Sunday, August 30, 2015

Up-Ending Tad by Kora Knight (series review)

The format for this review is going to be a bit different than my normal just because I read this entire series back to back one Saturday. Yes, it was that good. I HIGHLY recommend it. 
My Rating:
5 ***** stars
A+
Favorite read of 2015

Just a bit of intro into the series for you. The books are novellas and follow the journey of Tad, a straight guy, who's introduced to gay sex by Scott. It's completely eye-opening, somewhat earth-shattering event for Tad who never ever suspected he could be attracted to guys. 

The first book is entirely that sex scene and it's incredibly hot and pure erotica...no romance per se. But as the series develops, so does the romance and the story of these two incredible characters. The entire series is told completely from Tad's very confused, mixed-up point of view, but it works. 

Again, I have to say...I HIGHLY RECOMMEND IT!!


Story Overview:
Tad’s weekend started out like any other: hitting a college frat party with a handful of buddies. But just as the evening hits its peak, things get up-ended fast. Ditched by his drunken, trolling friends, Tad winds up getting hustled by three jocks playing poker. Now he’s forced to pay his dues in the most outlandish of ways: accepting a couple broken bones or spending an hour with his victors’ favorite flogger, Scott. But the tantalizing torture quickly proves to be the least of Tad’s worries… and the kickoff to a night of raw, shocking lust.

Experience the graphic, minute-by-minute account of that hour spent at the hands of Tad’s insatiable tormentor. Addicting chemistry lights the stage as Scott ignites Tad’s reluctant desires into a frenzy of forbidden need.

My Review:
This first novella is all about the sex. It's pure erotica, and pure heat and sexual exploration through BDSM. For Tad, he's never even considered sex with a man, but that changes when it's a choice between this BDSM torture or broken bones. He can handle a little flogging, but what he doesn't expect is the sexual high he gets from it all. 

Seriously, this novella is so sexy. It's one huge BDSM scene, but for Tad, it's so much more just because he's never been with another man or ever even considered it. As a reader who loves straight guys in m/m romance, this was right up my alley. It was incredibly sexy and a great way to kick off the series. And whoa, Kora Knight is the QUEEN of writing pages upon pages of sex and still managing to keep it interesting. Not once, did I consider skimming in any of these scenes in her books...and they are really drawn out...that's a skill!


*****



Story Overview:
The last time Tad saw Scott, the ripped physical trainer left him with quite a lot to think about. And that's pretty much all Tad's been doing for nearly two weeks straight. At his wit's end, he seeks Scott out, voluntarily, on his own terms. Will the completely different setting offer what he's seeking; proof that their exchange's unexpected turn was just a random mishap? Hormones run amok and truly nothing more? Or will being in Scott's presence suggest something different... their newest encounter tempting Tad's resolve while testing his ultimate limits. 

My Review:
In this second book, we find Tad reeling from what happened between him and Tad. That had to be the result of the endorphin high from the flogging, right? Tad has convinced himself, it was just the circumstances which made it the best sex ever, but he needs to test the theory so he seeks Scott out. Scott is a physical trainer who also does workout videos. He mentioned to Tad that he would give him a job as a model in those videos if he was ever interested, so Tad calls him up. 

The thing I like about these two guys is just how well they mesh when it has nothing to do with sex. They truly like one another and make great friends. That's why it's so hard for Tad to stay away. He truly wants to spend time with Scott simply because he likes him. 


*****



Story Overview:
Round two with Scott hadn't been what Tad expected, but it did end up providing a few important realizations. For one, that crazy first encounter was definitely more than mere male hormones. Which meant he felt a true attraction to the guy. Something that explained his defenselessness against Scott's smoldering charms. Seriously, the dude had cut through his fortifications like the things hadn't even existed.
Which, yeah, was pretty unsettling.
So Tad had resolved to cope with his findings the only logical way he knew how: purge the guy from his system once and for all by staying away for good. Unfortunately, that proved way more uncomfortable than he'd anticipated. Seemed his 'stupid infatuation' ran considerably deeper, which made going cold-turkey one miserable chore.
So when Scott unexpectedly seeks him out, Tad's too drained to fight his turmoil any longer. Allowing himself a much needed fix, he agrees to hang out, neither he nor Scott knowing Dom boy Max will end up part of the deal. What starts out as an unassuming evening quickly turns shockingly licentious. Question is, will Tad be able to handle it? And more importantly, what path will it send him down in his ongoing journey of discovery?
 

My Review:
In this book, we find the guys trying to move onto purely a friendship. Tad still isn't so sure. Even though he's had two of the most intense sexual experiences of his life, he isn't willing to accept yet that he might be gay. So Scott has made him a deal. They'll just hang out. Sex is off the table. If Tad wants it, he has to make the first move. 

