Author: J.A. Rock
Publisher: Riptide Publishing
Rating: 4.5 stars
Type: Novel in a Series
Received from Publisher
Blurb: Look, I’ll never stop missing Hal, but this Subs Club my friends started to review suck-ass doms isn’t gonna bring him back or give him justice. For me, it’s just another chance to hang out with my friends, even if they think I’m too dumb to understand the important work we’re supposedly doing.
Review: Manties In A Twist is the third book in The Sub’s Club series. It can be read as a standalone, however there would be some spoilers of events in the previous books if read out of order.
Having recently moved in with his boyfriend Ryan, at twenty-seven Kamen feels like he’s finally getting this adulting thing down. While his friends may feel that he and Ryan are moving too fast, Kamen is in no doubt about his feelings for Ryan and why waste time when you could be spending it with the one you love? Kamen may see things simply, and he may not be a rocket scientist, but he’s also not the loveable, but dumb jock that his friends still treat him as sometimes. Kamen has always been incredibly close to his friends, they really are more family than anything, but as Kamen continues to build his new life with Ryan and is moving on from the event that resulted in the death of their friend two years ago, tensions start to creep into Kamen’s friendship with the group, especially between he and Dave.
Kamen’s relationship with Ryan is far easier to navigate. They may find themselves on different pages every now and then, but mostly they are extremely happy together and very much in love. They are enjoying exploring their needs and wants (and kinks) together as well as everyday life as a couple living together. A run in with Cinnamon, a particularly unpleasant ponygirl, sends Kamen and Ryan into the world of pony play, initially as a challenge to beat her at the upcoming PetPlayFest. As they practice for the show, they discover that there’s more to pony play than just strapping on some hooves, that it may even be the kink that fits them as a couple.
This was such was a fun book. Light-hearted, playful, sweet, but with a real depth. I loved that Kamen didn’t lose his way of looking at the world, or his playfulness, while learning to navigate his way through a new, serious relationship, changing dynamics in his close circle of friends and the responsibilities of being an adult. I loved how supportive Ryan and Kamen are of each other. That they each see something special and amazing in the other. They are such a tight group of friends, it hurt to see a rift form between Dave and Kamen, but growing pains do hurt sometimes. I could really feel Kamen’s frustration with his friends not seeing that he was growing and changing, and adulting, just like they were, in his own way.
I adored Kamen. He was funny and likeable, with a heart as big as the world and wonderfully straight-forward when it came to doing what made him happy. He loved his boyfriend, his friends and his music. Kamen’s songs are truly…unique. And hilarious! As the story is told completely from Kamen’s POV, I didn’t fall as much in love with Ryan, but I did like him and I loved he and Kamen as a couple. I loved seeing the rest of the Sub’s Club group and what has happened with Miles and Dave since their stories. The author has a genuine knack for giving full life to all her characters, even the ones we love to hate. Cinnamon may have been a rather disagreeable character, but I was glad to see more to her than just the nasty side. It made her more real, not merely the token villain.
I have to admit, I was a little disappointed there wasn’t more of the “manties” featured in the story, given it’s in the title. And at first I was doubtful that I’d really get into a story about pony play, but once again the author beguiled me with hilarity and made me feel feelings for the MCs. In the end, I loved the enthusiasm they had for the play and the surprising joy and fun they found in it.