This is the prequel novella to a longer story (which I haven't read) called Haunted Passions. It seems like a good set up for the next book (which I'd really like to read at some point) but it doesn't really stand well on it's own. Which isn't really a surprise since it's likely meant for fans of that book and not any random person who likes M/M stories.
There was very little character development, but this is more of a novella than a whole novel so there wasn't really time of it. There were points that I really wanted to know what John was thinking. I knew the two of them would end up together, but I was hoping to see his POV.