Friday, August 3, 2018

What You Make It by A.M. Arthur

Can a Dom with a broken heart find what he needs with a single dad fourteen years his junior?

Micah Kelley’s life turned upside down when he discovered he had an infant daughter he never knew existed. A college drop-out and single dad with no support from his parents, he turns to his older brother, with whom Micah has a strained relationship. Living with Ezra and his partner gives Micah the freedom to admit he’s bisexual without the threat of their bigoted father’s wrath, while starting over and looking for work.

After losing his husband and sub to cancer, David Milano is stuck in an endless cycle of meaningless hookups and emotionless scenes with men he has no desire to see twice. But after an explosive encounter with a bratty, blond twink at a bar, David realizes he has room in his heart to love again after twelve years of grieving. When his unforgettable hookup walks into David’s office for an interview, David can’t think of a single reason not to hire him. Too bad their sizzling chemistry didn’t get the memo that Micah is now an employee and therefore off-limits. Micah didn’t get the memo either, and he’s intrigued by David’s style of BDSM. They begin a secret affair that gives Micah the freedom to explore new sides of himself, and it gives David a chance to open his heart again. But secrets have a way of coming out, and Micah has to put his daughter first. Always.

Even if it means losing the first person he’s ever truly loved.

AUTHOR’S NOTE: This book contains mild BDSM elements including restraints, blindfolds, and spanking. While the story uses characters from other interconnected series of mine, this can be read as a standalone.

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Book 4
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Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

This is a sweet story of a twenty-one-year-old single dad attempting to put his life back together and the older man he meets at a night club. The story reads as new adult. Micah has gone from frat boy to father overnight and he finds himself wrestling with his identity and new responsibilities.

This is the fourth book in the series, but it is the first one I’ve read. I loved the close-knit group of friends that surround Micah but the updates on each couple’s life didn’t mean much to me. I loved Micah’s brother Ezra and at times the relationship between the brothers was more intense than the romance between Micah and David.

I really enjoyed the way this book stays quite light and almost playful even while Micah is working through serious issues. There are some really poignant moments in the story, but the emphasis is on the group of young men being survivors, and the automatic support network Ezra’s friends provide for Micah is wonderful.

I’ve left the romance in this book for last because it doesn’t quite take centre stage here. After a slow burn and some complicated revelations, the relationship between Micah and Davidson is sweeter that I expected from the first descriptions of David as a dom. The kink in this story is very mild and more about David helping Micah feel free to explore his sexuality than anything else. I’m not a huge fan of big age gaps – but as a father, Micah feels much older than 21 and his adult responsibilities make him a good match for David.

This is the first book in the series that I have read and I didn't feel like I was missing anything so this, for sure, can be read as a standalone. However, I will be going back and reading the previous books. This book sucked me in right away and I wanted to keep reading but pesky work kept getting in the way. I easily felt a connection to Micah right away. Your heart just broke for him right away. As a parent, I just don't understand how other parents turn their back on their own flesh and blood. Micah's brother, Ezra, and his partner, Donner, are pretty amazing. They are the true definition of what family is. David is pretty great too; he's been through his tough times but is so patient and kind with Micah. Throw in sweet little Bree and you can't help but love this story even more. There is a little angst but mostly this is a story about getting through anything life throws at you, second chances, forgiveness, and finding friends who become your chosen family.

A.M. Arthur was born and raised in the same kind of small town that she likes to write about, a stone's throw from both beach resorts and generational farmland. She's been creating stories in her head since she was a child and scribbling them down nearly as long, in a losing battle to make the fictional voices stop. She credits an early fascination with male friendships (bromance hadn't been coined yet back then) with her later discovery of and subsequent love affair with m/m romance stories. A.M. Arthur's work is available from Carina Press, Dreamspinner Press, SMP Swerve, and Briggs-King Books.

When not exorcising the voices in her head, she toils away in a retail job that tests her patience and gives her lots of story fodder. She can also be found in her kitchen, pretending she's an amateur chef and trying to not poison herself or others with her cuisine experiments.

Contact her at with your cooking tips (or book comments).

Connect with A.M.

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Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of What You Make It (Belonging #4) by A.M. Arthur to read and review.

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