Cask Strength by Layla Reyne

Cask Strength

Professionally, the FBI team of Aidan "Irish" Talley and Jameson "Whiskey" Walker is as good as it gets, closing cases faster than any team at the Bureau. Personally, it’s a different story. Aidan’s feelings for Jamie scare the hell out of him: he won’t risk losing another love no matter how heart-tripping the intimacy between them. And loss is a grim reality with the terr...

Title:Cask Strength
Author:
Rating:
Edition Language:English
Format Type:Kindle Edition
Number of Pages:205 pages

Cask Strength Reviews

  • Ami
    Jan 27, 2017

    I wasn't happy -- strike that, I was

    with the relationship drama in this one. I thought both men were being idiot (Aidan's case) and whiny (Jamie's case). I am going to rant now -- so excuse my language -- because

    was totally NOT what I was expecting the sequel of the promising

    to be, at least in terms of the relationship.

    So five months later, Aidan is back to his old ways of being a

    I wasn't happy -- strike that, I was

    with the relationship drama in this one. I thought both men were being idiot (Aidan's case) and whiny (Jamie's case). I am going to rant now -- so excuse my language -- because

    was totally NOT what I was expecting the sequel of the promising

    to be, at least in terms of the relationship.

    So five months later, Aidan is back to his old ways of being a

    , refusing to commit to Jamie. He is dating other men, even if he still has sex with Jamie. His reasons? Because he doesn't want to get close to his "Whiskey", because people getting close to him tend to be in harm's way, and he doesn't want to risk it.

    Well, BULLSH*T. They are FBI agents, for God's sake. Their job can be dangerous in the first place. What kind of a reason is that?! So f*cking lame. Plus I truly disliked Aidan being written a player when just few months ago Aidan was worrying and feeling guilty of jumping into new relationship with Jamie too fast. You know, considering his husband has only recently DIED! What the f*cking wrong with you, Aidan?

    Sorry, it was NOT how I pictured Aidan would behave, and it left bitter taste in my mouth. Does Aidan have a complete character surgery somewhere between the release of Single Malt and this one?

    Then there was Jamie -- smart and

    Jamie -- who is sadly being reduced into someone who becomes jealous of Aidan's other men, then getting extremely upset because he realizes he doesn't want to share Aidan, and he is falling for the older man ... that it sort of interrupting how Jamie do his job. But then Jamie is going undercover, and BAM, there is his ex-lover there, muddling this already complicated relationship with Aidan. It made me want to scream, "

    "

    Oh, how I am NOT a fan when the relationship drama disturbs the working professionalism *grumbles*. Maybe this kind of supposed to offer angst for readers ... but instead of being emotionally engaged, I found myself fuming and wanting to knock some senses to both men instead.

    NOT a good reading experience, I tell you. Which is why I have to settle with my low rating.

    On a better note -- I was kind of intrigued with the gambling/identity theft case involving the basketball players. It was also fun seeing Jamie acting as the assistant coach, even if it was only for undercover and only for a little while.

    Things were also moving forward with the other case surrounding the death of Aidan's husband, Greg, as well as his work partner, Tom. Jamie was able to find more clues and answers -- even if it still ended it a big twist! That twist is a great hook to ensure that I will NOT miss book #3 for sure. Let's just hope that Aidan and Jamie clean up their mess and being a solid couple/partner next time I read them.

  • Aerin
    Feb 16, 2017

    Cask Strength is pretty much exactly what I expected considering how the first book ended. I honestly don't understand why some people expected Aiden and Jamie's journey to be lean waters when we've been told from the blurb and from the final chapter of Single Malt that stormy waters and a rocky road is ahead of them both. And just in case you're wandering, the big secret that Jamie is keeping from Aiden is still threatening to ruin their relationship. The third and final book in this trilogy wi

    Cask Strength is pretty much exactly what I expected considering how the first book ended. I honestly don't understand why some people expected Aiden and Jamie's journey to be lean waters when we've been told from the blurb and from the final chapter of Single Malt that stormy waters and a rocky road is ahead of them both. And just in case you're wandering, the big secret that Jamie is keeping from Aiden is still threatening to ruin their relationship. The third and final book in this trilogy will be the most angsty and emotional of them all, but I have complete faith in these two.

