The repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell didn’t come soon enough for Gunther "Gunny" Duchene and Macalister "Mac" Jones, career US Marines who met at boot camp in the 1990s. They’ve been somewhere between best friends and lovers in peacetime and wartime both, but as the clock ticks toward Mac’s and Gunny’s retirements, the guys have much more to worry about than coming out.
Whether their relationship will survive outside of the closet they’ve had to shove it into for over two decades is a big question mark. After all, Gunny questions why a hot military man like Mac--who could get any guy he wanted, including a younger, sexier one--would want him. But as Gunny and Mac navigate emotional waters as choppy as any they saw on duty, they just might learn Semper Fi applies to more than their careers.
When I saw this book for review in the audio edition, I HAD to try it. I feel like "Beyond Duty" is somewhat of a must read if you like M/M military books. I mean, two career Marines getting together? All that manliness and testosterone?! YUM! And some mild kink never hurt anyone, nuh uh.
Let's get right to it. I'm historically not a fan of established couples, and this book is basically an established couple story. Gunny and Mac have been exclusive for years, and though their relationship title was never established, they were essentially 100% a couple for a very long time. One of the problems that I had with this story was that I found Gunny and Mac's relationship to be a bit... boring. Without the excitement of a new relationship, I struggled a bit to get into the two guys as a couple. However, at the same time, I found their devotion and understanding of one another to be very touching.
Kink-wise, I was pretty "meh". I always like a good power play, but I was a little take it or leave it here. I think it made some of the sex scenes super hot, but there are a LOT of sex scenes in this book, and they began to feel a little rote for me after a time.
The story was an interesting one, and I liked learning about Gunny and Mac's families and their personal issues, as well as the "coming out in the military" plot. Though I found the story to be a little ambitious in terms of the amount of things that it covered, as well as a little slow, I liked it overall and found it to be mostly entertaining.
Now for my review of the audio. The narrator, Jonathan Young, did a decent job of the audio, even though I didn't love his voices for the MCs. They were a little over-exaggerated and growly for my tastes, and not in a particularly sexy way. However, I found him to be easy listening, and I would listen to another book by this narrator again.
I think that if you like established couple stories, military stories, and some light kink, you should certainly check this one out. Though it wasn't a stand-out for me, I can see why it is a favorite of many readers.
*Copy provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review*
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