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Drifting Sands

(The Warfield Hotel Mysteries #1)

3.45  ·  Rating details ·  49 ratings  ·  32 reviews
As he approaches his fortieth birthday, Justin Warfield feels alone, drifting like the sand that blows along the beach near his family’s hotel. He has done exactly as his father wanted. Married the right girl and carried on the family tradition of running the Warfield Hotel. On paper things seem perfect, but happiness hasn’t been a part of his life for a very long time.

Paperback, 194 pages
Published June 7th 2015 by Bottom Drawer Publications
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Average rating 3.45  · 
Rating details
 ·  49 ratings  ·  32 reviews

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*** 2.5 stars rounded up to 3 stars ***

One of my pet peeves is when a book ends on a cliff hanger. I find it irksome and I feel cheated and manipulated and quite frankly disinclined to buy the next instalment unless it is exceptional.

I quite liked the story of closeted hotel owner Justin and his love interest Marcus who comes to stay at the hotel with Justin's younger brother Peter. The story has a steady pace and plentiful if fairly brief chapters.

Peter arrives to celebrate his twen
Oct 18, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: bmbr-reads, 2015
I have a confession to make. This book has been on my review TBR pile for a while. I started it and then put it down. Started again and once more put it to one side... it took me a while to get into... but I think this was definitely a me thing. Sometimes I have to be in the right mood for a certain type of book. When I picked this up a third time, I couldn't put it down. Honestly, I loved it and can't wait to read the next in the series.

The Warfield Hotel and general setting of this story is as
May 19, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery, 4-stars
An enjoyable and well written murder mystery with plenty of clues sprinkled along the way to help you guess who the culprit is. The mystery is only partially resolved by the end of the book and sets up the next stage of the story. The m/m romance plot is interwoven and told from two POV, with several hot scenes involving the two main characters. My heart went out to Justin as he struggled with his loveless marriage, his wish to remain in the closet, and his desire to protect Marcus from the woul ...more
Inked Reads
Jul 22, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: m-m
This is an exciting murder mystery that I devoured in a single sitting.

Justin manages his family’s beachfront hotel in South Carolina. Aside from a messy divorce, things are going well until the bodies of his former lovers start appearing on his beach. Justin quickly finds himself the prime suspect in a murder investigation as he and his friends attempt to protect themselves and find the real killer.

Southern politics, a nasty and soon-to-be-ex wife and an escalating killer come together
Sep 07, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-male-male
I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

This is a hard book to rate. There are a lot of interesting elements to this book that I enjoyed and the characters are likeable but the story needs a little polishing. Please don't take this to mean the writing was bad because it wasn't. For me, the story just needs a better layout.

First, the villains are no secret. Everyone who is trouble blatantly shows it. Yes, there are some circumstances that are unknown, but it doesn't
May 19, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: 17+
Justin keeps his true lifestyle hidden from everyone out of fear of how it might affect the hotel. Marcus tempts him in ways that he's never dreamed possible and makes him yearn to break free. But someone is killing Justin's ex-lovers and he doesn't want Marcus in the line of fire and even if that means losing him forever Justin will do all he can to make sure that he's safe.

The tensions mount as the story races to the climax. Who is the killer? What is the Chief of Police hiding? Will truth and
Sep 04, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviewed
I received this book in exchange for an honest review.

Justin is very attracted to Marcus, however he was forced into a marriage when he was younger and is unable to get out of it until after his brother turns 26. When Justin’s ex-lovers wind up being murdered near his hotel he wants to keep Marcus at arm’s length to protect him. The romance was a back seat to the mystery in the story. I definitely want to read the next one to see what happens next and if Marcus and Justin’s story will continue.

What a wonderful story this is. One of the best mysteries that I've read in a long time. I could feel Justin's pain. I wanted to smack his wife. I'm so frustrated with Justin over Marcus! Just a great read.
Jun 08, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: books-i-won
I Won a copy on Goodreads.
so good wanted to smack Caroline... Marcus and Justin so good together. Couldn't put it down once I started it.
***3.25 Hearts for books 1 & 2 as a whole***

Readers should be forewarned that the first two books in this series have to be read/reviewed together if you’re hoping for any kind resolution to the “mystery” or semblance of a satisfying romance. I use the word mystery only in the loosest of terms.

