Adara Wolf-Under His Heel

I find book recommendations all over the place. Various authors, other readers, blogs, so on and so forth. I also get some from the groups I belong to on Goodreads. Two of the groups have book of the month reads. This is one of the books from one of those groups.

Under His Heel is dark. It’s noncon. It’s intense. It’s an M/m book, which not everyone likes, but I do. I will warn you that when I say dark and intense, I know of what I speak. The light in here is only lighter in comparison, and there are things which may trigger some people. Neither of our main characters are necessarily all that nice or likable, and they are very much written to be that.

So, here’s the story. Alex, who isn’t stupid but isn’t the sharpest pencil in the box and who has been manipulated by his twin brother for years, has been set up to sell his services as a bondservant. In the world in which they live, if you are in debt, you can sell your services and you end up doing whatever. For most people, for bondservant read sex slave. You write a contract that both parties sign stipulating what can and can’t be done, and then the owner pays off the servant’s wages. For Alex, his contract included that he gave up all bodily autonomy and no body mods were allowed, for a time period of 5 years.

The reason that Alex has to do this because his twin brother, Nick, has run up a gambling debt in his name, and they weren’t able to escape. Now Alex is the one who has to come up with the money, so the two of them hatched this plan. More like Nick hatched the plan and conned Alex into doing it.

Captain Tracht is a very authoritarian, strict, blunt, gives no fucks kind of guy. He’s also a pure sadist. He loves causing pain, both physical and mental. It gets him off big time, and for him, it’s even better if the person doesn’t get off on being hurt. I’m pretty sure he’s a total sociopath too. He’s also scrupulously polite and doesn’t like foul language. He runs a very tight ship, literally and figuratively. He is at the agency to get a new bondservant because the one he just returned was unsatisfactory. That guy was a masochist and he liked Tracht’s games just a little bit too much.

After a full body inspection that Tracht performs on Alex, he decides that Alex will be perfect. Alex isn’t all that excited, but he figures a 5 year contract with this guy is better than having a contract with the gangsters that own his debt. He saw one of their bondservants once, and she’s the reason that he has no body mods written into his contract.

Tracht isn’t nice. I’m relatively sure that we aren’t supposed to like him. I kinda do. The thing is that he is exactly who and what he says he is. He never says one thing and does another. He is consistent within himself. He’s a WYSIWYG system, even if he does like to play mind games with Alex. But that’s part of who he is, and he never told Alex that he would have loads of fun or that Alex wouldn’t be hurt.

Alex. Poor, poor Alex. He’s lost all over the place. He thinks that he can survive Tracht, but it’s pretty immediately obvious that he can’t. He has spent most of his life in way over his head and Tracht throws him right into the very deep end of the pool. Alex has such a hard time. Tracht is not an easy man.

Then there’s Parsons. He’s a member of the crew and he tries to be friends with Alex. I don’t like him. He’s a douche.

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I’m so glad that Alex saw through Nick, eventually. I hated Nick even before we ever saw him. He’s absolutely terrible. I mean, who does that shit to their twin brother? Alex is all about trying to protect his brother, but Nick is all about getting whatever he can out of everyone, including Alex.

Ugh. Parsons. Gods save me from people like him. He’s just such a shit. He’s judgmental, condescending, and turns into a user. The thing is, Alex could’ve really used a friend outside of Tracht, and Tracht was mostly OK with it. Luckily there was doctor’s bondservant he could talk to, but only when they were in coms range. She at least got it.

OK, that’s all I have to say on this one. I loved it. It left me gasping at the end. There’s a followup novella called Kidnapping. She’s also written another book called In Life, In Death. It’s totally different to Under His Heel. It was so lovely. They are all available in KU, so check them out.

Emily Tilton-Theirs to Use

Back when I was looking around on Amazon for kinky dark-ish books, I think Emily Tilton’s books were some of the first ones I ran across. I’ve since worked my way through the majority of them, both by buying them and on KU. I can’t ever wait to read the next one, because I’m always in love with her worlds. Her books tend to be set in dystopian worlds of one sort or another. Some of them are scifi and take place on other worlds, some aren’t. Theirs to Use is one of the latter.

