Make sure you check out the Book Trailer following the review!
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Punishing himself for a horrific past that is not his fault, bestselling author Alexander Montgomery seeks redemption and love—and perhaps he will find it.
Famous author though he may be, Alexander Montgomery is not someone you take home to meet Mother. Seriously flawed, damaged by a horrific past, he’s trying hard to claw his way back to normality. But how can anyone respect what he truly is? His therapy involves regular sessions at Study in Scarlet, an exclusive S&M club.
Then comes Sage. Tall, with black hair and blue eyes, an up-and-coming actor with impossible charm and boy-next-door good looks, he’s the perfect choice to play the leading man in a TV adaptation of Alex’s last best-seller. Even more, he is a man you introduce to your family. Which Alex would do—if he weren’t taken by another man who offers the punishments Alex prays will wipe away the past and make him the person he wants to be. Yet, perhaps there is another path to redemption. If only the solution would reach out and touch him.
So what did I think?
It feels a little strange to be saying how much I loved a book about a man punishing himself for the sins of others but I so much enjoyed this story! Susan Mac Nicol tells a wonderful tale as she pairs a very broken man with the one man who can deliver him a future.
It was heartbreaking to read of Alexander’s torment, of his traumatic past and the way he viewed himself due to the actions of others.“I’m so scared I’ll never be able to have a proper relationship, that I’ll always be on my own because no one wants damaged goods.” As well as seeing a professional psychologist, he chooses to punish himself physically during regular S&M sessions with Eric. These ‘therapy’ sessions are violent and savage and provide a direct contrast to the physical relationship with Alex shares with Sage.
Sage is gorgeous. He is also caring and very compassionate. He is so accepting of Alex’s situation, seeing the man behind the emotional and physical scars. He does make the perfect saviour.
Jealousy does play a role in the story as Sage battles with Alex’s dependency on Eric and there are ramifications as a result of Alex’s changing needs.
The plot is unique with the romance between Alex and Sage paralleling Alex’s involvement with Eric, while events occur putting lives at risk, all set against a backdrop of a TV series film set.
From my heartbreak for Alex, my pure hatred of Eric and my admiration and respect for Sage, this was an emotional journey. Highly recommended!
To find out more about Susan Mac Nicol and her books visit her website.