When I spotted these up for review my heart did a little pitter patter. Romance & mystery are my jam, my cup of tea, and my catnip. This was none of those.

The Warfield Hotel is one of those idyllic
Aug 22, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: dbml
I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

I think it was a really well written book. I enjoy it very much. It start a little slow and that last for most of the book, but it was interesting enough and didnt become boring. The storyline was mostly a mistery but had some romance elements, it keeps the atention in both subjects.
The thing that i liked the most of the book was the development of the characters, i think all of them were very interesting. The MC Justin is a very tr
Stacey Jo
I received a copy of this book from the Don't Buy My Love program from the M/M Romance Group on Goodreads for an honest review.

Justin Warfield is closeted and has been trapped in a fifteen year, loveless marriage due to his inability to stand up to his father. The bitterness between Justin and his soon-to-be-ex is heated. He has the love and support of his younger brother Peter who knows he’s gay and accepts him. Peter has come back to claim his part of the ownership of the Warfield Hotel and no
Julia Rist
Sep 12, 2015 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jul 17, 2015 rated it really liked it
This is an exciting murder mystery that I devoured in a single sitting.

Justin manages his family’s beachfront hotel in South Carolina. Aside from a messy divorce, things are going well until the bodies of his former lovers start appearing on his beach. Justin quickly finds himself the prime suspect in a murder investigation as he and his friends attempt to protect themselves and find the real killer.

Southern politics, a nasty and soon-to-be-ex wife and an escalating killer come together in an en
Sep 11, 2015 rated it really liked it
I received this book in exchange for a fair and honest review.

This is the first book I have read by author C.J. Baty. It will not be the last. Drifting Sands was a very enjoyable read. I love a good mystery and when it comes mixed in with m/m romance, all the better. We have a mystery set at the family owned Warfield resort in coastal South Carolina. People are dying and it looks like Justin Warfield is responsible. What follows is a story of bigotry, lust, obsession and a whole lot of crazy. Wh
Ashley Martinez (ilovebooksandstuffblog)
3/3.5 A thrilling romantic mystery that wasn't much of a mystery. The story was paced well and it wasn't bad but it was kind of predictable and I would've loved some unexpected twists. The characters weren't bad but I would've loved to see more depth.
The story does end in a cliff hanger to keep you guessing.
All and all not bad but would've loved more twists and depth.
May 20, 2015 rated it liked it
3.5 stars

Interesting who-dun-it story line, I must have changed my mind a dozen times. Unanswered questions abound at the end of the story, hopefully more will be answered in the next installment. I'm looking forward to the next story.
Mari  Cardenas
*Copy provided to Bayou Book Junkie by the author/publisher for my reading pleasure in hopes of an unbiased opinion, a review was not a requirement.*

In Drifting Sands, Justin has been living a lie for years. Forced by his father to marry the daughter of one of his friends and having to remain married to her until his brother's 26th birthday as stipulated by his father's will, which is about to happen in two months, he's just had enough of Caroline, despite feeling guilty because she does love hi
Wendy Bianco
Jan 20, 2017 rated it really liked it
As Justin Warfield turns 40, he realizes his life has never really been his own. Southern society doesn’t look kindly on gay men and Justin would never bring shame to the family name or risk hurting the business; so he married the girl handpicked by his father and took his place running the Warfield Hotel. He’s so far in the closet, he will never find happiness. His brother comes home on vacation bringing with him his best friend, Marcus Drummond. One look and the chemistry between Justin and Ma ...more
Amanda Showalter
Jan 20, 2017 rated it liked it
I found this to be a nice quick mystery read and I enjoyed it. Justin's family owns a hotel near a beach and he has done everything that had been expected from him. He followed tradition and married, followed the rules, and took over running the Warfield hotel but none of this has made him happy. This is because there is a secret inside him that most do not know, he is secretly into marriage and was forced to marry a woman by his father. Along comes Marcus who is the younger brother of Justin's ...more
Kristine (A Cozy Booknook)
This is an enjoyable book. This is a murder mystery with an interesting premise. The characters are likable and interesting, even the villains. I would have liked the book better if the villains were not quite so obvious. While I'm not completely opposed to cliffhangers there were quite a few unanswered questions and loose threads remaining. The story is interesting and well written.

