• Unstable Connections

  • Valor and Doyle Book 3
  • By: Nicky James
  • Narrated by: Nick J. Russo
  • Length: 12 hrs and 44 mins
  • 4.8 out of 5 stars (87 ratings)

1 title per month from Audible’s entire catalog of best sellers, and new releases.
Access a growing selection of included Audible Originals, audiobooks and podcasts.
You will get an email reminder before your trial ends.
Your Premium Plus plan is $14.95 a month after 30 day trial. Cancel anytime.
Unstable Connections  By  cover art

Unstable Connections

By: Nicky James
Narrated by: Nick J. Russo
Try for $0.00

$14.95/month after 30 days. Cancel anytime.

Buy for $24.95

Buy for $24.95

Pay using card ending in
By confirming your purchase, you agree to Audible's Conditions of Use and Amazon's Privacy Notice. Taxes where applicable.

Publisher's Summary

Missing children are reappearing, and the ties to a 30-year-old cold case can’t be ignored.

Detective Quaid Valor has too much on his plate. Between his shaky, brand-new relationship with reformed office playboy Detective Aslan Doyle, his sister’s case going from cold to hot overnight, his father insisting on being involved, and his boss breathing down his neck, Quaid is on edge.

The stress of the case is impacting Quaid’s whole life. He isn’t eating or sleeping, and every time he and Aslan are together, he is overwhelmed by feelings of inadequacy which threaten to ruin the one good thing he has. Aslan’s patience seems unending until something happens to turn his life upside down too.

Can their relationship survive the personal and professional pressures they’re facing, or will it crash and burn? 

Between media rumors and unstable connections, Quaid and his team need to hustle and piece together a complicated case before more children fall victim to their unknown serial kidnapper. Maybe once everything is solved, Aslan and Quaid will have time to work on their rocky relationship and find stable ground once again.

*Unstable Connections is the third book in the Valor and Doyle Mystery Series. It is a same-couple series that should be read in order. Although each book has a self-contained mystery with no cliffhangers, the romance is over-arching and progressive throughout the series.

©2022 Nicky James (P)2022 2022

What listeners say about Unstable Connections

Average Customer Ratings
Overall
  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    71
  • 4 Stars
    15
  • 3 Stars
    1
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    0
Performance
  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    72
  • 4 Stars
    9
  • 3 Stars
    1
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    0
Story
  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    65
  • 4 Stars
    15
  • 3 Stars
    2
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    0

Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Loved it

This series is really taking shape. I loved this one more than the first two, which I didn't think was possible. Nicky James and Nick J Russo are magic together. The case is heartbreaking, the characters are complex and wonderful, and every second hand me enthralled.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Fantastic!!

Nick J Russo has done an amazing job of bringing the men in this book to life. His narration gives great depth to this amazing series.
Search for the trail of Juniper carries on as Quaid struggles to get to the bottom of the mystery of her disappearance. Tensions and stress levels are high as the case gets more intense. The twists and turns were a huge surprise. I loved how it all came together. Quaid's insecurities were a little frustrating at times but I understood how his past made him that way. The flaws both men have made them a little more human. I enjoyed hearing Aslan and Quaids relationship grow and strengthen as Quaid leans on Aslan during trying times. I'm loving this series and eagerly await the final book. Happily recommend!

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Emotionally powerful

When we last left Quaid Valor and Aslan Doyle, a missing child had reappeared. With Quaid’s sister’s backpack. A sister who’s been missing for nearly 30 years.

Man, I was pissed that they book cut out there. But the mystery as to who attacked Quaid’s ex had been resolved. And since the mystery of the sister was Quaid’s motivation for being in the Missing Persons Unit in the first place, logic dictated that storyline would carry through into the final book (or what I thought was the final book – but more about that later…)

Quaid’s getting it from all sides. His father, who’d been responsible for Quaid’s sister the day she went missing – and who also served in MPU for years – wants in on the case now that there’s movement. Quaid’s boss insists on going public before there’s enough known, and the City of Toronto wants answers – both in the cold case and for these new young girls who are disappearing. Quaid’s also trying not to rely too heavily on Aslan. His ex burned him badly, and he can never quite trust that Aslan won’t do the same. Aslan, for his part, has stuff going on as well and things take a bad turn for him and then, with all Quaid’s going through, it doesn’t look like he can be there for Aslan and things look rocky.

