Chris Scully is one of my go-to-for-comfort authors. I have read all of her short stories and novellas so far and I love them all. Her writing style and storytelling fit my taste perfectly. So when I first found out that she would be releasing her first novel-length story, I didn't hesitate to pre-order, even without reading the blurb.
" Nights Like These " is a light romance-mystery fiction that I found quite enjoyable. The narrator (in 1st person POV) is 40-year-old Miles Koprowski, who lands a job as a night-shift security guy after being laid-off and unable to find decent work for the past 10 months. But just within the first few days, Miles stumbles into something more mysterious in this dead corporation building, when he discovers that some of the paintings decorating the building have been forged.
Miles is probably the prickliest characters I've ever read from Scully's books. He's stubborn, he can be a little self-deprecating with his wry humour, and he pushes people when they get to close. But it makes him entertaining to read. I have always have soft spot for grouchy distant characters -- probably because sometimes I feel like I'm one of these people in real life.
Miles's love interest -- though don't say that L word to Miles, will you? -- is the company's head of security, Colton Decker, a thirty-something single dad (with a teenager daughter) who Miles nicknamed as "Mr. Perfect". Colton is attractive and he gets under Miles's skin because he doesn't easily back down when Miles raising his inner-walls against possible closeness. It was really enjoyable reading their back and forth attraction. As always, Scully's romance falls into the sweet category rather than scorching, but I still found their sexy times as entertaining. Mainly because Miles still acting a bit surly even in bed.
The mystery part, unfortunately, is the weakest element of this story. Scully is not even attempting to weave complex twists and turns or offer red herrings for the answer of the mystery. The clues were glaringly obvious from quite the beginning, including the motivation for the forgery. For a mystery fan who gobbled up her Agatha Christie's novels in her teenager years, this reader is quite disappointed. Not to mention that art-theft mystery could be quite tedious, in my humble opinion, compared to a more urgent/thrilling crime cases like murder, for example. Though detectives working on art-theft/white-collar crime may not agree with me on that.
All in all, I still really liked it ... but not exactly my favorite from hers so far. I still look forward for her next books though.