Intelligence Check by Katherine McIntyre

Intelligence Check focuses on Mason, our nonbinary ball of sunshine, and Hunter, their surly coworker who communicates more in a few glances than most people do with a dictionary of words. And the story is well worth the read.

From the Blurb:

Mason gives people too many chances, Hunter gives too few, but are they willing to take a chance on each other?

Mason’s always tried to believe the best in people, and for the most part, their sunshine attitude pays off. They love their friends, their family, and they’re determined to win over their broody, gorgeous coworker Hunter—especially when their car in the shop turns into carpooling to work together.

Hunter’s only seen the worst in people, and he doesn’t trust easily—not after growing up with a mom who ditched and an addict dad. However, perky, sweet, hot-as-hell Mason seems to win him over with every goofy comment or adorable smile, and before he can stop himself, he’s falling hard.

The more time Mase and Hunter spend together, the more their attraction flares until they’re both holding the hope for something real. However, when Hunter’s past collides with his present, the secret he's been keeping threatens to destroy everything—the home he established, the friends who’ve become his new family, and any chance of a future with Mason.

Roll the dice on romance at Tabletop Tavern…

Sarah C's Review:

I've been intrigued by the character of Mason since the first Dungeons and Dating book and finally, its time for their story.

Mason and Hunter work together at Tabletop Tavern. When Mason's car breaks down, Hunter offers to give them a ride to and from work since they live close together. This starts the conversations and really begins to cement the bond between them, one that was already in place. It also helps the crush between our two main characters grow deeper than it already was.

Mason and Hunter are both incredible characters. They provide a great balance for one another with Hunter grounding Mase and Mason providing a lot of light to Hunter. The development of their relationship felt very realistic, though sometimes I wish they would've just communicated a bit better at the beginning. But it made the build up to their first kiss very worth it.

Also I want to commend Katherine McIntyre for how beautifully she handled Mason as a nonbinary character and how beautifully she handled the topics of familial addiction and loss in this book. These are very sensitive topics for some readers (please heed trigger warnings) and can be handled in a lot of graceless ways, but she did not have that problem. Her handling of these sensitive topics was top notch.

Intelligence Check is a dual POV love story and is the third in the Dungeons and Dating series. It can be read as a standalone, though you'll miss a few smaller details by not reading in order. (And the whole series is worth a read so highly recommend.) 

Rating: 5 Stars

Heather's Review:

I've been waiting for Mason's story in the Dungeons and Dating universe and we finally have it!   I'm always interested to see if authors can consistently write non-binary characters and Katherine McIntyre does it beautifully!  

I also love Hunter's character - past trauma has left him with deep scars that in many ways match Mason's own past - especially the loss of their twin sister... please heed the TW for substance abuse, addiction and loss.. these topics are well handled in the book but are not quickly resolved and are part of the thread of the entire book.

Intelligence Check is a slow burn as Mason and Hunter circle each other, with some sweet scenes leading up to full steam!   It's well paced, well thought out and brings in so many of the previous characters in the series. 

Rating: 5 Stars

Tatted_book_freak's Review:

Mason gives people too many chances, Hunter gives too few, but are they willing to take a chance on each other?

For this being the third book in what I can only imagine to be an outstanding series, this one has me hooked and going back to read where it all began. The connections between the characters was written remarkably well and the relationship between everyone was so enjoyable! Cannot wait to play catch up, especially with the increasing knowledge from these books. 

Rating: 5 Stars

AP's Review:

This book deals with a lot of heavy subjects. There is addiction, death, and grief, to mention a few. If you read this book, make sure you are in a good headspace to deal with the subject matter.

The two main characters, Mason and Hunter, have been friends and co-workers for a long time. Both characters seem to have had a crush on the other, with neither mentioning it. This story is a slow burn; Mason and Hunter’s first kiss does not happen until halfway in the book. While I do not dislike a slow burn, it felt too slow for two people who like each other and have known one another for a long time.

I enjoyed the interactions between Mason and Hunter. Both Mason and Hunter are gentle and respectful of each other’s issues. Hunter and Mason established a deep bond while working toward something long-term. Even though It seemed like these issues were trying to pull Mason and Hunter in opposite directions, they made it work. I adored Hunter’s character development; he stopped letting his past define him. Mason’s character development was similar to Hunter’s; he let grief keep him from being truly happy. Overall, I adored Mason and Hunter’s relationship.

As previously said, this was a weighty book. I thought this book would be a nerdy love story, but it was more complex. This book had heavy emotions, and I did not expect it. While I do not personally deal with addiction, I felt this book should have had some trigger warnings. This book has a lot of addiction. There is the death of a sibling from addiction, a parent suffering from addiction, and a side character currently addicted.

In the end, I was fond of this novel, even though I did not love it.

Rating: 3.5 Stars

Intelligence Check is currently available in e-book and paperback and can be read as part of your Kindle Unlimited Subscription