If I had to categorise this book using only one word I’d say ‘testosterone’. The title may be ‘Alpha Barman’ but I feel it could just as easily have been called ‘Alpha Males running amok’. Mind you, I’m not complaining. There’s nothing wrong with a group of macho men flexing their muscles while coming to terms with long standing issues and imminent danger.
This is a tension packed story. There’s the sexual tension between Jake and Mitch, anything but diminished as the result of two years apart. The two men are drawn towards each other despite resentment and lack of contact. And while Jake and Mitch try to resist the pull between them with less success the longer they’re forced to be together, they also have to deal with the threat of Riley making his way towards Jake, and the fact that not everybody is convinced that Riley is actually guilty of the crime he’s been convicted off. Throw in a secondary love story between a former colleague of Jake’s and his present day business partner, and you have a tension-filled drama on your hands. Having said that, I have to admit that the way the Riley story-line played out didn’t come as a surprise to me.
I loved the tension between Jake and Mitch and the way they fought the bond between them to no avail. And when they do give in to the feelings they still have for each other, it was a thing of beauty, not to mention scorching heat. I enjoyed the banter between all the men and the love, loyalty, and friendship they tried to hide behind insults and teasing.
Alpha Barman is a fast paced, well written, tension filled, and thoroughly enjoyable read. It’s the sort of story I love to lose myself in while the pages almost turn themselves. I’m glad to see this is obviously the first book in a planned series, even if the last line of the book, while clearly setting up the next story, also came as a bolt out of nowhere. I’m very curious to see where these characters and stories will take me next, because as far as I can see, anything is possible.