In Emily’s books, the heroines tend to be right around 18-22, with little to no sexual experience. They are also generally rather sheltered. Emily tends to emphasize shame in these girls. Shame that they are doing the things that they are doing and the things that their bodies want. Modesty is generally emphasized, especially with the books around the Institute and its particular world. Her heroines walk a real fine line between being ashamed by the degrading things that they are being told to do and the love of the way that the things make them feel. It’s a really interesting dichotomy, and I love how she does it.

Part of the way that Emily uses language fits into that too. Normally, in anything involving sex, you don’t see words like penis, vagina, and anus used a lot. But, in Emily’s books, you do. The clinical language wouldn’t fit in with a lot of other author’s books, but it works really well in Emily’s work. There’s just something so hot about a guy telling his virgin bed girl that he’s now going to put his penis in her vagina because he wants to feel good. It sounds like it shouldn’t work. It sounds like it should be stilted, but it fits right into the whole forced shamed/modesty/degradation thing that Emily has going on.

In the world that this book is set in, the lenders are predatory. When Karen signs her contract for her loan, she doesn’t really pay attention to the small print. If she misses 3 payments, not three payments in a row, just three payments, she will end up in jail, and that’s exactly what happens. The particular jail that Karen ends up in has a wing that special young ladies are put in, the fuck wing. Men can come in and rent the girls for 30 minutes at a time. The girls often get spanked with paddles when they misbehave and when they don’t want to have sex with the guys and even if the guys just want to. It hasn’t happened to Karen yet, but she figures that it will soon enough. So, when two guys walk into her cell, she’s pretty sure that she knows what’s going to happen.

Joe and Pete are there on a mission. They are there on behalf of their employer, Mr. Green. They are supposed to find 3 girls that their boss and his 9 partners can buy as their own personal sex slave. Karen is one of the girls that they chose. When Green and one of his partners, Singleton, show up at the prison, they evaluate the 3 girls, but Karen is the one who they choose.

OK. This book is marked as a reverse harem, and I suppose that it could be marked that way, by a loose definition, since there are 10 guys who own her now. But, a RH generally has a relationship between each of the guys and the woman. That doesn’t particularly happen in this book, where we get a gangbang instead. It may be because of Karen’s actions, but I’m not sure that changed anything that would have happened, really. I’m not going to complain about it, since it’s a nitpicky thing, and I liked the book, so it worked out well. One way or the other, it’s a great story and one that I will definitely reread.

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I really hated Green, so I was glad to know that he was going to be out of the picture, at least most of the time. I thought that he was a real dickbag. So, there’s that. I think some of the other guys seemed OK, but we really didn’t get to see enough of them to really know them.

Anyhow, that’s all I have to say about this one. I deeply recommend that you get all of her books. Many of them are on KU. Happy reading!

Kitty Thomas-Pretty Lies

I have Addison Cain to thank for getting me hooked on Kitty Thomas, so thank you, Addison! Comfort Food was the first book of her’s I’ve read, and I know that I’ve mentioned it here before, at least once. It’s one I recommend to anyone who is looking for a new dark read or new dark author to read. It didn’t take me long to move from that one onto more of her books, including the Pleasure House series. In fact, I think that the first book I read of Kitty’s after reading Comfort Food was Broken Dolls, one of the books in that world. That’s where I first fell in love with Brian and Anton and decided that I really hate Lindsay. Nothing has changed from that time to now. Except, Pretty Lies, the newest one in the Pleasure House world, has only made me love Anton even more. In fact, he may actually be tied with Brian, if not, he’s really, really close.

Anyway, even though this one was written last doesn’t mean that it takes place last. In fact, Anton and Annette’s story is the first story in this world. It’s also the origin story, more or less, of the house. I’ve wanted Anton and Annette’s story ever since I read Broken Dolls and first met them. Anton and Annette had a beautiful, settled relationship and it was obvious how devoted to each other they were. I was so excited when Kitty said that she was writing their story. I was looking forward to finding out how they got together. When I got Pretty Lies, I stopped reading the book I was reading so that I could immediately read it, that’s how excited I was.

