Series: New York #3
Published by Samhain Genres: Contemporary Romance, Erotic Romance, Ménage à Trois
Innocence Defied (New York #3)
By Lainey Reese
Source: Author Review Request
Gage Hollister is a Southern Dom looking for a full time sub/slave. When his family’s business brings him to New York City for an indefinite stay, he decides that now is the time to find her. Night after night he prowls the local BDSM club in search of a woman whose need to be dominated equals his thirst for true submission. As the search drags on he begins to wonder if his perfect match even exists. When he is asked to play chaperone for a family friend embarking on her first trip as an adult; he welcomes the chance for distraction from his thus far fruitless endeavor.
Zoe Marshall is the youngest sister to Gage’s best friend and she has been in love with Gage for as long as she can remember. She has saved herself for him and him alone. Now, after careful planning and a bit of luck she finally has her opportunity to show Gage that she’s all grown up and ready to be his. Although he believes himself too old and jaded for an innocent like her, Zoe will not relent until she belongs to him in every way.
Soon Gage’s resistance crumbles and Zoe’s dreams become reality but their budding love is tested when her brother discovers them. As those bonds of friendship strain under betrayal and broken trust, Zoe is confronted with having to choose between the man she loves and the brother she worships. Will having the love of her man cost her the love of her family? If so, is her heart strong enough to survive that loss? Is their love?
This book contains graphic language, BDSM elements, M/F/M ménage, a Southern Dom who’s a gentleman; and the woman who brings out the scoundrel in him.
I’ve really enjoyed the series and this book included but it is exceptional in that for the first time the hero really does behave as a true Dom. Gage Hollister doesn’t blur the lines inside and outside the bedroom because there is no line. He wants a submissive slave 24/7.
Zoe manipulates a stay in New York with Gage while her brother Brice, Gage’s best friend, is out of town. Gage hasn’t seen her in three years and his memory is of a young teen. Who shows up at the airport is a very grown-up and sultry 20-year old who is out to finally get her man. He knows he’s in trouble but thinks he can handle it.
Zoe is pretty young to Gage’s 31 years. Plus, his Dom behavior is on the extreme side and she’s sexually inexperienced…period. He’s made it clear of his desire for a slave sub and is known for his habit of “sharing”. It’s even more lethal that Zoe’s the baby of the family and Gage’s relationship with her brother, Brice, could be permanently broken.
What works about this story
It’s an erotic romp into the world of a true Dom with BDSM tendencies. There’s no steam here, just pure volcanic heat. Gage doesn’t lack for imagination and Zoe’s education is pretty exciting to “audit.” The sex was erotic and pretty amazing. Underlying it all is the growing tension of when, not if, Brice will discover that his best friend has compromised his sweet, kid sister. You knew it was going to be explosive and ugly and it didn’t disappoint. Gage was also true to his nature throughout, not making excuses nor seeing a need to. His evolving relationship with Zoe from a brotherly to carnal love was skillfully done as it could have easily crossed over to “ick” but didn’t.
Zoe’s age was right on the edge of being too young as she turned 20 a week after coming to New York. It wasn’t so much that Gage was old (31 isn’t that bad) but she led a completely sheltered life. Her nickname, Oops, was pretty ridiculous and annoyed me every time she was called it and it was used interchangeably throughout the story. It just reinforced how young she was emotionally and was a constant reminder.
The bottom line
This is an erotic romance and never strays from being anything other than that and it delivers. The story is interesting and really does give you a view of a Dom/sub relationship and how emotional bonding can influence both roles. It wraps up a little too quickly, a little too neatly but what came before it certainly does compensate. And, it was nice to have the HEA. I was looking forward to learning more about the smokin’ Gage and I’m still fanning, even if I was concerned at the outset about Zoe being his focus. He’s completely worth it and got the story he deserved.