Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Bonds of Love

Title: Bonds of Love
Author: Mickie B. Ashling
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Publisher URL:
ISBN: 978-1-61581-366-7
Genre: [M/M] Contemporary BDSM
Rating: 4 Nymphs
Literary Nymphs Reviewer: Mystical Nymph

Getting to know each other and melding their personal and professional lives together hasn’t been easy for Scott Gregory and Robin "Red" Kennedy. They’ve had to learn how to successfully balance the kinky side of their home life with that of their mainstream dental practice and it hasn’t been easy. There are also the differences in their personalities to take into consideration. Scott is quieter and more reserved while Robin is headstrong, impulsive and more flamboyant.

They’ve taken a big step professionally, when they and their friend Susie set up their own dental practices; far enough away from their old homophobic boss Ron, but close enough that their established patients can still easily find them. Work might be going well, but other aspects of their life aren’t as settled. Robin’s mother is experiencing a health crises, Scott’s grandfather suddenly shows in his life, Susie has finished her Dominatrix training and is looking for her perfect sub and Jenna, Ron’s assistant and their co-worker from the old office, is causing trouble.

On top of everything else, Robin wants to publicly collar his shy lover, when due to professional reasons, Scott needs to remain closeted. With so much turmoil in their lives, can Robin and Scott find a way to make their love work or will their obstacles drive them apart forever?

Bonds of Love is the sequel to, and follows a few months after where Impacted left off. Once again the reader is taken into the world of BDSM, but this aspect of Robin and Scott’s relationship is only a small part of their lives. Yes, it’s important to them, but it’s not the most significant part of their love and partnership.

There’s a lot going on in this interesting story and Robin and Scott are its heart and backbone, but author Ashling has creatively interjected old and new problems with family and friends to propel the story forward at a quick and believable pace. It also allows the reader to learn a great deal more about these intriguing secondary characters than was revealed in Impacted, giving a better understand of what makes them tick. I particularly enjoyed the pairing of Robin’s mother and Scott’s grandfather. The author did a nice job putting these two together and I hope we’ll see more of them in a future release.

While I enjoyed Scott and Robin’s warm, caring and deeply committed relationship, the scenes that really stand out are those involving Jenna and Ron. They’re unsettling, bleak, painful, and filled with regret and self-recriminations and can’t help but make the reader feel the deep emotional turmoil these characters are experiencing. If you enjoy complicated personal interactions with some blistering hot sex mixed in, then give this story a chance.

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