    Aiden finds it hard to come to terms with his new feelings for Jamie and he's scared to death of losing the only other person he's ever loved. Aiden is trying hard to keep things casual with Jamie by going out with other guys; we all know he's only lying to himself, but I'm ok with temporary self-delusion as long as Aiden finally gets on the love train. With the risk of spoiling this part of the story, I have to assure you that

    He leads Jamie to believe that he does, and that's because he's trying really hard to keep their relationship casual. Aiden lost the love of his life, give this scared, confused guy a break; he'll come trough and make it worth every exasperated moment.

    Trying to draw attention away from themselves after terrorist Renaud starts killing all persons of interest in Gabe and Tom's murder, Aiden and Jamie go undercover on a new case. This brings Jamie up close and personal with the career he loved more than anything and his ex lover, the one responsible for Jamie giving up on the game he loved so much. You know how sometimes a blast from the past makes you question your decisions and wonder if you made the wrong one? Jamie's ex might be a beautiful man who wants Jamie back, but even though Aiden leads Jamie to believe things between them will never be serious, Jamie's heart knows exactly who it wants. For Jamie, Aiden is

    This book is action packed, much like the first one has been, and the action served as a distraction from the emotional angst. While I loved the first book more than this one, Cask Strength didn't disappoint. The sexual tension and chemistry between Aiden and Jamie is still there, just as strong as always, especially after Aiden stops being a commitment phobe.

    I wish there wasn't such a long wait until Barrel Proof comes out, because based on how Cask Strength ended, it will either be emotional as fuck or emotional as fuck. Have your pick.

  • Jaime
    Feb 28, 2017

    is book two in the series, Agents Irish and Whiskey by author Layla Reyne. This book picks up right after book one and should

    be read as a standalone. I fell in love with these characters in book one and my love for them has grown as their story continues. In fact, my immediate reaction went a little something like this...

    is book two in the series, Agents Irish and Whiskey by author Layla Reyne. This book picks up right after book one and should

    be read as a standalone. I fell in love with these characters in book one and my love for them has grown as their story continues. In fact, my immediate reaction went a little something like this...

    - Made me love these two,

    - Made me question all loyalties...and of course, Love these two harder..

    - Just Might Kill me...the author, she

    ...she

    ...I just might not survive it, if she does!!

     

    You all must read this book...just don't complain cause it's very much a rocky ride, ends with a sort of cliffhanger...our guys, they are getting there...the luscious angst and the suspense is riveting, you won't be able to put this book down!!!

     

    So hang on..get the book, a bottle of Johnny Blue, and start flipping these pages!!!

    ... Pretty much that is still my thoughts on the series after finishing this book. I really cannot say a lot about the storyline because I refuse to spoil it for anyone. What I will say is - we get to know the characters a little bit more in this book. Aidan is afraid of having his heart broken again - he knows he is falling in love with Jamie, but as he fights it he even allows others to think he is going out and having sex with tons of people. So he isn't perfect - who is? Jamie on the other hand, he knows who he wants. Even when his dream job is dangled in front of him, complete with an ex-boyfriend - he only wants to be with Aidan. Personally, I

    the build between these two because I know when Aidan finally falls, he is going to fall hard and it's going to be so sweet!

    In the suspense and action part of the story, it's packed. These two are still working on fighting Renaud and the secret that Jamie is keeping - yes, it is still there and it is driving him insane. In addition to that, Jamie and Aidan go undercover and there is a lot of action surrounding that case.

    If you are put off by cliffhangers and unresolved situations then this story might not be for you. You will be missing out but to each their own. For me, I think this book is worth 5 fan-freaking-tastic stars!!!

    Review Copy of

    provided by

    for an honest Review.

  • Sara
    May 06, 2017

    We start five months after

    ended, with our FBI agents moving casually into a romantic relationship and firmly into their professional partnership. On Jamie’s end, he is all in no matter what he promised to Aidan about keeping it casual between them because Jamie has been so gone for Aidan long before anything physical happened between them. He knows Aidan was a man whore before his marriage to Gabe and half listened to Aidan’s points on not being serious – blah blah blah - bu

    We start five months after

    ended, with our FBI agents moving casually into a romantic relationship and firmly into their professional partnership. On Jamie’s end, he is all in no matter what he promised to Aidan about keeping it casual between them because Jamie has been so gone for Aidan long before anything physical happened between them. He knows Aidan was a man whore before his marriage to Gabe and half listened to Aidan’s points on not being serious – blah blah blah - but Jamie is his own man and he’ll do what he wants as long as he keeps it to himself. There are a few other things he is keeping to himself as well, like knowing the connection between Gabe, Tom and Renaud and not telling Aidan about it nor that Mel has him digging deeper into the accident and all that it involves.

