I struggle to find words to describe this story that aren't 'cute' or 'sweet'. Not in an exaggerated diabetes-inducing way that involved the main-couple telling each other how much they love the other every five pages, simply in the sense of 'this is a sweet story about good, nice and (mostly) happy people'. The case did require a bit of suspension of disbelief but not too much (especially as it is basically a cozy where I don't require as much adherence to reality as in 'serious' crime-novels') .
The characters and their relations with each other are where the book really shines. You can easily feel how much Jonty, Orlando and Jonty's family care about each other and everybody also seems like a really nice person you'd love to meet.
However, I would very much recommend to read this series in order. Having jumped right in the middle I have now been spoiled for several events that happened in the previous books. Not the solutions to any cases but events happening in the development of the personal relationship between the two. Not major things and no exact details but I'd definitely preferred to have learned about them a different way.
I did think the narration overused the phrase 'his lover' a bit (as in 'Jonty looked at his lover'/'Orlando went over to his lover'). I am a big fan of just calling people by their names or simply using pronouns (and yes, if just two men are in the room and it says 'Jonty looked at him' I am mentally capable of decoding that him refers to Orlando and not Jonty...) If it had been done just occasionally and to stress it for some reason I'd have been fine with it but here it threw me off.
I am also not sure about how much like sea-battles as metaphor for sex but it was at least a fascinating experience.
ARC provided by NetGalley