Reaction Shot by Parker Avril

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WARNING: NSFW IMAGES BELOW!!!

This book literally started out like typical budget porn. And at first I was a little skeptical, like okkaaayyyyy, I guess I can forgive a cheezy plot… these characters better be worth it.

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…and then you meet the precious gems.

To be completely honest… I didn’t like the MC’s too much at first. Especially Lyndon. I had a really hard time warming up to him as a character, but I think that’s also part of what I liked about this one.

Lyndon seemed like some full of BS rich boy and Shale seemed shallow and almost too quick to accept his “feelings,” which, at the time, I wasn’t too entirely convinced were genuine. It took me a while to consider what to say when writing this review, because I was very conflicted by what I felt vs. what the book was at face value.

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Lyndon rubbed me the wrong way right from the get-go. But I think that was intentional. By 35% I had Lyndon pegged for some self-righteous, stuck up asshole who only cared about three things in life: himself, himself, and oh… himself.

And I didn’t think Shale was much better, honestly. I felt like Shale was damaged, and not a strong MC at all. He seemed so far gone in his own trauma (which was not mentioned at all, up to this point) that he was completely willing to throw himself at Lyndon’s feet. But he didn’t just want to fall to his feet, he wanted Lyndon to make him fall to his feet. He’d grown so used to being pushed around (even from his submissive ex. lover?) that he almost needed it to feel like it was okay for him to submit himself. He was a complete and total brat.

“Call me Sir.” he said. “Right now I don’t like your fucking tone. I don’t like it at all.”

“Sorry about my fucking tone, Sir.”

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And Lyndon took complete advantage of Shale’s brattiness by tying him up and incapacitating him at every oportunity. He didn’t just want Shale to know how completely helpless he was, he needed it. And I absolutely despise that type of character.
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But I hit part 4, and I was kind of glad I didn’t throw in the towel on this one… because it got interesting really fast.

I saw Shale in a completely new light. Yes, he needed Lyndon to force him to submit. But why? I couldn’t believe that he was a brat just for the sake of it. But then I realized that he’d been expected to maintain a certain level of dominance for his entire life, and especially with his ex “lover.” Shale had never known submission in the intimate way that he wanted to, and despite it being the one thing he desperately wanted, he was afraid of letting go.

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But Lyndon’s smug attitude made it easier for Shale to not take him seriously, and that helped him relax. And I don’t think Lyndon was any different. Sure, he’d clearly dominated other men, but never anyone he wanted to keep. He was afraid of the PR mess that would come out of a relationship with a man like Shale. A man who was known to have dominated other men before.

And in the midst of dealing with the blackmail fiasco (which you’d think would discourage anything of the sexy variety), Shale and Lyndon bonded, and shit started heating up.

“Here’s the deal. I’m going to start counting. I’m going to keep counting until you’re completely undressed. Every count is a whack from the riding crop, so I suggest you work fast.” “Wait,” I said. “One. Two.” “Wait.” I pulled off the shirt over my head, which one pretty fast since it was already unbuttoned. “Three. Four. Five.” “Stop, stop, stop.” I unzipped my fly at the same time I hopped backwards to sit down hard on the nearest couch. “Six. Seven.” He counted like a metronome. Calm. Neutral. Tick-tock, tick-tock. “Fuck.” Slim-fit jeans come off at their own speed. I kept wiggling. At least I had my briefs hooked in my thumbs, so they came down along with the denim. “Ten. Eleven. Twelve.” “Fuck me. You cheated. You skipped some. Fuck!” “Fourteen. Fifteen.” “Stop, stop. Fuck me, I’m done. I’m naked.” He looked me up and down, and evil glint in his black-rimmed sapphire eyes. “Seventeen.” “Oh, for fuck’s sake.” I unclasped the gold chain from around my neck and put it carefully in a glass tumbler on the bar. “Nineteen strokes,” Lyndon said. “I feel sorry for you, but maybe next time you’ll move faster.”

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And UGH It just got hotter from there….

Shale let it go and submit without (too much) trouble for the first time since the book started. And ooohhhhh, was it glorious. And right when I had hope for this book. Right when it was getting better and I actually had a little faith in Lyndon and Shale…

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F*ING SHALE had to go and pull a move like THAT. I mean, wtf, Shale. I wanted to reach through the book at slap him. Like, have you learned nothing? I’ll admit, the switch scene was kinda hot, but also really gruesome. It knocked Lyndon down a peg, and finally, we readers, got to see who he was behind the confidence front, but I wasn’t entirely convinced it wasn’t just to save himself.

“I can’t do this right now. I can’t cross that line. I’m too angry with you to dominate you.”

And then, at almost the VERY end of the book, Lyndon completely changed my mind about exactly what type of person he is. You have no idea how desperate I was for him to redeem himself, and he finally did. I was actually kind of proud of him.

I thought this was a pretty fun book, and a little spin on the typical knock, knock, “Hey there stranger” plot line. My only real complaint was that it seemed a little drafty. I think this book would have benefited from another professional editor taking a read through it, because some pieces of the plot were very obscure, and I didn’t fully understand Shale’s background with his “ex” until the book was almost over, and it’s still somewhat fuzzy.

And I didn’t feel so much that the plot was rushed so much as the writing of the plot. Everything that was there was supposed to be there, and I think cramming anything else into the plot would’ve made it seem like too much, but when I was done I almost felt like this was shortened version of the original story (that might be too long to read). Regardless of any shortcomings, this was still a very entertaining read. From start to finish, I didn’t put it down, and the erotica was hot, oh holy mother of sexy, yessss. Avril can write some snarky bastards, that’s for sure. This one was worth it just from Lyndon’s mouth alone.

Disclaimer: This book was provided by the author via IndiGo Marketing & Design in exchange for an honest review.

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