Grif’s Toy by Joseph Lance Tonlet ~ Book Review by Caroline

Muscular body Title: Grif’s Toy

Author: Joseph Lance Tonlet

Publisher: Self Published

Cover Artist: unknown

Rating: 5 of 5 Stars


Grif believes he’ll live his life as a virgin. After all, who would want him? How could anyone find him, a guy who came with less than man-sized equipment, worthy of their love?

What he hadn’t counted on were the two amazing men who would change his life. After entering college, he meets Tate, his fun-loving, roommate. While years later, with Tate now just a memory, Wes, a handsome, rugged ex-marine who runs his own security firm enters his life.

Both men lead Grif through a twisted mesh of pleasure, pain, and denial, as they force him to see his value, despite his size and insecurities.


Caroline’s View:

This book will be going straight onto my favourite shelf and will definitely be getting pulled out sooner rather than later for a re-read.

Joseph is a new author to me and as I have said before I always get a little nervous and I am never sure what to expect. Well, I was absolutely blown away by this story! It has a little bit of everything as we go through the years with Grif and watch him learn to live with his personal struggles and how he thinks society views him.

We meet Grif as a teen and he seems like a happy go lucky sort of guy ready for life’s challenges. He is gay out and proud has a great family and then BAM, he gets into a communal shower at school and everything changes in that one moment when he realises he is different. It is apparent when looking at all the other naked guys in the shower, and that in itself is a treat for Grif, that he falls short in one very important area and that revelation will affect his life in ways he couldn’t possibly imagine.

I’m not always a fan of reading a story when the timeline jumps backwards and forwards but in Grif’s Toy it worked. In order to see where Grif was going we had to see where he had been and in order to see where he had been we had to find out where he was going. The two are very much entwined.

One of the greatest things to happen to Grif when he leaves home for college was meeting Tate on his first day. Immediate and fast friends they will live together for the next 4 years and Tate plays a huge part in shaping Grif into the man he will become. Tate was fun and was very quick to read people and it felt like he knew what Grif wanted and needed before Grif knew himself. They lead a very unconventional lifestyle and it certainly wouldn’t suit everyone. It may even seem that Tate is getting everything and using Grif for his own satisfaction, but I was left feeling as though their relationship was equal and that Grif grew in leaps and bounds and got his first chance at working out exactly who he was.

Just before graduation Grif’s life will change dramatically once again and for a while we see him floundering. Although his physical problems are never far from his mind he sets out to make a life for himself, the biggest honour he can give Tate is to succeed and nurture the hand that life has dealt him.

His personal life is the complete opposite to his professional life and is sorely lacking. He refers to his penis as junior and it seems he will never be comfortable with his body and with that thought in mind he can’t expect anyone else to comfortable either. His hook ups provide little satisfaction for him, he will never allow anyone to touch him and he despairs that he will never find anyone that can offer him what Tate had provided.

When he meets Wes during a business interview the lines between personal and professional blur and he is left with a huge feeling of …. what if.

Wes loves hard and fast, likes to dominate and loves a huge side of humiliation. It seems he would be the perfect partner for Grif, who at this point is still a virgin, but that would require a massive amount of trust from Grif and that is not going to come easily.

The affair and subsequent relationship between Grif and Wes and is HOT and downright dirty. There is such a lot for Wes to unravel but for the first time in years it seems that Grif might just throw caution to the wind and cut himself some slack.
This is quite a hard story to read in some places. Society places expectations on us and for anyone that doesn’t conform to the norm life can be extremely difficult. It gives hope that there are people out there like Wes that are able to look much deeper.

I am very excited that Wes is going to get his own book next year and thank you Joseph for giving us such a dark, delicious and heartfelt story!

Buy Links

Amazon US
Amazon UK
Barnes & Noble
Kobo US

I would like to thank the publisher for providing me with the eARC of this title in exchange for my honest opinion.

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,

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