Title: Sorting Out | Fitting In #2
Author: Silvia Violet
Publishing Date: December 28, 2013
Publisher: Self Published
Rating: ♥ ♥ / 2.75 hearts
Jack, Gray, and Mason have accepted that loves comes in many flavors and settled into a three-way relationship. Things haven’t been easy, and now that Mason has gone back to school and Gray is interested in a detective position, Jack is feeling lonely. His lovers aren’t around very often, and he misses lying around in bed, enjoying the benefits of living with two hot men. But Jack has secrets. He’s uncomfortable every time he puts his uniform on. He’s never recovered from seeing Mason held hostage, and he’s no longer sure he was meant to be a cop.
While stressing over his own future and facing pressure from Gray and Mason to bring their relationship out of the closet, Jack is severely wounded in the line of duty. His recovery, both physical and emotional might be more than their unconventional relationship can bear. Jack is going to need all the courage and support his lovers can give him if he’s going to bring himself back from the dead and create the life he wants to live.
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Oh, have I looked forward to this book since I learned Fitting In (the first book in the series) would be getting a sequel. I adored the first book and loved how all three got together and they fit together as a couple, so hearing I was going to continue on with learning more about them made me do a happy dance.
I should have learned by now not to get my hopes up. (for that matter, this review is going to contain heavy spoilers for the sex scenes in this book)
First of, this book was solely written from Jack’s perspective. It’s all fine and dandy and not something I truly had a problem with, as Jack was a likeable character. Not myfavourite out of the three, but he was part of the threesome and therefore someone I looked forward to learning more about. Unfortunately he turned out to be part drama queen, which is an annoying aspect almost all M/M books with moresome couples tend to have.
Yes, he was shot on the job. Yes, it was a pain in the ass and hell, I would have thought so, too. But, for the love of Christmas, move on and get up from the couch. Getting shot does not mean you are an invalid and bound to your bed for the rest of your life, but that you have to work on getting better both physically and mentally. It also does not excuse one for wallowing in self-pity for months on end. As a cop, I would have thought he knew that and it’s fine to do so in the beginning where everything looks bleak and there are no notable differences. But for the sake of the story, the plot should not reach a point of ‘dead pages’, which Sorting Out unfortunately did.
Yet, these things I could live with and still enjoy the story despite of. What I have a hard time looking away from is the direction the author has taken the relationship and the sex scenes, which quite honstly makes me grit my teeth, as I did not see it take this path in book one.
Almost from the first page, one of the only things Jack can think about is how much he wants Mason to top him. I’m sorry, but what? As far as I understood, Mason loved subspace and being submissive so much, it was pretty much never on his mind in the prequel. Since when did this change? Next, am I the only one who just could not see him top Jack in the first place?
I had a hard time with Jack being a switch, but I generally have a hard time with reading about BDSM switch characters, especially when the lines a drawn up like they are in Silvia Violet’s books. In the first book, Jack was pretty much a Dom the whole way through, though he did follow Gray’s leads, but he never really indicated to the need of being as much as a sub, as Mason is. Then, in this one, he is nothing but a sub. He calls Gray ‘sir’ in every sex scene, gets being called ‘boy’ and even accepts a bloody caning like it’s the most natural thing in the world.
Sean Michael, one of the pioneers in the hardcore genre of BDSM has only used caning as a punishment in one of her books and has not used it in any other form. I am all for diversity in books and with instruments, but this was taking things a bit too far for me. I could understand a flogging, hard spanking, a paddle, hell even a whip, but a cane is something else and not something I had seen coming from this series. I never got the feeling that it was in the part of the kink scale we were in. Nor that Jack was supposed to be the one who got off on it.
What sealed the deal for the rating for this book for me was the last sex scene, which I admit I skipped after I found out how it was supposed to be constructed. Sounds harsh? Yeah, well, I’m annoingly picky with my books and especially with the sex scenes and especially when authors suddenly disrupt a harmony in a couple.
We all know Gray, Jack and Mason talked about double penetration at the end of the first book, yes? Well, I have always enjoyed reading about experimental sex and read my fair share of both good and bad double penetration (in the writing, not the actual deal) and looked forward to seeing it happen. I had just thought, and mostly hoped, that when it would, it would be Mason who would be the guy in the middle of this happy sandwich.
It was Jack who needed all the attention and was a happy clam. Well, that didn’t particularly fit with my view of this couple as a whole and I honestly had to skip because I could not picture Mason topping Jack in the first place. And that annoyed me to no end, as this was, as mentioned, a book I had looked forward to for some time.
I am all for sex in my books. I am even more for drama in my books to shake the ground under couples a bit. Hell, I can even take a bit of drama queening and some tears, because there’s room for everything. Unfortunately, Sorting Out either became too much or never enough. What sealed the deal for me, though, was how this couple and some of its characters was suddenly pictured.
I did, however, enjoy the short interlude of the new characters Andy, Henry and Bryce and I hope we’ll get a story about some of these guys in the near future. Bryce in particular. I have almost been fond of firemen and even more so when they’re buff and blonde. Mhmmm.