Break Me Down by Roni Loren

Break Me Down by Roni LorenBreak Me Down by Roni Loren

Series: #8.5 Loving on the Edge
Genres: BDSM Romance, Erotic Romance
Published by Intermix on October 27, 2015
Format: eARC
Source: Author, Publisher
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Didn’t really know what to expect and confess to being tentative going into this latest installment of the Loving on Edge series. You see it is a man struggling with his submissive nature and a woman who refuses to hide who she is ever again. They had a moment and then disaster struck. Oh, and there’s more…they have dark pasts.

This is a novella between books eight and nine and tackles two minor characters from earlier in the series, Gibson and Sam. It’s probably a good idea to read the series in order, but I think there is enough in the novella that a reader would do fine getting it out of order.

The story opens with Sam’s best friend, Tessa, and her husband, Kade, stopping by the bar and bringing along Kade’s brother, Gibson. Sam and Gibson have a past. He helped her train as a Domme and things were going well until she discovered in one of their play sessions that her training Dom got off on being her sub. He ran from her and has ignored her since. Samantha is attracted to Gibson and still wants him, but she will not compromise her own nature to be with him.

Gibson got a shock when he enjoyed submitting to Sam, but it also brought out lots of old fears that he worked so hard to escape from. He can’t let himself be seen as weak or vulnerable as much as he likes Sam. So he walked away, but nothing has felt right since. And then when she is attacked and is shaken up, he can’t keep away. She confronts him and challenges him to give them one week on her terms. He agrees. And they both are pushed right to the edge.

The story is a novella so it starts with a crisis that draws the two back together and it works through some deep stuff quickly to get to the sticking point. Now that said, I don’t mean to imply that it raced through things and never delved deep. This story had depth and heart. Gibson faces two demons that stop him up short. There is the perception of society against male submissiveness and then the fears of being controlled instilled in him because he grew up an abused child. Sam grew up in the foster system that passed her around frequently and she had no control and a lot of anger before she also learned that she could be prey so easily. She just wants someone to see who she really is and pick her for once.

This pair are a sadist and a masochist and they do engage in this, but I would say the BDSM is moderate at most. There is spanking, caning, rimming, anal play, exhibitionism, and bondage.

Now, I feel like I should discuss the fact that this was a Domme/sub story. Not my general fare when I choose a BDSM read. Mostly I avoid them and for years I would have said it was because I didn’t like stories of women dominating men. Honestly, it’s probably a little of that, but mostly it was because I’d read ones where it felt like the woman was dominating out of anger and hate rather than it actually being her nature. To me that was abuse and I didn’t want to read that stuff, but then I learned that there were actually a few authors out there who could write a decent and even good Dominant Woman/submissive man relationship. There is respect, there is fun, lust of course, and there is trust and love. The woman is commanding, but the man is not emasculated. Roni Loren is one of those few precious writers for me. She writes a beautiful, poignant, yet hotter than blazes story.

So, yes, another solid win for me and a groan of disappointment that I need to sit back and wait for the next book in the series. If you enjoy BDSM that has developed characters and storyline, get going on this series.

My thanks to Penguin Group and Roni Loren for providing a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.

Romance Roundabout #343 ER

About Roni Loren

Roni wrote her first romance novel at age fifteen when she discovered writing about boys was way easier than actually talking to them. Since then, her flirting skills haven’t improved, but she likes to think her storytelling ability has. Though she’ll forever be a New Orleans girl at heart, she now lives in Dallas with her husband and son.

If she’s not working on her latest sexy story, you can find her reading, watching reality television, or indulging in her unhealthy addiction to rockstars, er, rock concerts. Yeah, that’s it. She is the National Bestselling Author of The Loving on the Edge series from Berkley Heat.

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I was born and raised near Sacramento, CA. I have read since I was four years old and developed tastes that run the gamut of literature. I went away to college and have a degree in education, a certificate in family history research, and a certificate in social work. I worked for a non-profit agency with low income families for 20 years which included being responsible for the children’s library and promoting/teaching adult literacy. I have lived in Southeast Michigan for the last 18 years and I am currently a book addicted homemaker with a cat and husband who keep me grounded. Recently, I made it a challenge to review each book that I have read as a favor to author friends who said reviews are important. I have done reviews for Good Reads, Amazon, eBay, and Smashwords, but mostly at Goodreads and Amazon.
  • *watching something on tv while trying to read the review* I am distracted

    • Yeah, I can’t watch TV and read unless its sports. Then I can. 😉

  • Question, are all the books Domme/Sub? I keep seeing it’s the men submitting to the girl. I like that

    • No, there is a hodge-podge of relationships from Dominant/submissives both male and female in those roles, to Dominant/Switch/submissive in menage, regular kinky m/f and m/m. Pretty much in flavor of kink so far.

  • This sounds like just the type of story that I like. Thanks for the great review.

    • Oh good! Hope you get a chance to read it, Mary.

  • oh wow loved your review for this one. You have me tempted to try this author out, which I have been nervous about doing.

    • I know the feeling. I’m always nervous about BDSM and erotic romances. I have to like the characters and story not just the hot scenes. This is an author who grew in her writing from book one onwards. I started with book four and five before going back. You can survive reading them out of order, but I have to admit that I like them better now that I’ve been reading the last several in order. 😉 I’ve had some squirmy, uncomfortable moments b/c of my own sensitivity, but I have loved all these stories.

  • So glad you ended up loving this. I like realistic dom/sub where the female knows who she is and what she wants.

    • Yes, I’m always shaky about trying this dynamic, but I had nothing to worry about with the way the author wrote the story.

  • I purchased this, the reviews for it have been really good… I was going to get to it this weekend and it didn’t happen. Maybe THIS weekend. I’ll have some time to myself…;)

    • I think its Murphy’s Law. Get a compelling read and then have no time to read it. Haha! Hope you end up getting some weekend time and like it, Nelle!