For fans who loved the snarky wit of Will & Grace and the epic love drama found in Brokeback Mountain comes Avery Aster's new full-length, standalone contemporary erotic M/M romance novel, Unsaid.
Chelsea’s hottie Blake Morgan III has reemerged from a nasty breakup. His marriage was a frigid disaster beyond repair, and he vows to be single—forever. Bruised, but still hot in Prada, he creates his Seven Desires wish list, his sexiest imaginings. Blake soon realizes there’s only one man he may trust to make these uninhibited intentions come to fruition: his best friend Miguel Santana.
Lower East Side multimedia artist extraordinaire Miguel Santana may be known as the cocky Latin stud in the city, but all he’s wanted since college was Blake’s hand in marriage. He was livid when Blake walked down the aisle with the wrong guy. Miguel has his own list titled the Seven Needs, which are quite contrary to Blake’s dirty-boy deeds. They involve serious commitments, which may leave his new-to-the-singles-scene buddy sprinting for the door, destroying any hopes Miguel has for happiness.
Can these two hunks conquer their intimate fears and love one another as only best friends can? Join the star-studded cast in The Manhattanites series and see for yourself!
Exciting him all the more, Miguel pushed him against the table. His friend’s actions may have been plain old-fashioned lust, but someone sought him, in the flesh. Not for his monetary assets, but for his ass.
“I want my tongue inside your hot mouth.”
He wrapped his right leg around his friend’s tight waist. The warm friendship blanketed them, making him feel desired. He’d never been kissed by anyone but his ex-husband before. This felt different. Real. Mutual. His buddy tilted his head to the side. Bit by bit, Miguel gazed down over his forehead and finally rested upon his eyes, almost speaking intently, as if saying, I’m going to give you the passion you’ve always wanted. I’ll fill your need. Miguel brought his tongue to a long-stroked lick over Blake’s bottom lip before plunging into his mouth, deep and hard with a grunting moan. Breathless as a teenager kissed for the first time, his cock stiffened all over again.
“You’re going to be my niño this week,” he muttered in a thick accent.
Relishing in the forceful kiss, exhilarated in agreement, he forgot the Hell and nightmare he’d been living in and answered, “Yes, I’ll be your boy this week.” Blake wondered how he’d ever be able to walk away from him once the lists were completed. Would they be able to go back to being best friends? More importantly, if he told Miguel the truth, could he keep it a secret?
Many thanks to Gossip Girls PR and Avery Aster for providing me a free copy of Unsaid, in exchange for my honest review.
At first glance we see that this is book is the third in the Manhattanites series, even though it’s advertised as a standalone. I did a little preliminary research into the series and found that even though this series boasts a huge cast of characters, I was able to follow along with not much trouble. All of the characters are friends from boarding school and beyond. After graduation they all remained close, all working together in their various businesses.
After college Blake thought he knew what he wanted - a committed marriage and eventually a child. He thought that was what he was getting when he married Diego. Unfortunately Diego had issues that Blake never anticipated, and after five years of trying to hold it together they divorce. Thanks to Diego’s “issues” Blake found himself virtually celibate for the majority of their marriage. Miguel is one of Blake’s best friends, and an artist, hailed as the next Salvador Dali. Miguel is Mexican royalty, and is in the closet, unlike Blake.
Blake has a lunch with his friends Vive and Thor, during which a list is made of his seven desires- seven sexual acts that he wants to participate in. Actually Thor and Vive (who were thoroughly soused at the time) made most of the list for him, which included some pretty rough sex. He’s not too sure about all of this craziness, but goes along with it anyway, right up to them taking him to a spa to have some pampering and manscaping done. Vive has set him up with two tops, since his real desire is to bottom, even though his entire life he has been a top, or the dominant in the relationship. Or to put it even more plainly, the pitcher, not the catcher.
