Birch is one of Delphic Agency's most talented submissives, a young man who really loves his job, but even those who know him well aren't sure about the latest contract with two married Doms who have very different kinks. Griffin is into bondage and denial, while surgeon Ivo's tastes run more towards a medical nature. Can one submissive, even one as talented as Birch, please two masters?
“Paid to be Shared” builds on the speculative near-future scenario where prostitution is legal, and the Delphic Agency is one of the top companies authorized to manage the trade. Although some of the secondary characters in this story have appeared in the other books, you can read this story without having read the previous volumes.
Birch appeared briefly in the last book but we didn't really get to know anything about him other than he is a very pliant submissive. In this book, as he gets to know the two Doms Griffin and Ivo, he also manages to tell us a lot about himself. He is surprisingly clear about why he's doing what he does, making a living with his body, which he's worked very hard on. It's a very compelling story that makes us really warm to him as a person and feel for his point of view. In an age when some groups keep trying to [further] demonize sex work, this series, in a very small way, tries to explain why some people may choose to do it, and be happy about it.
The two dominants, Griffin and Ivo, are a little more secondary in this story than in the first two books. Still, we get to know them well enough for them to be believable characters. However, I had a hard time believing the two had a good relationship. It's clear enough why they needed someone like Birch to help them express their dominant desires, but the idea that they had a solid marriage before Birch is more something we keep getting told rather than shown through the story. The relationship we actually see in the pages appears a bit toxic. Likewise, the extreme nature of their kinks is more implied than demonstrated, but I have less of a problem with that.
Despite my quibbles with this particular installment, I'm still enjoying this series and it's rather fresh approach to kink relationships. Will definitely be reviewing the next book in the near future.
“Paid to be Shared” is available from Amazon.