Author: Rachel Haimowitz and Heidi Belleau
Reviewed by: Connie
Publisher: Riptide Publishing
Genre: M/M Slavery
ISBN 13: 9781937551971
With a wedge at last driven between Mat and Dougie Carmichael, courtesy of Nikolai Petrovic’s expert manipulations, the brothers must each accept their new path forward: Dougie, a perfect slave, sweet and obedient and loving. Mat, a tightly reined dog, snarling and snapping but never allowed to bite.
Unfortunately, no transformation, however well planned, is without its growing pains. Mat’s leash is so tight it’s choking him. Dougie is tormented by a little voice inside his head—a fragment of his former self—that he cannot silence.
And Nikolai’s most difficult tests for the brothers are still to come.
The critical question isn’t whether they can pass those tests, but whether they even want to. Without each other to lean on and live for, a bleak future has become bleaker still. But Nikolai’s too good to let his slaves slip through his fingers—by death or by despair.
A noose, a nighttime sky, a shared lover, an unexpected friend. A foreboding forest cabin. A lavish party with all the debauchery Nikolai’s clientele could want. It’s all coming in season 3 of the Flesh Cartel.
Seeing Dougie like this was heartbreaking.
For a while now I’ve been trying to identify the weakest link in this chain of horror. Trying to find who or what is going to be the catalysts that will make this entire situation blow up in Nikolai’s face.
And for a moment, at the beginning of Loyalties I thought I found it, but then he went and proved his loyalty once again. Not only that, he actually helped the development of the events that lead to Dougie actually thinking of himself as a pet and putting Nikolai’s pleasure and needs above his.
Just like that I went from liking Roger to hating him in the same measure I hate Nikolai. I pity him too.
I feel sorry for him, because as he was telling Dougie his story, where he came from, it felt like he lost himself in the process. However, Roger still believes that Nikolai save him.
It’s not easy to write a review without spoilers for this chapter as the cliffhanger from episode 7 Homecoming was evil! So I apologize for this… But Mat is back, and it looks like he has a plan.
I am still unsure of how I feel about that plan including Roger, because there was something there, at least on Mat’s side.
Mat´s need for human contact was so strong, and Roger was the only one available to him in that moment. It was confusing and I am still at lost as to what this connection will mean in the future for Mat and even for Roger.
Just another layer in this masterpiece of mind games.
I think we are closing a breaking point, the next couple of episodes will probably be very intense and I am hoping for some kind of indicator that this time, Mat will be strong enough and Dougie will listen to that inner voice that has not yet submit to Nikolai.
But in the meantime, Rachel Haimowitz & Heidi Belleau will put us through hell, I am sure of that. And we will enjoy every bit of it.