Author: Tasmin Baker
Cover Artist: Jay Aheer
Rating: 1 of 5 Stars
Publication Date: 08/12/2015
Length: Novella (~ 15K-50K)
Genre: Contemporary, M/M Romance
Zach has fulfilled all of his goals in life. He’s successful, wealthy, and a good person. It’s time to find the right guy, and his brother’s hot friend may be just what the doctor ordered.
Dylan loves his life as a firefighter, and when he meets the gorgeous Doctor Zach he decides that a relationship might be worth while.
But Zach isn’t used to putting his work second for anyone, and Dylan’s one night stands haven’t prepared him for the ups and downs of a real relationship. Can a hot fireman and a super sexy doctor make their crazy schedules fit each other? Or will the hazards of their jobs be the end of their happily ever after?
Be Warned: m/m sex, rimming
I don’t even know where to begin with my review of Dr. Zach’s Hot Fireman. I will admit I went into the reading with pretty low expectations — based on the title and cover alone. I know that doesn’t seem fair, but if I go in with low expectations, I can’t be disappointed. Well, this time, I was wrong. Disappointed doesn’t cover it. Offended is a better word. Confused is another good word. As is flabbergasted. But enough of the vocabulary lesson.
The premise of this story is pretty mundane. I was expecting low plot, high heat, and formula. That is what I got as far as those three aspects go. Zach and Dylan are hot together. However, that is the last redeeming quality of this story.
This story is formulaic and predictable. They go hot and heavy for a while; then they break up. A job-related injury, of course, brings them back together to live happily ever after. However, I wasn’t expecting anything less on the plot side of things.
If it had lived up to my expectations, Dr. Zach could have topped out at about a three-star read. However, I had too many issues with the book and the way it was presented to give it anything higher than the one-star I am generously awarding it.
My first issue is that Dylan acts like a twelve-year-old any time he doesn’t get his way. For example, he says in one breath that he understands the demands of Zach’s job. Then in the next, he is breaking up with Zach and giving him the silent treatment.
Now let us get to the offensive part. I am pretty damn hard to offend. I think we take things way to personally here in the US. However, in a genre where we are supposed to be lifting up those who have been marginalized from a young age, offensive terms and situations thrown around casually is not acceptable. Passages such as the following should NEVER appear in an M/M Romance or Gay fiction novel. At least not without them being disputed or censured.
At work, you couldn’t even tell Sam was gay, but put him in a room full of alcohol and other queer guys and he turned into a pansy.
That first quote was part of Zach’s inner dialogue. I don’t think it needs further explanation why it doesn’t belong or which word raised my hackles.
The second passage to give me pause is the following stereotype, used blatantly. This statement is part of Zach’s inner dialogue while observing the interaction between Dylan and a “twink” at a party.
His hands were fluttering over Dylan’s chest and face, his effeminate movements making it clear the boy was a bottom.
Seriously? “effeminate movements” means he is obviously a bottom? Do I need to explain my issue here?
Finally, we have the following.
He looked down at himself. His cock lay limp and satisfied against his belly, his chest smeared with white, sticky cum. His ass was throbbing, covered with lube and his legs were spread like a little bitch. What the hell had happened to him? [sic]
Little bitch? Really? Yeah, no. I can understand Dylan’s need to come to terms with enjoying bottoming when he always has thought he was a top. I can even understand a certain amount of self-loathing during that process. However, this statement was out of character for Dylan on the whole and offensive to any gay man who might read this book.
These aren’t the only instances in the book, only first few to give me pause. In general the author took every possible opportunity to emasculate Dylan. He wasn’t a man in her eyes, and she let us, the readers, know it. In fact, after reading this story, I don’t think she thinks any bottom is a “real man.”
For what it is worth, I ran these passages and a few others by a friend who is as easy going and at least as hard to offend as I am — who also happens to be a gay man — to make sure I wasn’t taking offense when none was deserved. His reaction cemented my opinion.
Does the author even like gay men? That is so … offensive.
So apparently she’s never met a gay man, either.
I had some other issues with this book. The author’s mix of Australian and American slang makes it difficult to place these characters. This issue is something that should be caught during the editing process. Also, the sheer number of typos and punctuation errors took any redeeming value from this story away.
And because I might as well be as complete as possible. Rimming is not taboo. Kink? Maybe. Taboo? Not even remotely. Just saying.
I would like to thank the publisher for providing me with the eARC of this title in exchange for my honest opinion.
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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