Annette is a phone sex operator. She stays home, answers the phone, and tells men all the pretty lies that they want to hear. She’s good at lying and telling them all those pretty little lies doesn’t cost her anything and doesn’t hurt them. On this particular morning, she barely woke up in time to take her regular call because she had been at a bar the night before and gotten rip-roaring drunk. All she remembers is a beautiful Russian man and whispering filthy little lies in his ears.

Annette has a twin sister named Janette. Janette calls Annette and tells her that she’s going to go to a spa to get a massage. When Janette never comes home, Annette worries because that isn’t like her. That’s when she finds out that Janette has been abducted by a beautiful Russian man.

Anton met a beautiful woman at the bar, after listening to all the filthy things she told him, he was planning on taking her home and playing with her, except she drunkenly slammed the cab door in his face. When the beautiful woman wearing her face walks into his spa, he figures that she tracked him down and wanted to play, so he took her.

Anton and his friends, Lindsay (boo hiss), Brian, and Gabe have decided that they are going to start a house where they can train submissive women and sell them to men who want them. Theoretically all the women are supposed to be volunteers and screened carefully before they come to the house. They’ve just purchased the house and are just getting it set up. They don’t really have anything set up yet, including a training protocol, but that’s where Anton took the woman he kidnapped. She keeps telling him that she isn’t who he thinks she is, but he doesn’t want to believe her, until he’s confronted with the truth, with Annette walking in to trade herself for her sister.

OK, you know the way it goes. You get to choose whether you are going to stop here or keep going. I’m sad to say that my beloved Brian doesn’t come off really well in this book. Then again, he’s a complete and utter psychopath, so… Anton doesn’t come off all that well throughout this book either. There are a few times when he’s almost dislikable. I did really enjoy seeing the start of the house and what it took to get it moving smoothly. The other books all take place well after the house has already been established and is running the way that it should. I also liked seeing Anton not quite combobulated. He makes mistakes, all kinds of mistakes, and it takes some time for him to figure things out. He may or may not have to get smacked upside the head once or twice too. I was glad to see as little of Lindsay as we did. Don’t ask me why I don’t like him, I just don’t. There’s something about him that just annoys the fuck out of me. I don’t want him to ever have a HEA. In fact, can we have an unhappily ever after just for him?

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I was really disappointed in Anton after the big Brian episode. The fact that he threatened Annette with Brian right after what he had done was just bad. I’m not surprised that Annette did what she did after that. This was definitely one of the places that Anton screwed up, big time. He should have realized after that episode that Annette wasn’t OK.

I hated Phyllis. I mean, what a judgemental bitch. I really wanted to someone to just smack the crap out of her. She shouldn’t have been so nasty to Annette. She didn’t know the situation at all, which means that she should’ve just kept her big mouth shut.

Anyway, I totally recommend this book. I’ll read it over and over, just like the rest of her books. So, go grab it, and happy reading!

Sara Fields-Conquered

If Sara Fields writes it, I will read it. It’s like the whole Field of Dreams thing, but better because I don’t have to walk out into any corn fields or sit on an uncomfortable bleacher bench. I can sit in my nice comfy couch, with a nice cold beverage, and just read the books. So, totally better.

Today, she decided to write a dark scifi reverse harem book. Is it the darkest thing I’ve ever read? Nope. I have a feeling title will be coming soon. Is it darker than other things that she’s written? Yeah, I think so. Did I love it? Fuck yeah, you better believe I did.

So, on to Conquered. This is an alien invasion/abduction story on the top of it. The Vakarrans are a ruthless species. They can’t really afford to be if they want their species to survive. There are no Vakarran women, so if they want to continue, they need to find species with which they can breed. Humans just happen to be one of those species. The Vakarrans pretty much figure if the humans didn’t want Earth to be invaded, they should’ve just been better at protecting themselves. Oh well, they weren’t, and now all the men are slave labor and the women are all sex slaves and breeders. Women were supposed to all go to training camps so that they can be trained and such.

