Would I lie to You? (Game Players 1), by Brad Vance
Author: Brad Vance
Series: The Game Players Book 1)
Genre: Gay Fiction/Romance/Suspense
Page Count: 289 Pages (Novel)
Publisher: Brad Vance
Heat Level: Explicit
Blurb: 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.
This is the first time I’ve read anything by Brad Vance, and it won’t be the last. Would I lie to you, was an amazing story with an in depth plot and storyline. It kept me on the edge of my seat and glued to the pages, until the end.
Marc Julian is full of surprises. As the story begins, Marc is in the middle of a very intense Dom/sub scene when he gets a call that his company computer system has been hacked. At first glance you may think Marc is meek and mild, someone who likes to take orders, not pass them out. And, you wouldn’t be wrong, but only at the hands of Master Ryan.
On the job, he is anything but. He is aggressive, highly intelligent, and knows how to run a multi-billion dollar company. A company that he owns and constructed from the ground up. He has surrounded himself by the best and most loyal employees He has learned many hard lessons to get him where he is today, and he refuses to go down without a fight.
“Your job is not to fall on your sword. Your job is to draw that sword. And find me a head out there. And cut if off. And bring it to me on a platter.”
Someone has infiltrated his system stealing a very secretive code that Marc and his team have been working on. In order to find the culprit they will have to bring in someone who has his own secrets. A man who has spent time in prison for cybercrime, the same thing they are trying to stop.
Jesse Winchester is a convicted felon who should still be in prison for his crimes, but he only served 3 years, out of 35. He’s the best at what he does, has a great sense of humor, and is gorgeous. He has his own secrets that he’s not willing to share, but sometimes it takes a thief to catch a thief.
Marc is attracted to Jesse, and he can tell it’s mutual, but being duped and taken for everything he owned by his last lover, he doesn’t trust anyone. But, it’s very hard considering Jesse’s dominating personality hits every button Marc has.
As they begin to work together they fall into an easy comradery. They are a perfect match but neither one is willing to open themselves up enough to fully trust. Being in prison, Jesse learned a lot of things such as taking life for granted. While there, he had no choice but to think and plan, but also realizing he would have to trust, a little bit, in order to survive.
Meeting Leonid, in prison, was the saving grace Jesse needed in order to get through his time there. He offered him protection and a way for Jesse to stay connected with the outside world. It came with a price, of course, but it was a price Jesse was willing to pay in order to feel human again.
Leonid takes Jesse under his wing, mentoring him, showing him the ways of prison life, but in the process, a very good friendship is formed. A friendship that would remain long after his release from prison.
Jesse begins to show Marc how to experience and enjoy the smaller things you never have time to think about. Like enjoying the taste, the smell of something that, normally, you wouldn’t ever give any thought too. He begins to open himself more in his presence and trust, on both sides, begin to take hold.
Both, Jesse and Marc, seem to be looking for redemption, if for no other reason than to prove their worth to the other. Both were tricked by past lovers that left a massive hole in their hearts.
Brad writes with a very descriptive narrative that appealed to my sense’s keeping me tuned in till the last page. His ingenuity with the storyline was clever and brilliant. The plot was told from both points of view allowing us insight into both Marc and Jesse’s past.
Their past is the meat of the story and the defining moments of how they behave in the present. I loved the execution which, imo, gave the story more meaning. He takes us through the rough patches of their lives and the moments that have led them to where they are now. We learn why they have trust issues and we learn that family is the backbone to their success.
Even though they don’t understand everything about the other, they are forming a bond. They have a real connection and chemistry they both want to explore. But, will they let their guard down enough to take a chance?
Is it possible that Jesse could be using Marc just to have a chance to orchestrate his own payback? It’s very possible and when the time comes that he will have no choice but to reveal his true self, will Marc understand? Or lose himself, again?
Deception runs rampant in this story, but intrigue is a captivating factor making it a very addictive read. The story’s complexity and level of intensity was very gratifying to me and I enjoyed it immensely. Their attraction to the other is like a slow burn that never reaches its full potential. Yet, you know when it happens they will combust from the heat.
Marc started to reach for him, to give in. Fuck he was so gorgeous. It was crazy, that he’d never had as much as a hand on Jesse’s cock, his bare ass, never had Jesse’s lips on his…and yet the feeling of intimacy he already had with him was so complete…
He was so hungry. So hungry for love, for passion.
That would…ruin everything. Make them just two horny bastards who couldn’t control themselves.
Brad uncovers more and more as the story unfolds and I have to say that I was pleasantly surprised on more than one occasion. When everything is told and all the facts are laid out allowing you to see how even the smallest of pieces finally make the overall picture, well… very clever Mr. Vance.
The ending is a revelation that is not really the end, but a continuity for more adventures. I look forward to more Game Player adventures, in the future. Oh, and when Jesse and Marc finally consummate their relationship, just as I knew it would be, HOT.