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Redemption Paperback – April 1, 2012
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About the Author
Livvie has been writing in one form or another for more than fifteen years. Enough kind people encouraged her, that she decided to try her luck in the wild and woolly world of indie publishing. So far, so good. Olivia Duncan Craig is not her real name. For various reasons, she needs to lead a double life. That may change one day. She is based out of Washington, DC, but travels extensively for work and play. She just returned from London and has trips planned to Barcelona and Sydney before the year is out. She lives with her adorable dog and long-suffering cat. Her apartment overlooks the water. Life is good.
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A futuristic tale, "REDEMPTION" chronicles the life of Jason, who chooses to become a bondsman, signing away 20 years of his life as a personal assistant and companion to interplanetary industrialist Devin Blair. Jason sees no alternative for acquiring enough credits for what remains of his family to escape to the edge of the Galaxy and safety from Fred Lehman, the murderer of Jason's parents and brother, Aaron. "The man Jason becomes that day is alone, with no ties to the past. No gray, just black and white, before and after."
After a disastrous marriage to a Hollywood star and yet another personal assistant's exit because of pregnancy, Devin Blair opts for a male bondmate relationship. It meant an assistant at work and a lover at home, and one unencumbered by female foibles. Selfish? Maybe.
Devin checks his messages before meeting with FIF's attorneys for a proposed merger. Redemption Unlimited, Earth's leading provider of high-end bondmates, has sent a dossier on a potential candidate and an appointment for later that day. He considers declining until he opens the file, and then he reconsiders.
Enclosed is a photo of Jason, the candidate. "Dressed in the classic bondsman apparel, as was fitting for a first visit, he looked good...The clothes suited him...On some, the outfit looked like expensive pajamas; on him it emphasized the width of his shoulders, his narrow waist, and long, smooth neck. No doubt about it. He was tempting."
So begins the relationship between st8 Jason and bisexual Devin. At this time, society accepts same-gender relationships and indentured servitude, but others, such as Devin's father and Vince Fairburn, CEO of FIF, legal bondage remains questionable, if not immoral.
Nonetheless, Jason agrees to honor every condition of the contract, even to having sex with his contract-holder. Jason believes he has more to bring to the relationship than the physical; he has a degree in holographic design and earning a Master of Arts degree. Fulfilling the work requirements should be easy, but the companionship part concerns him. All would be well with this new anonymous persona until Fred Lehman discovers Jason's whereabouts. One evening while enjoying a leisurely stroll, an assailant attacks Jason and Devin, and Devin suffers a knife wound. Jason knows it's his fault, putting Devin in danger. Jason decides to run, but Lehman's thugs capture him.
Devin leaves the hospital, and with the help of David Benedetto, the corporation's security chief, goes to find Jason, who has come to mean a great deal more than a bondmate.
The story is well plotted and written, and the relationship between Jason and Devin explored. Jason grabs the heart, making him easy to admire; Devin’s likability takes a while, but he eventually warms. Secondary characters appear, adding to the narrative. With no major diction, punctuation, or formatting distractions, REDEMPTION is an easy read.
Read this enthralling tale of devotion and danger to see if Jason and Devin's love can overcome adversity. Four-star recommendation.
In a way, Jason is lucky since the one to buy the contract is Devin, an handsome man in his thirties who is basically a workaholic without time for a private life. Buying a bondmate is a perfect solution, during the day Jason will be Devin's personal assistant, during the night he will share his bed, if Devin is in the mood, or otherwise he will stay in his room, without risk to hear recrimination. Devin's former wife was a society butterfly and she left when she realized Devin was not her personal escort, but he had actually a job he had to do.
I liked the contrast between Jason's expected role and his physical appearance: Jason is strong and young, not at all weak, and if not for the urgent need of money, he had also perspective on the future, he was a post-graduate student with excellent credentials. When Devin takes him home, I had the feeling Jason felt like an elephant in a glass shop, and I think also Devin was questioning if he had done the right choice.
Another interesting point is how homosexuality in this futuristic society is no more a taboo, basically everyone is bisexual, and indeed Jason had only one previous homosexual experience, but he has no issue at all at being bought by a man, while instead Devin, from what I understood, had his same share of women and men in the past, and I think he has picked a man now since he is still burned by the bad experience with his ex-wife.