When Bowen and Aldis meet at the gym, sparks fly between them. In fact, the pair end up in bed together almost immediately and the connection is so good, both men are looking for more. When Bowen’s best friend and roommate, Hawthorne, arrives home during their encounter, he gets both an earful and later an eyeful. Hawthorne’s reaction surprises him, as while he and Bowen have been best friends their whole lives, Hawthorne has never been interested in Bowen, or any man for that matter. But something about Bowen and Aldis’ encounter has brought up some feelings in Hawthorne that he can’t explain.
Bowen has been half in love with Hawthorne for years, but his friend has never shown the slightest interest in men. Bowen knows he needs to move forward with his own relationships and Aldis is turning out to be exactly what Bowen needs — hot, sweet, and just the right amount of bossy to get Bowen going. Things are going great between them, but there is a part of Bowen that can’t fully turn off his feelings for Hawthorne.
Aldis is falling hard for Bowen, but it is also clear to him that Bowen and Hawthorne have some unresolved feelings, despite the fact that Hawthorne has always seen himself as straight. Aldis can see the way he looks at Bowen — and the way Hawthorne sometimes looks at Aldis too. Aldis has always been very open minded about his relationships and he figures there may be a chance here for all three of them together — he just has to help the other two realize that it could work. As the men begin to explore a three-way relationship, the chemistry is intense and the feelings are strong. But part of Aldis can’t help but worry that once Bowen and Hawthorne finally work their way to each other, there won’t be any room left for him. And Hawthorne wonders if he may have missed his chance with Bowen, now that he sees how close Bowen has grown to Aldis. The three men may just be perfect for one another, but they need to take a leap and find out if they are all meant to be together.
Mountain Topped is a super sexy polyamory story that has a lot of heat, along with enough plot and character development to hold it all together nicely. The story opens with Bowen and Aldis meeting and the two are so hot for each other they are basically in bed within minutes of meeting. This is a high heat story and we get lots of sex in lots of combinations. The men are a good fit, as Aldis tends to be a bossy dirty talker who likes to watch, Bowen enjoys being used and told what to do, and Hawthorne is exploring sex with men for the first time. Expect lots of sex, lots of dirty talk, and a super high heat level here between three super muscular and athletic guys.
What keeps the plot moving is some nice character development and some interesting dynamics among the men. Aldis and Bowen are exploring a new relationship and have an intense connection almost right away. But Bowen is very caught up with Hawthorne, yet thinks he has no chance. So Bowen feels a little torn, wanting to move forward with Aldis but struggling to fully close the door on things with Hawthorne. For his part, Hawthorne has never considered an interest in men and he is slowly exploring this attraction that has flared up in him for both men. But as he sees the way things are developing between Aldis and Bowen, he can’t help but wonder if he has missed his chance, just as he is realizing his feelings for Bowen. And of course, Aldis wants the best for Bowen and worries that if things work out for him with Hawthorne, there won’t be a place for him anymore. So there are some complex dynamics here, and what keeps the book from being overly angsty is Aldis’ practical approach to exploring things among all three of them. He sees no reason why anyone has to choose, and as the three begin to explore the connection among them, Bowen and Hawthorne start to believe it could work as well.
There is not much hard conflict here, mostly light issues as the men build their relationship, but have some niggling fears in the background. I think things settle pretty easily and early enough on that I was waiting for more to happen toward the end in the way of conflict or story development. As it was, it felt like the main resolution happens a little too early for the story. But as I said, most of the focus here is in the physical and emotional relationship among these three rather than major conflicts.
Overall, I found this one fun and super sexy. If you enjoy triad stories and are looking for high heat, Mountain Topped is a great choice.