The moment Zach was able to he joined an exclusive BDSM club and finally felt like he was where he belonged. When he first saw Andrew, he was immediately drawn to him and wanted to serve and submit to him. But Andrew thought Zach, who was 18, was too young. Also, their brothers were dating and lived together and Andrew didn’t want to jeopardize his family. But Zach only wanted to submit to Andrew and, since he was denied that opportunity, he became a dominant in demand. Two years later and Zach and Andrew cross paths often as they both work for Zach’s brother’s band, The Dark Angels, and the spark has never dimmed. Even though Andrew craves Zach, he is still not willing to take a chance.
One night at a charity auction where Doms are asked to submit, Zach gives in to his baser instincts. Andrew knows it’s now or never to finally collar the man who has forever gotten under his skin and into his heart.
Lock and Key was a book I was really looking forward to reading. Some books pique your interest more than others and this one sounded intriguing. This book is not billed as being part of Allora’s Dark Angels series and I feel that it should have been. I have only read the first book in that series and felt like I was missing a few important elements to pull this entire book together for me. Zach’s brother, Dusty, is the drummer for The Dark Angels and he is living with Andrew’s brother, Justin. Andrew thought Zach was too young and he believed getting involved with him would only lead to a breakup that would then rock Dusty and Justin’s relationship. Andrew is extremely protective of Justin and, while glimpses were given of his story, there was also a lot I was missing by not having read the previous book. Also, there were several scenes with side characters, one which is rather lengthy, and was written as if I was supposed to know the story behind those characters. There were also characters whose lives were touched upon, but clearly still have stories left to tell. All of this made for a disjointed read at times and up front I wasn’t given the information as to why Andrew was completely sacrificing his own happiness for his brother.
So Zach wants to submit but only to Andrew and the two become tentative friends. Andrew then turns Zach down when he wants to take their relationship further. This leads Zach to make some poor decisions. Then two years pass and time jumps to when Zach is a dominant in demand. Most of that two years is not discussed and we have to go with the fact that while Zach has tried to move on with his life, he has been longing for Andrew all that time.
Throughout the book Zach has a similar internal dialogue or mantra with himself. Whenever he sees or even thinks about Andrew, he has a repetitive series of single word chants that continue on throughout the entire book. Kneel. Serve. His. Not His. While this did go to showing Zach’s state of mind, it was entirely too repetitive and often disrupted the flow of the scene for me.
The guys can’t seem to get it together even when they are together. They are both living life as dominants and are well versed in the scene, yet they cannot communicate at all with each other. They are fighting and not communicating even while trying to have their first real conversation. Then when they finally do get together, they both think it’s temporary. The scenes are heated and well written, but the focus was on the fact that they still thought they couldn’t be together and it was harder to enjoy that they were. Their thought processes here were a hindrance to the scenes fully coming together for me.
If I had read the entire series, I would have enjoyed the overall story more. I can still say I’m glad I had the opportunity to read the book, but while I was into Andrew and Zach as a couple, the progression of their relationship didn’t entirely work out for me.
A review copy of this book was provided by Dreamspinner Press.