Kira was just a teenager when the Vakarrans invaded the Earth. Her two younger sisters weren’t even teenagers. On invasion day, their parents shoved the girls out the door and into the forest behind their house. The girls ran and hid in a cave. They expected their parents would be there at some point, but they never showed up. The girls had to figure out how to live in the wilds. Luckily, they had always played out in the woods and were familiar with stuff, so it wasn’t as bad as it could’ve been. Now, Kira and her sisters lead a rogue band of humans. Mostly they are women who are hiding from the Vakarrans, either they’ve escaped or they just never went to the camps at all. There are a few men there too, but not as many. Kira would like for her group to be a resistance, but right now she just wants to make sure that they are all safe. She may be rebellious, but she’s also a very responsible leader and has done everything she can to make sure that they stay hidden, including laying traps for the Vakarrans.

The Vakarrans have sent another patrol out to find her, and she’s used her traps to kill them, in a very nasty way. That made the leader very angry, since they were his buds. He wants Kira caught and punished. So he sends out a very good team to get her, Zaavyr, Jax, Coltan and Aedan. They are veterans, smart, wily, careful, and tricksy. They manage to come up with a way to catch Kira and bring her to their training camp.

I love Kira. She’s very strong and very smart. Sometimes, I think that she may be a little too smart for her own good. She is always thinking, and that can get a person in trouble. But, I think that our guys value her intelligence, strength, and spirit. Not everyone did, but if they didn’t, they deserve what they may get. This is a true fact. I do like the guys, even though some people may think that they were a little hard on Kira. I think that they were as hard as they had to be at times. Things that people may think were terrible could’ve been a lot worse than they were, and the boys had to do what they did in order to keep from having to do things that would’ve been worse or letting other people do those things to Kira. The important thing is that while they may hurt her while they are punishing her, they would never harm her, and that’s better than others would’ve done. And, I think they may have had to be hard on Kira, at least at first, because she was so used to being independent, and it can be really hard to go from being the one in control to being the one who has no control.

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I love that the guys kept Kira’s secrets and let her keep an eye out for things. They are really trusting her, but they love her, and theoretically, you trust the person you love, right?

I do also like the way they managed to get rid of the nasty captain. It let Kira get some of her own back, and I’m all for that. He’s the one who hurt her, he deserved what he got.

OK, that’s it for Sara’s new book. I can’t wait for the next one to come out. It can’t come soon enough for me. I want to know if it’s going to be a RH book too. Go check it out. I’m going to settle in for the night and read some Tanya Huff while eating brownies. Happy reading!

Aubrey Cara-Night of the Monrok

Today is another entry into the Night of… RH series. We have one more to go after this, Ava Sinclair’s book. But before we get to Ava’s book, we have Aubrey’s book.

For Aubrey’s entry into this grouping, we’re visiting her Monrok universe in Night of the Monrok. I love the Monrok. I own all the books because I love their universe and those big guys so much.

So, here’s the basic backstory on the Monrok warriors. They are genetically and cybernetically enhanced humans. As babies, the Zapex warped them, did surgery on them, and just all around treated them horribly. When the Monrok had the chance to kill the Zapexian prince who was in charge of them and escape to freedom, they did. The impetus behind their rebellion was that the Zapex had kidnapped human women and were planning on forcing the women and the Monrok to reproduce so that they would have a ready supply of babies to turn into Monrok. None of the guys wanted that to happen, so they rebelled. Now, they have been declared free by the council that rules the galaxy. Of course, that’s mostly because the council wants to have the Monrok as allies in case they need to go to war.

So, on to today’s story. It can be read as a standalone because you get enough of the history of the universe to figure out what’s going on. But, it also slides in quite well with the rest of the universe and it does expand and advance the overall storyline of all the books.

