Cheating Chance (Taking the Odds, #1)
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Cheating Chance (Taking the Odds #1)

3.94 of 5 stars 3.94  ·  rating details  ·  862 ratings  ·  111 reviews
Vice Detective, Brandon Carr, despite his tattoos and bad-boy cool, lives in the closet with no intention of ever coming out. Then he meets Nevada Gaming Agent, Nick O'Malley, at a Goth convention and his perfectly constructed world starts to crack. Nick's passions for him, a restored hearse and rope bondage might drown Brandon's will. With the odds stacked against them th...more
ebook, 255 pages
Published by MLR Press, LLC (first published 2008)
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Look at me, I'm in total agony!

So what triggered this latest bout of melodrama? Was it Goodreads’ censorship policy, that made me join the Great Migration to BookLikes? Or was it the fact that BookLikes reminds me a lot of Tumblr, which made me want to make comparisons?

So here’s what I decided to do: I boldly logged onto my Tumblr account at the office for the FIRST TIME IN MY FREAKING LIFE and my boss chose exactly THAT moment to walk in for a social call... And since I’m not only following Tum...more
Heather C
I just loved Nicky...I even loved the asshole Brandon! These guys were hot and a lot kinky: balcony sex, hearse sex, table sex, cyber sex, bondage, sex toys...

This was the first book in the series so it ends with a HFN. But it was a really sweet HFN and showed a lot of hope for these two guys. I really liked the ending and was even surprised by the few twists, too (view spoiler)...more
Nichole (Dirty H)
3.5 stars

This could have been more like a 4 to 4.5 star read, but this book got completely bogged down in irrelevant detail and gratuitous description. I truly appreciate the amount of time and effort that went into the research of this book. But sometimes when an author does research for a book, it's more to help them know where they're coming from and a lot (or most) of the stuff they learn won't ever make it to the book. Just because you researched it does not mean you must squeeze it in. Thi...more

Talk about an intense relationship. Brandon and Nicky are two of the hottest main characters I've read about in a while. They are both my idea of the perfect man: black hair, tattoos, Nicky (hair to his waist) grrrrrrr, I am not usually into anything goth or bondage related but damn does it ever work for these two. The interaction and dialogue between them was great, my only issue was trying follow along with the gaming regulations and acronyms...that was hard for me. But still, it was a great r...more
Nikyta *Miss Forgetful*
Honestly, I don't even know what to say about this book. It was interesting and my emotions ranged throughout it. I loved and hated the characters and I loved and hated parts of the story but overall it really is a great book to the point that it kept me captivated through the whole story.

I absolutely loved Nicky. He's sweet and passionate and funny and a goth, which I surprisingly liked. And I loved the fact that he drove a hearse. That was just plan awesome. I realized while I was reading that...more
Jul 12, 2012 Cris marked it as dnf  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: gay, abusive-mc, nope
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Stacey Jo
This book was great! Hot guys, great sex, suspence and great music (love Rob Zombie). I thought it was interesting to read about how the slot machines worked and to learn a little about the policing of the gaming industry but i can see where some say it gets a little too technical for their taste. Liked how the romance built between the two. And LOVE the car!! Can't wait to start the next book.
JustJen "Miss Conduct"
Loved it. Nick is funny, quirky and hot as hell, and while Brandon's in the closetedness got on my nerves at times, he came through when it counted. The two of them together are scorching.

I was a little bored with the technical casino machine talk, but still I could not put this down. A solid 4.5 for me. I'm looking forward to reading more of these two.
Nicky and Brandon 4EVAH!
The setting at the start of the book is one of the most unusual I've ever read: A Goth Convention. I don't really know much about goths, especially that they hold an annual convention. However, it doesn't take long to get into the sense of fun and companionship that the convention brings. Our two heroes, Nick and Brandon meet at the convention and have an instant attraction, which they are both happy to act upon. What started as a weekend fling deepens into a relationship when they swap numbers,...more
This was a surprise! And what a good one!

Having just read the first three Adrien English books and Kaje Harper's Life Lessons, I felt so so lucky to stumble over this series.

The set up was fairly similar: in the one corner, ladies and gentlemen, meet the amateur sleuth, your out and proud sensitive gay guy with strong "boy next door" tendencies. In the other corner, we have our usual taciturn muscle-packed cop, preferably divorced with kids.
But, the cop/ amateur sleuth theme worked so much bet...more
I'm afraid I'm not convinced about Nick and Brandon's relationship, even though so many have named them Most [Positive Adjective] Couple in their reviews. Right from the start you can tell this relationship isn't going to work out.


