Reviewed by PizzyGirl
TITLE: Pent Up
AUTHOR: Damon Suede
NARRATOR: Christopher Kipiniak
PUBLISHER: Dreamspinner Press
LENGTH: 12 hours, 46 minutes
RELEASE DATE: June 19, 2017
PENT UP: Mix business with pleasure and take cover.
Ruben Oso moves to Manhattan to start his life over as a low-rent bodyguard and stumbles into a gig in a swanky Park Avenue penthouse. What begins as executive protection turns personal working for a debonair zillionaire who makes Ruben question everything about himself.
Watching over financial hotshot Andy Bauer puts Ruben in an impossible position. He knows zero about shady trading and his cocky boss lives barricaded in a glass tower with wall-to-wall secrets and hot-and-cold-running paranoia. Can the danger be real? Is Andy for real?
What’s a bullet catcher to do? Ruben knows his emotions are out of control even as he races to untangle a high-priced conspiracy and his crazy feelings before somebody gets dead. If his suspicions are right, Andy will pay a price neither can afford, and Ruben may discover there’s no way to guard a heart.
This is one of those stories that I enjoyed much more the second time around and much more in audio format. The issues I had when I first read and reviewed this title were not present this time around and I actually listened to this one twice back to back because I enjoyed it so much.
The first time I read this, I didn’t love the MCs. I liked them, Ruben much more so than Andy, but I didn’t really connect to either of them. However, this time around, I connected to them instantly since I already knew the outcome and I was so eager to revisit them and their story. I was interested all over again because I had the chance to focus on things I could the first time around when I was reading their story for the first time. These men are bastards and would probably not be likable in real life, but in this book they were great because they were great together.
I loved them as a couple. I found their relationship odd at times, slow at others, but overall, I liked the stumbles and realism injected into their romance. I liked that their sex life was wonky and dirty and confusing. I liked that these were not porn stars getting it right on the first try. I liked that both were stuck in their heads afraid to make that first move. That both men were tentative but that once the lust took over, they were visceral and raw. I felt that new relationship, can’t keep my hand off my partner, want sex all the time vibe perfectly. I really enjoyed these men together. They were HOT and vulnerable and oddly tender in their ferocity.
I also liked that these were flawed men and that their flaws almost ruined a good thing. But once they realized their love for one another, they compromised in their own screwed up and not quite right ways. It was a good romance that I found believable.
I loved that this story had so many layers. I loved that those layers were all intertwined. I loved the addiction and the clear picture that was painted of recovery. And that recovery was all about overcoming yourself. About overcoming the rationalization, the transference, the denial. Ruben’s struggles to stay away from alcohol were only a small portion of his journey to sobriety and in a weird way Andy was a vital piece needed to keep him on the right path. But at the same time Andy had addictions of his own and together these men had the potential to be a lethal combination.
I recommend this story in audio format and I recommend listening multiple times. I picked up new things each time and feel it is well worth the time investment.
This is my first experience with Christopher Kipiniak as a narrator. I think he did a pretty good job with this one. He is not a performer but he is also not just a reader so his narration was enjoyable. The characters were unique enough to follow and the emotions was clear. I will gladly give him another try.