This book felt like breakneck speed at times – with information coming from all different directions. Quaid’s got a solid team behind him – his partner, another pair from MPU, as well as Aslan and his partner from homicide. But will they be able to solve the mystery in time? Because, with a predator out there, children are still at risk.

I’ll admit I didn’t see the ending coming and that was all the more impressive. At the end, though, even though everything was resolved, I still felt like I wanted more. Needed more. And, apparently so did the author. The fourth book has just been released and I’ve got my fingers crossed that it’ll be coming to audio shortly and OMG, can we talk about Nick J. Russo? I love him and he’s so perfect for these books. So, although I’ve loved them all, this was the best and fingers crossed the next one will be just as good.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

great listen!

This audio book was a great listen! I love these guys and the narrator does a great job bring them and the story to life each time!

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Sad its over.

Wonderful series by Nicky James! Excellent narration by Nick Russo! I hope there will be more books about Quaid and Aslan. This series has it all! Interesting plot with a missing persons case, romance, intrigue, laughs and feel good moments. I just love these guys!

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

A Favorite Series

This series just keeps getting better and better. Aslan and Quaid are still learning how to be a couple but I love how when one struggles, the other steps up. This case in particular is hard on Quaid and my heart hurt for him. There were times that Quaid seemed so alone and Aslan always made sure he was a there to bolster Quaid through the difficult times. The mystery in this book is intriguing and wraps up an important background story in a unique way. I loved how Nicky James revealed the past mystery through the present case. Nick J Russo did an outstanding job in this audio, especially in the both the broken and the tender moments. He elevated the emotional tone while adding to the suspense.

If you're new to the series, listen to the two previous books first, to get the most impact out of this book. You won't regret it, as this whole series is excellent.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Absolutely Fabulous!

Nick J Russo just keeps getting better and better! He just brought all the emotion, love, tension, and passion to this narration. It was amazing!

Wow what ride this book was! I could not put it down. Everything Nicky James writes is just so unbelievably good! Our favorite detectives are back and we pick up right where we left off with the shocking ending from book 2. Aslan and Quaid are just glorious together. They are officially dating now and we are treated to so many sweet and swoony moments between them. I am absolutely in love with Aslan. He just gets Quaid. He understands his insecurities run deep and while that might send many running in the other direction, Aslan is all in. The way he reassures Quaid and continues to just be there for him was wonderful. Their connection was so strong, even through all the ups and downs they had to face along the way. While they are still navigating their new relationship, there is a case that is very personal to Quaid just consuming so much of their time and energy and testing the bonds of their new found boyfriend status. I was RIVETED to my kindle as clue upon clue was revealed and evidence was pointing in a thousand different shocking directions. The pace was fast, the facts were mounting, and everything was happening. It was just such a magnificent book all the way around. I am thrilled they are getting a book 4 because I am absolutely not ready to let Aslan and Quaid go yet!

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Best of the series!

Oh my GOOOOOOOD!!!
This was so so good. Easily one of my favorites in the year. Aslan and Quaid are quickly becoming one of my favorite couples.

I just love how real these two are. They are imperfect and authentic.
I love Quaid's vulnerability and insecurities. It makes him so human.
I love Aslan's strength and love for Quaid... even if he hasn't said it yet. I also love his fear of failure and misstepping. It adds to the authenticity of his character traits. He's a recovering alcoholic and he's always weary and sometimes weak.

These men's imperfections make them beautiful I my eyes.

I also adored how Nicky showed that these imperfections affect their relationship, but they were stromg enough to rise above them. NO UNNECESSARY DRAMA!! Thank the lord.

