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Love is a Stranger

(More Heat Than the Sun #1)

4.06  ·  Rating details ·  1,727 ratings  ·  370 reviews
How do you love someone who exists entirely in the shadows? How do you love a man who describes himself as dead? How do you get that ghost to love you back? Ex-SAS soldier Ben Rider falls in love with his enigmatic married boss Sir Nikolas Mikkelsen, but Nikolas is living a lie. A lie so profound that when the shadows are lifted, Ben realises he's in love with a very dange ...more
Kindle Edition, 296 pages
Published May 16th 2014 by MLR Press (first published May 2014)
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Ericka Leonard Of course not...
Ben and Nickolas, love each other to the point of obsession.
The story is dark and gritty.
With Nickolas cold and aloof. With his dark …more
Of course not...
Ben and Nickolas, love each other to the point of obsession.
The story is dark and gritty.
With Nickolas cold and aloof. With his dark pass.
And Ben, Energetic and bright. He's a bit... Too... Er... Heart-blooded? nice? well, trying to act like a hero most of the time...

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Val ⚓️ Shameless Non-Snowflake ⚓️
Need to catch up on this going to re-read it...4/29/16

This was insanely good.

Seriously, outstanding.


It's not everyday that you score like this and get the sometimes elusive trifecta of great writing, a solid plot and fleshed out characters ALL IN ONE BOOK.

Crazy, I know.

Plus, I have read a lot of m/m, a lot of military, and a lot of mystery/thrillers in my time ...and let me tell you, John Wiltshire took my expectations for this this book and said, "Pffft."


Benjamin and Nikolas are
4 stars. Review posted December 1, 2014

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One of my favorite quotes. Its meaning is very telling:
Dead men can't be resurrected, no matter how much life you have running through your veins.

First off, let me sweep some preconceptions out of the way. While Love is a Stranger has a couple similarities, it's nothing like Special Forces: Soldiers Part I -Director's Cut. SF is edgier, grittier, much more violent and certainly steamier. Yet all those facts did not prevent my humble little self from enjoyi
*J* Too Many Books Too Little Time
May 11, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: male-action
Oh man.....I really had to use my brain on this one.

It almost felt like the book started in the middle of the story or something. Nik is Ben's boss and they've apparently been sleeping together for the last 4 years. It's previously only been sex, but where this story begins its obvious more feelings are involved.

And speaking of the sex. It was....different. interesting. Definitely fade to black in some scenes and not always very detailed. But then at times was really hot.

I really wish we had g
Nov 06, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: favorites, lgbtq
****4.5 Stars****

Firstly I want to say that it took me a while to get into this and I almost gave up.
I am glad I've persevered because at some point a U-turn happened and I couldn’t stop reading it.

There were two things bothering me at the very beginning but I came to terms with it as soon as I started to get to know both characters better - around 30% in the story, I would say. They were:

1)I know it's going to sound weird but their sex style was bothering me. I believe my friends know me as an
Written January 6, 2015

4 1/2 Stars - Overwhelmed and totally exhausted after this emotional and action-packed adventure

Book #1

The first book in John Wiltshire's talked about series 'More Heat Than the Sun' (4 books so far - all published 2014). ~ I was so very happy for this Christmas freebie gift and so very curious and excited to start to read it.

Ohmygod what have I just read and experienced?
This is unlike anything I've read in a long time. A cross between an action spy / agent thri
Lyn❤Loves❤Listening #AUDIOBOOKADDICT
Audio 5+++ Stars...Gaaahh another series narrated by Gary Furlong! 👏🏽👏🏽❤❤💞💞💃🏽💃🏽

Story 4.5 Stars

Well damn this series looks like it can easily become an addiction! I'll admit the beginning was a bit confusing for me. It felt like I was starting a series already in progress. I was grateful for the flashbacks because they cleared things up for me. That said...holy hell even with the bit of humor, shit gets dark and dirty! Just like I love it! The secrets, lies and twists....I'm so here for it. 😁

