Review: Music and Metal

Music and MetalMusic and Metal by Mike Shade
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Dave Morgus is an eccentric musician, who is searching for something he can’t quite find and getting involved in various problematic situations while searching for it. He’s fragile but definitely not weak and has some serious self-esteem and other issues to deal with, most stemming from a prior abusive relationship.

Richard is a metal worker, a strong, confident, handsome, well-to-do man who seems to have everything together. He and Dave were together some years back, almost a decade, and it was Dave’s need for something slightly more, a hint of BDSM, that Richard couldn’t provide at the time which led to their breakup. That spurned Richard into investigating the realm of BDSM more and turned him into a more confident man.

When Dave and Richard meet again, some years later, they are both very different, yet both are still looking for that perfect someone to fill their needs. They leave together, both happy for the renewed connection but Dave, thinking it’s a one-night stand for old times’ sake, disappears early in the morning and it’s weeks before Richard can find him again.

At that time, Richard discovers that Dave is still reeling from an abusive relationship years prior and desperately needs someone to help him. Dave has trouble making decisions, sleeping and not getting overwhelmed with the fears and problems he feels are crowding his daily life. Richard is the perfect foil and offers the control and help Dave needs to feel sexy, safe, comfortable and loved.

The BDSM elements in the book are skillfully done and help both the reader and Dave recognize why he craves this control and how it is a positive influence on his life when applied correctly. Richard shows the difference between love and cruelty. His connection to Dave is immediate, obvious and real. The love these two men share is beautifully drawn and wonderful to observe.

One of my favorite quotes I’ve read in a book comes from Richard continually surprising Dave with all manners of toys and in places Dave never expects. It’s very playful and fun, lending a lightened air to a plot that could be oppressively dark. In a scene where Richard pulls yet another toy from his pocket, Dave laughingly replies:

“You have the most amazing pockets”

It’s a simple turn of phrase but I loved it and it stayed with me as a great line for both the characters and the story. These moments of humor, laughter and love combine to make a very enjoyable story. Although, lest you think these two are platonic, the sex is sizzling with an undeniable chemistry between these men.

My only caveat would be that the villain, Dave’s Ex, is portrayed as a bit over the top evil. Anyone that unbalanced and clearly sick, I have a hard time believing would be able to maintain a doctor’s license and practice for any length of time and the further mystery of his whereabouts while continued stalking lends an air of disbelief but does add the right amount of tension and resolution to the story.

Overall, it was a very well done book and I genuinely liked it. The connection between the men is engaging and the plot was skillfully woven so as to keep interest without overwhelming the story or sidetracking from the romance aspect. I recommend this author and went and bought several books off their booklist myself based on this one.

View all my reviews

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