Well, this is a case of too much sex (scenes) not enough story combined with wrong expectation based on the blurb. Duly noted I only read the blurb once before requesting the ARC, then I forgot about it when I started to read since I wanted to be in a ‘clean slate’ when I was reading. However, I definitely didn’t expect the D/s tone.
See, I am not really keen with D/s in general. On cases where D/s stories work for me, it usually because I am mentally prepared somewhat or at least the D/s feels natural for the characters. In my humble opinion, leather bar does not necessarily mean BDSM scene, so it definitely threw me off.
Another issue I had was with Grady, as one of the MCs. I just felt that his personality was all over the place, went hot and cold, and his incessant internal drama and denial were not appealing (I am not a submissive!). So Grady didn’t share everything — because clearly, men don’t communicate — and then he got pissed off because Micah made the (wrong) move or assumption?
Yeah. Sexy. Not.
Grady remedied that situation around half-way by telling Micah about his bad experience with a Dom — thought it didn’t really stop him from going hot and cold the rest of the way. It definitely made a dent in my enjoying him as the main character. To be honest, if it wasn’t for Micah and his health condition, I might not be able to finish. Although, in full disclosure, I also skimmed the story when they went back to all sex scenes.
Micah was the one that kept me going. I liked characters that weren’t flawless. Micah’s health condition was intriguing for me. I was engaged to read how he performed in day-to-day activities and how he reacted with the possibility of having a lover in his life. Even if I couldn’t understand what Micah saw in Grady … but maybe that makes him a better person that I am (*haha*).
Grady’s conflict and denial gave way to a lot of arguments with Micah and the tendency of him running away when things got intense. Then the closure was slightly rushed and hey, everything was hunky-dory, except for me as a reader.
Conclusion: MEH at best for me. Not exactly my cuppa tea. But for those of you who like their books with a lot of sexy times, D/s kink (or at least giving up control in the bedroom), you might enjoy this more that I do. I am bailing out of the series too — marine Doms are not my poison *shrugs*.
The ARC is provided by the publisher via Netgalley for an exchange of fair and honest review. No high rating is required for any ARC received.
Title: The Harder He Falls
Author: Lynda Aicher
Series: Kick, #1
Genre: MM Contemporary Romance
Release Date: June 7, 2016