They talk, they communicate like adults and they work things out. That is HOT in my humble opinion.
Give me all the men who act their age!!!

That ending 😭😭😭😭😭

I can't wait for the next book 😍😍😍😍

I NEED MORE

As for the audiobook:
Nick J Russo SLAYED this audio.
The emotions, the inflections... he WAS Aslan and Quaid. His performance was amazing. He made me tear up and smile many times during the audio. He truly is a perfect match for these characters 👏🏻

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

excellent story & narration

THE STORY


Let me start by saying, this is not a standalone.

The mystery in Unstable Connections answers questions from the previous book (Elusive Relations).
At the end of book 2, NJ teased us with a new case.
This case hit close to home for Quaid Valor. This case caused the usually stoic detective to spiral. This case made Aslan Doyle step up to the plate and show what a supportive partner he could be.

This instalment is intense. It's moving and heartbreaking. It's beautiful and romantic.
The balance between mystery and romance is perfect.
Valor and Doyle series follows two of my favourite detectives. NJ takes us along for the ride as we watch their relationship grow.

If you love a series with a new mystery with each instalment and with characters that will make you pine for more, Valor and Doyle is definitely for you.
Can't wait for more from these guys.

THE NARRATION

As expected, Nick J Russo did an amazing job with this story. He brought my favourite Detectives to life.
The cast of secondary characters were very well portrayed.
Looking forward to more collaboration by these two artists.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Another winning collaboration

Nick J. Russo is the perfect narrator for the Valor&Doyle books, the way he uses different voices for each character, and Quaid and Aslan in particular. I love the way he performs the tension within Quaid while working on this case, the nerves. I love the intimate moments between Aslan and Quaid, and the desperation when Aslan was not okay.
But what a ride!! We finally get some answers here, but this book is intense, both the romance and the mystery. I couldn’t put it down before I knew how the case was solved and that Aslan and Quaid were good.

And for this once, can I gush again over how much I love Nicky James's writing?! I feel so privileged to be part of her ARC team and to have the possibility to read her upcoming releases before most readers do. And seeing as I love her new Valor&Doyle series, I feel extra thrilled about that.

This series, my friends, is a must read if you enjoy mm romance combined with a thrilling mystery. This here is Nicky James at her best. Each book in this series shows us a beautiful character development and both Quaid and Aslan have sneaked their way under my skin when I wasn't paying attention. They occupy my mind even when I'm not reading and there's not a lot of characters who manage to do that. I love how their relationship develops, at just the exact right pace and in the most natural way.
In this third book that same relationship gets ultimately tested. Aslan surprised me in the most positive ways and I just wanted to wrap my arms around Quaid and let him feel how worthy he is. His lack of confidence and trust tug at my heartstrings repeatedly and it almost broke my heart.
These two men are so good together, and I already look forward to read about how they continue from here.

The mystery in this book kept me on the edge of my seat and I think it was the most intense, thrilling story in this series up til now. We finally get some answers from the past and Nicky once again took us on a wild rollercoaster ride to get them. I just had to keep on reading until I knew how things were solved and that Aslan and Quaid were okay.

Another thing I absolutely love about this series is how perfectly balanced the romance and the mystery is. The mystery is a big part of each book, but it doesn't take away from the growing romance between Aslan and Quaid. Their relationship still takes the center stage, even when they are busy solving the case. It's in the little things, the small gestures, the sweet words and the whispering, the stolen kisses. Their growing love is palpable, their feelings for one another obvious. These guys belong together and I'm really, really curious to where Nicky James will take them (and us readers!)

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Mrs N
  • Mrs N
  • 01-17-23

And the plot thickens!!

Having read the book when it first came out I knew the story blew me away initially and I was curious to see if I felt differently with the audio....

With such talent as Nick J Russo voicing Quaid and Aslan I felt everything deep in my soul. The nuances he put into each character was so good, Aslan's strong personality came through each time he had to pull Quaid back from one precipice or another. He definitely heightened the pleasure of this story for me.

