Story Rating: 4 stars
Audio Rating: 5 stars
Narrator: Michael Ferraiuolo
Length: 7 hours, 9 minutes
Nate Boudreaux is looking forward to finishing his Ph.D. He likes his life as he teaches at the university and has Grindr to take care of some of his other needs. Nate is looking forward to his latest hookup arriving to take some of the heat off, and while the man happens to be good looking and interesting, Nate does not need a relationship.
Alistair Drake is from a wealthy family. He lives in a penthouse and has millions in the bank, but it’s never enough for his family who are all more successful than Alistair. and his brothers look down on him. A hookup is just what he needs and he has no reason to believe he will ever see Nate again and no reason to believe he will start a family with the random omega.
But three months later, Nate and Alistair are in for quite a surprise when it’s revealed that Nate is pregnant and the men have their very own clutch to care for. Except, Nate took every precaution not to become pregnant and when he finds out that Alistair isn’t even human, his entire life changes. Nate is immediately bonded to his clutch, but the elders that rule Alistair’s clan are not at all pleased about an unsanctioned clutch. Nate and Alistair may be mates and they may be falling in love, but they may also have to fight to keep what is already theirs.
Clutch was a fun read with good characters and an interesting story. Nate and Alistair meet by hookup and think they will only spend one night together. But if you are familiar with what a clutch is you can see where this story might be heading. We learn early on that Alistair is a dragon and the two men have inadvertently sired an unsanctioned clutch. This sets off the entire story as while Nate is an omega, Nate didn’t know there were dragons, and neither did his science geek roommate, Harry, who is thrilled with the developments and offers some comic relief early on in the story.
Alistair and Nate form a shaky alliance at first. They are thrust together by circumstances and are more bound to each other than they were ever expecting. We see a lot through Nate’s eyes as he learns all about Alistair’s family, clan, and the laws that rule the dragons. Alistair is the smallest of his brothers and is less successful than they are. By less successful, he is only a multi-millionaire where his brothers are billionaires. This is linked back to the hoard mentality of dragons, but Alistair has been treated badly by his family for years, so many many years, because of what they see as a lack of wealth.
Nate and Alistair fall for each other and the fated mates aspect moves that along quickly. I didn’t feel they had a full on sweeping romance here, but it was certainly enjoyable to watch them interact. There was more depth to this story than maybe you might think upfront as we see Nate and Alistair go up against the ruling forces of the clan to protect and keep the clutch safe. I do not read that much omegaverse and I could have used a little more overall world building and at times and I felt like Harry, as I had as many questions as he did. But if you don’t need all the answers to all the things, this will work better for you in that area. The ending got a little muddled for me as “bad guys” make a sudden appearance and that was hastily put together for me and just as hastily resolved. But the highlight here is Nate and Alistair and their clutch making their way into a future they never expected.
Michael Ferraiuolo’s performance is amazing, absolutely amazing. I have liked every performance I have heard from him and this was particularly superb. He had incredible voices for each character with Alistair and his brothers having a refined, upscale tone to reflect their status in life. Nate’s voice was filled with all the emotions and inflection that his situation warranted and Harry’s geek-like scientific tone was the entertaining, comic relief. While I liked the story, I loved the audio version and would highly recommend this performance as clearly one of the best of the year.