"a solid, tightly-woven story"
Archer "Ace" Belmont is a reluctant soul collector, one who
hasn't quite given up on his humanity no matter how many
debts he's called in over the last several decades, or how
long he has served Him. Ace's latest assignment starts off
routinely enough until he meets and makes love to Ryder
Conway and all bets are suddenly off. Ace does what no soul
collector should ever do; he falls for his charge, na´ve
young law student Ryder, to the detriment of them both.
Lovelorn, Ryder feels as if he is doomed to forever have
deep feelings for men who won't or can't return his
feelings. And gorgeous and distant Ace is no exception,
telling Ryder from their first encounter that he should not
fall for him, that they can never be. He doesn't, however,
tell Ryder why this is, not until he can no longer hide the
truth: that he has come to collect a debt. Ryder is
confused until Ace reminds him about a stormy night and a
car accident that nearly took Ryder's best friend, Tommy
Burke's life until a miracle saved him. Ryder, however,
learns that it wasn't just a miracle that saved Tommy, but
his own desperate promise to give his life for Tommy's.
When Ryder learns of Ace's real reason for coming to him he
is at first disbelieving and then horrified. Neither,
however, stops him from feeling the way he does about Ace,
nothing stops him from urgently wanting the "man" who has
come to collect on Ryder's debt.
Jesse, a bitter spirit from Ace's past steps into the
picture, as well as Ryder's body, and he has an agenda that
doesn't include allowing Ace to ride off into the sunset
with his new mortal lover to live happily ever after.
Manly creates an intriguing and formidable world of grays
inhabited by the flawed but sympathetic heroes in Ace and
Ryder and a colorful assortment of secondary characters in
the dubious friends and cohorts who try to help Ace solve
the sticky possession issue and the dilemma with his past
and present lovers.
Payment Due is a solid, tightly-woven story with enough
emotional and physical twists and turns, complex
characterizations and sizzling encounters between Ace and
Ryder to keep an erotic paranormal romance fan turning
pages until the satisfying end.
Reviewed by Gracie McKeever
Posted April 27, 2008