Skin and Hide by Neena Jaydon

BOUND

Skin and Hide by Neena Jaydon
Publisher: Torquere Press
Genre: Sci-Fi/Fantasy
Length: Short Story (18 pgs)
Other: M/M, Anal Play
Rating: 3.5 stars
Reviewed by Fern

Former imperial commander Villam Elding and former rebel monk Luke tyv Sicinik arrive at Stavalai Colony at the beginning of the year’s biggest imperial festival. Excited by the prospect of the festival, Villam even makes the traditional leather goddess pendants by hand. But being in imperial territory digs up old wounds, and tempers flare when Luke refuses to help Villam with an intimate act of goddess worship. Can they somehow reconcile Villam’s love of the empire and Luke’s hatred of all things imperial before the celebration ends?

Villam and Luke had a whole week off their ship while it’s being serviced.  After buying some leather in a Stavalai market, Villam is cutting into it when Luke returns from a swim. Upon learning they’re at the start of a five day imperial religious festival Luke is outraged. Following a different religion – one that he was taught hated the imperial following – he struggled to understand why his partner and lover has dragged him into this mess.

This is a wonderful tale of another world and a different set of rules, society and religions. Villam and Luke, however, are easy to identify with and their conflict is so very human it made it easy to get really into their story. Passionate and both strong willed, I enjoyed watching them learn a lesson in tolerance and being open minded. The sex between them was also scorching hot, their love undeniable and exceedingly well written. I’d enjoy reading more books set in this world, the briefness of the story felt like a tantalizing tease into a glorious alternate reality – one I’d happily explore and learn more of.

An awesome book, full of love and tenderness with a deliciously spicy ending.

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