This series is so good, Nicky James throws in enough red herrings to keep you guessing and wanting more. The plot thickens as more victims throw more questions into the already complex missing childrens case.
The precarious relationship between the 2 fabulous detectives has my heart in a spin, I'm really looking forward to much more....

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for H. Spanarella
  • H. Spanarella
  • 01-12-23

Fantastic Twists & Turns Along the Way!!

Wow! This latest book in Aslan and Quaid’s journey was a roller coaster of emotions! This was a must listen for me on the heels of their next book coming out. As expected Nick J Russo knocked it out of the park stepping back into the shoes of Aslan and Quaid. He brought out emotions and feelings in the narration that were more poignant than when I initially read the story. While the book was hard to put down, I felt myself savoring the audio as Aslan and Quaid’s relationship continued to grow and face challenges. I was drawn in so fiercely by the latest case that Quaid and Aslan found themselves involved in. Quaid is investigating a case involving a missing child, that hits close to home. The case starts to uncover ties to Quaid’s sister Juniper’s kidnapping from 30 years ago. The twists and turns we are treated to while Quaid and Aslan investigate their latest case kept me on the edge! I found myself saying, “OMG what is happening?!” several times while I tried to piece it all together. You know the lies we tell ourselves reading? “Just one more chapter, I’ll stop at 11:00, when the plot evens out?” Yeah those. In this book, one more chapter will never be enough. The end of every chapter is drama filled and you must continue to the next! On top of the fantastic mystery, is the Quaid and Aslan navigating their new relationship as boyfriends. I love both these men, and at points I think I adore one more than the other, and then I flip back! Poor Quaid is struggling to accept he’s worthy of Aslan after the number Jack did on him over the last year. But Aslan never fails to to soothe Quaid’s fears, and tell him he’s worthy and show him how much he cares. These two are absolute #goals and I am loving seeing their relationship evolve and grow. I love the fantastic connection they share, and their chemistry together only grows with each book. It’s hard to decide what I enjoy more - these two working cases together, or these two navigating their new relationship. I hope there is no end in sight for getting to know these two!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Mandy Tunstill
  • Mandy Tunstill
  • 01-10-23

Absolutely Outstanding ❤️

Simply brilliant can't get enough of this amazing series by Nicky James and her two special men Quaid and Aslan love both of them and with the narration of Nick J Russo it's absolutely fantastic can't recommend enough pure perfection ❤️

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Gordon / steven
  • Gordon / steven
  • 01-09-23

love this book series

so we'll written feel like this has been one of the best series I have read in a long time. I couldn't wait to get it and sad it's finished

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Susana
  • Susana
  • 01-04-23

Love it!!!

I can’t recommend enough this series!! The romance between Aslan and Quaid is amazing! Nick J. Russo is the perfect narrator for this books, I like so much how he brings these two characters to life! I like how much these two have grow and they are trying to work out, the case is very personal and important to Quaid and swoon every time Aslan is there for him. Can’t wait for more books!! Highly recommend it!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Amelia
  • Amelia
  • 01-03-23

An engaging, emotional mystery to solve

I knew Quaid and Aslan were in for a rocky ride after that bombshell about Juniper dropped at the end of the last book, but Nicky James absolutely blew my mind with this fantastically engaging mystery to solve. All the questions I've had about what happened to Quaid's sister thirty years ago were finally laid to rest in this book, and the truth was as thrilling to uncover as it was heartbreaking. Nick Russo was the perfect narrator for this story--his delivery was expressive, sincere, and helped build a sense of urgency as the storyline progressed.