Banx, Jor, Tawn, and Ast have been a very tight unit for many, many years. They pretty much act and think as one when they are in a fight. They are good friends and brothers, even when they sometimes want to strangle each other because of whatever reason. They are currently on Ak’ba and have been told that they should go to the slave auction later that evening because there is going to be something that they would like to see.

When they get to the auction, they are amazed to see Sana. She is a veran concubine. The veran are lower-class Zapexian women and are sold as concubines. They are also seers. It’s very rare to see any Zapexian woman out and about on her own, and nearly impossible to find them being sold as slaves. When Banx first sees Sana, he knows that she is his, so he jumps on the stage, throws a bunch of money at the slavers, and carries her away, followed and guarded by his brothers. When they get to their ship, there are a bunch of Zapexian warriors waiting there, ready to fight. They want Sana back and they were willing to be stupid enough to go after a quartet of Monrok warriors.

Sana has been the concubine of a high councilor of the Zapex king. While she’s been a concubine, she’s never really been used because her master is more into the gearan, which are the male equivalent. Most veran are sterilized so that they can’t get pregnant, but some of the veran aren’t because they have special powers. Sana is one of those. Her master’s honored mate wasn’t real happy about having a veran concubine around, and when it came time to breed her, her master’s mate had Sana beaten. Pippen, Sana’s only friend, arranges to get her off planet and tells her to go to the Galactic Unity Council so that she can tell them things that she knows. He tells her to be brave and trust her fate.

The 4 Monrok guys are very similar in some things and very different in others. They each have their own personalities and their own way of doing things, especially when it comes to Sana. Banx, Tawn, and Ast are very excited to have a a mate, because they know that she is there mate. Jor, who is my favorite, by the way, isn’t as sure about it and while he’s happy to get his dick wet, he’s not so sure about Sana. He’s pretty sure that she’s going to be trouble. I’m really digging RH stories for so many reasons, but the fact that each of the men answer a need in Sana and she answers a different need in each of the men. They all show her how much they care for her, even Jor.

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City of Light

So, the reason that Jor is my favorite is that he is so broken, but he takes the biggest chance when it comes to being with Sana. He really makes himself vulnerable, especially before she gets taken away. It’s beautiful. That breakthrough and the fact that he was willing to do something that would make him feel so vulnerable just shows to me how strong he was.

Anyway, that’s all of this one. Happy reading!

Loki Renard-Broken Boy

On Thursday, we had Loki Renard’s Shamefully Broken with Ellie and Mason. Today, we have Broken Boy with Aiden, Steve, and Rob.

BTW, I have bouncy box giveaways for both of these books going on right now. Click these links to try your luck. Broken Boy bouncy box Shamefully Broken bouncy box. May the odds be ever in your favor.

Before I get started on my review, it’s important that I point out that this is an MMm book. You have a Daddy, and Dom, and a very, very sorry boy. It is dark romance. Not as dark as some of the stuff that I’ve read, darker than others. So let’s get into it, shall we?

Aiden has never really had to grow up. His family is old money and his parents have been rather neglectful. Until he was 5, he wasn’t sure which of the women he saw around him was his mother. He’s never had anyone tell him no, so when he started getting into drugs, there wasn’t really anyone who could stop him. Eventually, his parents cut him off, but that didn’t stop him from his habit, so he tried other things, like dealing and pimping. Then he got into a jam with a local mob boss.

His little sister, Elliot, did what she could to get him out of trouble, and went to his old friend Mason. Mason runs a security company, and he made a deal with Ellie that he would make sure that Aiden was protected. To do that, he sent out two of his best operatives, Steve and Rob.

Steve and Rob found Aiden where he had run away from rehab and secured him in a safe house where they helped him detox. Steve is very Dom-ly and didn’t really want to care for Aiden. His idea of helping Aiden to eat was to tie him up and then force him to open his mouth. Rob, on the other hand, is much more paternal. He convinces rather than forces.

Eventually, Aiden gets clean and everyone is attracted to everyone else. Rob keeps reminding Steve that Aiden is a client and that nothing should happen, but that’s often easier said than done.

