Review: Fidelity by Lia Black

TITLE:     FidelityFidelity

AUTHOR:     Lia Black

PUBLISHER:     Vinedark/ BlackHouse Press

LENGTH:     213 Pages

BLURB:

How far would a man go in the name of faith?

Fydelis was once worshiped as the Angel of Fidelity, but his love for Gareth, a mortal knight, caused him to fall from the heavens. He has now become the demonic aspect of Regret, and the unwilling plaything of the Sunderer, the darkest of all dark gods. His only hope is for death, but first, he must find someone to take his place as the Sunderer’s favorite toy.

Father Gareth De’Aubyn is a man tormented by his past and ready to sell his future to save the souls of his flock. Questioning the wisdom of war, he’s traded his Crusader’s armor for a cassock, and now ministers to the very people his army sent fleeing for their lives. When his church is attacked by unknown assassins, Gareth is mortally wounded, and with his dying breath, he calls out to the Creator for help.

But his god does not answer.

Instead, the demon, Fydelis, heeds his call, cajoling him to promise his soul to the god of the underworld for a chance to tap into the powers of dark magic, and set everything right.

A stranger to Gareth, the man who once swore to him his honor and his love, Fydelis is forced to make the dying priest an offer he can’t refuse: in return for sparing the lives of those under his care, Gareth must collect several very stubborn souls.

Together, they’ll begin a journey that will test everything they thought they knew about faith, love, and fidelity.

Content warnings: Graphic violence, fantasy-based theosophical overtones, dub-con, rape, heavy on the dark at times, snarky banter, hot and sweet m/m sex.

REVIEW:

As a knight, Gareth swore himself to his guardian angel, Fidelity, who he thought of as a spouse he would never be allowed to touch. However, when Gareth becomes disenchanted with the corruption in the crusades, he leaves the knighthood to become a priest.

The book starts when Gareth is dying following the massacre of his congregation. He calls to the heavens for help, but he receives help instead from the underworld. The demon, Fydelis, assists Gareth in exchange for his soul and the souls of twenty others, which he is tasked with collecting. When all is set to right in his church, Fydelis is still hanging around, and it becomes clear that he wants more than Gareth’s soul. Despite the demon’s temptation, Gareth sticks to his vows of chastity and remains true to his beloved angel, Fidelity. Along their journey to collect souls, Gareth continues to resist Fydelis, but grows fond of him and starts to care for him. The book ends in a twist, with love that is truly heartbreaking.

I don’t generally read books with theological undertones, but I took a chance on Fidelity due to the promise of dark things to come. Though the main characters are a priest and a demon, I never once felt like a line was crossed. However, I did a lot of crying throughout the book, and I can’t even write my review without getting choked up. Although Gareth and Fydelis seemed to be traveling down a path that was sure to lead to tragedy and heartbreak, I was very pleased with how the story ended.

RATING: Loved it!

DARK ARTS ELEMENTS:

Abuse, Creature/ Monster Sex, Dark M/M Fantasy, Dark M/M Romance, Dub-con, Graphic Violence, M/M Dark Erotica, Non-con, POV of Victim, Rape, Taboo, Torture

BUYING LINKS: 

Amazon (Available on KU)

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Lia Black tends to do everything the hard way; beginning with being born backwards into the world and now raising a teenage daughter by herself in conservative Upstate NY. Her career choices are no less extreme, including occupations of fine artist, computer geek, firefighter, and mortician’s assistant— just to name a few.

A fellow Author describes Black’s mind as “a glorious kaleidoscope of f*ckeduppery”; she loves the challenge of writing about people who probably have no business being together on the same planet, and who occasionally deal with questionable sanity/morality. It’s fun to glue broken things together and try to make something interesting and new.
–She especially loves broken boys who have lots of fascinating pieces.

Her characters often suffer through the worlds she creates for them, which leaves them a little cranky and sometimes less lovable than others in a romance genre. Yet Black swears that someday, “there will be comedy.”