But then they get to Scott's house, and Scott's roommate, Max, who's a professional Dom, needs their help. He has a client who gets off on voyeurism. He needs the guys to watch him with his client. Well, you can see where this is leading, right?

Oh yeah, this one is sexy...but then again,the entire series is completely sexy. And I have to admit, I'm intrigued by Max, the roommate, and Sean, the client. Max, so far in the story, has been this harsh, hard character. To see him acting so differently with Sean...loved that. 

And I need to just interject here...I love the way this room is set up in Scott and Max's house. Love the imagery of the dungeon and the observation room, but there's also the whole gym set-up. It's fabulous!


*****



Story Overview:
With Tad's reservations firmly on the one-eighty, he's finally more at ease exploring this intriguing new part of himself, especially where his attraction, and affections, for Scott are concerned. But when their evening plans get cancelled, Tad winds up watching the guy in action at the gym instead. Kickboxing lessons lead to sparring, which in turn leads to a face-off more erotic than Tad could have ever imagined. With huge new boundaries crossed, both men are floored like never before. Have these milestones finally put all Tad's hang-ups behind him? 

Warning: this 30k+ story includes erotically rough physical play and graphically explicit gay sex. 
Intended for mature audiences only.

My Review:
Oooh, this one was so good. I love that in this one Tad gets to turn the tables and dominate Scott a bit. Have I mentioned how sexy this series is? Yeah, well, it's definitely worth repeating again. 

In this story, Tad is becoming a bit more confident in what he's exploring with Scott. Up until this point though Scott has always been the more dominant of the two, even though Tad is pretty alpha, too. In this one, he's taking the lead and I love that. And it's not only in their sexual relationship, he's also stepping up a bit more to challenge Scott in all areas. 

We get to see more of Tad's group of friends in this one, with an interesting dynamic that appears to be setting up between one of his friends and one of Scott's friends. What's the history there? I'm definitely intrigued. 

I think this is my favorite book of the bunch, just because it's so out of the norm for the two of them. I liked to see Tad asserting himself and being less submissive. Over time, I think these two are just going to get hotter and hotter. Seriously, Kora Knight could just continue to write installments for them, and I think I'd be happy, because there are a lot of areas they could really explore. *ahem* the swing... I'm just saying.

*****

Story Overview:
It’s Friday night and Tad finds himself doing pretty much what he’d expected. Celebrating with his friends at a night club in honor of their buddy Breck’s birthday. The music’s pumping, drinks are flowing, as laughter and dancing bodies abound.

Nothing too outlandish, nothing unusual.

Until Scott and his own crew show up at the place. Funny how the one person Tad prefers above all others is the last person he wants to see. But now that he’s spotted the guy across the room, he can’t seem to take his eyes off him. Which winds up being a very bad thing. Seems Scott out in public with other attractive men is a much different story than Tad’s used to.

As one disturbing event after another unfolds, Tad splits before he loses his mind. But the breather he needs he does not get. In fact, things just go from bad to worse, the night ending on a note he never would have imagined. As things between Scott and him hit rock bottom, the only direction left must be up. If only Tad’s life would follow such a formula. But the path he’s been walking lately has never been that simple.

With a world of revelations finally revealed, can Tad find it in himself to make peace with Scott’s past so they can finally head into the future?

My Review:
The final book to read...at least so far. There's still one more to come in the series...and yes, it's supposed to release next month! Tad has finally accepted who he is and what Scott means to him and is on the cusp of coming out of the closet. But first he has to get through Breck's birthday. He doesn't want to take from his friends celebration, but that ends up blowing up on him big-time. 

This is an explosive installment...just because emotions are riding so high. Scott's been patient, but he's...understandably...at the end of that. I loved this story so much just in that we got to see some real insight into Scott and Max's background. So far, there really hasn't been all that much about Scott, since the entire book is told from Tad's point of view. That depth to Scott was definitely missing and I have to say, I was really surprised by what came out. But it made so much sense with what we know about Scott. 

There was a lot of conflict and emotion to this installment, but I really love where the two guys are. I think that blow-up was needed for them. The entire series has been so phenomenal. I maintain that it's one of the sexiest things I've read, but I love how the characters and emotional ties between them has grown over the stories. They started out as completely about the sex, but have become so much more. Kora Knight is an incredible story teller and she has a new fan right here. I cannot wait for #6...although I'm sad that it's supposed to be the final in this series. Although, in good news, I was snooping on her website and there are two full-length books coming for both couple of Max and Sean and Breck and Kai. YES!! (and a print version of this entire series...YES! Because I need this one for my keeper shelf.)

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