Author: J.R. Gray
Release Date (Ebook & Print): July 24
Note: Say Yes was originally published in an alternative form by Omni Lit Publishing on December 1, 2015.
Length (word count): 35K words, 126 pages
Subgenre: Contemporary M/M BDSM
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Reviewed by Erin
He tried to be what they wanted.
He tried to deny it.
He tried to be a good Catholic boy…but it’s become too much.
He craves pain, submission.
He’s denied himself far too long, and it’s eating him alive.
Charles thrives off the exchange of power. He knows the world revolves around control. It’s given and taken like currency, in business and in pleasure. He won’t get attached, though, or so he tells himself, until James turns his world upside down. He’s defiant and snarky, but Charles can taste the submission on him.
Charles holds the key to his salvation but James has to Say Yes.
I love BDSM stories when they're written well. I love when there's an age gap. I love when there's a bit of cat and mouse, when there's a chase and the two main characters don't immediately fall into bed with one another. All of this and more is present in JR Gray's Say Yes. This is a re-release of an earlier edition that has an absolutely GORGEOUS new cover and it's been expanded a bit from the original version. I read that one and really liked it, but reading it through again, I loved it. Charles and James hit all of my buttons ... and some I didn't even know I had.
James is a nineteen year old college student. His father has recently passed away, his mother has cut him off, and he's working in a men's store selling fine suits, shirts, and ties. He's gay, but not out, and is struggling to make ends meet after a lifetime of wealth and privilege. But he's surviving, no matter that he's still reeling from the death of his father who he misses desperately. His life is turned upside down when a man walks into the store late one night. Charles is commanding, a charismatic presence and James is immediately drawn to him. Charles wants James from the very first moment, and James, though young and inexperienced, is not one to just to surrender from a heated glaze and dirty words. I loved the chemistry between these two. It's intense and sizzling ... and I believed it. I loved how strong James is, and though he hasn't admitted to anyone the darker desires he keeps hidden in his heart, he's unafraid of them.
This is a short book, so there's not a lot of back story or time for much build-up. I would have loved for more information about Charles, more of James's relationship with his father, and more of why there is the cold animosity from James's mother, but that doesn't mean that I didn't completely get sucked into Say Yes, because I did. There is something so strong and appealing about James and Charles that just gripped me from the first page. The writing is crisp and sharp, the pace lightning quick and the sex ... oh boy, it's hot and intense. James's witty humor and sarcasm is fun and Charles with his dry tone just made me smile. I can't wait to see what comes next for these two so if you haven't checked out Say Yes yet, make sure you correct that ASAP!
Let’s talk about your writing process. From beginning to end what’s it like for you?
My process is all over the place. It ends up being different for each book. Some books I write start to finish, and others I write out of order. Some books I write really fast, and then others like Clouded Hell and Bound Five took me months. I think each book is a different journey so my writing process is different.
You have added chapters to Say Yes. Can you tell readers who read the first edition what they can expect?
I think the added chapters really round out the end of the story, and then give some bonus insight into life after the resolution, and some more fun.
What made you add on to Say Yes?
I wanted to give the readers more at the end of the book. A glimpse of James’ training starting.
Can you tell us what you are currently working on or future projects?
I am working on a couple of things. Bound Five is with my betas, I have a new book due out in September, and the sequel to Say Yes.
What is the easiest and hardest part about publishing a book?
For me finishing a book is always the hardest. The last 10 to 15k always drags for me. The easiest part for me is starting. I love writing new things. I love world building, and I love fleshing out characters.
Of all the characters you’ve written which one resonates with you?
Funny enough, different characters resonate with me depending on my mood. I put a little part of myself into most of my characters, but overall I think it’s a tie between James and Steve.
He took another few breaths then walked back toward the changing rooms. “Let me know if there is anything else you
need.” James was proud of how even his voice sounded. He would get Charles out of here and then go home to gay porn and cold showers. He had three more years at least, and he had to find a few ounces of self-control to make it through.
“I could use some help.”
“Sure.” James put a smile on his face and came around the corner again to find Charles leaning back against the mirrors with the dress shirt he wore unbuttoned, showing off his cut chest. James followed it down to where Charles gripped himself through his slacks.
“Want to help?”
James swallowed hard.
James swallowed hard.
When not staying up all night writing, J.R. Gray can be found at the gym where it's half assumed he is a permanent resident to fulfill his self-inflicted masochism. A dominant and a pilot, Gray finds it hard to be in the passenger seat of any car. He frequently interrupts real life, including normal sleep patterns and conversations, to jot down notes or plot bunnies. Commas are the bane of his existence even though it's been fully acknowledged they are necessary, they continue to baffle and bewilder. If Gray wasn't writing…well, that's not possible. The buildup of untold stories would haunt Gray into an early grave, insanity or both. The idea of haunting has always appealed to him. J.R. Gray is genderqueer and prefers he/him pronouns.
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