Adrien English Mystery Series. Books 1-5 by Josh Lanyon



Book 1: Fatal Shadows

Adrien English Mystery Series #1

Someone’s out to get Los Angeles bookseller Adrien English. His best friend has been viciously murdered, now he’s getting weird phone calls and sinister gifts from a mysterious “admirer”. The cops think he’s trying to divert suspicion from himself—with the exception of sexy and homophobic homicide detective Jake Riordan.

Is Riordan really such a great detective—or does he have a few secrets of his own? Is his offer to help Adrien on the level or is he out to nail his favorite suspect—to the wall?

Book 2:  A Dangerous Thing: 

Adrien English Mystery Series #2 Suffering from writer’s block and frustrated with his tentative relationship with hot but closeted L.A.P.D. Homicide Detective Jake Riordan, gay bookseller and mystery writer Adrien English travels to northern California where he finds a body in his front drive. By the time the sheriffs arrive, the body has disappeared, and Adrien once again finds himself playing amateur sleuth. But when the game turns deadly, Adrien turns to Jake. Jake may be confused about some things, but keeping his lover alive is not one of them–no matter what the cost.

Book 3:  The Hell You Say

After bookstore clerk Angus flees following terrifying death threats, owner Adrien must contend with a mysterious Satanic cult, a hot and handsome university professor, and his on-again/off-again relationship with closeted LAPD Homicide Detective Jake Riordan.

Book 4: Death Of A Pirate King

#4 in the acclaimed Adrien English Mystery Series by award winning author Josh Lanyon. Gay bookseller and reluctant amateur sleuth Adrien English’s writing career is suddenly taking off. His first novel, Murder Will Out, has been optioned by notorious Hollywood actor Paul Kane. But when murder makes an appearance at a dinner party, who should be called in but Adrien’s former lover, handsome closeted detective Jake Riordan, now a Lieutenant with LAPD — which may just drive Adrien’s new boyfriend, sexy UCLA professor Guy Snowden, to commit a murder of his own.

Book 5: The Dark Tide

As if recovering from heart surgery beneath the gaze of his over-protective family wasn’t exasperating enough, someone keeps trying to break into Adrien English’s bookstore. What is this determined midnight intruder searching for?

When a half-century old skeleton tumbles out of the wall in the midst of the renovation of Cloak and Dagger Bookstore renovation, Adrien turns to hot and handsome ex-lover Jake Riordan — now out-of-the closet and working as a private detective.

Jake is only too happy to have reason to stay in close contact with Adrien, but there are more surprises in Adrien’s past than either one of them expects — and one of them may prove hazardous to Jake’s own heart.

Purchase Links:

My Review: 

** This review contains spoilers **

Bare with me while I rant, rave, swoon, and then rant again! Picture a roller coaster that doesn’t stop. And you are on it for days. Starting it’s a little rickety, but a straight line and then all of a sudden you are thrust up in 2.5 seconds and then dashed down in the next 10. AND! You had to chance to get off the ride but you chose not to. YOU and only YOU chose to stay on this ride. This is me reading this series.

5 books.


Book 1: Hmmmm I still don’t know what to make of this book. Its the start. We meet Adrien, with an E. I liked him right away. He had a quirky attitude, a weak heart, but apparently a big one.

Jake- Hiding in like 10000 closets. His gay jokes weren’t funny. Neither was his bashing. All in all he was a serious dick and I didn’t like him. It is really rare for me to not like a character. A MAIN CHARACTER in a book . Rare. Very very rare. You have to be the biggest douche bag for me to not find 1 SMALL THING TO like about you.


The Whodunit kept me entertained in this book. I mean its kinda obvious who the killer was, but you know, when you need to be sure! So I kept reading on and was thoroughly impressed with the fact that I was right! Right!

Book 2:

Even worse guys!!! I mean I started it in February and did WFAT (will finish another time). I read like 8 other books in between. I don’t even know what made me pick up book 2 again. I just…DID….

And I really really didn’t care for the mystery. I skimmed the mystery bits in this book. I ate up the Jake/Adrien saga. Hoping against hope that Jake would change? Nope. Nope he’s still a dick. Like a major one. And I kept wondering WTF Adrien saw in him. Even fictional, Adrien, is a better person that me. Cause I would have SHOT JAKE.

