REVIEW: Home Fires (Common Law #4) by Kate Sherwood
Trouble comes to Mosely, Montana, from the outside world. When the residents of Mosely are left on their own, they can make things work. Sure, there’s always been a militia operating up in the hills, but they were small-scale—just survivalists doing their thing—until organizers came in from out of state. Now Jericho Crewe and the rest of the sheriff’s department are facing down a heavily armed band of fanatics, and the feds are busy elsewhere.
The odds are hopeless, but Jericho swore an oath to serve and protect the citizens of Mosely. He won’t walk away from that, even if Wade Granger’s begging him to run away somewhere and finally be together the way they always should have been.
But this time, it’s Jericho who refuses to leave Mosely, even if staying kills him.
BEWARE OF SPOILERS.
Dear Kate Sherwood,
After reading part three of this series my expectations that I would read a satisfactory (to me) ending were quite low. We catch up with our friends in the small town of Mosely, where Jericho is asking Kayla whether she really invited more feds to town.
Alas, she did. Apparently there are rumors that the survivalists/local militia/rednecks have increased their activity and Kayla feels that she may need more help from the feds.
“Is there any possibility it’s a practical joke?” Jericho Crewe asked. “Or just a rumor, maybe?”
Unfortunately, Sheriff Kayla Morgan shook her head. “ I was the one who called them,” she said, leaning back in her battered leather desk chair.
“You called the feds.” Jericho waited a few seconds for the words to make sense, then gave up. “We have feds in tow worrying about the border, feds in town still cleaning up the biker mess, feds in town investigating your dad, feds in town trying to catch Wade – and you woke up one morning, looked around, asked yourself, “What does this town need more of?” and the answer you came up with was “feds.” Honestly?”
Soon after that, events start moving pretty fast. Some militia folks decided that it would be a good idea to ambush federal agents, people die on both sides, and Jericho and other sheriff department people manage to make some arrests. Now the small town of Mosley has one more investigation going – to find out who sent the militia people into town.
But this attack was just the beginning, because apparently the militia folks have much bigger plans to wreak havoc in Mosely, and the citizens of Mosely will have to rise and defend their town.
Readers, let’s stop right there. You might ask me why the citizens of Mosely will have to be the ones to act. Isn’t there a pretty big presence of federal agents in their town *already*? And isn’t the presence of federal agents from several agencies only increasing after what these militia folks did in the beginning of this book? Well, yes, yes they were, but of course in order for Jericho to show off how heroic he can be and how he can even remember that he is supposed to protect and serve people of Mosely, all those federal agents have to leave town temporarily, the threat of militia coming down from the hills notwithstanding. (As an aside, I would surely think that his heroism does not include being in bed with the mobster? Oh never mind. I do remember trying to convince myself that the story is a modern western in disguise when I was reading the previous part.)
And leave town they do, coming back after everything is pretty much over. I obviously do not want to spoil the story too much, so I will let it to the readers to decide whether this plot development made sense. The narrative definitely gives a reason why the feds had to leave, but to me it was not nearly convincing enough..
You probably want to know how Jericho and Wade’s relationship is progressing. They are openly together at the beginning of the story and the problems they face are mostly about them and their jobs. Considering that Jericho still works for the police department and Wade is a local mobster it was not surprising to me.
I want to be very clear about one thing though – if I had not been convinced before that Jericho and Wade loved each other, I had no doubts whatsoever after I finished this story. Their love was deep and powerful and they were the most important people in each other’s life. I just wish I could *like* both of them more.
Jericho is still as incapable of self-reflection as ever. He is a corrupt man – sleeping with the mobster, albeit a small-scale one, makes him that. Deciding that a certain suspect in the investigation should be killed makes him that, and protecting another suspect in another murder, (especially when he pretty much knows that the person did it) makes him that.
But hey, that was a nice conversation between Jericho and Wade, when they agree that what counts is that they did not kill *innocent people”. Never mind that Wade admits to lying and taking advantage of innocent people, never mind that he as good as admits that he supplied guns to the militia people in the course of his totally honest employment as a self-made local mobster. I guess as long as he had no idea that militia people would come up with a plan to start a revolution, he cannot be held responsible and him deciding to stay and fight to help innocent citizens of Mosely is all that matters now.
So yes, they lived happily ever after. At least they both quit their jobs, thank goodness, but doing so at the end of the book really does not make me like them any better – they did enough damage already if you ask me, despite the narrative that wanted me to praise their heroics.
I’m still trying to get my head around “a mobster in a small town”. I don’t think this book is for me but I appreciate the honest review.
On a higher note, K J Charles has a new book coming out next month, I believe. I don’t read much m/m but I read everything she writes. :-)
@Carolyn: Thank you. Well, he may be a mobster but he is *their* mobster :-). This may not be the exact rationale used as to justify Wade’s doings, but this is exactly the same rationale used to justify so many things, like they had red neck militia for years up in the mountains and they did not do much harm if any. But the outsiders came and trouble started!
To be clear, I do not think fictional story has an obligation to justify anything happening within the narrative, but I do think it should convince me to follow along. My most recent review draft ( of the completely different book, on a completely different topic and not even m/m) was about the book where most of the characters all did *very* *very* unsavory things at some points of their lives. But within the bounds of that world I understood why they did those things and had a lot more sympathy for the characters than I had for Wade and Jericho whom I just wanted to slap multiple times while I was reading book three and four of these series ( I still was hoping when I was reading book two).
Thanks, Sirius – I always enjoy your reviews. Personally, I’ve been happy with the series so far, and will definitely read book 4. The moral relativism wasn’t that big a deal for me, but I think that’s because, about midway through book 1 I decided to treat the whole thing as a sort of rural fantasy. Made some of their more egregious behavior much easier to gloss over. (It was either that or throw the Kindle across the room.) Looking forward to seeing Jericho and Wade get their HEA!
@Donna: Thank you. Absolutely, when I am able to convince myself that the thing is a fantasy, it is much easier to follow along and another book I am reading now ( also a different one but also the guys not behaving very professionally) actually making it much easier for me, you know?
It all depends on the writing and execution whether the book is convincing for the individual reader. I definitely think you will enjoy their personal happy ending, because if anything I was convinced that they were in love.