Five by J.A. Huss
Series: Mister #0.5
Published by Science Future Press on September 19, 2017
Buy on Amazon
Fifty million books ago I promised you a love story about Five and his Princess. This is their story.
Five Aston has known Rory Shrike for as long as he can remember. He played with her in the sandbox. He went to every damn horse show just to be supportive. He helped her with her French, walked her home from school, and faked his test scores just to stay with her a little longer and not be sent off to college early. But eventually he had to move on. And so did she. Never has a second chance meant so much to a boy who loves a girl.
A standalone book that is also a spin-off of the Rook & Ronin Series and prequel to the Mister Series. You can read it first, you can read it last. It doesn't really matter because it's f*cking Five.
Rory and Five was a story I couldn’t wait to read. Within the first few pages it dawned on me I should have refreshed my memory on their backgrounds before embarking on this book. To have researched thoroughly, I would have needed to shut myself off for a good spell. Five is a spin off or connected to the following series:
- Rook and Ronin
- Rook and Ronin Spin Offs
- Dirty, Dark, and Deadly
And possibly the Mister series, since it is Mister #.05 and apart from this book, I’ve yet to read anything else in that series. The others I have listed above were all favourites I have read and they were all 4 to 5 star dark and twisty reads. Twisty being the keyword, meaning a lot has happened over the ten books. While I recall the bones of each of the series there’s also a lot I needed to refresh my memory on.
Regardless of the complexities of the plot, it was the simplicity Rory evoked and demanded when she was with Five I appreciated. She’s far from naive but she’s been sheltered and is not as street savvy as I expected her to be. On more than one occasion I wanted to send an SOS to her family to come and have a long overdue chat with her. Then again, with Five having gone stealth with his family, the intel would have to be collated from more than one source. Of course, her family more than likely were unaware of the unknown players holding key information essential to paint the full picture.
My heart went out to Five, he was damned if he did and damned if he didn’t whichever move he took. Well, except for the moments he insisted they embrace what they had with the understanding only the present is a gift and the future a mystery. I expected Five to be more like Ford than he was, but with all the pressure coming at him to contend with, I understood why he wasn’t. Whereas Ford worked in a team, Five is flying solo, despite Rory’s demands to join him to put a stop to the threats he is sensing drawing closer by the minute.
While I struggled with the repetition when it came to pleasantries, there were other times where the details were scant and I was left wanting more. It would have been good to have fleshed out the drama when trouble struck or threatened. My experience had me torn between a 3 and 4 star rating, settling with the middle ground. This was a coming of age story based around the dirty and dark dealings of the rich and powerful, depicted haphazardly but always well-paced. This was a page turner despite my struggles and a book that came into its glory at the final hour.
It would be remiss not to mention the EOBS (author afterword) which, as always, illuminated the story with JA’s usual finesse. I instantly wished I had read it as a foreword but then if I was meant to read it in the beginning it would have been put there…wouldn’t it?
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