Failing Straight (Bob-O-Link’s Review)

Title: Failing Straight (Taught by Two #2)
Author: R. Cayden
Publisher: Self Published
Release Date: March 23, 2019
Genre(s): MMM Romance, Light BDSM
Page Count: 185
Reviewed by: Bob-O-Link
Heat Level: 4 flames out of 5
Rating: 4.5 stars out of 5


A straight tennis jock.
The sassiest guy on campus.
One very special outdoorsman.

Love turns the world upside down in this Gay-for-Two romance.

Teddy: I’m pretty comfortable with who I am. I’m the star tennis player at a small college, a good friend, and I’m definitely straight. So it’s one thing when I get turned on by sassy Isaac, but after I meet his butch boyfriend? Suddenly, I’m having a lot of trouble focusing on my tennis game.

Isaac: I really do want to let go of my gay playboy fantasies, but there’s a flirt inside me that won’t shut up, and a new hot jock landing in my lap. I’ll never break the rules of my open relationship with my boyfriend, but that doesn’t mean I can’t have fun toying with confused Teddy when I see him around campus. After all, he’s straight, so it’s not like it could really go anywhere…

Rick: I chose to skip college, preferring the solitude of the woods to just about anything or anyone. And then I met Isaac. Now, I’m driving my truck into Mayerville to visit my college boyfriend twice a week, and dreaming of a future together. But if I thought Isaac turned my world upside before, once he introduces me to Teddy? Hell, I guess we haven’t even gotten started yet.

Failing Straight is a 60,000+ word standalone MMM romance novel. It features passion in the mountains, locker room fights, and a straight-to-gay Happily Ever After. It is filled with heart, lots of heat, and a little bit of kink. Enjoy!

Sometimes sweet and simple is just what is wanted. R. Cayden has offered a novel that is just right for the reader wanting to peek into the lives of three nice, sexy men, as they develop into a rational and hot triad. [That last fact is, in no way, a spoiler, unless you can’t figure out what the title means.]

Isaac is an almost stereotypical gay man: moderately petite; neither super effeminate in mannerisms, but not likely to be characterized as masculine; almost impossible to suffer conversational limits: and with erotic nerve endings that connect to his heart, but by way of his
erogenous zones. Isaac is a wonderful main character, particularly as he has too much self-confidence and self-awareness to bother playing a role outlined by anyone else. He likes himself, and he likes the life he is into.

That life particularly revolves around Rick, Isaac’s boyfriend. Oddly, he too is something of a figure from central casting: a gay icon, of height, hefty musculature and manly mannerisms. My goodness, he is even a lumberjack! He doesn’t seem to dwell deeply in abstract thoughts, but rather deals with events as they occur, and focuses on making life pleasing for him and the man for whom he cares.

Finally, there is Teddy. Of our three heroes, Teddy is most in transition. He knew he was straight – having had one serious and physically satisfactory relationship – with a woman. He’d never even thought of sex with another man. To top it off, he was a jock! Even his masturbatory fantasies were of women. Straight guys don’t just randomly become gay. Sure!

With these men as building blocks, a nice, if somewhat predicable, journey ensues. We can rest assured that the last stop will be, at the least, the start of HEA. There are sufficient plot twists to keep us turning pages. The requisite villain is a sufficiently detestable bastard. There is lots of nicely limned sex which assiduously avoid being repetitive, and a palatable soupcon of vanilla bondage and domination. Isaac is great fun, especially his cynically astute observation to Teddy that:

“Even if you are straight, you aren’t very good at it.”

Author Cayden inserts enough moralism to make the novel suitable to our era of growing familiarity with the issues that frequent gay men in their sexual development. Who can’t root for Teddy as he realizes that he had been living someone else’s life, and that he had wasted years on someone else’s dreams?

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Advance Review Copy

Galley copy of Failing Straight provided by the author in exchange of an honest review.


I'm a retired professional. My husband and I, each with an ex-wife, between us have six married children and 10 grandchildren. We both read voraciously, with a strong leaning to gay romance and HEA. Stories with a little (okay, even loads of) sex, and a lot of tears, always pleases.
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