Title: Pup (Guards of Folson #1)
Author: SJD Peterson
Cover Artist: Paul Richmond
Buy Link: Buy Link Pup
Genre: M/M Contemporary (BDSM)
Rating: 4 stars out of 5
A Guest Review by Sammy
Review Summary: A young man in desperate need of focus and a strong hand turns to an aging Dom who has avoided commitment all his life. Could this eager “pup” be the one who finally breaks the walls around this Dominant’s heart?
Blurb: Micah “Pup” Slayde knows he wants Tackett Austin the moment he lays eyes on him in the Guards of Folsom. Micah wants to have purpose, to be taken care of, and to take care of his Dom—wants to trust him completely, live for him, belong to him. To become his everything. Micah is sure Tackett is the one. The problem is, in order to be the perfect sub, he needs to stay focused, and that’s not easy for Micah, who suffers from what he refers to as a “broken brain.” Focus and adult attention deficit disorder rarely coexist.
Ever since Ty Callahan and Blake Henderson’s collaring ceremony, Tackett’s been thinking too much about his own loneliness. Even though Ty introduces Micah and urges Tackett to give him a try, Tackett isn’t so easily convinced. He’s spent his life pursuing a successful business career, and the subs he dominates almost never enjoy the kiss of his leather twice. Twenty years Micah’s senior, Tackett has no interest in taking on and taming such a young and naughty sub—but it’s difficult to resist such an adorable pup when he begs.
Guards of Folsom Series
Review: Pup by SJD Peterson hit many of its plot line elements dead on. Lurking in every chapter were some truths concerning ADHD, the D/s lifestyle as I have heard it described by those who live it, and a realistic growth of affection between these two characters. While the novel had some secondary characters, I felt the book fell short of developing any of them sufficiently to make me want to learn more of their story, with the exception, perhaps, being the current owner of the bdsm bar, Guards of Folsom, Blake and his sub Ty.
However the lack of interest-provoking secondary characters is not the reason this novel failed to receive a five star rating. Within the story, which spanned a mere two weeks in which Tackett takes on the training of Micah as a sub, were some contrivances that made me shake my head and wonder at their purpose.
For instance…the name Pup. I get it–My SO and I have nicknames for each other–but we do not use them 24/7. By the near constant use of the diminutive “pup” for Micah I felt the character began to really lose his identity. He had some very real inner turmoil about his inability to focus, about how he had been ridiculed and referred to as “stupid” most of his school life, and about how, even as a young man, he continued to feel inferior due to his ADHD. I really felt that this turmoil was hit on and then almost glossed over by the thought that enough punishment could bring this man…well, to heel.
There were times when Tackett would use punishment and means of restraint as a way to “focus” Micha. While I understand that this is a definitive element in the BDSM lifestyle, I remained unconvinced that a true ADHD person could curb their impulses just because they got a whipping.
However, I have taught ADHD students all the way to the college level and found that Ms. Peterson really did illustrate the heart and mind of Micah spot on. It was just the way in which she had Tackett “curb” him that rang false. Plus, given the fact that she gave Tackett a genuine, caring heart as well, I would have thought that he might have really done some serious research about Micah’s disorder…but no, there was some talking with friends and advisers, but all of it was opinion…no facts. That did not ring true for the Dom character in this novel at all.
Pup was a carefully crafted story–that was so apparent. The author invested a great deal of time in developing her two MC’s and gave each of them believable and beautiful traits. Their growing attraction was real, and it was not unfathomable that after two weeks of living together 24/7 there would be some definite attraction between the two of them.
The BDSM elements occasionally made me squirm–but in a good way. Never brutal, but definitely painful and well detailed, the disciplinary interactions between Tackett and Micah rang with truth and realism. These aspects of the novel read easily, there was an air of the natural about them as if we were actual spectators to a very intimate training session of a submissive.
But the name…pup…the lack of any research into Micah’s disorder by such a controlling and rigid Dom, and the constant “almost completely developed but not quite” feel about the inner dialogue from Micah made this book just a tad unreal for me…just a shade too glib.
Having said that, I would still recommend Pup by SJD Peterson to you, dear reader. I do like this author and this is definitely a worthwhile read for any who enjoy BDSM and a solid love story.