    I have to say that when I first learned about the men Aidan was seeing on the side I saw red and not just the natural color of Aidan’s hair. I was pissed off but then I turned the page and got Aidan’s POV and settled down. Self-preservation is the solace of one's own mind and though you don’t agree, you can’t pass judgment because it’s each person’s own validity. Aidan is so terrified to lose Jamie that he tries to keep him at arm's-length by “dating” copycats of Jamie and swearing there is no feelings between them. It’s a dick move but when Jamie calls him out on it, we do get some delicious UST that unfortunately leads to more dick moves and then Mel giving them a case back in Jamie’s home town with them undercover and an Au Naturale Aidan as Ian… *swoon* Call him what you want, Agent Irish is edible as his natural ginger self.

    My brain is a jumbled mess right now as I try to process everything we have learned. Not only about the accident that killed Gabe and Tom but about all this crap in Charlotte with basketball and people wanting a piece of both Jamie and Aidan that they will stop at nothing to get it. The undercover case was nothing less than fascinating and full of informational detail that doesn’t weigh the reader down. It was easy to follow, the betting etc. and fueled every aspect of the story line. As with the first book, this is full of cinematic action and swoon worthy moments along with intense passionate games of er, um pool? Yeah, we will call it games of pool and how scorching the game of billiards can be, or at least just the use of the table.

    It was great to see Jamie in his roots with basketball even though it was undercover. We get a lot of him as the FBI Agent and hacker, but I loved seeing how much his first love meant to him in real time. We know why he left the game and that he has thrived in his life as an FBI Agent but he lived and breathed basketball for so long that is also suffocated his inability to be out with his sexual orientation. Of course, being home brings up drama that is unavoidable but did it ever make for some intense moments between Jamie and Aidan that had me melting. I mean, jealousy can be a good thing when its labors bring about a change.

    Again I have to bring in the title of this book. I love that the author is sticking to the whiskey themed titles and that Cask Strength, points at the production in whiskey straight from the barrel and its maturity. Ha! Maturity. I think in this case we can either talk about Aidan being older but older doesn’t always mean better or for that matter Jamie if we talk about whiskey maturing and losing some of its potency, known as the angel’s share. We learn a lot about Jamie when we go home with him undercover as himself to catch the insiders betting on basketball and stealing identifies. Aidan is of the assumption that his younger lover is so damn pure because Aidan thinks he is so damn tainted and yet learns that his own Whiskey at cask strength has a burn that overpowers the subtlety of his own flavors. Hmm… Aidan, be careful that scent you like to inhale so much from Jamie’s neck doesn’t burn your nose hairs. Kay?

    Goodness. As Jamie, Danny and Mel work the case behind Aidan’s back more secrets come out of the closet like a needed yard sale of a hoarder. It was crazy how many ties to Aidan all of this has and how Jamie will tell him. The manner of which Aidan goes about working the case, how he goes about lying to his lover, his partner and the man he loves leads us to an heart stopping conclusion and cliffhanger to the story. Seriously, I yelled at the end and contemplated how long my resolve would take to break before I ran to request the last book because OMG! That end was amazing.

    So, declarations have been exchanged and promises have been made but when Jamie comes clean with Aidan with the whole story about Gabe etc., he may need his own stock of cask strength liquor to drown out the memory of what could have been. OR, will this new love between partners and lovers be strong enough to not be diluted. Only two fingers of the finest Barrel Proof will tell for sure.

  • Vanessa theJeepDiva
    Apr 17, 2017

    Jamie and Aidan also known as Whiskey and Irish are quickly finding their way to the top of my favorite couple list. Now if you have not read and enjoyed the first book in this series, Single Malt you’ll want to do that before you purchase this book. This is a series that must be read in order. Also if you have not read Single Malt you may find some spoilerish things within this review.

    Cask Strength begins five months after Galveston and Jamie is sure that Aidan is trying to kill him. Jamie is

    Jamie and Aidan also known as Whiskey and Irish are quickly finding their way to the top of my favorite couple list. Now if you have not read and enjoyed the first book in this series, Single Malt you’ll want to do that before you purchase this book. This is a series that must be read in order. Also if you have not read Single Malt you may find some spoilerish things within this review.

