Monday, September 27, 2010

Handcuffs and Leather (Rawlings Men book One) by Kim Dare


I read and reviewed the second book in this series, Handcuffs and Glory Holes two months ago, and I'm just now getting around to reading the first book, Handcuffs and Leather. Both are short stories, not novels. Which is really too bad, because the premise of both books would have easily extended to a novel length book.

I felt like Handcuffs and Glory Holes could have been the first two chapters of a twenty chapter book. Handcuffs and Leather felt like the first five chapters of a twenty chapter book. The story takes us just far enough to get the idea that the couple is going to be able to work things out, but not as far as I wanted to be shown. They were just getting started on what looked to be a nice D/s relationship. I enjoyed the parts we were shown, but I wanted more. 

I generally have a problem  when a therapist or psychiatrist gets involved with a patient, but I was mostly okay with the way it was handled here. Still not the ideal, but things were stopped early enough, and since there was no ongoing therapy needed, and that was confirmed by a second professional, it worked okay with the story.

Here's the blurb:

All Constable Hadley wants to do is put the last few weeks behind him. As if being taken hostage wasn’t bad enough, he’s had to deal with all the stupid publicity that’s surrounded him ever since. And the fact that he hasn’t slept since that night isn’t helping him feel any better about the world, either.

The last thing Hadley needs is a shrink wandering around inside his head trying to dig up all his dirty little secrets. When he finds out he’s being sent to Dr. Rawlings—the man he’s had a crush on for months—Hadley knows his life has finally hit rock bottom.

The only thing that could make things worse for Hadley would be Dr. Rawlings finding out how Hadley feels about him. But fate wouldn’t be that cruel to him—would it?

Kim Dare seems to have a good understanding of the whole Dom/sub dynamic, and she is able to get pretty deep into the psychological and emotional dynamics of a BDSM relationship. She does tend to go light on the physical aspects of things, and that shows up in the Intensity Ratings. Handcuffs and Leather gives us a fairly intense first scene between an experienced Dom and a new sub, and gives us the promise of more physical intensity to come, but ends before we actually get to see it happen.
  • Bondage and Discipline: There is one really nice bondage scene. There is also the promise of punishment by denial. 2 of 3
  • Dominance and Submission: Yes, and it is very nicely described. 3 of 3
  • Sadism and Masochism: No.
  • Extra Point: No.
As for the story elements: the plot is a good one - too bad it was used on a short story. The pacing was perfect. Prose and dialogue were both good. Character development is well done.

  • Heat Level: 5 of 5
  • Book Rating: Handcuffs and Leather: 9 of 10
  • BDSM Intensity Level: 5 of 10

Rawlings Men series
1. Handcuffs and Leather
2. Handcuffs and Glory Holes
3. Handcuffs and Headlocks (September 29)
4. Handcuffs and Trouble (Nov 24) 

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