Date #1: Subject stole food from N's plate without asking. Sign of criminality, irresponsibility, and running roughshod over partner's sensibilities.

Date #2: Subject flirted and pawed woman in public avenue, i.e. club. When N confronted subject about flirtin...more
4.0 Stars

Nick O'Mallley is an agent for the Nevada Gaming Commission. He's out, a Goth, and eccentric (read: he's restoring his ride, a hearse ... that's right, a hearse, he's named Quierda). Brandon Carr is a vice cop with the Riverside PD, which suits him fine given his plethora of tats, piercings and the biker boy look he sports. The two meet at a Goth convention in San Diego and the sparks fly. As their tryst turns into a weekend fling and then slowly develops into more, the problems abound,...more
I had only read one story by James Buchanan before. I like this one too. I think it combines very good part of romance and action. Though I'm a bit lost with the technicalities of the Gaming Commission matter but it proves that it is thoroughly researched. I enjoy the complicated relationship between the Dracula Goth slash Gaming Commission Agent Nicky and the closeted gay cop slash biker Brandon.

Honestly, at first, I thought Brandon was an ass; the way he got pissed at Nicky, I thought he woul...more
This was a 3.5 star read for me but I'm giving it a 4 because much of the enjoyment was lost because of my being unfamiliar with casinos and slot machines. I couldn't follow the parts about the EPROMS and skipped much of it after trying to understand and giving up.

I'd like to read Inland Empire now but decided in favor of Clare London's Diplomacy just in case IE continues with the casino storyline and more EPROMS.

That aside, I felt Nicky got a raw deal with Brandon much of the time and even when...more
Jeff Erno
When I first picked up J. Buchanan's Cheating Chance, I almost feared that I would regret investing the time it'd take to read it. When the central character Nick was introduced in the first chapter, I was certain that he was someone I would never be able to relate to. He is goth, very dark and almost sinister. He has a penchant for morbid things, and his primary mode of transpotation is a hearst. Nick is a 28 year old agent for Nevada's gaming commision. He's a computer geek who audits software...more
Lilia Ford
Mild Spoilers. Loved it. Nicky is such a sweetheart--What a great hero, lovable, vulnerable, smart. His relationship with Brandon was one of the more believable I've come across. How they meet, the travails of their long-distance affair, their arguments, Nick's insecurity, Brandon's paranoia about phone calls: they felt like a real couple with real problems--who just so happen to have the hottest sex imaginable.

Usually in crime/mystery books like this the procedural is dull or unrealistic, but...more
Emanuela ~plastic duck~
These guys are incandescent together, very intense. Once I closed the book, what remains is them them them. I wouldn't tag this book as BDSM even if it's their kink, because it's not what defines their relationship. When I think of them, I see two guys who enjoy each other. Their relationship is complicated. They are both law enforcement, Nick is an agent with the Nevada Gaming Commission; Brandon is becoming a detective for the Californian Riverside PD. When they meet, it's at a Goth convention...more
This is my first Buchanan book. It was well written, attention grabbing, and *hamina hamina* the D/s scenes were SCORCHING! But I have to agree with the other reviewers; the descriptive detail regarding gaming elements read like a deluge of insidious details at times (I skimmed some...shhh snitches get stitches!). I enjoyed reading about Nicky and Brandon as a couple but seriously wanted to smack them upside their heads as individual characters. :P I'll definitely read the rest of the series.
I really liked this book! Brandon is a closeted gay cop. Nick is a geeky Gaming type cop. They meet at a Goth convention in San Diego. Nick totally lives the Goth lifetsyle.

Things I loved:
Rope play!
The Hearse! Named Querida!!
The super duper hot sex!
Nick's Gparents house turned Goth house

Things I didn't like:
Nicks ex boyfriend
that closet of Brandon's
the over information of casinos/gaming laws/inner workings of slot machines

I give it 4 stars!
4.75 stars. No, not quite 5 stars. This book flowed so well, and if this is what the author was writing in 2006 then I look forward to more recent offerings, particularly the two sequels. And yes, I am planning on reading Inland Empire this coming weekend, which I guess says more than anything how much I enjoyed this book.
I started off really liking this book, but Brandon quickly irritated me. Flirting with and touching women when he's out with Nicky. Granted they were pretending Brandon was straight, but he still had no right to be touching a woman like that. And why did Brandon feel the need to pretend to that extent? They weren't out with Brandon's friends or co-workers, so why the need to flirt and touch the woman? It just didn't make sense. He did get better by the end, verbally flirting with no touching, bu...more
Considering the amount of good reviews, I had a lot more difficulty reading this than I was expecting. The main problem was the author apparently did a lot of research for this story & had trouble weaving it in unobtrusively. Instead we were subjected to periodic info dumps that bogged down the storyline in several spots. When this happened my eyes would glaze over & I ended up probably missing some of the plot. Who knows because I was too bored to go back & find out. Writers need to...more
I was somehow expecting more from this story.

