Antidote by Jack L. Pyke
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
If you thought Don't... was harsh on Jack, wait until you read this book! In Antidote, Ms. Pyke cranks up the trauma. Jack's past comes rushing to the forefront as his time as Cutter's extreme masochistic painslut phase is broadcast to all. The pedophiles especially get off on Jack's underage porn flicks.
Whilst this latest attack on Jack is going on, Gray seems to be having relationship difficulties with Jack. It is very confusing as to why the relationship goes into the dumps quite so quickly after all they have been through together.
It is best to read this book after reading Forgive us by Ms. Kelling. The tie ins between these two worlds is what makes this story a bit more understandable. Gray's past shows how he's been a rebel and not always Mr. "All Seeing".
The character development in this book is better than the previous. The reader gets to see how Jack, Jan and Gray respond to adversity. The story also introduces more intrigue. There is a hidden force which seems to be doing it's best to break Jack. Who is this group and who is funding the elaborate set up to "fix" Jack from his SM perversions?
Ms. Pyke's writing style is less convoluted this time around. The plot still contains twists and she does a better job of foreshadowing what is to come. What is very disturbing about this story isn't the rape or torture. It's the way two people can so easily disappear without raising any alarms. Even with all of Gray's over protective methods, the kidnappers were still able to make it seem as if two people were just taking a vacation instead of missing.
Ms. Pyke's forte in writing is how well she constructions the "evil" doer's plots. These aren't the average bumbling fools committing petty crimes. These antagonists are well funded with well planned and scarily well executed crimes. For the most part, the men are smart as well as sadistic. Once Gray catches on, he does as he always does, unravels it quickly and determines the culprit. Yet the way this story is left, it seems there is still an unknown assailant hiding in the shadows.
The BDSM in this story is mixed. The scenes between Jan, Jack and Gray are erotically hawt. In contrast, the tortures Jack experiences from others is pure abuse. It may sicken people and it is rather dark. I didn't find any of the sex and scenes with Jack and his kidnappers erotic because Ms. Pyke does a good job of showing how it is wrong. I am one who thoroughly enjoys non-con, the darker the better. In this one, it isn't so much that I didn't enjoy. More that it is clear we are not supposed to enjoy it. This difference was well written and appreciated. For me, even through all the horrors, I'm a bit too jaded to find it quite that horrific. For those who don't like even dub-con, several of these chapters may be a bit too much. This dark thriller is recommended for BDSM lovers who prefer something different.
* Provided by the author for an honest review
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