Melissa reviews Insight (The Community #1) by Santino Hassell. Published March 13th 2017 by Riptide Publishing, 264 pages.
Growing up the outcast in an infamous family of psychics, Nate Black never learned how to control his empath abilities. Then after five years without contact, his estranged twin turns up dead in New York City. The claim of suicide doesn’t ring true, especially when a mysterious vision tells Nate it was murder. Now his long-hated gift is his only tool to investigate.
Hitching from his tiny Texas town, Nate is picked up by Trent, a gorgeous engineer who thrives on sarcasm and skepticism. The heat that sparks between them is instant and intense, and Nate ends up trusting Trent with his secrets—something he’s never done before. But once they arrive in the city, the secrets multiply when Nate discovers an underground supernatural community, more missing psychics, and frightening information about his own talent.
Nate is left questioning his connection with Trent. Are their feelings real, or are they being propelled by abilities Nate didn’t realize he had? His fear of his power grows, but Nate must overcome it to find his brother’s killer and trust himself with Trent’s heart.
Why I read this book: The blurb really spoke to me and I’ve heard great things about Santino Hassell as an author so I thought this would be the perfect book to start with this author.
An ARC was provided by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
Wow, as impossible as this is, Insight is my first Santino Hassell book. I know right? But, OMG, this was a very good first book. I enjoy paranormal stories and HELLO, special abilities like mind control, how cool is that? If it’s in the right hands, of course.
I am going to start with the end of the book. It was such a thrilling ending. Nate and Trent cuddle and kiss and I love those squishy satisfactory endings. Seeing couples who have had a lot of heart pounding thriller action finally getting to settle down and cuddle just gets me. 🙂 And then Nate gets a phone call. Dun, dun, dun!! Trouble has once again stirred in New York and Nate can’t say no to going back to help. This is obviously a lead in to the next book of this trilogy, and I am seriously pumped and way more than ready to get that installment in my hands.
Insight is really a “Who done it” type story. Yes there are paranormal things going on, and that is definitely a huge aspect of the plot. But at equal level of importance is what happened to Nate’s brother, Theo. Nate is struck suddenly with a vision of his brother drowning in New York, but he knows Theo didn’t commit suicide. Compelled for reasons he can’t explain, Nate heads to New York. As Nate is thumbing his way down the road, Trent (a stranger but someone Nate did interact with at the liquor store where he works) stops to pick him up. Nate doesn’t get any bad empathic vibes from Trent’s car so he gets in. Because of Nate’s empathy abilities, he gets nothing but calm and soothing feelings from Trent, which puts Nate at ease. Do I have to even bother saying they fall for each other?
When Nate gets to New York, he meets up with Theo’s band mates and learns that everything Nate thought he new about special abilities is wrong. Not only is Nate basically a baby psy, but there is a community specifically designed and created to find and help psys of extreme value (defined by how helpful their abilities are).
This is definitely an action packed story and I HATED having to put it down. If you like paranormal and tense plot lines, this is the perfect book. I loved it all, and want time to speed up to get book 2 (and of course book 3). To say too much about the other characters will spoil the mystery. This IS a mystery that Nate is trying to solve and I was guessing and pondering right along with Nate and Trent. I didn’t know who to trust and I have to say, I was a little surprised by the ending, but not completely. I suspected everybody so am I still right when the bad guy turns out to be one of the millions on my list?
For me the first few pages started off slow but don’t let that stop you. Once things take off, they REALLY take off. I know I am leaving out a lot of the plot, but you shouldn’t know too much going in. Just know that things do work out for Nate and Trent.
Santino writes queer romance that is heavily influenced by the gritty, urban landscape of New York City, his belief that human relationships are complex and flawed, and his own life experiences.
To learn more about Santino you can follow him on:
Facebook: theonlysonnyhassell | santinohassellbooks
And at his official website: http://bit.ly/16sgcSu