Dirty Laundry by Heidi Cullinan #AudioReview

Dirty Laundry by Heidi Cullinan #AudioReviewDirty Laundry by Heidi Cullinan

Narrator: Iggy Toma
Series: #3 Tucker Springs
Genres: Contemporary Romance, M/M Romance, New Adult Romance
Published by Riptide on March 30, 2016
Length: 7 hours 34 minutes
Format: Audiobook
Source: Publisher
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A few years back, I was introduced to something that I considered quite innovative and unique- the Tucker Springs series  My first time to read through a series of book written by a team of authors only loosely connected by the characters all residing and working in the same small mountain community.  This particular story was the one that introduced me to the series (they can be easily read out of order).  Gentle, slightly spicy, small town feel it is not (though the rest of the series is), but it was a surprising story that was deep, and meaningful beneath it’s heat.  Self-respect, self-knowledge, compatibility, healing, and care for another all rolled in to a moderate BDSM romance.

My, my, my, the difference an audio can make.  I read this one a few years back and I remember that it had kink, opposites attract heroes with their own vulnerabilities.  It was hot and had me squirmy.  But my lands, either I didn’t remember well or getting it in audio amped all that dirty talk up exponentially.  Whew, my man Denver could dish it out and his boy Adam ate that stuff right up.

Iggy Toma, the narrator, had the job of bringing this story to life.  I enjoy his storytelling and particularly the way each voice is distinct.  He really did well with Adam’s internal monologues.  My only niggle was that his Denver accent sounded older to me though the ‘cowboy’ accent was great.

Adam and Denver met under unusual circumstances when Denver rescued Adam from some drunken frat bullies at the laundromat. Adam is attracted to Denver and shocks them both when he puts himself out there as available to Denver. Denver gives Adam the most incredible experience of his life that at the same time stirs Denver to even consider a relationship instead of a one and done. Denver gives Adam his phone number and the two virtual strangers part ways.

Adam has severe OCD, depression, and anxiety. He considers himself an absolute mess that no one would want to tie themselves to. He is still bruised and smarting from his recent break-up even if for the first time in his life he is living independently. The experience with Denver is never far from his thoughts because he remembers that with Denver for once he felt no fear, but only safety. He wants that again.

Denver is attracted to the tentative Adam and when they finally do get together he is thrilled to the soles of his boots when Adam accepts and takes all of Denver’s more intense needs. But that being said, Denver is aware that Adam is hiding something and it’s big, but then Denver is hiding things about himself too.

This plot was very much character-driven so it moves along at a gentle pace. The relationship forms from a quick lustful attraction, but it then slowly builds with a basis in friendship and growing mutual trust. Both men have needs in the bedroom and issues that make this pace necessary.

Denver is a Dominant and very knowledgeable in the BDSM lifestyle. His past has given him a need to be in charge and to take responsibility for another’s care. Adam is new to it, but discovers that it meets his needs to feel safe, to be pleasing to someone and to be cared for by someone. And yes, that means there are scenes of play and punishment and I share that in case it touches a comfort issue for you.

The characters were written in such a way that it was easy to believe that both had the issues that they did (not that I’m an expert when it comes to mental illness or disability and how it affects those who live with it). Like I said, seeing them struggle and triumph was a great part of the story for me.

It’s an easy thing to recommend this story to those who enjoy character-driven M/M Contemporary Romance with moderate BDSM elements and heroes with disabilities.

My thanks to Riptide publishing for providing this book in exchange for an honest review.

Challenges Met:

Romance Roundabout #148 NA
Audio # 19
Div #28

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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.
  • I can imagine that hearing the steamy scenes instead of reading them gives you a more in depth experience.

  • I’ve read M/M and I’ve read BDSM, but I don’t think I’ve read M/M BDSM. Well, I have some, The Angel by Tiffany Reisz. That is the only one. I always forget that series, since it is part of a series that is based on a female. Not sure that is a true M/M. I’ve not listened to this narrator. I’m really glad you enjoyed this the second time around.

    Melanie @ Hot Listens & Rabid Reads

    • This was actually my first time listening to BDSM of any orientation so it was quite the experience. Yes, I’m familiar with the Tiffany Reisz so I know what you mean.
      I enjoyed a few different aspects more that I didn’t notice as much in the first read. For all his dirty talk and dominant needs, Denver really is a gentle, caring guy.

  • Karen

    I’ve read several books by Cullinan but I hadn’t heard of this one.

    Karen @For What It’s Worth

    • Glad I could share it with you, Karen. I still have many of her books to read.

  • Not one for me, sorry-I just don’t like the BDSM stuff. This town, are all the stories M/M or was this just one of all different types of stories? I am reading a couple of series that are all done by different authors in a town but they are both paranormal 🙂

    • That’s okay, Lorna. I know BDSM isn’t everyone’s thing. It’s actually the only one in this series. Though yes, this series is all M/M couples. I was fascinated about authors all taking turns writing a series about a small town.

      Which PNR ones are the ones you read?

  • LOL the dirty talk is interesting in audio. When done well holy cow! The DD Ayres one I don’t know that it would have had me squirming as much in print. Would have been hot but whoa boy! hearing it in audio lordy be!

    (love that the hero has glasses)

    • Yeah, I was doing my dishes and my neighbor came over to borrow the wheel barrow. I’m pretty sure he heard some stuff that will have him wondering (he’s 67 and lives alone). Now me, I was taking my sweet time with the dishes and having very porno thoughts. haha!

      Oh yes, I thought whoever did the cover matched up good with the Denver and Adam of the story.

      • Oh my gosh. How very funny! I’ve had quick moments of that while walking the neighborhood since I would have audios playing on my phone app and didn’t have earbuds at the time. I’m sure some thought whew! Heh.

        • I have sound-canceling earbuds, but I don’t like to wear them in the house and if I do wear them on a walk, I keep one out b/c I’m always afraid of not hearing something important. Its not just the cars, but the skateboarders and bike riders who come up behind me. But yeah, guess I’m doing my part to keep the neighbors entertained.

          • I totally get that. Thankfully we don’t have too much issue with bikes/skateboards but I do get nervous about cars or loose dogs.

            Heh yup keeping them entertained. You probably spiced up his life quite a bit that day. lol