Mashing by Sean Michael

Mashing by Sean Michael
Publisher: Totally Bound
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Short Story (111 pgs)
Other: BDSM, M/M, Anal Play, Toys
Rating: 4 stars
Reviewed by Fern

Life is good for Toby and Damon—maybe too good. What happens when someone seems intent on destroying their happiness?

Toby and Damon are growing closer every day, with Toby recovering from the shot to his shoulder and Damon trying to keep him from pushing too hard too fast. Things are good between them.

They’re even better in the bedroom, where Toby is learning all sorts of new things and Damon is happily pushing his limits.

They’ve almost forgotten that someone doesn’t seem as happy with their closeness as they are, when Toby walks into his studio to find it trashed and his little apartment ransacked. Are the authorities going to be able to apprehend the culprit before Toby decides the best course of action is to remove himself from the equation?

Toby is recovering from a shot shoulder. As an artist, a sculptor, the thought he mightn’t be able to work had driven him crazy. So he’s rushed back to his art, pushing himself hard but is really pleased to find he’d not lost the edge of his talent. Toby is desperately in love with Damon and grateful for the man’s presence, Damon keeps him from pushing himself too hard. But the threat from an unknown hater is weighing on them both. Can they work through this bump in their lives?

This is the third book in the Beer and Clay series, and while I feel it can be read as a stand alone book, I definitely think readers will get more out of it if they’ve read the first two stories first (“Malting” is book 1, and “Milling” is book 2). This book had a lot more detail about Damon’s friend Pete, and Pete’s lover, Christian. I was really excited about this, as we were somewhat introduced to Christian in Milling and it’s clear the man has quite the background and story to tell. There’s also quite a bit more mystery in this book than the previous two. Toby and Damon’s “stalker” is a far more prominent plot point and I really enjoyed seeing this aspect of their story come more into the foreground.

I felt this book had something for everyone – a really solid, sexy hot M/M relationship, good friends and strong secondary characters coming into their own, and a mystery plot really blossoming and coming into fruition. While not all the plots were wrapped up neatly – clearly there is at least another story in the series – I felt there was definite progression in the overall story arc and I enjoyed the strong steps forward both Toby and Damon (and Peter and Christian) made.

This is a hot, sexy read with a fair bit of kink and a well-established, loving couple as the main protagonists. I thoroughly enjoyed it and am looking forward to the next installment. Recommended.

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