Review: Stuck in Between
Stuck in Between by Blakely Bennett
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Ever been the rope in a tug of war? Jacqs can tell you all about it. Jacqs is an off again and on again fuck buddy of Bond. They have been best friends for a very long time. The problem is that Bond is a terrible flirt and he's into poly. Jacqs on the other hand prefers to be in a monogamy and each time Bond goes off, it kills her a little bit more. She becomes a bit more insecure and a bit more crazy. What woman wouldn't? If the man who matches you in so many ways constantly fucks other women, how can this not make a woman feel as if she isn't enough? Jacqs, cut your losses and move on.
Ms. Bennett is an author who excels with dysfunctional relationships and alpha males being assholes. This story does not disappoint with a selfish messed up man-boy. Bond is a rich boy who is the black sheep in the family. His family is appallingly vain and cruel. This still isn't what makes Bond the way he is. This big secret of his, is what makes him such a terrible boyfriend material. When the big truth is revealed, I blinked. Sure the incident is both tragic and traumatic. What it does show is how Bond is really still a little boy in a man's body. He is emotionally stunted and immature. It matters not that he's an exceptional sexual partner. He is no lover. He can't love. He only likes to own and show off his possession. He also never learned that once he breaks a toy, the toy may not want to be around him anymore. Jacqs was his toy and the last time he broke her heart, it was the last straw.
When the status of relationship is set to "it's complicated", a picture diagram of Bond, Jacqs, Red and their group of friends should be depicted. This budding romance between Red and Jacqs can barely take off because of Bond and a few other friends. This is frustrating because Ms. Bennett captures the ties and complexity of friendship so well in this love entanglement. The fact that Bond still insists Jacqs is his when he callously threw her away each time he finished using her is just appalling.
From a character development standpoint, Ms. Bennett excels. Each character is different, memorable and some of them oh so vile. There are many times I wanted to smack some sense into Bond. How can his friends be so faithful to him when he is so faithless? I don't understand how he can command such loyalty. The three main characters in this book are well crafted with multiple layers. It's easy to hate them at times and yet still feel sorry for them. None of these characters are black and white. There are reasons behind their madness, whether or not these reasons are acceptable is a different story.
The main theme of this story is about relationships. There are many ways relationships work and no matter how it works, it comes down to a few truisms. There must be trust, chemistry and being on the same page. If the people in the relationship are not on the same page, chemistry alone won't save it. It also seems as if a successful relationship requires a ton of work. This is ever so evident with how Red and Jacqs finally overcome their obstacles of ex-lovers and questionable friends. It's really a train wreck waiting to happen. I'm hooked and I can't wait to see what happens next. This is a lovely start to a new series. This book is recommended to erotic readers who enjoy messy complicated love.
*I received this book as a review copy in return for an honest review
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