“Sometimes the dreams that come true are the dreams you never even knew you had.” ~ Alice Sebold (The Lovely Bones)
Mac MacAllister, of 'Golden Dancer' by Tara Lain, is an excellent reporter with a good career, but, in order to really make it big, Mac thinks he needs one really high-profile story, finally validating him as a great reporter. He's convinced he is on to that story; it involves Daniel Terrebone, a well-respected billionaire, and philanthropist who Daniel is convinced stole a priceless statue called the Golden Dancer. Few people in the world have the financial and technical skill to accomplish this feat. It is common knowledge that Terrebone has attempted to purchase it several times before it went missing. Even so, it makes no sense that Terrebone is so intent on having this piece and even less sense that he would steal it, but Mac is convinced that he's the thief and Mac is determined to discover why.
When a fellow reporter becomes ill, Mac covers an interview with Trelain Medveyev, an internationally famous ballet dancer. From the first moment Mac sees Trelain, he is entranced and the feeling is mutual. Mac is confused by the strong reaction and tells Trelain that he's straight. They end up in Trelain's hotel room where he proceeds to demonstrate why he doesn't believe that Mac is straight. Mac's mind is totally blown by Trelain's seduction. When Mac learns that Daniel Terrebone, the man Mac considers his nemesis, has invited Trelain to his mansion for a minivacation, Mac rushes to his aid. Mac knows what a player Terrebone is and doesn't want Trelain to end up as one of his discarded toys.
Daniel knows about Mac's tryst with Trelain so when Mac rushes in to save Trelain, instead of being angry, he is amused and Trelain is actually flattered. Mac stays for a while using the excuse of needing more information from Trelain for his interview. Daniel is very observant and sees that the attraction between Trelain and Mac is more than a casual dalliance. Instead of attempting to push Mac out of the picture, he decides to seduce him in order to keep him there for Trelain, as well as himself. Mac stays, but after having sex with both men, Mac has to accept that he is, indeed, gay.
Mac is a changed man who is quickly embracing his newly discovered gayness; but he's at a loss as to what to do about his investigation, especially since he's seen a different side of Daniel. He still believes Daniel stole the statue and wants to do the story, but is emotionally invested to the point that he knows if he exposes Daniel, he will go to jail and doing so would inevitably cause him to lose Trelain as well. Mac is torn between his desire to write his article and gain notoriety and maintaining his newfound happiness with Daniel and Trelain.
As usual for Tara's stories, this one has a lot more going on than I can fit in a review, but the complex background stories will stretch your emotions to the limit. Mac, Daniel, and Trelain are all wonderfully fleshed out characters with flaws as well as strengths. They are all damaged in their own ways, but together, they can move a mountain. I'm not a real fan of ménages, but Tara has opened my mind and shown me that it's, theoretically at least, possible. This is not a light, happy ever after fairy tale like many of Tara's stories. It's bold, gritty, and has in-your-face realism. Even though this is my second reading of this book, it is so full of mystery and intrigue that I couldn't put it down until I finished. If you like reading stories full of handsome men, kidnapping, action, adventure, love, steamy sex, and a happy ending, then you may enjoy this book. Thanks, Tara, for the experience of knowing Mac, Daniel, and Trelain.