Shot in the Dark by H.J. Raine and Kelly Wyre
Story Rating: 3 out of 5 paddles
Sting Factor (kink): 3 out of 5
The story starts out at a firing range where it goes into a flash back of Ellis and Maxwell’s time together as lovers. Ellis meets Maxwell originally in a PTSD group after a tour in Afghanistan where they become friends, and then later in the story they meet at a club and divulge some of their fantasies to one another. Maxwell takes charge and makes some of Ellis’ fantasies come true. Once the flashback ends, Maxwell proposes a new question to Ellis, but will he game?
This is a quick, HOT, fun M/m read with guns, suspension, and a romantic version of a Dom/sub relationship. The story was hard to follow to start off with but then I got lost in the ultra hot scene with these two characters. They already trusted each other beyond a shadow of a doubt due to their previous experiences together, so the trust aspect in their scene was beyond question and easy to lead into their BDSM dynamic with one another. This novella could easily be a prequel or a quick transition to some of the authors other works, but I am unsure if that is how this is intended. You’re definitely left wanting to know what happens next and asking for more!
Reviewed by Jennifer
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The New Deal
HJ Raine and Kelly Wyre
Torquere Press [link to buy]
Rating: 3 out of 5 paddles
Daniel and Clark seem to enjoy an intense relationship. Former Drill Sargent Clark seems to be an extreme pain slut, and Daniel likes to dish it out. “The New Deal” is a short story chronicling one hot scene between the two, as Daniel binds Clark and then inflicts progressively more pain on his body. It’s implied that they’ve discussed the scene before-hand, but there’s still plenty of tension as well as apprehension in the air between the two.
The two characters seem to have quite a bit of history, with Daniel referred to as ‘the professor’ many times, although professor of what we’re never told. In fact, there’s quite a bit of what sounds like an interesting back-story hinted at early on. I found this rather frustrating, as it made the early parts of the story quite muddled. On checking out the authors, it appears that this story is some kind of short follow-on to “Hearts Under Fire”, featuring the same two main characters from that story. Having not read the first book, I was quite lost during the first parts of the story.
However, that confusion is easily forgotten as the scene finally gets heavy. It does get quite hot and heavy, with a slow build-up as Daniel restrains and teases Clark before moving on to inflict the pain Clark needs. Daniel comes of a wee bit wimpy at times, for a sadist, but as the scene progresses it becomes clear that some of this is due to how much he cares for Clark, and how much he wants to please the man. In a way, Clark comes off as the more dominant character, even though he is the one who gets trussed up and whipped.