Kaje Harper
Jun 07, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: m-m, mystery
The main characters in this book begin as boss and subordinate in a black-ops type of unit based within the UK. Ex-SAS soldier Ben Rider is a man whose skills of all sorts, including sex and assassination, have been used by his smoothly-charismatic married boss Sir Nikolas Mikkelsen, in the pursuit of the unit's goals. But a recent operation resulted in the death of a man whose family is intent on revenge against Ben, and as they strike back, the falling dominoes unravel the whole situation. Nik ...more
Nov 09, 2015 rated it liked it
*3.5 stars*

I'm upping my rating because I enjoyed the book more this time around but my review still stands. The narration is a hot mess (especially in the first half) and the plot is all over the place. But I paid attention this time, and somewhere along the way the story and its characters found their way. In the end I was invested enough to keep going (plus I have great company). I also noticed (now that I wasn't skimming) that the dialogue is quite brilliant sometimes. Off to the second book
***3,4 stars***


Even if there is a significantly increased risk that all my brain cells would be irretrievably destroyed after...


And if a harmful effect has been already shown, I have a single reassurance – I am not alone.

We'll go down all together!

WARNING: Everyone can be infected, but our experience shows that particularly young men and women with preference for strong masculine characters with a hard shell and a soft cor
This book did the impossible: it cured one of THE worst book hangovers I ever had caused by An Exaltation of Larks! It was literally a 'Mission Impossible' kind of situation but ... John Wiltshire's Ben & Nik stole my heart. 'Love is a Stranger' sucked me in right from the Prologue and managed to hit all the right buttons thereafter: 3rd person narrative (I think I've become allergic to anything BUT), set in Britain, exquisite writing, mystery element that had me guessing and biting my finger na ...more
Optimist ♰King's Wench♰
I'm sticking on 3 stars because I've saddled up to the table for seconds. But I must say I wanted to like this sooooo much more than I did especially since this thing has been in my TBR since 2014!

Yet Love is a Stranger is what I'd call a 'mixed bag'.

I liked the plot twists that it kept me guessing.
The whole house sequence. The atmosphere Wiltshire created was visceral and mystical. That's when I bought into their connection.
I ❤️❤️❤️💕💓💞💕💞💓💗❤️❣️ Radulf and how he just becomes part of them

This series has been on my tbr list for some time and since I love mystery, suspence and m/m, I figured it was time to give it a try.

I was sucked right into the storyline and even though this story doesn't have a real distinct beginning, I had no problems figuring out what was going on. At least not at this point. You see, we get thrown right in the middle of an already ongoing relationship. If you can call fucking your "almost stranger boss" for 4 years a relationship ;)

I was happily readin
Nick Pageant
Feb 06, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: m-m
BR with Lena, Mark, and Sofia!

3.5 Stars

My head is still spinning! This is a very good book. Lots of action, lots of sex, and some great plot twists. I'm taking off one star for a pretty rough start, but I promise if you hang in there you'll be hooked (unless you're Sofia). Good stuff!
Literatures Movies

Ps. I just found out about Radulf's blog after reading my darling Lena's review, and now I cannot stop laughing.

Lol this dog is truly something else.

Spent whole day alone with blond biped. Played hide and seek. Brilliant. Blond biped more fun than thought. Will occasionally obey him now as reward.

