Review: King's Captain (Merely Players Book 2) by Ian D. Smith


Author: Ian D. Smith

Genre: Erotic Romance

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My rating: 5 out of 5

Blurb: Paul is Hayley’s lover and now her leading man. But acting and portraying a hero on a period TV show takes far more than a suit of armour. He’s totally out of his depth, personally and professionally.

Help arrives with dramatic lessons in leadership and courage, when strange events put him and his friends in harm’s way.

Hayley’s happy when her best friend Becky books hotel rooms with a bed big enough for three, which confuses Paul. Sorting out their relationships is even scarier than acting, jousting, and stunt fighting in front of the camera.

Life doesn’t imitate art. Life shoulders art out of the way. Discovering a secret threatens Paul’s trust in Hayley and Becky, and forces him to face his doubts and fears. He must decide if it’s braver to walk away, or ask for honest answers. Even if they may break his heart.

Review: That was the first book I have read by Mr. Ian D. Smith so I wasn’t burdened with any expectations. It was interesting to read an erotic romance written by a man and giving us a unique male point of view that we don’t see very often in this genre.

The King’s Captain is a book 2 out of Mr. Smith’s series Merely Players but it can be easily read as a standalone. The story, characters and their relationships are interesting enough, easy to relate to and understand even without the back story. Writing is easy, it flows like a fairy tale and slowly draws you in the story. The author does a fantastic job out of the sex scenes and gives us a very realistic feel of what it’s like to be a man caught between two lovely but very teasing and confusing ladies. Add a bit of suspense, paranormal subplot and colorful supporting characters that would often steal the show. There were some angst situations but not to such an extent that they would depress you. All of this makes for a very pleasant, fine erotic romance novella. I thoroughly enjoyed it and that is saying something, given that I usually love my romantic stories with a heavy dose of BDSM.

Paul, the novella’s leading man, is an over six-foot eye candy of a jousting stunt performer. Usually, that description is accompanied by a typical Alpha Male (or what passes as an alpha male in most of the erotic romance) personality with a very limited emotional range. I’m glad that the author decided to make a twist here. Paul is genuinely a nice person who is trying to do the best and right thing for everyone around him and for himself. It was endearing and dare I say empowering to see that the opposite sex stresses over love, sex, feelings and relationships just as much as we do. It is difficult to keep your balance when you don’t want to hurt anyone but you get confusing messages. It is even more difficult when you are constantly being teased and pleased by two charming, naughty ladies.

Hayley and Becky were both adorable in their own ways, different and similar with their unique flaws, insecurities and past problems that hinder them in the present. What I loved was that in spite of their issues they struck me as pretty sexually confident and unashamed of their desires. At times it seemed that Paul was the inexperienced student whose eyes they had to open for all the pleasure and opportunities that could open for their triad if they let go of their inhibitions.

Like I said above, I also loved the supporting characters, especially Mark and Maggie and I hope they’d get a book of their own soon.

I won’t give too much of the plot away but as a conclusion, that is a lovely, heart-warming and arousing story of three people who find affection and passion with each other in an unconventional way. It also points out how important communication is, especially when three hearts are involved. I look forward to reading more of Ian Smith’s upcoming work.

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