Review of Cut and Run by Madeleine Urban and Abigail Roux

    Cut and Run (Cover)Cut and Run starts out roughly with a murder mystery, which unites two FBI agents, Tyler Grady and Zane Garrett for the first time. It’s instant dislike at first meeting, but over the span of the assignment, two very strong-willed, independent men come to what is the beginning of a tentative partnership. Zane and Ty immediately find themselves in danger as soon as they arrive in New York to solve a serial murder.

    Tyler, or Ty, is the brighter of the two, the more incandescent. He drops on masks like a chameleon. Ty presents himself as a wisecracking, cocky and abrasive character. He knows his job and does not defer to anyone. Ty has performed “side jobs” for the Bureau that no one ever reports on in any records. What is not always evident with Ty is his sensitivity to others, which he only reveals in certain moments.

    Zane is the darker partner. He has a history that includes a deceased wife. Zane is serious, detail-oriented and focused. Zane is a chain smoker, an alcoholic and a drug addict trying to overcome his personal demons. There is an immediate attraction between these two hard-edged characters, but there is also tremendous difficulty with either of them trusting each other.

    Urban and Roux seem to lose their focus in this first book of the series. Ty and Zane are intensively involved in the murder case. They are working outside of the system because they suspect the killer is someone inside the Bureau. This leaves them vulnerable and open to some disastrous circumstances that finally prompt the FBI to withdraw them from the investigation for almost six months. Not only does the case lag, but also the relationship between the two protagonists as the Bureau sends Zane and Ty off in different directions to work on different cases.

    The ending to the first book in the Cut and Run series was a nice, but somewhat confusing read. The novel seemed to focus more on solving the crime, than the relationship between Zane and Ty. I found that refreshing, but the story left the romance, if I can call it that, as secondary. Still the relationship between these two characters is intriguing enough to make the reader eager to see the next episode.

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    Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
    Image courtesy Dreamspinner Press