My rating: 3 of 5 stars
So, like with book one, there were bits I really liked and times when I was very frustrated with this book.
Owen is an utter charmer, he’s delightful, secure in knowing the kind of Domination he wants and perfectly willing to stretch his comfort boundaries.
Kamal is more of an enigma and was one of my biggest frustration points. We don’t get his POV, only Owen’s, and I wasn’t given enough information to get any kind of reading on him at all, other than surface level.
He’s a ponyboy trainer, he likes to Dominate, he’s Muslim (but again that seemed only as a nod to him being an unusual ethnicity for a BDSM Dom because “religion”) rather than having any actual bearing on the plot narrative.
The ending, like book one, felt rushed and overly sudden.
There is so much made during the whole book about how the trainers can’t get into a sexual relationship with the ponyboys – although they can physically bring them to orgasm during training etc – but then when that obstacle is resolved by the end of the book, we still don’t get a scene of them having sex together.
That seriously irritated me. It was made such a big deal out of that Kamal is fighting his attraction to Owen and he’s making him almost break the rule and he wants to f*ck and then we don’t get it at all. Big fail for me, sorry.
I did think there was a bit of contradiction about how the ranch was founded versus what was said in book one. That may be a case of the anonymous ranch owner (mentioned in book one) just handing it over to Andrew and Kamal to establish. The way it read here was that the ranch was theirs.
However, there were also some great bits. The ponyplay, as in book one, is exceptionally well done, as was the brief switch into puppy play. The sense of place is also done well, the ranch and its setting is very easy to visualise, as are the other ponyboys on site with Owen.
The ponyboy scenes are all intense, more so with Owen and Kamal as they do go deep into humiliation and objectification play, and I really loved the threesome with one of Kamal’s old friends who visits the ranch.
So, overall, a good read, but I slightly preferred the set-up of book one as I felt that narrative was more rounded out.
#ARC kindly received from the author in return for an honest and unbiased review