Rating: 3.75 stars
Buy Links: Amazon | iBooks | Amazon UK
Striker and Dante love each other, but their hot tempers mean their relationship is often as tempestuous as it is passionate. After some flirting in a bar leads to jealousy and anger, the guys decide to open their relationship. It isn’t what either man really wants, but neither one can quite back down either.
Frances lives a quiet, ordered life with lots of routine. He loves gaming and collecting old postcards and he doesn’t step outside of his comfort zone that often. But after making his own way when his father kicked him out, Frances is stronger than he sometimes lets himself believe, and he is determined to push his boundaries. That means getting a tattoo for the first time. It also means that when he comes across a hot biker stranded on the side of the road, Frances takes a leap and engages in some hot sex with a stranger. And when he gets his tattoo, Frances takes a chance on with sex with another sexy bad boy right there in the shop.
What Frances doesn’t expect is that the men he hooked up with are actually dating, and despite their newly open relationship, neither Dante nor Striker are particularly happy when they learn what their boyfriend has been up to. Their tempers scare Frances off and it is enough to make both men take a step back and re-evaluate their behavior. Dante and Striker begin to reach out to Frances, and as he sees that he can trust them and their tempers, the men begin to explore a sexual connection among the three of them. Despite his reserved appearance, Frances is not afraid to ask for what he wants in bed and he revels in the experience Dante and Striker can give him. For their part, the couple realizes that Frances gives them a sense of calm and perspective that really helps the connection between them. The guys are all falling for one another, but now they have to figure out if there is a way to fit Frances into Dante and Striker’s relationship and build something with all three of them.
I am a big fan of a geeky hero so this story called to me right away. My favorite part of the book is Frances’ progression from someone shy and unsure of himself to a man who is more confident in who he is, what he wants, and what he can accomplish. Frances has a lot of things he wants (particularly in the sex department), but he has not had the confidence to try for them. Deciding to get a tattoo is the first step, and meeting Dante and Striker helps move him forward even more. We see as his confidence grows in terms of their sexual connection, it also grows in other parts of his life. He begins to recognize that he has overcome a lot and that he can be proud of all he has managed to achieve. This confidence gives Frances the strength to stand up for himself in new ways and to try new things. So I really enjoyed his character growth and the way that even as Frances finds himself, he doesn’t change fundamentally who he is and still embraces his geeky side.
The connection between the three men is definitely steamy (although things are more tame in the second half as the focus is more on the relationship). There is a dirty intensity to their sex that I enjoyed and Cayden does a nice job showing the chemistry among the three of them. I appreciated that Frances helps bring some balance to Dante and Striker’s relationship, though I do wish we got a better sense of why. At times it just seemed like Dante and Striker were being on their best behavior for fear of scaring Frances off. However, the story is presented as if having Frances as part of their relationship is changing their dynamic to make them each softer, and I needed to understand more about why that was the case. I also felt like these guys move from hot sex to love and a real emotional connection a little quickly for me. There isn’t a ton of time that they are all three together before they are declaring love. I also would have appreciated seeing some conversations between Dante and Striker where they talk about their feelings for Frances and how that affects them as a couple. So overall, I would have liked more insight here into some of the aspects of the relationship dynamic among them all.
The story started out a bit rough for me as Frances falls into sex with both men seemingly out of nowhere. He meets Dante on the side of the road when his bike runs out of gas and within about 30 seconds they are having sex right there on Dante’s bike. I mean, I get Frances is pushing the envelope, but having public sex with a stranger after barely exchanging a word seemed a huge leap and felt more porn fantasy than something realistically Frances would do. I also struggled with the early relationship between Dante and Striker. We come to learn a lot about their background and why they are such volatile guys. I could also understand how these men work together and each can accept the other’s temper and other faults. But they decide in the middle of a fight to have an open relationship neither man really wants, and yet both seem too proud or stubborn to actually say that, even after the heat of the moment. And then both of them end up having sex with Frances almost immediately after. They behavior seemed immature and their inability to talk things through wasn’t appealing. However, I did really appreciate that these guys do come to their senses and talk to one another. They share how they are feeling and work things through before the situation drags on too long, which showed some nice growth from both of them.
So I had a few issues here, but overall I enjoyed this story. It picked up steam for me as it got going and I enjoyed the way things came together for the three men. If you like geeky heroes, hot bad boy tattoo artists, and some sexy threesome action, definitely give this one a look.