Goodreads

 

 

 

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Spotlight: Stealing Innocents by Lisa Henry as Cari Waites

TITLE:    Stealing InnocentsStealing Innocents

AUTHOR:     Lisa Henry as Cari Waites

PUBLISHER:     Anglerfish Press

LENGTH:     273 Pages

BLURB:

Those who dare to scratch the surface of ordinary, everyday life may be horrified to find a sick underbelly beneath—a nightmare world populated by villains and victims, predators and prey, where the rules of society no longer apply.

Where you’ll find people like Danny, the boy who sells himself to pay for his father’s gambling debts and ends up in a situation more twisted than he ever imagined. Or Troy, the cop whose obsession with saving a brutalized human trafficking victim turns deadly. Or Drew, the mental patient who begins to suspect his nightly delusions of abuse by his doctor are actually real. Or David, the cuckolded husband who decides the best way to get revenge is to seduce his wife’s barely legal son.

Stealing Innocents is an exploration of our darkest human impulses, where sex is power, love is horror, and there’s no such thing as a happy ending.

READER DISCRETION ADVISED.

This collection contains three edited second editions stories that were previously individually published, plus one all-new story, by Lisa Henry writing as Cari Waites.

RATING: Some stories I liked, and some I loved!

DARK ARTS ELEMENTS:

Abuse, Barely Legal, BDSM, Captive, Castration, Child Abuse, Drugging, Dub-con, Forced Prostitution, Forced Seduction, Graphic Violence, Incest, Kidnapping, M/M Dark Erotica, M/M Erotica, Murder, Non-con, Non-consensual BDSM, porn industry, POV of Aggressor, POV of Victim, Psychological Trauma, Rape, Rough Sex, Sadism, Sex Trafficking, Sex Worker, Slave, Taboo, Torture, Underage

BUYING LINKS: 

Anglerfish Press Amazon ARe

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

I like to tell stories. Mostly with hot guys and happily ever afters. They gotta work for it though. No free lunches on my watch.

Spotlight: Claimed by the Order (S-Gods #1) by J. Johanis

TITLE: Claimed by the OrderClaimed by the Order (S-Gods #1)

SERIES: S-Gods #1

AUTHOR: J. Johanis

PUBLISHER:   Self Published

LENGTH: 222 Pages

BLURB:

He failed to save himself. Is he strong enough to save his lover?

Young and eager to join the social playground of the gods, Marduk enters his first day of college at the exotic mountain retreat at the Temple of Power. But he swiftly falls into the clutches of a secret order. Confronted by the powerful gods who wish to claim him, Marduk is defenseless. His only way out: to lure another virgin god into the Order.

Advisory: Contains graphic violence, non-con, & abuse. Intended for mature readers.

DARK ARTS ELEMENTS:

Abuse, Captive, Castration, Dark M/M Fantasy, Dark M/M Romance, Dub-con, Forced Prostitution, Graphic Violence, Humiliation, Hurt/Comfort, m/m Dark erotica, M/M Erotic Romance, M/M Fantasy, Ménage, Non-con, Non-consensual BDSM, POV of Victim, Psychological Trauma, Rough Sex, Taboo, Torture

BUYING LINKS: 

Amazon

ARe

Barnes & Noble

 

 

 

 

Book Review: Wicked Gentlemen by Ginn Hale

TITLE:    Wicked GentlemenWicked Gentlemen

AUTHOR:    Ginn Hale

PUBLISHER:    Blind Eye Books

LENGTH:    224 Pages

BLURB:

Belimai Sykes is many things: a Prodigal, the descendant of ancient demons, a creature of dark temptations and rare powers. He is also a man with a brutal past and a dangerous addiction. And Belimai Sykes is the only man Captain William Harper can turn to when faced with a series of grisly murders.

But Mr. Sykes does not work for free and the price of Belimai’s company will cost Captain Harper far more than his reputation. From the ornate mansions of noblemen, where vivisection and sorcery are hidden beneath a veneer of gold, to the steaming slums of Hells Below, Captain Harper must fight for justice and for his life.

His enemies are many and his only ally is a devil he knows too well. Such are the dangers of dealing with the wicked.

