REVIEWED by Cindy and Jen B.
TITLE: Broken Wings
SERIES: Phoenix Reborn #1
AUTHOR: Houston Michaels
PUBLISHER: Unleashed Ink
LENGTH: 104 Pages
RELEASE DATE: May 16, 2017
Proud to have served his country, Gabriel O’Roarke returned from war unable to recognize the man he had become. While war was hell, it was the aftereffects that were slowly eating away at his soul. Returning to civilian life after surviving events that should have killed him, he struggles to adjust and find himself again. Suffering from PTSD, he is without hope, until a chance encounter with one of the men who saved his life changes things.
Gabriel never imagined Nickolas Tanner would be into the lifestyle, so running into him at a BDSM club is a surprise. The patient and caring Dom is exactly what Gabriel needs, but everything he fears. After suffering captivity, Gabriel struggles to let himself go, to submit to another man. He craves regaining that part of himself, but worries it is forever lost. Nickolas’ steady domination gives him something he has thought lost long ago – hope.
Can a broken submissive, damaged by captivity and torture, learn to fly again?
Let me start by saying Gabriel and Nick push just about every button I have. I love a good story that just happens to be set in the BDSM world and a broken ex-military man is a character I just can’t resist.Gabriel is a man who’s almost living between two worlds. He’s no longer in the military but the experiences he suffered through while in service to his country have left him feeling like he doesn’t belong at home either. When he finds himself feeling lost in a place that used to be somewhere he was more than comfortable, he finds himself self dangling at the end of his figurative rope.
Nick is someone who help saved Gabriel’s life physically and now he wants to help him find the peace he so obviously deserves and longs for. As a Dom it’s in his nature to care for people and no one needs more care than Gabriel.
The author did a great job here with the BDSM side of the story. I love the time the two men spend talking about what they both need and expect from each other and a lot of it rang true for me.
I did have an issue with how fast Gabriel seemed to overcome his reservations about trust in general as I think someone who survived what he did would be a much harder nut to crack but I also accept that in this genre there is only so much time an author can give to overcoming those kinds of issues.
I also love how the author approached the subject of therapy and how it was a very necessary part of Gabriel’s healing. I appreciate that there was no magical “sexual healing” for Gabriel and that Nick understood that he couldn’t be Gabriel’s savior, only his supporter.
The BSDM scenes and the sex are very hot and well written. It didn’t overpower the rest of the story and I liked that they weren’t falling into bed in every chapter.
I know that the stories of the other men in the therapy group are going to be the basis for more books in this series and I have to admit I’m looking forward to them.
This was a book that I couldn’t put down once I started it as it swept me along for a fascinating ride. It wasn’t perfect but I have no problem recommending it to just about anyone even if you aren’t a big BDSM fan. It’s on the softer side of the spectrum and honestly a great starting point if you are a little wary of that lifestyle.