Monday, October 9, 2017

Book Review: Covet by Yolande Kleinn

Jack Mason—graphic designer and unrepentant player—has never been interested in monogamy. He certainly isn’t looking for romance when he meets Professor Colin Sloan.

Newly single and not looking for anything serious, Colin is intrigued by Jack’s offer of a physical affair with no strings attached. Becoming friends wasn’t part of the plan, but as accidents go, this one’s pretty great.

Peter Mason is Jack’s identical twin. In a long-term relationship himself, Peter tells no one that he’s falling for his brother’s newest favorite, even as the secret creates tension with his girlfriend.

When Peter’s relationship falls apart, he seduces Colin, fully expecting Jack to forgive his transgression. But Jack is keeping secrets too—he hasn't told even Colin that he’s fallen in love. Suddenly the twins are feuding, and Colin is caught in the middle, blindsided by the revelation that he doesn’t want to choose between them.

Jewel's rating:

Covet had a rather interesting dynamic. It wasn't the typical menage romance I run across. In fact, I'm hard-pressed to actually think of it as a menage, even though there are sex scenes where all three men are participating, and in the end, there are three people in the relationship, even if two of them are not sexual with each other. So I suppose menage still fits. It is polyamorous, though, most definitely.

I feel like I should talk a bit about what this book isn't. It isn't a twincest book. They definitely skirt the line once (double penetration scene), but Jack and Peter don't feel a sexual attraction to one another, at all, and they don't touch each other, more than incidentally, during sex with Colin. Also, there is no cheating. Peter and his girlfriend break up before he and Colin have sex and Colin and Jack were never in an exclusive relationship. So, for those that like polyamorous stories, but were hesitating because of concerns of cheating or twincest, I think Covet might work for you.

I enjoyed Covet quite a lot. I do feel like the story was not just about how Jack, Colin, and Peter form a relationship, but also it was about Jack and Peter and how their relationship as brothers gets seriously tested when they fall for the same guy. It almost broke them.

And when Peter and Colin had sex, I appreciated that they didn't try to keep it from Jack. It happened and, even though Jack and Colin were not in any kind of exclusive relationship it needed to be disclosed. It might have been different if Colin had hooked up with pretty much anyone else, but Jack's twin brother? Yeah. And it broke Jack and Peter for far too long, because Jack -- who always insisted that he never wanted a relationship with anyone -- kept how he felt about Colin to himself. And the strain extended to Peter and Colin, too, who were friends before "the incident". And time passes and Peter and Jack are both miserable but eventually they figure their shit out -- in a rather satisfying way.

I liked the way the three men embarked on a relationship. I appreciated that it wasn't just about the sex and that both Jack and Peter were friends with each other and also with Colin, on an individual basis as well as all together. There were plenty of scenes between the men that were not sexual at all. And, I liked that it was fairly late in the book before the three of them actually tried to mesh. It took a lot of time for that to happen - both page time and story time. And jealousy, which was certainly a factor for Jack, until he faced his feelings for Colin and the fact that he didn't want to lose his brother, faded away once they all started facing things and just being. Not that they don't need to learn effective communication. Relationships between two people are hard enough. Add in a third, and you have to learn how to talk about what you feel and what you think.

I'd say the ending was an HFN for all three of them. "I love you's" have been exchanged, but none of them would be comfortable with their relationship being out in the open. It would be too risky for them socially, with their families, and career-wise. It's also early days and I'm sure they have all kinds of logistics stuff to work out. Maybe they will find a way to be open at some point in the future, but even if they don't, I think they could still make things work long term.

The epilogue was different than I prefer, as well, though I did end up liking the feel of it. It consisted of Colin having lunch with his ex, Kyle. There's closure, there, and Colin seems settled with both of his men, but I generally prefer that epilogues focus more on the MC's.


Review copy of Covet was generously provided by the publisher, via NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review.

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