I have new ball! I have new ball! It's yellow and bounces and runs away and then I bring it back! Dark-haired biped learnt to throw it quickly. He appears easily trainable. Blond one hid it so I
♣ Irish Smurfétté ♣
Update: no change in my view on this book but, having now read books 2 & 3, I'm so freakin' happy I kept going with this series. So if you have anything similar to my experience, I definitely recommend to keep going. Because, surriusly, Nik & Ben... siiiiigh :)

3.5 Stars on Prism Book Alliance

By the time I arrived at the beginning of chapter 8, I felt like I was having trouble understanding both Ben and Nikolas. We’re told that Ben has been working directly for Nikolas for some time and they’
Jan 24, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Tina by: Gina

YouTube Booktrailer Love is a Stranger

Wow… this book was just wow, it's an exhausting, overwhelming start of a brand new series, I couldn’t put it down one damn second. Who needs sleep? Sleep is overrated anyway.… John Wiltshire made me virtually inhale the story, devour it. I’ve never heard from this author before but after only reading one of his books he became an auto-buy to me.

You love dark? You love gritty? You love reading about a MC who seems to exist entirely in the shadows? You don’t m
Sep 22, 2014 rated it it was ok

It’s a tale replete with:

Kickass, emotional, picture-perfect model mc’s, able to kill or cry at the drop of a hat.

Back stories full of tear jerking traumas.

James Bond action

Fluids – starting from tears going on to spit and spunk, plus lots of showers.

Sex - well lots and lots of that in every shape and form.

I tried hard to connect believe me, my friends assured me that I would. Unfortunately the writing and me never gelled. This was me whilst reading

Unplanned BR with Lena, Mark and Nick – they
Mar 05, 2016 rated it it was amazing
To cut things short:

Black ops. Secrets. A smokin' hot undercover operative. An enigma that is his boss -slash- lover. An out of the ordinary love story. Marvelous dry sense of humor. Excellent writing style.

Exactly my cup of tea! LOVED IT! It's just the beginning, but this is serious all-time-favorite material! I'm in!

3.5 stars : damned these good series with hot guys, action and fucked up twists. Rounded up to 4 stars because it's a bit unconventional and I'm surprised to enjoy it so much.

Ben is a black-op working for Sir Nikolas. These 2 have been...colleagues with benefits (?!?) for 4 years and their relationship is slowly evolving to much more as terrorists swarm around them and the pasts of the 2 characters are revealed bit by bit.
It’s fast-paced when it comes to the plots, complex when it comes to the p
Oct 13, 2015 rated it it was amazing
An excellent m/m thriller with lots of hot sex between two uber-male characters. Forget about prep, lube or condoms however! Also loved the cute dog. Story continues in book two.

'We don't look anything like brothers, and you're Danish and weird. How about we say I'm your... financial advisor?'

Re-read 20 May 2016
The title of this book, is what really drew me in and made me want to read it. I am obsessed with music and the song of the same title by the Eurythmics is one of my favorites. In fact, I have it on repeat while I write this review. The lyrics… they have so much depth and emotion and this book, oh boy it does the same and then some.

I don’t know how much of a review I can actually give for this. There is so much that happens in the story with so many twists, turns and secrets revealed that I woul
Ulysses Dietz
Dec 27, 2014 rated it really liked it
Love is a Stranger

By John Wiltshire

Four stars

One thing is clear: when you read reviews by amateurs (which of course includes yours truly) you have to understand where they are coming from—what baggage they bring to the review.

Professional reviewers (“mainstream” reviewers) also have baggage, but everyone knows who they are and the biases they bring to their reviews.

So, as an almost-sixty-year-old gay man with a 39-year relationship; someone who came out in the mid-1970s in the first great wave
Loved it!

Let me just start off by saying that no lube penetration is usually a no go for me.
it’s hard for me to enjoy the sexy time if I’m wincing at how painful it should be without lube. Lube does not exist in this book.

I do love that there was no condom usage. I’m sorry, don’t judge me but the filthier the sex the better IMO and that condom just takes away from it. Just find a way to take it out of the equation quickly even if the book starts out with it. (Of course not in RL)

But no lube a
He wondered how many other people were lucky enough to have an entire universe of need satisfied by one blond-haired man.

