Book Reviews

Infected: Throwaways (Mean Streets 2) by Andrea Speed at DSP Publications

Genre Gay / Urban Fantasy / Romance / Mystery/Suspense/Thriller
Reviewed by Christy Duke on 13-February-2018

Book Blurb

Former prostitute and street kid turned private detective Holden Krause is asked to look into the murder of Burn, a black-market dealer, who turns up dead near the infamous homeless encampment known as the Jungle. It’s a place Holden is familiar with—and his memories of it aren’t entirely bad. The settlement has been taken over by sinister people but Holden isn’t afraid to take them on. A big part of his PI gig is cover for his more dangerous vigilante crusade: exacting justice for the people the system ignores, the throwaways—people just like the ones living in the Jungle.


It’s getting harder and harder for Holden’s partner, Chai Nayar, to look the other way while Holden searches out retribution beyond the confines of the law. When one of their associates is shot and Holden realizes—far too late—that he’s in over his head with this case, Chai is left to pick up the pieces and hopefully save their lives. He resorts to the only solution he can find and calls Roan, who is more lethal than ever. Will it be their saving grace, or a fatal mistake?


Book Review

I’ve missed Holden with his snarkiness, his way of breaking everything down to in-your-face reality, his questionable morals, his ambiguous values, and his vigilante justice. His general “I don’t give a flying f*ck” attitude is always equally refreshing. ‘Infected: Throwaways’ is the second book in the author’s spin-off series, ‘Mean Streets’. I don’t believe I’ll ever get over not seeing Roan all the time and the constant reminders that he’s basically dying still hurt like hell. Regardless, I did want to see how much more trouble Holden could get up to.

“Namely, all the rest of the guys had settled down, and Chai was ready to throw himself in that pile as well. But Holden hadn’t changed. He had, in fact, turned himself up to eleven. He was still the slick hustler, the guy who wasn’t exactly pretty and yet had the burnished aura and confidence of the prettiest man in the world, with an edge that glittered beneath the surface. But now that edge was more visible and deadlier than ever.”

I like the way the author writes this series where I get to see more than one perspective. I hear from Holden, Chai, and Scott, which gives me so much more clarity. I was also happy to see the multiple cases Holden was juggling. He has a missing persons which happened to be the husband of a woman who used to hire Holden to do a threesome for a night with them. Then there is Burn, a drug dealer/anything-criminal guy who was murdered in the Jungle (an area of the city packed with homeless), and Holden agrees to ask around for Kevin, the cop who is sure Holden is a vigilante but can’t prove it. The situation changes and gets far more deadly when Kevin is shot right outside the Jungle and Holden is attacked by six men hired to take him out. So Chai makes a decision to call Roan and let him know about Kevin and Holden.

“It was dark, shocking, a deep crimson that seemed to go almost black. It made Chai think of blood, then think there was no way that could be his real color. That had to come from a bottle or a jar of Manic Panic. But then he turned around, and Chai saw that his eyebrows, although a slightly darker shade, were essentially the same color, so no, probably not a dye job. And his eyes were like a punch in the gut. They were a bright, clear green and reminded him somehow of cat’s eyes.
Oh. So this was Roan. Funny, Chai thought he’d be taller.”

With Holden in the hospital it’s up to Roan and Chai to get the answers. Well, mostly Roan, but Chai does his best. It doesn’t take Chai long to realize why all the guys are half in love with Roan and view him as the greatest superhero around. It also doesn’t take long for Chai to end up in the bad guys’ crosshairs with Roan coming to his rescue. It would appear that these men don’t believe the “kitty fag” can possibly hurt them. Some things never seem to change. *grins*

I have mixed feelings about ‘Infected: Throwaways’. I still love this urban fantasy slash paranormal world the author has created but without it revolving 100 percent around Roan, I feel as if the story has grown flat and dull. I realize that Roan is a very tough act to follow and getting a glimpse of him within these pages didn’t make my reactions to Holden, Chai, Kevin, Scott, Grey, and others any more stimulating. However, the suspense portion of the plot is just as enthralling as I have always found it to be, and Holden’s snarky wit hasn’t stopped entertaining me.

It’s a toss-up right now as to whether I’ll read the next installment in the series. On the one hand, I’m invested in these characters and seeing where they go is always interesting. On the other hand, some of the characters are a recipe for disaster in terms of their continuing lifespan. I’ll have to wait and see what the author brings next and until then, I can always lose myself in rereads of both series.





DISCLAIMER: Books reviewed on this site were usually provided at no cost by the publisher or author. This book has been provided by DSP Publications for the purpose of a review.

Additional Information

Format ebook and print
Length Novel, 280 pages/101585 words
Heat Level
Publication Date 13-February-2018
Price $6.99 ebook, $16.99 paperback, $16.99 bundle
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