises, twists and turns which kept me thoroughly entertained and wanting to read more.
So now we have a our dilemma, both guys are capable of having hot sex together and believe me it is HOT!!! As only our Smutketeer Brad can write. But how do you go to that next level? The level that needs trust, the level where you have to admit that something is developing which is more than just stress relieving sex. An emotional connection which can be called love, maybe? Yes, love and trust, two words that in many respects are synonymous but with these two guys the "trust" part is like a big elephant in the room that needs to removed before they can move forward. I loved the dynamics between the two MCs, “work hard - play hard” and phew when these guys went to play!!!! Time to get the air conditioning on! Oh my, the heat level was almost off the scale. I say almost because how much better could it get if they were able to remove that great big elephant sat in the middle of the room? An immovable object called “trust” that neither characters for various reasons are able to get over and beyond.
Well, by a turn of fate where Marc does some background checking on Jessie and realise they both have the same enemy in common. The gauntlet is laid to come clean, to get all secrets out in the open. Geez, it was like a whole weight was lifted off my shoulders, all they way I kept saying to myself, "Oh for goodness sake, just tell him!" or "Will you please just come down from your ego trips for one minute and talk to each other?" Yes, as with any CEO or high flyers they both had egos the size of houses. But they have to find that level playing field where they can meet and then start to trust each other. After this was done, then there was no holding the two of them back. What a team! Yes, they got behind the baddies and got their revenge even though there was a cost to it. But Jessie thinking more about Marc, his reputation and safety has to make a sacrifice. Oh the hurt! The bitter disappointment! Marc thinks he's been duped once again but then releases it for the sacrifice it actually is and comes to terms with it. After all isn’t love about sacrifice as well? This in a way so so sweet, Jessie needed to do this so Marc would be OK so if this wasn't a sign of love then I don't know what is.
The whole thriller aspect of this was great. Not your James Bond action type of spy thriller where you have Mr Macho running around shooting people and blowing things up. Here the collateral damage is a lot more subtle as it is virtual, an internet one, but the damage caused is as far reaching and just as devastating as blowing anything up. It was just as riveting and got me smiling like a Cheshire Cat when the bad guys, who were seriously detestable, got their just rewards in the end. A thoroughly entertaining read from Brad and should Jessie's and Marc's story continue I'll definitely be getting myself a copy.
About the author
Brad Vance writes gay romance, erotica and paranormal stories and novels, including the breakout hits "A Little Too Broken" and "Have a Little Faith in Me."