Drusilla Stasevich wants to leave the past behind and start the next chapter of her life. Returning to her hometown to open her dream kink club, Escape, seems like the perfect solution. But it can be tricky making dreams come true—especially when the person you want to share them with isn’t around anymore.
Amie Templeton is no stranger to tough times. She’s learned to make it on her own, and doesn’t do relationships outside the kink world. When her ex Dru moves back to town, old feelings surface. But that’s fine, right, since Dru has just opened the hottest new kink club in town?
Dru and Amie want to get the distracting spark between them out of their systems. Instead, their intense play sessions fan that spark into a flame. As if Dru didn’t have enough on her plate, an anonymous saboteur threatens to push her new club out of business. It will take the help of everybody at Escape to set things right again, and a lot of trust for Dru and Amie to start working toward a new life together.
It's a good book, the premise got a bit lost in the bulk, as there were a few times where I wondered where the book was going, hence skipping from 60-82% of the book.
I wish the threat to Dru's club came earlier, because at some point I got bored of Anie talking about her sadistic tendencies, and the BDSM scenes just didn't work for me, not because they weren't interesting because, at some point, I felt like that was all the book was about.
Another minor issue I had with the book was the fact that I didn't know the characters well, I kept feeling off, and it wasn't until I read the backmatter that I realized that the book was part of a series. It's a standalone but I really couldn't understand any of the characters, and even worse, I felt no sadness when Dru's club was was threatened by 'Master Cool'
Since I skipped some parts of the book, missed a few things, so I'm going to include two paragraphs from Xan West's review on Goodreads.
I was very uncomfortable with the depiction of Dru's prior partner. [ I get that the author was attempting to educate the reader about the dangers of fat oppression in medical institutions but in the end, this character was created to die, and she is the only fat character who basically only gets described as a victim of fat oppression who is basically killed by it. The fact that the fat oppression is described in detail also mostly feels like trauma porn. Despite good intentions, this felt like it reproduced the very fat oppression it was trying to challenge, especially since she is the only fat character in the book.
Trigger Warnings: [
-detailed descriptions of fat oppression in a medical context (in the past)
-stalking storyline, including doxxing (in the present)
-detailed description of familial queer oppression including being kicked out (in the past) and harassed around religion (in the present) and the internalized homophobia that can be part of those experiences
-description of being a homeless queer young adult (in the past)]
Read Xan West's full review HERE.
Enough with the negatives, On the plus side, while the author did a great job of exploring the BDSM scene in a way that didn't make me roll my eyes. The characters had a life outside the BDSM scene which made them less of a stereotype and more of a person.
I like how despite down even at the center of Aime's personality/sexuality she was still very much entwined with the BDSM culture? I mean, the scene where she tried to have vanilla sex with Dru was so awkward as compared to other scenes.
I liked the tension between Amie and Dru, although I'm still trying to figure out where Mara fits in, who she is apart from just Aime's ex. I kind of wanted to meet Amie's super religious family, but only because I wanted to know what bullshit they would spew 🙂
What I loved the most was Dru's versatility both as a bisexual person and as a switch, I felt like Aime hasn't fully accepted the switch part of Dru though. Nevertheless, it was great to read a BDSM book with a bisexual character who's a switch, I was beginning to get bored of this whole 'In BDSM you are either a Dom or a Sub'