Straight Shooter by Heidi Belleau ~ Review by Optimist ♰King’s Wench♰

Ms. Belleau finished the Rear Entrance Video series with a bang, not a whimper. By the by, I didn’t review Wallflower for the blog but it too was excellent.

18808267Title:  Straight Shooter (Rear Entrance Video #3)

Author:  Heidi Belleau

Publisher:  Riptide

Rating: 5 out of 5 Stars

From the Publisher

This macho jock has a crooked little secret.

College hockey player Austin Puett is in trouble. Unless he starts treating his flamboyantly gay roommate with respect, he’ll lose his room and his job at Rear Entrance Video. But Austin’s got a not-so-straight secret of his own: nothing turns him on more than insults implying he’s gay—even though he’s definitely not!—and all his old coping methods have stopped working.

Pure desperation drives him to rent a Mischievous Pictures porn flick about straight men tricked into servicing Puck, a male dominant. Instead of letting off steam, though, it just leaves him craving more, more, more, and suddenly, Austin finds himself at Mischievous Pictures Studios for an audition. After all, you can be Gay For Pay and still be straight . . . right?

But meeting Liam Williams, the real person behind Puck, confuses Austin even more. Liam really seems to like him as a person, and Austin likes him back. And while Gay For Pay’s okay, what does it make Austin if he still wants Liam when the cameras aren’t rolling?

My View

Straight Shooter was one of those reads. You know the ones. The ones that suck you in and you can’t put them down. You have to know. You ignore your friends. You procrastinate on projects. You forego sleep. I started this thinking, ‘I’ll read a few chapters then go back to the other book’. Famous last words. And the other book doesn’t suck. At all. Simply put, Straight Shooter overtook over my life for a day and half.

Austin is like a lot of guys I know and have known. They’re simple and I don’t mean that derogatorily. They see the world in black and white, good or bad. They enjoy the simple pleasures. They don’t need all the extraneous crap people surround themselves with. They may be a bit narrow-minded, but generally speaking they are good, hard working people. Austin is a team player, a hockey player, always has been. Austin’s mentality is: what’s best for the team is what’s best. Like most athletes, he at his finest in a reward/punishment system; he needs validation for his good deeds, but he’s not afraid to take one for the team either.

“He was a hockey player, dammit. He wasn’t fucking built to do this much thinking. Split second decisions, that was what Austin was good at.”

“Austin was nothing, on his own. But in a team, even a team of two, he was a giant.”

Austin has backed himself into a corner with his roommates forcing Noah to give him an ultimatum-‘shape up or ship out’. Shortly thereafter the proverbial shit hits the fan with his hockey team and he’s labeled a traitor. Really nothing is going Austin’s way. What’s got him spinning isn’t his roommates’ newly discovered gayness nor his ouster from the hockey team in and of themselves. No. Austin is, as Max so delicately puts it, “repressed”.

Austin has a humiliation fetish. He has done everything he can think of to get rid of it, to purge it from his system including hitting himself, cutting, extreme work outs which cause him actual pain and running until he pukes. Nothing works. Nothing ever works. In fact, it seems to be getting worse putting him at risk for being outted as gay by his teammates since degrading smack talk is de rigueur in the locker room and, coincidentally, exactly what turns him on. Austin needs to find an outlet. Soon.

A customer returns a video one night called STRAIGHT SUB SETUP 4, a BDSM video with Master Puck and Mistress Titiana as the dominants who set up the straight guy. Not gay, right? There’s a girl in it. Naturally, this doesn’t cure him. Next step in the plan is gorging on gay porn, none of which does much for him. Master Puck does it for him. Does that make him gay? As fortune or misfortune would have it Master Puck/Liam Williams, owner of Mischievous Pictures Studios, strolls right into Rear Entrance Video and turns Austin’s life into a waking dream or is it a nightmare?

He wanted to lose, and badly. Wanted to lose everything to Liam, be taken down to nothing, give into his terrible urges but take on none of the fault. Because it would be Liam’s fault, Liam’s responsibility. Liam’s responisbility for turning Austin and changing him and breaking him, and then it would be over and Austin would be himself again, and there’d be no guilt at all, except for whatever Liam carried.

Austin believes Liam/Master Puck holds the key. He can fix him. He can make it go away. So, in an impulsive and reckless decision he propositions Liam to star in one of his videos and gets turned down. But, Austin’s played this game all his life. Remember, he’s a team player. He knows what it means to sacrifice, to work for what you want, to make a plan and stick to it.

Endurance
Resiliency
Commitment
Discipline
Tenacity

“Being a part of a team meant conforming.”

Austin Puett knows what he wants he just has to find a way to get Liam to give it to him without ruining his life and, possibly, his career in the process. However, it has to be a secret and he needs assurances that this doesn’t make him gay! Does it?

This is where I really have to commend Ms. Belleau. Read any non fiction BDSM novel or talk to anyone actively involved in the community and they will confirm that BDSM doesn’t have to involve sex. It’s a power exchange. Austin has a humiliation fetish which Master Puck/Liam plugs directly into. He needs to be forced, overpowered, degraded, punished, used and having all of that done by a man intensifies the humiliation as well as the gratification. I don’t believe Austin could truly let go with a female dominant or that it would be as powerful a connection. He’s been involved in hockey since childhood, works out like a demon and as we would say in the South, is built like a brick shithouse. He needs to be able to fight back and Master Puck provides him that opportunity safely with the added bonus of being male-the cherry on top of his humiliation pie.

“And that’s what Austin wanted. To be overpowered and used. Sexually. He wasn’t about to start scrubbing Master Puck’s floors unless he was doing it butt naked on his hands and knees.”

Does that make him bisexual? Maybe. I’m on the fence about labeling someone bisexual within this context. Austin needs Liam, wants to serve him, submit to him, wants to make him happy and will do anything to prove he can take it, so he can get his reward. Do they form an intense connection? Sure they do. Will it last? Can anyone definitively say yes to this question? Ever?

“As much of myself as I can, for as long as I can.”

The lifeblood of the entirety of this series is these three men-Christian, Rob/Bobby and Austin-grappling with their sexuality. The latter two of which have sexualities that aren’t easily defined in conventional terms. Additionally, they’re in college trying to define their future, in the first flush of independence and trying to carve a place in the world that is their own. Heady stuff. This entire series is phenomenal and has safely ensconced Ms. Belleau at the top of my list of authors to stalk adore, but Straight Shooter is definitely my favorite.

“You made me feel like there was still order in the world. Like even if it felt like everything was falling apart, I knew it never would completely, because you would always be there. In the centre.”

I would label the BDSM in the mild to moderate range. I was actually anticipating heavier play, but I’m probably biased. I believe Ms. Belleau labeled it “heavy”, so I would take her word over mine. For those who enjoy humiliation, Straight Shooter should be right up your alley.

Where to Buy

Riptide

I would like to thank Riptide for providing me with an ARC of this book in exchange for my honest review.

Farewell Giveaway
I have a number of paperbacks, most of which are signed, to giveaway. Over the between now (11 Mar 2017) and 31 Mar 2017, every comment on the blog (this post and all other new posts), will be entered to win 1 of these paperbacks. There are also some misc swag items, so there will be a few packs of these to give away as well.

Thank you so much for your support over the last 4 years. Prism will be closing its doors on 1 April 2017. All content will remain available, but no new content will appear after 31 Mar 2017. As such all request forms have been turned off. Again Thank you,

Brandilyn
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