In The Absence of Monsters by JP Barnaby

In The Absence of MonstersIn The Absence of Monsters by J.P. Barnaby

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The blurb…

Jayden Carter knew the path he wanted his life to take. He wanted to get his Master’s Degree in History and teach. But when he answered an ad for a roommate and met mysterious doctor, Ethan Bryant, he’s brought into a world he never knew existed and his path changes.

It changes again for Jayden and he leaves Ethan with their friend, Lexi, in tow. Ethan loses himself in a haze of self-destruction and pain. With the help of a childhood friend, Gabriel, Ethan battles the demons of his childhood and finds a way to survive. Gabriel and Jayden wage an epic war for Ethan, but in the end, they may all end up losing.

Adapted from The Forbidden Room and A House of Cards: Deconstructing Ethan

So what did I think?

It has been a while since I immersed myself in a deeply powerful and compelling story and I couldn’t have picked a better one to read – at times dark, often emotional, it was totally absorbing.

Jayden moves into the home of Dr. Ethan Bryant and finds himself given an ultimatum he can’t turn down, that of submitting to Ethan. The story follows Jayden as he is introduced to the world inhabited by Ethan and his submissive Lexi.

It is quite difficult to review this book without giving away spoilers. There are complex relationships that evolve between Jayden, Ethan, Lexi, Gabriel and Connor. There are secondary characters who play important roles in the story.

This is a story of domination and submission with frequent BDSM scenes. It is a story of struggling to understand sexual desires. It is a story of broken people and damaged relationships. There is denial and heartbreak but also love.

I found the mood of this book sombre, with deep emotions on each and every page. There were twists and turns and events, some that were expected and others a surprise. What surprised me the most was my own enjoyment of Lexi in the story. To be honest, I wasn’t overly happy to read of her inclusion in the early scenes in the book but she is an integral part of the story and she had definitely found her way into my heart by the end of the book.

I thoroughly enjoyed the way this story was told. The first half of the book is from Jayden’s point of view and is very much focused on his reaction to entering the world of BDSM and importantly figuring out his own sexuality. The second half is told from Ethan’s perspective and sheds a different light on the events from the first half of the book. This part of the book was the my favourite section – the insight into Ethan’s background, his reactions to the events in his life and his eventual healing.

Compelling story, wonderful characters, deeply emotional – perfect!

A copy of this book was provided by the publisher in return for my honest review.


To find out more about J.P. Barnaby and her books visit her website.

Buy In the Absence of Monsters from Amazon.

Buy In the Absence of Monsters from Wilde City Press.


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