This book has sat on my kindle for quite a while and I'm annoyed that I didn't realise how good it was and read it sooner. I blame friends of course for not binging it to my attention! I'm certainly going to be bugging the hell out of everyone I know to read it as they are really missing out on something special. It's absolutely epic and I know that Nikolas and Benjamin ar
This is my first John Wiltshire book. That's all it took to make me a rabid fan.

I spent days immersed in the insanely captivating world of special black ops and international secret agencies. I'm sure I grew a gray hair or two stressing over our MCs. Wiltshire put Ben and Nik on a long, torturous road to HEA.

I traveled with them on an amazing road of discovery. A road that revealed so much to each other, yet revealed even more to themselves. I watched with bated breath between gasps of surprise
Apr 12, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
4.5 stars
Really excited to continue this series!!
Nov 12, 2016 rated it really liked it
Recommended to Ariana by: Jan, Simone
*4,5 stars*

Oh my. That was a wild ride. And didn't I love it!

1. This has an excellent start! It immediately created tension and a whole bucketful of anticipation!

2. There is the action of course, worthy of any good thriller. Be prepared for shootings, kidnapping, fighting, kicking, and some other 'gruesome' stuff. Think of secret agents and you'll get the idea! :)

3. Then there are Nik and Ben, of course. And sigh, where to start?

There can be no doubt that the chemistry between them is intense.
Dec 23, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Re-read, it's been awhile. The intensity is as I remember it. Nik we know is secretive and lies but Ben also makes for an unreliable narrator, capable of being coldly professional but not fully cognisant of his own emotions. Both men are damaged and seem to fit together. The book is in three parts and they work as separate if linked stories.
-- --

Didn’t expect to like this as the blurb gave me doubts but it turned out to be the Christmas-Freebie that really grabbed me. Complicated, messed up char
Apr 12, 2016 marked it as unfortunately-abandoned
ETA: wasn't to be. Bummer.:(

I've been told this could be read as a really good Hannibal fanfic, so of course here I am, stoked and all ready.

Uh! The guy's last name is Mikkelsen?! ... No, I'm fine. I'm cool. I'm squeeing just a wee bit with anticipation.

-------- Original Review 3 Jan 2015 ---------
While I did end up loving Love is a Stranger, it seemed to take me forever to read. When the story starts, we get Ben saying how, though Nikolas has been his boss and lover for four years, and they've been living together for several months, Nikolas is a stranger. Then we're taken back six months to see the story unfold. There were a few times during that six month build up where I was confused where the story was going, but that did clear up and then
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Goodreads Librari...: FIX AUTHOR BIO 2 32 Jul 14, 2015 11:03AM  
Discussion threads in Fan Group 1 13 Mar 28, 2015 05:43PM  
The Challenge Fac...: ~Melissa~, Ezi & Debbie - Love is a Stranger 33 32 Jan 09, 2015 07:43AM  
The Backlot Gay B...: "Love is a Stranger" by John Wiltshire 3 39 Dec 27, 2014 09:59AM  
The Backlot Gay B...: John Wiltshire 5 49 Nov 22, 2014 07:26PM  

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John Wiltshire is the fictional persona of the author of the More Heat Than The Sun series. After spending twenty-two years in the military perfecting the art
of looking busy whilst secretly writing, John left as a senior officer
when a hastily dug tunnel was ready for use. Now living in New
Zealand (at least until enough money can be raised to leave) John has no plans to return to the army. Unless t

Other books in the series

More Heat Than the Sun (8 books)
  • Conscious Decisions of the Heart (More Heat Than the Sun, #2)
  • The Bridge of Silver Wings (More Heat Than the Sun, #3)
  • This Other Country (More Heat Than the Sun, #4)
  • The Bruise-Black Sky (More Heat Than the Sun, #5)
  • Death's Ink-Black Shadow (More Heat Than the Sun, #6)
  • Enduring Night (More Heat Than the Sun, #7)
  • His Fateful Heap of Days (More Heat Than the Sun, #8)

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