Dana reviews Lock and Key by Z. Allora (Published by Dreamspinner Press, July 15, 2016, 321 pages)
Why I read: I was lucky enough to review Z. Allora’s Dark Angels series for this Rainbow Gold Reviews. Lock and Key is a spin off from that series. I picked up this book prior to speaking with the author about a review. I love her books so much so I was glad to post a review here.
Blurb: Rejected. Heartbroken. Devastated.
Zack Davis wanted to serve only one man, Andrew Nikeman. He was denied because Andrew thought he was too young and because their brothers were together. So Zack crushed his submissive tendencies and focused on being the perfect Dom, giving every sub he played with something he couldn’t have.
After years of denying his submissive side, Entwined’s charity auction “Are you Dom Enough to be a sub?” gives Zack an excuse to get a little of what he’s always craved.
Andrew doesn’t know when his infatuation turned into more, but it kills him to see Zack with a constant parade of submissives. He’d refused to jeopardize his brother’s relationship or become Zack’s regret; however, Zack isn’t a kid anymore, and his brother’s relationship is unbreakable. Now Zack’s popularity and success as a Dom might ruin Andrew’s dreams of collaring him, but he can’t wait any longer to confess his feelings or he risks losing the man he loves forever.
I loved the Dark Angels series by Z. Allora. The main characters of Lock and Key were first introduced in that series and I couldn’t wait to see what would happen between them. The beginning of Lock and Key overlaps with the Dark Angels timeline showing Zack and Andrew’s meeting and the rise of sexual tension between them. I have to say that the wait for their story was well worth it.
Zack and Andrew met when their brothers started dating. There is a spark between them and a mutual interest in BDSM, but a seven year age difference between them keeps them from being together. At eighteen, Zack isn’t a stranger to rejection, though, and part of him shuts down. He squashes his natural submissive tendencies to be be the dom that he will never have.
I love the way that this author writes about the BDSM community. I have to admit that the only BDSM knowledge I have is from other books, but Z. Allora seems consistent with other’s portrayal. BDSM can often be misunderstood but for the greater part their motto is safe, sane, and consensual. The author takes us through an introductory class along with Zack and also explains how BDSM is different for every individual. Some subs and doms will find their maximum pleasure through bondage alone, while some prefer breath play or needle play. The importance of safewords and responsible doms in the lifestyle should be self-evident though it is not always the case in real life and the author does include examples of those who abuse the power they are given by their submissives. I can’t say whether or not I would ever participate in BDSM but when an author writes the scenes right, you could easily imagine the pleasures that subspace or topspace have to offer. I think Z. Allora did that.
It finally takes an auction where several doms dare to offer themselves as slaves for a weekend for Andrew and Zack to explore that spark between them. The cover of this book is brilliant because it so on point for this scene. I was definitely happy that these two got together. But just because it was for the weekend doesn’t mean that everything fell in place immediately. I do like when the couple works for it, though.
I really enjoyed this story. It was like a reunion for me getting to see the Dark Angels members again as well as Zack, Andrew, and Zack’s younger brother Jordon. New characters were introduced within the BDSM club, Entwined, who were very interesting. I can see more stories spinning off, and I would still love to see Jordon find his happy ending. I would definitely recommend this book. It is a stand alone, but I would also recommend the Dark Angels series and the author’s other books.
10/10 Pots of Gold (100% Recommended) – Compares to 5/5 Stars
Z. believes in soul mates, love at first sight, and overcoming all odds to find happily ever afters. Born in Upstate NY, Z. Allora and partner have spent the last fifteen years together traveling across the United States, the Middle East and Asia. These travels provide the inspiration behind many of the detailed settings and characters throughout Z.’s work. Z. received a Master degree in Psychology and Bachelor degrees in both English and Philosophy. (though Z’s editors would probably question the English degree). Z. is both a writer and a huge fan of M/M romance as well as Yaoi. It is said the pen is mightier than the sword. Z. thinks all writers and publishers of M/M are promoting equality, since everyone deserves a happily ever after.