REVIEW:

Very Dark, suspenseful, and extremely well written. Wicked Men is a clever mixture of fantasy, romance, and mystery which appears to be set in the 1700-1800’s. Ginn Hale creates a world which is much like our own except for the existence of prodigals; a repressed class of magical men who are the descendants of demons. The story revolves around two unlikely lovers who come together while investigating a mystery that threatens to take them down.  Excellent story and highly recommended.

DARK ARTS ELEMENTS:

Dark M/M Fantasy, Enemies to Lovers, Torture

BUY LINKS: 

Amazon

 

 

 

 

Book Review: Neko by P.L. Nunn

TITLE:    NekoNeko

AUTHOR:    PL Nunn

PUBLISHER:    Lulu

LENGTH:    221 Pages

BLURB:

A young Neko is captured and sold into slavery. In the hands of brutal woodsmen, who consider him more animal than human, he learns the true meaning of brutality, until he is rescued by a mysterious trapper with secrets of his own.

WARNINGS! This is not a pleasant tale. There is brutal and inventive NON-CON, Bestiality, Torture, and exaggerated scenes of humiliation, sadism and bondage and gratuitous violent M/M sex. NOT FOR THE FAINT OF HEART. There will be resolution at the end, that was never addressed in the Comic book, but the Neko will go through hell before he gets it. You Have been warned.

REVIEW:

I can’t say I liked this as much as I liked Bloodraven. I’m glad that there was a happy ending for Neko, but for the first half of the book, I was wondering when things would start moving along in the story. It seemed like there was nothing but torture. It was very inventive torture, but it was never ending with no apparent escape or resolution in sight. Things got better later in the book, but not spectacular.  I rated Neko with four stars because I admire the author’s courage in writing something so taboo and out there. Of course, this book comes with strong advisories for non-con, violence and abuse. I recommend this novel to anyone who likes dark m/m erotica, and to anyone looking for where they draw the line. As for me, this book was crazy, but not enough that I felt I had to put it down. I’ll certainly be reading more of PL Nunn.

DARK ARTS ELEMENTS:

Abuse, Banned Book, BDSM, Bestiality, Captive, Creature/ Monster Sex, Dark Erotica, Dark M/M Fantasy, Forced Prostitution, Graphic Violence, Humiliation, Kidnapping, Ménage, Non-consensual BDSM, Polyamory, POV of Victim, Rape, Sadism, Taboo, Torture

BUY LINKS: 

Lulu

Bishonen Works  

Review: Fallout by Lisa Henry

TITLE: FalloutFallout

AUTHOR: Lisa Henry, M. Caspian

PUBLISHER: Self Published

LENGTH: 184 Pages

BLURB:

High-school boyfriends Jack Haldane and Bastian Wade thought everything would be perfect once they reunited at college, putting disapproving parents and small-town attitudes firmly in the past. Now Jack’s on track for a PhD scholarship and a career as a researcher, and Bastian . . . well, living inside a broken body and trailing along in Jack’s shadow didn’t feature in his lofty teenage ambitions. A weekend camping trip back home offers a chance for them to reconnect, but an ugly confrontation with the local motorcycle gang is only the start of their problems. When disaster occurs and the world unravels, will Bastian and Jack manage to hold on to each other, or fall further apart as they try to survive?

REVIEW:

Amazing dark romance; a fight for survival against all odds. Jack and Bastian’s struggling relationship is put to the test when their camping trip turns into a life or death situation. In a landscape that appears post apocalyptic, Jack and Bastian make extraordinary decisions in order to survive. This is far from being an enemies to lovers book; with that said, I really love how the Stockholm Syndrome is represented. Fallout is an emotional journey, full of violence and suspense, and though love and justice prevail, it should be advised that this book is not for the faint of heart.  I’ll definitely be reading more from this author.

DARK ARTS ELEMENTS:

Abuse, Captive, Dark Erotica, Dark M/M Romance, Dub-con, Graphic Violence, Kidnapping, Murder, Non-con, POV of Victim, Rape, Torture,

BUY LINKS:

Smashwords | Amazon

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

I like to tell stories. Mostly with hot guys and happily ever afters. They gotta work for it though. No free lunches on my watch.