Jake and Adrien finally kiss, and then have sex. And I felt disconnected. BECAUSE YOU DESERVE BETTER ADRIEN! You do dammit!!! But they just had to go and keep saving each other! And spending time together. And then Jake had to go and give us these really really brief glimpses of that fact that maybe just maybe he’s really not as douchey as he portrays himself. When I say brief, I mean, if you blink you’re gonna miss it.

With all of this, I still dived right into book 3. Which in my opinion is titled perfectly.

Because really Jake! The hell you say????????

Did you really just say that???? Did you really just break my poor Adrien’s heart??? Admitted to sleeping with a woman and she’s going to have your baby??? And you’re going to marry her??????????? I couldn’t believe. I lost my stomach and almost lost my dinner. I definitely have no nails left because I have chewed them all off.


Not only is the Jake/Adrien saga still commencing but we meet a bunch of supporting characters that truly made me laugh through the 1st 3 books.

Adrien’s mom: She’s kinda priceless and made me laugh with her ridiculousness. But truly you can tell she just wants Adrien to be happy.

Angus- what a quirck. Seriously.

Adrien’s new family. I liked them all and was happy to see that the “step-father” had nothing to do with all the satanic rituals that were going down in this book.

Guy~ Meh he’s just a guy

The mystery surrounding book 3 is not my cuppa tea. I don’t deal well with Satanic things. BUT that’s just me. And that’s ok.

So onto book 4 I go. All in a day’s work. Cause seriously Adrien English has rendered me useless.

Thank God I work remotely, away from my office. Cause if I didn’t…. well it doesn’t matter. Nothing would have changed. Because I was freaking invested in what was going on in these books that everything else became moot.

Book 4 was the death of me.  2 years later???????????? You really left him for that long????????

My heart hurt, my stomach hurt, my fingers hurt, my hair hurt and my poor poor ereader hurt because it could not hold the charge. Because I feasted. Like it was cake. Like it was the apple.

Adrien deserves better than Jake- Yes this is still my assessment well into book 4. BUT I don’t want him with Guy… I want Jake to man up, become HONEST and for them to “sail” into the sunset.

“Jake’s mouth found mine, his lips molding hot and soft to my own. His tongue tentatively tested the seal of my lips; I parted them and he pushed inside. It was startlingly sweet and achingly familiar, like finding harbor. Like I had been waiting decades for this, travelling leagues, Odysseus sailing at long last into the blue crystal waters of Ithaca–and never considering trouble ahead.”


…”And yet we were kissing again. We were locked onto each other as though we had just discovered this incredible thing you could do with two mouths pressing close and moist against each other. And the taste of him…the flavour of him…. Horrifyingly, unbearably sweet– sweet in the way crack must feel hitting the bloodstream of an addict after years of trying to stay clean.”


The mystery angle in book 4 was IMO the best one.  The intro was a kick in the stomach. Josh Lanyon really knows how to play well on a readers emotion. Kudos. I wonder as he wrote this if he hated Jake as much as I did starting book 4. And 11% in I didn’t think that I could ever ever like him, he could never redeem himself in my eyes. Because for real, 5 years??????

And even though I knew Paul (the fucking cockroach, scum of all scums) is a protagonist, I still didn’t put it past Jake. Why? Because he has proven his douchiness time and time again throughout the 1st 3 books.

And yet……..

I still secretly earned for Jake to become the person I knew he could. His ying to Adrien’s yang.

I think I read this book in 2 hours. I loved book 4 the best in this whole entire series. The best.

Book 5: 

The end. The end of the ride. The end of an era, Just you know the end.

And it really just ended……………………… yes HEA has been had, Jake has redeemed himself to me, to Adrien to the world.

And all I keep thinking was not even a prologue???

It ended in a way that I/we/the world deserve to really know how Adrien and Jake are doing now.

Please? Can we please know?

A novella? A book 6? Something? Anything?

And that’s it. That’s all he wrote.

And I’m left sagging a bit, cause I gotta come out of this make believe world and enter reality and its HARD dammit but I have to.

All of the above probably makes it seem like I didn’t love this series. I did. Any author who can make readers go through so many emotions in so little time, are amazing. Truly think everyone should jump on the Adrien with an “E” ride. I don’t think you will be disappointed.


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Filed under LGBT, Mare's Review, MM Romance

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