Brick by Brick

Maryn Blackburn
Brick by Brick
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Loose Id LLC
Release Date
June 2014
Contemporary Romance, Erotic Romance, LGBTQ, Ménage or more

Natalie and James hook up with handsome actor Gage Strickland in a wine-induced threesome which flouts Natalie's fantasies of being in the middle. While Gage and Natalie pair off, Gage also lets James take him.

James's bisexuality doesn't change Natalie's love. The adventure ignites their sex life for weeks, until it's clear Gage is not going to call. In his usual alpha mode, James attempts to convince his wife to do for him what Gage did, but she refuses.

Then, full of apologies, Gage returns. James seems to prefer watching Gage with Natalie before taking Gage himself over "the usual" with his wife. Luckily, there's one intimacy Gage won't engage—in but Natalie will.

Natalie sees how often James hurts Gage and worries about why the actor would allow it. For love? As submission? A show of devotion? Whatever the reason, James's increasing closeness to Gage, in and out of bed, casts clouds of doubt over the marriage.

When a contrite Gage finally goes to his knees for James, trouble rains down. And if Natalie and James want their marriage to work, they're going to have to rebuild it, the three of them, brick by brick.

Book Review by Delta (reviewer)
Jul 25, 2014   [ OFFICIAL REVIEW ]
187 people found the following review helpful
BRICK BY BRICK will give you "the feels," and not always in a good way. Anger, arousal and happiness will surround you from page one and wrap you quickly into the world of this trio's ménage.

Even after ten years of marriage, James and Natalie Bedwell are still very much in love. Still, inviting another man into their bedroom has been the number one fantasy for both of them for a long time, though neither thought it would happen.

Enter Gage Strickland.

The sexy actor is more than willing to help the Bedwells with their fantasy, but none of them anticipated the "MORE" that happened between the three after just one night together. Even though it takes Gage a while to get up the nerve to call them, James and Natalie welcome him back into their bed with open arms...and legs.

Natalie has always felt confident in her husband's feelings for her, but it's not long before Natalie begins to wonder just how strong her marriage to James really is. After all, Gage gives him something that Natalie doesn't. With the loving glances and lust-fueled touches between the men, Natalie starts to question whether she's even necessary now that Gage gives James everything he wants. It'll take more than just sweet words to heal the wounds they each inflict on one another. James and Natalie will have to repair their marriage, including the permanent addition of Gage, before any of them can fully heal.

BRICK BY BRICK is the debut novel by the talented Ms. Blackburn, and it starts off amazingly hot, with Natalie and James going for Gage like they pick up men all the time. They take him home and blow his mind, making them all want a whole lot more. I really disliked James pretty much throughout the entire book. He was arrogant and pushy and downright rude a lot of the time, especially to Gage. But the way he went hot and cold with Natalie too just ticked me off. James avoided having any meaningful or romantic time with Natalie even when they were alone. The men were totally into one another and Natalie did seem like an extraneous part of their relationship for most of the book. I wished that she would've expressed her concerns to James, but instead she let him walk all over her until she snapped.

Like James, the sex ran hot and cold for me. When Gage was involved with both James and Natalie, the scenes were terrific and super hot. When it was just the two of them...not so much. I think that Ms. Blackburn did an incredible job writing in the first person as Natalie; it made my emotions run higher than they would have if she switched perspectives. I appreciated the realistic dialogue and inner monologue of Natalie, from the frustration of stinky-stained sheets to the pain of her menstrual cramps. The author didn't shy away from adding huge doses of reality into an erotically charged ménage novel.

Whether it was Gage discussing the abuse of his past, James' frustration that Natalie wouldn't let him do anal on her or Natalie feeling left out of the men's growing relationship, BRICK BY BRICK definitely gave me "the feels." And any book that runs the gamut from arousal to anger to excitement is a well-written book to me. This book wasn't all sunshine and unicorns and dealt with a lot of the more personal emotions that someone goes through when they bring someone else into their marriage. BRICK BY BRICK was just awesome and I can't wait to read more from this really excellent author.
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Book Review by BookAddict (reviewer)
Aug 12, 2014   [ OFFICIAL REVIEW ]
175 people found the following review helpful
Ménage with a triad where it's m/m/f is truly delicious. Sometimes, one person gets left out and when it's the woman, there is hell to pay.

Natalie and James are a happily married couple who are doing their best to get by. James is a customized bricklayer who is putting in long hours to keep his company afloat. Natalie is a good housewife who takes care of her husband.

The two of them meet movie star Gage and their life turns upside down. Both of them are attracted to him and he wants them just as much. Sometimes, too much isn't a good thing. The threesome starts out a bit awkward and quickly goes into a honeymoon phase. Before this new relationship can bloom, it withers as Gage never calls Natalie and James back. To bring it back into a second bloom is difficult.

Ms. Blackburn does a good job of showing the pitfalls of a threesome. She also show how things fall apart as well as how a happy marriage can tear apart. Basically, jealousy will eat a person through.

I'm honestly mixed about this story. I liked the ménage. The sex between the men is very hot. The sex with Natalie is not so hot. I think the problem for me in this book is that Natalie is too down on her body. She feels as if she is a 5 and both her husband and their lover are 10. She competes with Gage for her husband's sexual attention and it makes her look needy and petty. She also behaves in some ways which I categorizes as crazy woman logic. At the end of the story, I didn't like her and really felt the threesome should have ended and have Gage drive off into the sunset with James. The two of them have amazing chemistry. Natalie thrown in should have kicked the heat up. Instead, she brings it down and is kind of a dud.

The emotional baggage of this story is also a bit of a drag. Characters are flawed and that's okay. The way these three are designed, it makes them all seem shallow and insecure. When I'm not as fond of the characters, it makes for a difficult read. The sex between Gage and James carried the book. Recommended for ménage lovers who enjoy watching men getting rough with each other.
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