Becoming His Master (Neighborly Affection #4) by M.Q. Barber



From rescue to romance…

 
Teach a wounded submissive the value of his service. The task ought to be an easy one for an experienced dominant like Henry Webb. 
 
But novice Jay Kress challenges his teacher like no other. Still bearing the bruises of an encounter outside the bounds of safe consensual play, Jay is desperate to submit to the man who saved him—and shamed by his desires. 
 
Henry recognizes the dangers of a relationship built on hero worship. He’ll teach Jay how to stay safe, that’s all. He won’t take advantage of the younger man’s trust. He won’t share his fantasies about his dark-haired, athletic student. He’ll never claim this submissive for his own…

I have never read anything by M.Q. Barber, but saw a review for this book. It sounded intriguing and as it was a prequel to the series, I  snatched it up.
Master Henry never gets involved with submissives. He enjoys them at the club or on certain weekends at his friend Will’s cabin, but he never collars one. A week before the story begins, he rescues a male sub whose safeword was ignored by a sadistic top. This book starts with the owner of the BDSM club he attends, asks him to take the boy on until they can get him to act safely.Jay Kness wants to submit, aches to submit. But he had a hard, fast, and cruel introduction to BDSM and doesn’t even understand what his rights are as a sub. And as he has an innate need to please, it makes saying the word “no” virtually impossible. In the world of BDSM, he’s a danger to himself. He already has a bit of a crush on Master Henry since he rescued him the week before and when Henry takes him on as a sub at the club, he’s thrilled.
I loved this story – for several reasons. 1: Master Henry was a good dominant in my opinion. He put Jay’s needs above his own. His sole focus was to get his sub to protect himself. Always paying attention to Jay’s needs, he quickly realized that the play Jay had engaged in was the exact antithesis of everything he wanted. 2: Jay was the perfect newbie sub. New submissives truly don’t understand their power or the fact that it is NOT all about the dom’s wishes. Not until you find one you can trust and then give over that control, anyway. 3: The secondary characters  were well written and I’d love to read a story about the owner of the club and his sub.
While I won’t be reading the rest of the series as M/M/F trios aren’t my thing and that’s what the rest of the series is, I will be keeping my eye out for more MQ Barber books.The reason I gave it four stars instead of five is one thing: The ending was too abrupt. Jay was suddenly a completely different person, unlike the unsure sub we’d seen through 99% of the book. That part felt contrived and not natural, but overall, I did love this book.
USA Today bestselling author M.Q. Barber likes to get lost in thought. She writes things down so she can find herself again.
Often found staring off into space or frantically scratching words on sticky notes, M.Q. lives with one very tolerant, easily amused husband and one very tolerant, easily amused puppy.
She has a soft spot for romances that explore the inner workings of the heart and mind alongside all that steamy physical exertion. She loves memorable characters, witty banter, and heartfelt emotion in any genre.
The former Midwestern gal is the author of the Neighborly Affection contemporary romance series. Pick a safeword, grab a partner or two, and jump in.