Author: Lyn Gala
Cover Artist: Paul Richmond
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Buy Link: Buy Link Fettered
Genre: Contemporary M/M Romance
Rating: 5+ stars
A Guest Review by Sammy
Review Summary: The heart knows what it needs but fear and doubt, if left unchecked, can derail the strongest desires.
Blurb: Dylan Carter has always played second fiddle to his perfect older brother, but now that brother is implicated in a terrible crime, and Dylan’s family is imploding. Dylan can’t hide anymore. Knowing he’s falling apart, he searches for something or someone to hold him together—and lands in a BDSM bar called the Stonewall.
Dylan doesn’t understand Miss Dolphinia, the hard-drinking queen who seems determined to play matchmaker. But more confusing is the way the powerful men in leather make him feel. In her wisdom, Miss Dolphinia sends Dylan off to a back room for his introduction to the world of erotic spankings and bondage.
Dylan’s teacher—for want of a better word—is the very dominant Vin Hauser. Vin likes to play hard, but he’s honest with himself—he knows all those men want is a strong hand, not a long-term relationship. Yet Vin can’t help but hope Dylan might be different.
With controversy over his brother’s sins stirring up danger around him, Dylan needs Vin’s support more than ever. But until he and Vin learn to trust each other, Dylan will have to face his fear and the growing threats alone.
Review: Do you really need another recap of story? Then please by all means, read above again. I refuse to belabor what the blurb has already pointed out in a nutshell so lets get right to the heart of the matter instead–cause this is good stuff.
FIVE THINGS I LOVED ABOUT THIS BOOK!
Miss Dolphinia, aka Lee is the best, absolutely best secondary character to ever grace the page. Brash, bold, feisty and devious, she is all heart and has a good left hook to boot! She thrusts herself into the lives of Vin and Dylan with all the finesse of a bull in a china shop but by golly she gets the job done. She bemoans that the gay world is changing; that the old days of D/s lifestyle where a bit of torture was key are fading beyond her grasp. But do not be fooled–this lady is a chameleon and is ever so quick to adapt so that she is always a force to contend with–I adore her!
Carmine…oh dear, here is a female wrapped in a male dominated world that comes out fighting and takes no prisoners. She has seen the worst side of childhood, abuse at the hands of a sibling and lived to overcome it and managed to find love despite it. She is angry, compassionate and has an iron backbone but her heart is tender and her loyalty to her brother Dylan is unshakable. She may jar your senses, you may call her a bitch and you would not be far off the mark, but you will stand back in awe at the phoenix she is–rising from the ashes is her calling and she embraces it with all she’s got.
Ed Carter. Dylan’s father is both flawed and flawless. He avoids conflict, allows his wife to believe that her oldest son is not the rapist he has been accused of being and has, in many ways, turned a blind eye to the comings and goings in his household for the last twenty years all in the name of peace. Flawed, for sure, but oh so flawless when the chips are down and the truth is revealed. His love for Dylan and his wife and daughter pour out on the page like a balm meant to soothe and heal. While you could argue his actions near the end of this outstanding novel are too little, too late, I would counter with it is never ever too late to tell your child you love them and to protect them as best as you can–even if that means turning their care over to someone else.
Vin Hauser. I just want to say two words: Sexiest Dom ever. Ok, three but you get the picture. You could add scary, controlling, obsessive, wounded, loyal (there’s that word again–note how Dylan inspires it in anyone who loves him) and HOT–in all caps please. I want to marry Vin Hauser and be chained to that little bed in that closet off his main bedroom,please. (Did I just say that out loud?) Lyn Gala knows BDSM, and she is not afraid to use it, honey! Vin is a true sadist but he is also the most caring and loving man you would ever want to meet. Having thrown his heart away to a former drug addicted lover and submissive, he forswears ever playing with a partner twice…until he meets Dylan. Even then, it takes Miss Dolphinia’s machinations and puppet mistress tendencies to bring these two men together but when it happens, the chemistry these two have dances off the page with sparks blazing. Vin Hauser is the biggest, best bad-ass you have ever seen and he is deliciously enamored of one young man only.
Dylan or Dilly all grown up. When you look at your own life, you can recognize that emotionally you have certain needs–desires that fulfill you, make the person you want to be crystallize and take shape. If you are Dylan, then those needs are dependent on one thing…being dominated completely. Couple this with the real fear that because he loves to be taken, tied, spanked, tortured and controlled he worries he is a borderline psychopath like his brother and the result is a very naive and confused 19 year old. One who needs to be protected, yet more importantly, given the encouragement to stand on his own two feet and trust in his ability to survive without hiding in the shadows as he has long been used to doing.
And here, dear reader, is the thrust of Fettered by Lyn Gala–it is quite like a coming of age novel. A story of self discovery and personal growth wrapped up in a compelling and tautly woven plot. There are no namby-pamby characters in this novel. Each one has an inner core of such strength that is wrapped around wounded hearts that yearn to find the love they so richly deserve. Oh my…this was such an excellent read–I stayed up half the night finishing it.
I highly recommend Fettered by Lyn Gala to you. Please know that if BDSM in all its guts and glory is not your cup of tea you should steer clear of this novel–but dear reader, I must reiterate, this is one story not to be missed!