Spotlight: The Grand Ballast by J.A. Rock

TITLE:     The Grand Ballast The Grand Ballast

AUTHOR:     J.A. Rock

PUBLISHER:     Self-Published

LENGTH:     301 pages

BLURB:

In a future where live sex shows abound to keep a jaded population entertained, dancer Bode Martin falls for the brilliant and unstable Kilroy Ballast, who molds Bode into the star attraction of his erotic circus, the Grand Ballast. Drugged beyond any real feeling, Bode trades freedom and his once considerable pride for an illusion of tenderness—until he inadvertently rescues a young man from a rival show, and together they flee to an eccentric town in the west where love still means something. Valen’s not an easy man to know, and Bode shed his romantic notions under Kilroy’s brutal employ. Yet their growing bond becomes a strange and dangerous salvation as they attempt to overthrow the shadows of their pasts and wade together through a world of regret, uncertainty, beauty, and terror. But Kilroy won’t let Bode go so easily. Long ago, Bode was responsible for the loss of something Kilroy held dear, and he still owes Kilroy a debt. As the three men battle toward a tangled destiny, Bode must decide if his love for Valen is worth fighting for—or if he was and always will be a pawn in the story Kilroy Ballast will never stop telling. WARNING: Contains violence and noncon. Not a genre romance.

THOUGHTS:

Extremely dark with a lot of off page dark erotica and taboo elements. I would categorize this as m/m horror. Recommended to anyone who likes bittersweet m/m erotic romance.

RATING: I liked it!

DARK ARTS ELEMENTS:

Abuse, BDSM, Captive, Dark M/M Fantasy, Dark M/M Romance, Drugging, Dub-con, Forced Prostitution, Humiliation, M/M Fantasy, Non-con, POV of Victim, Rape, Taboo, Torture

BUYING LINKS:

Amazon

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

J.A. Rock is the author of queer romance and suspense novels, including BY HIS RULES, TAKE THE LONG WAY HOME, and, with Lisa Henry, THE GOOD BOY and WHEN ALL THE WORLD SLEEPS. She holds an MFA in creative writing from the University of Alabama and a BA in theater from Case Western Reserve University. J.A. also writes queer fiction and essays under the name Jill Smith. Raised in Ohio and West Virginia, she now lives in Chicago with her dog, Professor Anne Studebaker.

Book Review: Finding Zach

TITLE:     Finding Zach finding zach

AUTHOR:     Rowan Speedwell

PUBLISHER:    Dreamspinner Press

LENGTH:     264

BLURB:

For five years, Zach Tyler, son of one of the world’s richest software moguls, was held hostage, tortured, and abused. When he is rescued at last from the Venezuelan jungle, he is physically and psychologically shattered, but he slowly begins to rebuild the life he should have had before an innocent kiss sent him into hell. His childhood best friend David has lived those years with overwhelming guilt and grief. Every relationship David has tried has fallen apart because of his feelings for a boy he thought dead. When Zach is rescued, David is overjoyed—and then crushed when Zach shuts him out. Two years later, David returns home, and he and Zach must come to terms with the rift between them, what they feel for each other, and what their future could hold. But Zach has secrets, and one of them might well destroy their fragile love.

REVIEW:

I loved this book. I wasn’t trying to read something addictive but I was drawn in right away. Finding Zach is so much more than your average m/m love story. Zach and David practically grew up together but right after discovering they their attraction for one another, Zach is kidnapped by a Central American warlord and is kept prisoner for five years. The story begins at Zach’s rescue and continues through his recovery. After all that happened, it’s truly heartbreaking and wonderful to see Zach and David come together. This is a couple that I’d like to see again. There was a happy ending, but I was sad when the book ended.

RATING: I loved it!

DARK ARTS ELEMENTS:

Abuse, Captive, Dark Erotica, Dark M/M Romance, Forced Prostitution, Graphic Violence, Hurt/Comfort, Kidnapping, M/M Erotic Romance, Non-con, POV of Victim, Psychological Trauma, Rape, Torture

BUY LINKS: 

Dreamspinner Press 

Amazon

ARe