I received a copy of this manuscript from the author, my review has been voluntarily submitted.
Jan 02, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Good book

Received this series as a gift, not knowing the genre. M/M romance is not my style. I will admit to not reading the sex scenes but the book itself was very well written
Barbara Cerda
Feb 28, 2017 rated it really liked it

The flow of the book was spot on. I really enjoyed the ambiance created in a southern beachside resort because I’m a transplant living in Georgia. There is always room for a Deep South murder mystery, especially one consumed by unrequited love and steamy mysteries.

The story takes place in southern beach resort near in a small town. And as with most truly enjoyable stories about southern culture, it is replete with the drama of family relationships and the dynamics of dysfunctional ma
Sep 11, 2015 rated it did not like it
This book was provided for free by the author in exchange for an honest review.

I would normally have stopped reading at around 35%, but due to the commitment I made to the M/M Romance group on I felt I had to finish this book to write a fair review.

This book is either very poorly edited or not at all. There are copy-editing issues from the first pages: everything from improper punctuation (incorrect comma use and comma splices) to inconsistent tense forms to incomplete sentences. T
Aug 30, 2015 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own, dbml
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Avid Reader
Jul 21, 2015 rated it really liked it
Drifting Sands - CJ Baty
3.5 stars
I was given this book for an honest review by Inked Rainbow Reads.

This story had a lot of mystery, some hot sex and some hateful characters. While I could understand Justin wanting to finally be rid of his crazy wife and out of his forced marriage, I felt plopped in the middle of this story.

You have Justin who runs the family business, the back story of why he runs the business and why he married Caroline. But, I felt like it was missing a huge piece of his past
Aug 26, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: glbt, mystery
*This book was received free in return for an honest review via the Goodreads Don't Buy My Love program*

An ok mystery romance. Justin, in the closet gay, owns and runs the family beach front hotel, but low and behold, lovers of his past are showing up dead on his beach.

There were things I liked and a few that I felt were a bit rough. The beginning felt a bit choppy, delievery of the characters background could have been delivered in a more cohesive timeline. I really like the character of Marcus
Sep 02, 2015 rated it liked it

drifting Sands by CJ Baty was a story I thought I would enjoy this a lot more than I did. The plot was an interesting but somewhat simplistic mystery. Men are getting lured by a letter to meet at the MC's Justin's hotel then get murdered. I found it pretty easy to figure out the mystery. The characters, Justin and Marcus were not particularly memorable. Justin had quite the martyr complex going on, marrying a woman he didn't really like to please their families. I liked Justin's brother best of
Stephanie   GooglyEyes
I think there was too much going on and a lot of info and characters were crammed into this book. Things got a little confusing at times with so much going on and a lot of contradictions were made. The fact that there were two Rogers didn't really help either. Both happened to be bartenders as well? Very confusing. Also, was Doc Martin a planned pun? or a happy coincidence??

That being said, this could have been a great murder/mystery if all the extra stuff had been edited out. A good editor can
Jan 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing
God I loved this book! I literally could not stop reading and read it all in 1 long sitting. It was such a beautifully written story with just the right balance of heat, romance and suspense. My only complaint was where the book cut of at the end. It has left me chomping at the bit waiting for payday to roll around again so that I can purchase book 2!
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Other books in the series

The Warfield Hotel Mysteries (4 books)
  • Crashing Waves (The Warfield Hotel Mysteries, #2)
  • Roaring Waters (The Warfield Hotel Mysteries #3)
  • A Warfield Christmas (The Warfield Hotel Mysteries #4)