Master Takes a Name by Sean Michael
Note: This review was written for and originally appeared at BDSM Book Reviews.
Before he can embrace his future, he must accept himself.
Kael is happy with his life. A consummate sub, he’s out, proud, and surrounded by good friends. Then he hears about Master L, a new Dom who has all the twinks aflutter. Kael’s curious, but not unduly so, until he and the stud do a scene. Then he understands the commotion. But since Master L only ever tops a sub once, when it’s over Kael is determined to forget him, even if he has to go on holiday to do it.
Liam is deep in the closet, but the Dom known as Master L also has needs. So far, he’s kept his identity a secret by never choosing the same boy twice, and frequently changing venues. After his scene with Kael, Liam finds himself fixating on the sub and willing to break his one-time only rule. But will it lead to heartache or happiness?
“Master Takes a Name” is a hot short romance. Liam and Kael have an instant connection, the kind that probably only happens in fiction. It also happens to be a very physical connection, and almost all of their time together is spent having sex. That makes for a hot story, although not necessarily the most believable. We never really learn much about either of the characters. The coming-out angle is a bit over-played in the blurb. Liam is supposedly closeted, but there’s very little discussion of it and he never explains it to Kael. In the end, his coming out is nothing overly dramatic. It just sort of happens, without any real consequences.
But let’s not kid ourselves. You’re unlikely to read a book like this for a compelling story line. The setup is plausible enough and there’s enough drama to move the story along at a good pace. You may not know much about the characters, but they’re real enough to keep things interesting and not distract you from the scenes. This is the kind of erotic romantic fantasy that you want to be true, even though you know it’s unrealistic.
As for the scenes, the first few are certainly kinky, but not very extreme. A little light flogging and spanking. The attraction between these two is more about dominance and submission than anything else, and the sex between them gets progressively more vanilla as their relationship develops.