Review: Sex, Lies, and Joysticks
Sex, Lies, and Joysticks by Lynn Chantale
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
One woman with two men as lovers in a poly arrangement, how perfect can her life be? This book is exactly how I think a poly arrangement is going to work--not well.
Randa is a strong woman with a selfish jerk of a husband, Linc. Linc is a man who robbed his wife of ever having children through a mistake he made. He also has affairs, explains his infidelity to his wife that she is his number one and convinces her that a poly relationship is great. But when Randa's other lover, Matteo, also claims a piece of her heart, Linc does his best to sabotage her life.
This book is hard to rate. It's well written. The jealousy and dynamics of a poly formation is spot on. Not sure if Ms. Chantale is in this type of relationship or has friends in a poly. The erotic parts in this tale are also enjoyable. The angst and the conflict are hard to read. Not because it's contrived. It's because the conflict and the information revealed about Linc makes me hate him. At the end of this story, Linc who starts out as an understanding and cool husband turns into a villain who I cannot accept.
Ms. Chantale does a great job of building her characters. Each one of them is an individual with a clear voice. As a woman, I can sympathize with Randa and her situation. She's by far an overly accommodating wife. Matteo is a dream lover for Randa. He's the one, if Linc wasn't in the picture, who would be the perfect mate for Randa. In fact, one could argue the happily ever after is more a happily for now and would be better with just Randa and Matteo.
Matteo does have a past with complications of his own. What is good about him is his secrets are to protect others, not because he's egocentric. Linc is a pathetic excuse of a man. His philandering ways are rationalized through a poly relationship. Basically, he can have as many different women and spend time with them but when his wife does the same, he flies off the handle.
This story came across all too realistic when it came to the pleasure, pain and misunderstandings in a relationship with more than two people. The main conflict is a little out there, but still in the plausible realm. The world building with Randa as a gamer is a nice touch. A female gamer is no longer an elusive animal hard to catch sight of. Instead, there are more and more females entering in the competitive gaming world. The adversity they face is similar to how it is described in the book.
The reason why I ended up with a 3 star rating is because I just couldn't get over Linc. He's not created badly. He's just a character who I couldn't like and when I don't like a character to this degree, the rating takes a hit for me. It is because I don't enjoy the book as much because I'm so angry at the character. Ms. Chantale is a good writer because she can generate this type of feeling in a reader which makes them more engaged.
This book is recommended to kinky readers who want to read how a polygamous relationship can be in real life.
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