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Romance and other things

Really hard to review

For Real (A Spires Story) - Alexis Hall

Laurence Dalziel is worn down and washed up, and for him, the BDSM scene is all played out. Six years on from his last relationship, he’s pushing forty and tired of going through the motions of submission.Then he meets Toby Finch. Nineteen years old. Fearless, fierce, and vulnerable. Everything Laurie can’t remember being.Toby doesn’t know who he wants to be or what he wan




First of all the book was a kindle loan from the book friend.  So I have read other reviews (including Kate's obviously :)) and did not really come to this book with a clean slate so to speak. I did like it better than I expected to. I liked the dynamic between them a lot and let me mention something once again - my only BDSM reading comes from romances (and some older gay erotica too), but I know nothing about real BDSM scene. Nothing except having one RL friend who I know likes to play but we do not have extensive conversations about this topic. So when I say I like the dynamics between them what I mean is that for me "different" worked well enough in this one - tired of old experienced humongous Doms and tiny Subs, like seriously tired of them as "fictional characters" . I mean all those experienced Doms surely get their experience from somewhere right? They have to start at some point? Really appreciated that the book shows naïve young guy who nevertheless knows what he wants and tries to figure it out.


I also want to say that yes, I appreciated that the main scene was not BDSM club. Once again (because I did read Steelwisper's hilarious comments on Goodreads, but I do not engage on Good reads anymore except complimenting my buddies' reviews), when I say this I only mean that I am tired of 99% of BDSM romances that I have read taking place in BDSM clubs. As any romance trope, it tired me out after a while, that's all I mean, no disrespect to any people who play in BDSM clubs and to the clubs. Maybe after a while I will like romances taking place there again, but it is like surely some people like to play at home too and it is like romance books almost completely forgot about those people.


So, liked Toby, thought Laurie was endearing enough when he was not being an idiot. I mean, yes he was with his love for a long time, but six years felt like enough for him to stop moping and actually realize earlier that he can actively seek a new relationship.


My main problem with this book was that it was just too darn long for me. I mean, I did feel like the characters grew throughout the story and had the actual arc and learned things about themselves, but it felt like the book could be twice as short and tell the same story. And while I liked his voice here overall, cut the flowery comparisons, as I said elsewhere was so rolling my eyes at "arse spreading like sweet peaches" (very close paraphrase, because there was another part of the sentence I think) and perfect opals coming from the dick.