--- He was supposed to never leave prison. And then he was in my bedroom. ---
Dayton is always on time to work, always organized, always ready to do overtime. The perfect receptionist-waiter-cleaner. Employee of the month. But Dayton has a secret side to him. A kinky, filthy side full of dark and dangerous fantasies that should never see the light of day.
He explores his taste for submission in one way only. For three years, he’s been writing letters about it to Max. Convicted to life in prison for the murder of three men and unlikely to ever be free, Max is the safest outlet for Dayton’s frustrated fantasies.
Only that he does leave prison. He finds Dayton. And he won’t settle for anything less than what he was promised in the letters. Too bad Dayton is nowhere near ready to indulge Max. Or himself for that matter.
Themes: ex-con, sexual fantasy, role-play, bondage, dirty talk, bullying, hotel setting
Genre: M/M contemporary erotic romance
Length: ~60,000 words (standalone novel)
WARNING: Adult content that might be considered taboo. Explicit content, strong language. Reader discretion advised.
Break My Shell, as was promised, was extra dirty! Filthy filthy dirty. It starts off with an adrenaline rush of a dub-con scene, but any discomfort I felt at the dubiousness of the consent was quickly overridden with just how hot it was. Well, at least as soon as I knew the real score.
Dayton has been slaving away at a middle of nowhere motel in Montana, working for a woman who is better described as a snake in the grass. She was behind on paying everyone, but no problem, right? It's not like she was going without. And Dayton took it, because he didn't think he could do better. So he put up with the bullying of someone he went to high school with and every night he went "home" to the run down motel room at the place he worked and talked to his cat, Cinnamon. Not much of an existence, for sure, but he can't exactly afford to leave it, either.
One of the only things that has kept him going for the past few years are the letters and occasional Skype calls from Max, an inmate in Texas imprisoned for murder. With Max, Dayton felt like he could actually be the Dayton he desperately wanted to be, because well, there's no danger that he will ever meet Max, so what's the harm in telling Max his deepest, darkest fantasies? Funny thing, that... Max's prison sentence was cut a bit short, so guess who is in Montana all ready to enact all of Dayton's deepest darkest fantasies? You guessed it!
Max was actually a very sweet and protective man. Before going to prison, he was a boxer with a promising career ahead of him. But life has a way of coming at you, sometimes, and in the blink of an eye, it's all gone. And then his family disowned him, his trainer turned away, and any friends he had evaporated. So for three years, all Max had to look forward to were the letters from Dayton. Someone to looked upon him like he wasn't scum of the earth. You'll have to read the book if you want more of Max's story, but trust me when I say, trust the authors to not do you wrong here.
Max and Dayton, when they were getting dirty, were so filthy! Dayton has a bit of a humiliation kink and he especially gets off on rape fantasies. Not my thing, at all, mind you, but for Dayton it was a way to let go, when he was with someone he really trusted. And while the last person he let in on that secret betrayed him, Max really takes care of him. The kink only comes out in specific circumstances and Dayton can just...be. It was sweet, actually, and a bit beautiful. With Max, Dayton felt safe and gained more confidence to stand up for himself (and it was glorious), and with Dayton, Max felt like he really mattered. So, while Dayton's kink is not my kink, I still loved every bit of this story.
PS -- <check out the spoiler in my GR review>[I still want Vanessa, Greg & Friends and Dayton's parents to die in a fire. (hide spoiler)]
ARC of Break My Shell was generously provided, by the authors, in exchange for an honest review.
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Happy (filthy dirty) reading!