After reading The Good Thief and Hard Fall, I wasn't sure whether I was going to get only one or both sides of the story. This time, both Brandon and Nick were introduced. But it didn't help with the story. There seemed to many elements introduced and not enough time to develop them properly into the story.

Other than highlight his eccentric nature, I didn't see much point to the hearse. I was surprised and disappointed when Nick let Jake fuck him aga...more
3.5 stars

I knew it was going to be hard for me to review this book and keep it brief - I have seriously hot and cold feelings for this book. Overall it was pretty entertaining and in some aspects rather unique. There is quite a bit of conflict and some interesting twists and turns. There is also some very hot and sexy stuff that makes it rather fun to read. But really I can't say it's one of my favorites yet.

I found the characters grew on me as the story developed - I did not love them though. M...more
Why not a 5? Well three reasons.

1) Brandon was an asshole. Like, complete and utter, needs a kick in the nuts then a drop kick out of a moving car asshole. Who the hell he thought he was? To rant properly would be a spoiler, but suffice it to say no matter how hot he sounded (and he sounded VERY hot) I would have dumped him and run away screaming in the other direction.

2) The thing with Jake. Just, no. It made me squirm and not in a good way. I'm definitely NOT generally a 'cue sweet music and...more
♆ BookAddict ~ La Crimson Femme
When does a geeky goth boy meet up with a hot Harley riding tattoo cop? When they hook up at a goth convention. I felt the same as one of the Detectives in the book. "There are goth conventions?" While that detective may have been incredulous. I'm more envious and wondering where the hell I was when I was a young goth kid. I would have loved to go to one of these places. Of course, This would have been 20 years ago and I'd probably be known as a "baby-bat". I think I'm okay with that term. From...more
So I got a little sidetracked when I was reading this. I liked it, but it didn't pull me in till after page 30, then it's started to roll. I loved the dynamics of Brandon and Nick's relationship. They fall into sex, but then discover each other through the rest of the story. Both are very likable characters. It was joy to watch them grow, since they knew little about each other, except that sex was great. Nick is a Nevada gaming agent and Brandon a detective. Both love their jobs, but Brandon u...more
Dec 18, 2013 Samantha rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Samantha by: Stacey Jo
Freaking fantastic.

It's rare for me to get through a chapter of a book and say, "Wow, I really like this already!" I just take a bit to get into a book, usually. In this case, I had that moment, finishing the first chapter, where I was just grinning and enjoying it so so much.

Reading other reviews, I totally understand and even agree about the technical aspects of this being a bit much at times, but I didn't mind not totally understanding what the hell they were talking about it as I got the gis...more
What I liked:
1. Nick was amazing; quirky, kinky, kind, and multi-faceted. I really enjoyed being inside his head when the story was told from his POV.
2. It was interesting to have a story set in Vegas and Nick's career was different from the usual cop, firefighter, paramedic type.
3. The goth element was interesting. It's not usually my thing, but it was a great setting for this novel.

What bothered me:
1. Brandon drove me nuts. I felt like he needed to get some empathy fast. (Although he grew on m...more
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James Buchanan, the author of over ten gay novels and single author anthologies, lives in a 100 year old Craftsman in California with SexyGuy, two demon spawn and a heard of adopted dogs, cats, rats and fish. Between managing a law practice with SG, raising kids and writing books, James volunteers with the Erotic Author's Association, Liminal Ink, the EPIC Awards Committee as well as coordinates t...more
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“Fuck, he couldn’t. But Brandon knew that he’d never forgive himself if he didn’t do everything in his power. Even if it failed, he had to try. It had to be worth it. “Jeff.” He swallowed his fear. “You asked me today if this relationship I’m in was the one…well it is. And the chick I’ve been seeing, the one from San Diego, she ain’t no gal. I can’t lose Nicky. I’m going to lose him. I got nothing if you don’t help.” 2 likes
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