24/7

J.A. Rock. Riptide, $17.99 trade paper (283p) ISBN 978-1-62649-350-6
The fourth in Rock’s Subs Club contemporary erotic series (after Manties in a Twist), set in an unnamed American town, continues the heart-wrenching journey of a group of submissive men trying to recover from the death of their close friend Hal during a BDSM scene with irresponsible dominant Bill Henson. Three years after Hal’s death, Gould, who once dated Hal, is in a submissive relationship with BDSM club owners Kel and Greg. He’s deeply unhappy that they forgave Bill and allowed him to come back to the club and feels personally guilty for being alive and starting to move on. But he also feels the need to try the next step on his own personal kink journey: being a slave, 24/7, to Kel and Greg. Rock ably portrays Gould’s mixed emotions as he longs to find a lasting relationship with Kel and Greg, remembers all the good times he had with Hal, and grapples with a shocking run-in with Bill. Gould’s pain, PTSD episodes, and extreme survivor’s guilt pack a devastating punch, and the empathetic responses by Kel and Greg ring true. This book defies stereotypes about straight and queer men, kink, and grief, drawing the reader into a moving tale of unconventional, undeniable love. (June)
Reviewed on: 04/11/2016
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