Before You Break (Secrets #1) by K.C. Wells & Parker Williams #LGBT #Audiobook #Review #BDSM #Contemporary #RGRGiveaway

Erryn reviews Before You Break (Secrets #1) by K.C. Wells & Parker Williams. Published by Dreamspinner Press May 26, 2017 340 pages. The audiobook was released January 23, 2018, is narrated by Joel Leslie, and is 13 hrs and 21 mins.

Why I read this book: I’ve read all the Collars & Cuffs books and was thrilled when KC Wells and Parker Williams launched a new series.

Six years ago Ellis walked into his first briefing as the newest member of London’s Specialist Firearms unit. He was partnered with Wayne and they became fast friends. When Wayne begins to notice changes—Ellis’s erratic temper, the effects of sleep deprivation—he knows he has to act before Ellis reaches his breaking point. He invites Ellis to the opening of the new BDSM club, Secrets, where Wayne has a membership. His purpose? He wants Ellis to glimpse the lifestyle before Wayne approaches him with a proposition. He wants to take Ellis in hand, to control his life because he wants his friend back, and he figures this is the only way to do it.

There are a few issues, however. Ellis is straight. Stubborn. And sexy. Wayne knows he has to put his own feelings aside to be what Ellis needs. What surprises the hell out of him is finding out what Ellis actually requires.

***Check out the giveaway at the bottom of this review for a chance to win one of several prizes***

Buy Links: Audible | Amazon | Add to Goodreads


My Review: 

How far can someone go until they break?

What if there is someone there to stop the fall?

What if, in the process, closely guarded secrets are finally revealed?

I was thrilled when I heard K.C. Wells and Parker Williams were launching a new series.  I adored their BDSM series Collars and Cuffs and I may have listened to the series twice and I may have mourned a bit when it ended.  I was grateful the authors recognized it was time to move on and was impressed they cleverly left the door open for a new series by moving a central couple from Manchester to London.  Eli and his submissive Jared have purchased an aging gay BDSM club and closed it for desperately needed renovations.  The reopening is the catalyst for the new couple – Wayne and Ellis – to move forward in their relationship.  What of it there is.

There were several scenes in Jared and Eli’s point of view and it increased my comfort level with the transition between series.  Is it wrong for me to say they were my favourite couple from Collars and Cuffs?  I suspect I’m not the only fan who felt that way.  The significant age gap is still there, but Eli is more comfortable in his role as Dominant.  Jared has always been comfortable in his role as submissive, but he’s less concerned about the fact he is decades older than Eli.  Oh, and he brings his mother Margaret to London with them and oh my God, the woman is still as feisty as ever.  Talk about a great character.

Also, some of the characters from the old series do make cameos.  It was great to see all my favourites and although the Dominants hanging out is cool, it’s the puppy pile of submissives that always warms my heart.  Some of them have chosen different paths – including fatherhood – and it’s good to get caught up.

On to Ellis and Wayne.  I’m a sucker for a character with a lot of challenges and Ellis is definitely that man.  Wayne is confident in his life and who he is.  His work as a tactical police officer demands complete and total dedication and attention.  Aside from his visits to Secrets (the reopened club owned by Jared and Eli), he keeps work as his main focus.  He plays with bottoms at the gay club but shies away from any serious engagements.  Or he has for the last six years since he met Ellis, the man who has become his best mate.

His best straight mate.

So while Wayne pines, he’s watching Ellis spinning out of control.  He’s tried various methods to get Ellis to open up, but nothing’s worked.  Also, he’s tired of hiding who he is from his friend.  Yes, he’s open with all the guys at work about the fact he’s gay, but none of them know about his Dominant tendencies.  Wanting to share this part of himself, he invites Ellis to join him at the reopening of Secrets.  Ellis believes he’s prepared himself by some searches on the Internet, but nothing let him know just how much he was going to react.  Soon after that night, his life comes to a head and things go right off the rails.

Cue Wayne.  He doesn’t want to control Ellis – much – but he can see the younger man needs a guiding hand.  He inserts himself into Ellis’ life and as he uncovers plenty of secrets, including what’s really in Ellis’ heart.  And when things are finally turning around, tragedy strikes in a most painful way.  Wow, did that horrific event ever affect me.  The men are police officers, so violence in the jobs is, unfortunately, expected.  The reality was difficult to handle for me.

I love the relationship between the two men.  They’ve both held secrets close to their hearts and when they finally lay everything on the line, it was very powerful.  There were also secondary characters who, at first, annoyed me greatly.  Some of them might have grown on me.

Being close to breaking is terrifying and not knowing how to get out of a destructive situation can be harrowing.  Accepting a lifeline isn’t easy, but if someone like Wayne comes into your life and offers kindness, gentleness, and a solution, it’s hardly surprising Ellis eventually comes around.  Whether through just talking or through the firm hand of BDSM, Wayne brings calm to Ellis and the perfect resolution to the book.

Finally, I need to mention Joel Leslie. *sigh*  He narrated the last few books of the Collars and Cuffs books and I was thrilled to see he was back with Secrets.  He has brought back all my favourite characters and then added great voices for the new characters.  As always, I cannot say enough good things about him.

Book 2 is out and I will be doing a review shortly so stay tuned.

My Rating:


Comment on this post for the chance to win one of several prizes including audiobooks, ebooks, and $5 gift cards

You must be 18 years or older to participate in this giveaway. Void where prohibited. Etc.

This giveaway ends on March 8, 2019 at 11:59 PM CST. GOOD LUCK!

Born and raised in the north-west of England, K.C. WELLS always loved writing. Words were important. Full stop. However, when childhood gave way to adulthood, the writing ceased, as life got in the way. K.C. discovered erotic fiction in 2009, when the purchase of a ménage storyline led to the startling discovery that reading about men in love was damn hot. In 2012, arriving at a really low point in life led to the desperate need to do something creative. An even bigger discovery waited in the wings—writing about men in love was even hotter….

K.C. now writes full-time and is loving every minute of her new career. The laptop still has no idea of what hit it… it only knows that it wants a rest, please. And it now has to get used to the idea that where K.C goes, it goes.

And as for those men in love that she writes about? The list of stories just waiting to be written is getting longer… and longer….

K.C. loves to hear from readers.
E-mail: k.c.wells@btinternet.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/KCWellsWorld
Twitter: @K_C_Wells
Website: http://www.kcwellsworld.com

Happily Ever After Comes With A Price Tag. Parker Williams began to write as a teen, but never showed his work to anyone. As he grew older, he drifted away from writing, but his love of the written word moved him to reading. A chance encounter with an author changed the course of his life as she encouraged him to never give up on a dream. With the help of some amazing friends, he rediscovered the joy of writing, thanks to a community of writers who have become his family. Parker firmly believes in love, but is also of the opinion that anything worth having requires work and sacrifice (plus a little hurt and angst, too). The course of love is never a smooth one, and Happily Ever After always has a price tag.

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4 thoughts on “Before You Break (Secrets #1) by K.C. Wells & Parker Williams #LGBT #Audiobook #Review #BDSM #Contemporary #RGRGiveaway

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