OK, it’s that time. I loved these guys. I love how Steve and Rob balance each other out and how they handle Aiden. I also liked seeing the interactions between Aiden and Elliot from his point of view. That’s always an interesting thing to see. Steve did annoy me once, but that’s because something he did hit a hot button on me, so that’s a me thing, and it might not bother someone else. BB can be read as a standalone, it isn’t really a direct sequel to SB. They are connected, but you get enough of the backstory to know what’s going on with no problems. The two books do take place at the same time so I would consider them adjacent to each other more than books 1&2 in a series.

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OK, the thing that really annoyed me about Steve is that he gave Aiden the silent treatment. Yeah, Aiden fucked up by trying to prank the guys, but really, that was where he was in his head at that point, a naughty tween trying to get authority figure’s attention, which is what he did. I hate the silent treatment, and the fact that he gave it to Aiden for so long and after he had Aiden had advanced their relationship just bothered me. And it set the stage for some of the next things to come.

Other than that one thing, I thought that Aiden deserved every damn thing he got, and then some. He really needs strict and he needs parental, so Steve and Rob are perfect for him. They both meet needs that Aiden has.

OK, that’s it for this one. Go check out Loki’s books and see why I love them so much.

Jane Henry-Deliverance

I love reading Jane Henry’s books. And this one, Deliverance, is the first book in a new series, so yay for that! Similar to the Boston Doms series that Jane wrote with Maisy Archer, this the New York Doms series. Jane is writing this one solo though. Still great to read.

Diana is a single mother of a son who is autistic. She’s been single for a long time, with a few breaks for relationships that just don’t work. In fact, a failed relationship is what brings Diana to us. She and her friend Beatrice are out trying to drown Diana’s sorrows in a lot of tequila. When she sees a silver Maserati, she wants to key it because she’s sure it’s her ex’s. Except, whoops. It’s not. Turns out it belongs to a huge hunk of Dom named Tobias.

Tobias is a part owner of a BDSM club called Verge. One night when he walks outside of his club, he sees two drunk women, one of whom is keying his very, very expensive car. When he confronts Diana about it, he notices that she’s pretty much drunk as a skunk. He takes her back in to Verge, into his office. She is pretty apologetic about it and is starting to feel pretty bad about what she was meaning to do. She swears to Tobias that she will pay him back, she’ll just give him her insurance info and be on her way. When he tells her that her insurance isn’t going to cover her vandalism. Diana keeps checking her phone and tells Tobias that she has to leave. If her son wakes up and she’s not home, he’ll be very upset and could meltdown.

Except, there’s a problem. Tobias gets a bright red flashing light on his desk and a phone call from a cop friend of his. There’s been a horrific attack on a woman and it’s associated with his club. So Verge is on lockdown and Tobias has to go out to the rest of the club to deal with it, which means that Diana is going out with him. That’s when she manages to earn her first spanking.

Alright, you know what time it is. I really enjoyed this book, as I have everything else of Jane’s that I’ve read. Lots of great spanking and great sex. She also has a great story going on around it. There are a lot of stories going on within the book and a lot of relationships being built. That is something that could really get out of hand and overwhelm the other elements of the story, so it works out really well. I really loved the positive representation of an autistic kid in a story. There are a lot of stereotypes about people who are autistic, so seeing a positive and realistic example out there is important. It’s also important to get the realistic example of single moms who are dealing with kids with special needs. This is a great story, all around, and I am looking forward to the next one and to see if who I think the next couple is going to be is actually the next couple.

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FTR, I’m pretty sure Zach and Beatrice are the next couple to show up. Of course, watch Jane pull someone else out of her house altogether, just to prove me wrong. LOL.

I would love to see Tobias adopt Chad, but I’m not sure that his dad would ever let go, even if he doesn’t really have much to do with Chad. I know his kind. He’s just a prick and always going to be a prick and Chad will never be enough for him because he just doesn’t want to understand who his own son is. Dickhead.

Anyhow, that’s all for today. I’m going to go plan my weekend reading now. Happy reading!