Friday, February 22, 2013

Review: The Italian Connection Vol.1 by Alex A. Akira

The Italian Connection Vol.1 (Dojo Boys #4) by Alex A. Akira
Triple A Press
Novel: 213pgs
3.5 Pants Off

This swiftly paced 2 Volume romantic Yaoi love story tells the story of the multi-talented thief/dancer Philippe Michael Ponty. First introduced in Dojo Boys: Dragon & Crow Volume II, the now 22 year old platinum haired, petite Adonis struggles to make a home for himself in America.

Volume I finds Philip settling in Connecticut in disguise as he doesn't want to draw too much attention to his true line of work. Despite his caution, he meets and befriends a local rock musician Tommy Sear, who despairs of ever having his band make it.

Quickly smitten by the dark haired, shy Asian male that is Philip, Tommy seeks to make the young man his, but Philip doesn't believe in love, besides he has a very real problem, he can't seem to get the victim of his last burglary, green eyed, virile Italian male... out of his mind.
With Philip's encouragement, Tommy renews his efforts to get his band Sear a record deal. He makes a demo and shortly after a scout contacts him, from Italy no less.

The Italian scout is coming to America hear them play in the hopes of signing Sear to the much sought after label Romano Studios. But Tommy has a secret and he's afraid that without Philip's help, they may not get the deal.

So I went into reading this one without having read the first 3 volumes, and though there were characters I was unfamiliar with, the story was pretty easy to follow. The book begins with Philippe a lithe thief breaking into a home, research says no one should be home but his plans get thwarted when a beautiful man is asleep in a couch in the very room he needs to steal from. Philippe is attracted to him, and wish he could have seen the man under different circumstances but he's got a job to do. What he never expected was a confrontation with the sleeping man and a kiss that would come to change his life.

Julian Romano is in Italy for a little R&R after a very nasty break-up with his partner. He's hurting and was being a bit destructive, and as a part owner with his twin brother Gregori of Romano Records, he needs to have his wits about. What he never expected was to be robbed on his vacay, and to want the thief something fierce. Many months later he's still pheneing for his little thief, but alas real life calls and it’s time to head back home and get back to work.

The book is very fast paced, and I did enjoy pretty much all the characters but I had a few niggles. The constant knowing what every character is thinking was annoying, really killed the flow of reading. So I found myself not reading all those inner thoughts written in italics (it was like a character always having an aside). The flashbacks also felt very contrived and out of order, which once again messed with overall delivery (it probably cause some confusion for readers). While most things seem all over the place, the author manages to bring everything together, but still left me with questions and anticipating reading the next volume. Things is about to get serious.

The thing to remember is that this book is yaoi, from the very core of the plot to how the characters talk to each other. There is a lot of story happening, with many characters and eye rolling moments. The Italian Connection is a fun read, with likable characters, and pretty men all around. An insta love thing going on which works with the story line and Philip's past which is very questionable, will not be for all readers (underage talk of sex) something which is not unusual in yaoi so I wasn't bothered. Overall, I liked it and can't wait to read volume 2.

Should You Read It? If you are a fan of yaoi and enjoy reading about pretty men then this book is for you. The sex part of it is very tame, and mostly it’s all very character based. Needed to be bit cleaner in delivery, but I liked it nonetheless. Plus, that covers is all kinds of pretty!!

3.5 Pants Off

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