    Cask Strength begins five months after Galveston and Jamie is sure that Aidan is trying to kill him. Jamie is head over heels for Aidan and he’s at the point even if he could stop what they have between them he doesn’t want to. Aidan wants to keep things casual so much so that he is doing things that are completely wrecking Jamie emotionally. Aidan’s already lost his husband to a man that is still out there and clearly still after him and his new partner. Aidan has to protect what’s left of his heart and Jamie. Jamie is quickly working his way into the void that that has been in Aidan’s heart since Gabe was killed.

    Yes, there is a lot going on here and the entire time you’re reading and loving the second installment in this series you’re waiting for the numerous other shoes to drop. Jamie has to tell Aidan about Project Angel. We also know from the first book that there is something there as to why Jamie left basketball that he has to come clean about. The case they are working in this book puts Jamie back in North Carolina and back on the court as a coach. All sorts of old feelings and desires bubble up. So many shoes waiting to drop, I couldn’t put this book down.

    Layla Reyne has a way of hooking the reader. Just like the ending of Single Malt the case here is tidily wrapped up. Our men are at a good happy for now place. One of those shoes drops at the end though and it was loaded for bear. I don’t see this as a cliffhanger but I am dying to get my fingers on the next book, Barrel Proof.

  • Diana
    May 01, 2017

    , book 2 in the Irish and Whiskey series by Layla Reyne. The story picks up a few months after they wrapped their big case in Glaveston. Both Aidan and Jamie are quietly continuing their work on trying to find the terrorist Renault, who may be the one who orchestrated the accident that killed Aidan’s husband Gabe, and his FBI partner, Tom. When things heat up with Renault, their boss, Mel, decides they need to get out of town for a few days. They take a case

    , book 2 in the Irish and Whiskey series by Layla Reyne. The story picks up a few months after they wrapped their big case in Glaveston. Both Aidan and Jamie are quietly continuing their work on trying to find the terrorist Renault, who may be the one who orchestrated the accident that killed Aidan’s husband Gabe, and his FBI partner, Tom. When things heat up with Renault, their boss, Mel, decides they need to get out of town for a few days. They take a case at a college in Jamie’s hometown where the great Whiskey Walker goes undercover as their new basketball coach and Aidan is his sports agent. They are trying to figure who is involved in an identity theft ring hiding behind on line betting on the basketball games. Easy case, right????

    They mystery with the identify theft sucked me right into the story. With the list of suspects growing, I had no idea who was behind it.

    So why didn’t I give it 5 stars? Honestly, I had a major problem with Aidan and Jamie’s relationship. With Aidan playing the “I can’t get close to anyone, because they die” card, it drove me crazy. Along with some other things, but I don’t want to give too much away. Even on top of all that, I still adored these two. They both tried to hide the love that was growing, as well as trying to protect their hearts at the same time. While Jamie didn’t like it “casual” he is keeping secrets of his own. Secrets he knows it will destroy their relationship as friends, partners and lovers.

    This is definitely not a standalone and it also ends with a cliffy!!! UGH.

  • Dia
    Jun 15, 2017

    I enjoyed this book. It's the continuation of

    .

    I was really curious how Irish and Whiskey would find their way to each other. The painful part was seeing how Aidan struggled to accept his feelings towards Jamie. I didn't like it one bit how he still kept it casual and told himself they don't have something special. Jamie was too afraid to lose him, so he ached in silence.

    Overall it was a great journey seeing the two of them undercover. I've read this almost in one standing, i

    I enjoyed this book. It's the continuation of

    .

    I was really curious how Irish and Whiskey would find their way to each other. The painful part was seeing how Aidan struggled to accept his feelings towards Jamie. I didn't like it one bit how he still kept it casual and told himself they don't have something special. Jamie was too afraid to lose him, so he ached in silence.

    Overall it was a great journey seeing the two of them undercover. I've read this almost in one standing, in vacation. I was glued to the pages and hoped really hard that Jamie would tell Aidan what he found out even if he was afraid to break his heart.

    Well dark times are coming ahead and I'm super curious to read the next book. I've got an ARC so thank God I don't have to wait. Looking forward to their HEA.

  • Jewel
    Jun 21, 2017

    Other reviewers weren't kidding -- the first part of this book is heartbreaking and I kind of wanted to smack Aiden for his stubbornness. But the ending?! Hell, I need the next book now.


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