Reviewed by Elizabetta
TITLE: Serve Me (Anthology)
AUTHORS: Anna Hedley, Gabriel Belthir, Lor Rose, Fox Lee
PUBLISHER: Storm Moon Press
LENGTH: 129 pages
BLURB: For some people there’s nothing more appealing than the idea of a man forced to serve against his will, as a second-class citizen: a slave. Despite the dark history surrounding forced servitude and slavery, there remains a growing desire for depictions of fetishized slavery fantasies. Like rape fantasy, the appeal for readers in slave fiction lies not in a desire for the actual act, but in the ability to explore such things in a safe space. Many people harbor a secret wish to be forced into certain acts that they know they want, but have been socially conditioned to abhor. Such is the core of the Serve Me anthology. Be warned: these are not stories of consensual, negotiated power exchange. The stories in this anthology focus on true sexualized, erotic slavery: stories of men forced, coerced, or otherwise bound into a second-class life servicing another in whatever ways their master sees fit.
Idris is part of The Spoils of war: the last surviving member of a barbarian clan, he is famed in the gladiatorial arena for his bloody ruthlessness and outside the arena for his carnal appetites. His inner beast is calmed by the presence of his slave and lover, Theo, but to be true to his heart, Idris may have to risk breaking it. Samuel has spent years striving toward the Viscount’s circles, where rich and fantastical parties are given and elaborate slave auctions held. He thinks he wants a young lover, but when he buys an Adonis known as Apollo, he realizes what he was truly missing. Now Apollo gives the orders, and it is Samuel saying, As You Wish. Life is Unforgiving for Aidan and Aaron, criminals who have been doomed to live as slaves to vampire masters, whose appetites can be agony… or bliss. When Aidan is given a new lease on life with a benevolent Master, his relief is tainted by pain at leaving Aaron behind; pain which only his Master Ryce has the power to end. Yuta is a gentle giant who joins a local gang for the sense of family that they can provide, but when they leave him high and dry in the middle of a failed heist, it’s his captor, Takashima, who shows him what family can really mean as the vicious gang enforcer tenderly turns him into Takashima’s Pet.
Forced servitude is the common theme in this anthology about slave fantasies. If non-con, multiple partners, slave pets, bondage, and humiliation are triggers, stay away. If not, you may find something here to titillate.
Overall rating = 3.0 stars
The Spoils by Anna Hedley
Idris’ berserker skills make him a formidable combatant in the arena where he fights for the entertainment and gain of his Master. Problem is, Idris can’t control when he “whites out” and goes crazy on his opponents’ asses, and he remains invincible. That is, until he meets the snarky demon Kage, who kicks his butt; until he starts hallucinating the ghosts of all those he’s killed in the arena.
Idris is going through the motions, he’s had enough of the carnage and chewing on his opponent’s guts. Theo, a maenad (confusing, as they are supposed to be feminine; or maybe this is a playful poke at girly guys?) pleasure slave with magic healing skills, is given to Idris. He and Theo take a pretty quick cottoning to each other… or maybe Idris just appreciates healing massages… and Theo just wants his freedom. Anyway, I’m not really feeling it.
Kage, however, is fun. He’s a sexy, wise-cracking ninja master with a wicked toothed whip, and he knows how to take control. We don’t get nearly enough of this demon match-maker.
The debauchery à la ancient Rome, is chock-a-block with lusty pleasure slave rapey-ness, multiple partners, oily wrestling, public sex and humiliation, and even a double penetration. So, lots of fluid swapping excess swamps the action.
As You Wish by Gabriel Belthir
Set in a pseudo Victorian-era England, a young working stiff gets his fondest wish when he is invited to hobnob with the ton. It’s never clear just what Samuel’s allure is to Viscount Edmund Kaylock, why he’s been invited to his private slave auction at the mansion– I was eager for more information about that.
Samuel can’t believe his good fortune as he surveys the tall and massive, ebony skinned, Apollo, up for bid. This slave spells danger, is rumored to have murdered, but that doesn’t stop Samuel from taking him home.
There is some initial awkward racial “Mandingo” stereotyping that had me worried. But a nice role twist develops and Apollo eventually shows insight and ingenuity. I found this mostly pedestrian though, and there’s not a lot of world-building. But, there is a hot role-play scene and the relationship works sweetly in the end.
Life is Unforgiving by Lor Rose
In this paranormal vamp story the slaves are called ‘blood bags’. Vamps, or Daeva, are out in the world but feared by all. And they are allowed to take slaves.
Aidan is discarded by his old Master; he’s sold to Ryce who is quite gentle and indulgent with him. So things start looking up for the horribly abused Aidan. There is a very hot menage scene– Aidan is the middle in a vamp sandwich with Ryce and vamp friend, Levant. They work very well together, in concert and synchronized… oh hell, the whole thing is sexy. Let’s just say that Aidan’s luck has changed when he discovers vamp sex. He may even find vamp love. This is my favorite of the anthology, I like Ryce’s treatment of Aidan throughout and his promising him a happy ever after is sweetly romantic.
Takashima’s Pet by Fox Lee
Yuta has the misfortune of getting caught when his gang attempts to rob Takashima’s warehouse; they take off running, leaving him behind. Fortunately, the well-known yakuza likes the look of Yuta and gives him the choice of death or becoming his sex slave.
The first day Takashima keeps Yuta he leaves him alone bound, ball-gagged and catheterized, on his bed. For the whole day. Alone. No food, no water. This was completely unappealing. It doesn’t matter what Takeshima thinks of Yuta, it’s just plain dangerous behavior. The blurb says that Takashima tenderly teaches Yuta the meaning of family. It’s all relative I suppose, as Yuta hasn’t known much tender love in his life. He quickly adapts to being Takashima’s pet, and says he’s in love and in it for the long haul. Not surprising since he doesn’t have anywhere else to go. I didn’t find this particularly romantic or erotic, I couldn’t get past the initial abuse.
Elizabetta is one of the official reviewers on The Blog of Sid Love.
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