That was one of the points in this book, that male bottoms, or subs for that matter, are seen as less than by male tops - but hey, if you're gonna have a m/m somebody’s gotta catch sometime, right? I don’t get the stigma - wait, yes I do, they treat them like… hey wait a minute - girls, amirite? (cue the heavy sarcasm here) Yes kids, men are pigs all over. (Just kidding guys, we’ve all got to share the same pigpen, so let’s all be nice.)
Unknown to Blake, Vive and Thor forward the list to Miguel. They know that Miguel has been in love with Blake since college, so their intent is twofold. Unable to stomach the idea of Blake with anyone else, Miguel does step in to fulfil Blake’s list. However, he has a list of his own. While Blake’s list is mostly of sexual acts, Miguel’s list is a little more personal, with things like moving in with him, sharing domestic life, and accompanying him to a dinner with his parents where he plans to come out to them. Blake is leery about any kind of commitment, even though it’s pretty obvious that he has been crazy about Miguel for some time. In fact you wonder just why he married Diego. Their married life and breakup is a mystery, and based on the nightmares that Blake has in his first nights at Miguel’s there was more to it than he let on to his friends. Diego makes contact with Blake, threatening him with something that he’s done that Blake has knowledge of. Blake has put Diego up at some fancy hotel, and you get the feeling that he threw money at a problem trying to make it go away. Blake is antsy, and you don’t find out why until much later. It’s much more serious than anyone suspects.
As it goes on, Miguel and Blake are working on both of the lists, and let me say right here that I have learned more about anal sex in this book than I ever wanted to know. I was big eyed and blushing for some parts, and that hardly ever happens to me anymore. They dance around the actual sex for the entire book, doing other things all the while. (They lost me on the golden shower, dude that is just….un-right….**shudders**) All the while Miguel is pushing for a deeper relationship, while not actually coming out and talking about it. But Blake has his own secrets, and when they are revealed the truth is shocking.
So, why did I give this book a 3.5 and not the four that I probably should have: mostly because I had a hard time connecting with the characters. It all seemed to move very fast, and I would have like to see some more character development. Now, given that it is the third in a series, the development I was looking for may have been shown in the previous books. I would have like to have known more about Blake and Diego’s marriage than we were shown.
I very much liked how this book made you think about the social roles of tops vs. bottoms, or dom vs. subs, however you want to say it. Also, perhaps this is just my bank account talking, but it amazed me just how much money these people have. It was enough to make me sit back and say whoa, I can’t imagine anyone actually living like that. It must be nice! This is one of my first straight up m/m books, and I blew through it very quickly. It did read a bit like a soap opera, albeit a very dirty one (lol) and although I liked it well enough, I don’t know that I will be going back for the rest of the series. To think of it though, this author is releasing a prequel set of stories for these characters, called the Undergrad years, and perhaps if I started from there some more of my questions will be answered.
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Milan’s notorious playboy, Prince Tittoni, seems to have everything—Lamborghinis, exotic women, palaces throughout Europe and business success. Ramping up his fabric company to go global with a new apparel brand, he ruthlessly stops supplying fabrics to the American client who inspired the collection. But once they meet, what’s he willing to give to get her in his bed?
Upper East Side designer Lex Easton has already endured her fair share of hard knocks. She’ll be damned if she’ll let an Italian stud muffin knock her down. So what if she named her favorite vibrator after him? With Fashion Week approaching, she’ll do whatever it takes to secure the fabrics she needs to make her clothing line an international success—even sleep with her rival.
Lex’s Louboutins are dug in deep to win this war. All’s fair in love and fashion!
Inside Scoop: Though the hero and heroine remain monogamous, their Prada-wearing friends indulge in a ménage a trois and other fashionable sexual fun and games.
New York Times bestselling author Avery Aster pens The Manhattanites, a contemporary erotic romance series of full-length, stand-alone novels, and the naughty new adult prequel companion series The Undergrad Years.
As a resident of New York City and a graduate from New York University, Avery gives readers an inside look at the city’s glitzy nightlife, socialite sexcapades and tall tales of the über-rich and ultra-famous.
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