I felt every ounce of Quaid's stress and tension as he threw himself into investigating new leads, re-interviewing past witnesses, and struggling to make the pieces fit together. If you thought you'd seen stressed-out, overworked Quaid before, it was nothing compared to his mental state in this book, and the resulting strain it put on all his close relationships was noticeable. Aslan and Quaid started off the story on a somewhat hopeful note--getting Quaid's father's begrudging approval and making little inroads on building trust--but sadly the heavy weight of the case revealed cracks in the foundation of their relationship. Quaid fell back into old habits learned from Jack, like not reaching out for support in fear of being seen as weak or clingy, and it made me ache to see all the things he left unsaid. Aslan did his best to keep open lines of communication between them, but with both their jobs being so busy and stressful, it was inevitable that they'd reach a breaking point. It certainly didn't help that Aslan got blindsided by the reveal of an incident from his past, and it gutted me to see how hard he spiralled in response. Thankfully, both Quaid and Aslan were committed to working things out, and no matter what ugly things they said in the heat of the moment, they always came back together, apologized, and worked to build each other back up. It was honestly really nice to see how self-aware these characters were, because it meant they didn't hold themselves or each other to an impossibly high standard to meet.

I'm genuinely impressed by how well Nicky James developed Aslan and Quaid's romantic relationship without taking any focus away from the MP cases, and I remained equally captivated by both as the story progressed. The more links to Juniper that were revealed, the more my brain kept spinning with theories and possibilities. I've said it before, but I love the way Nicky James puts her readers directly into the headspace of her detectives, including all dead ends, incorrect theories, and breadcrumbs of information that lack just enough clarity to keep everyone in the dark. I fell into all the clever traps of misinformation she laid and didn't guess who the real culprit was until Quaid had finally put the pieces together himself, and even then the truth was so unexpected I almost couldn't believe it. Juniper's kidnapping was one piece in a much more twisted story, and my heart hurt for all the innocent people that were involved. I'm glad that Quaid and his father got some closure at last, but that didn't take away from the emotional impact of the ending. Aslan and Quaid are going to need each other's support more than ever to move forward, and that's part of why it made me really happy to see them take some steps forward in their relationship and reaffirm their commitment to making it work.

**I voluntarily listened to a free copy of this book. This review expresses my honest thoughts and opinions.

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for HMM
  • HMM
  • 12-29-22

Not as well thought through

There are several clichés I dislike in novels about crime solving. Two of four are: cops being allowed to investigate a crime against a close relative, and a series ending with the unraveling of a crime in the early life of a main character. It bumps the rating down to 2 stars. In this story I also disliked the lack of romance.
Narration was great.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Katie townsend
  • Katie townsend
  • 12-28-22

like coming home

being back with aslan and quiad with nick j russo narrating unstable connections was absolutely wonderful I was hooked and loved it

mystery with romance is just perfect and following aslan and quiad's relationship develop more was a absolute treat

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for AL
  • AL
  • 12-27-22

These two never get boring!

Story: I am so in love with these MCs! I cannot express how much of a pleasure each book in this series is and how excited I am there is more to come.
Once again Nicky James created a riveting story that glued me to the pages and built the amazing love story into it. Both MCs are just perfectly imperfect and their chemistry is dripping off the pages. Loved it!
Narration: Nick. J. Russo is absolutely perfect for this duo! His impersonation adds another layer of brilliance to the story and it works splendidly every time!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Vicki Williams
  • Vicki Williams
  • 12-24-22

Wonderful

The Story:

Another master class from Nicky James who has woven another intricate and intriguing plot balanced by the fledgling relationship between two strong but flawed main characters.

Quaid has his personal insecurities and those combined with a lot of work stress add pressure to his new relationship with Aslan. Include the possibly of a life changing event in Aslan’s life and this have the potential for the relationship to get messy.

We were left with a final line bombshell in the 2nd book and that investigation is the focus of this book. I was kept guessing all the way through and was amazed that the questions left over from book 2 were answered in such a mind blowing way. This was a binge listen for me and I loved every minute of it.

The Narration :

Nick J Russo gifts us with another flawless and captivating performance in the Valor and Doyle series. From start to finish his ability to bring all the characters to life doesn’t miss a beat.