I love this series so it was hard to come away from reading this book feeling ambivalent. From previous books I know what a great story is and I know that Ward can write one, but frankly this wasn't one of those. There were just too many things going on and too many stories competing with the two central characters for attention. Unfortunately most of the time the central characters simply didn't seem like they were the focus of the story and I didn't feel I got to watch their relationship develop like I did with the other couples. To be honest I didn't feel that the story really focused on Manny and Payne so much as Butch and Jane. There were a lot of interesting developments and intriguing things hinted at that will keep me reading but for this book I felt let down by the lack of focus and development of the central couple, Manny and Payne.