Book Reviews

Serving Him (The Retreat 1) by L.M. Somerton at Pride Publishing

Genre Gay / Contemporary / BDSM / Erotic Romance
Reviewed by Christy Duke on 09-August-2018

Book Blurb

Rowan Stanton knows he is submissive. He loves to look after people but the country hotel he works at can’t quite fulfill his need to serve. When he succeeds at getting a new role as houseboy at The Retreat, an exclusive BDSM hideaway in the New Forest, he believes it’s his dream job. Inexperienced in many ways, he soon realizes he’s not as prepared as he thought for the demands placed upon him.


Lorcan Wilder is young, rich and successful. He’s also haunted by nightmares and has sacrificed a decade to his business. Selling it gives him the freedom to explore his Dominant side and four weeks at The Retreat are the start of a new life. He doesn’t expect the young submissive employed to serve him will have such a profound effect on him. Exploring and pushing Rowan’s boundaries is exactly what Lorcan needs to separate himself from his past.


Lorcan makes full use of The Retreat’s facilities, from the genuine dungeon to the secret toys concealed in every room. He rediscovers his energy for life and gradually re-engages with the world. However, his efforts to compartmentalize the past ultimately fail and he comes to realize what he’s always known—that true submissives have an inner strength he can only envy.


By the end of his stay, Lorcan can’t let Rowan go, though he thinks he must. What will convince him that he’s allowed a happy ever after, and will he find the courage to accept it?


Book Review

I am ecstatic that the author decided to write a crossover series based on the BDSM retreat created by Carey and Alistair, two of my favorite characters from L.M. Somerton’s ‘Tales from the Edge’ series. Since that series continues to reign as one of my all-time favorites in the Dom/sub genre, I was delighted to see some favorite characters (Olly!) plus watch as The Retreat took its very first client. The Retreat is different from The Edge in that it is designed to handle one client at a time, to fulfill all of their requirements, and provide them with efficient staff to each client’s specifications, especially in terms of submissives. I found that entire concept to be utterly fascinating so I was really looking forward to Lorcan and Rowan’s story.

I enjoyed getting to know Lorcan. The intrigue revolving around something that happened to him in his earlier years was a part of his storyline but it didn’t overtake it, in my opinion. Lorcan is young, not quite thirty, and he started his own business at nineteen, worked extremely hard, and now ten years later he has sold the company and can focus on himself. Most of that focus involves immersing himself in the Dom/sub lifestyle which he has neglected, except for random evenings here and there, so Lorcan is determined to make the most of his month stay at The Retreat. The owners have provided him with a sub, a perfect one to match his desires, and Lorcan can’t wait to experience everything with Rowan.

Rowan is beyond wonderful. He’s submissive and has known that for a long time although he doesn’t have a lot of experience. Nothing makes him happier than to serve someone, to take care of them and see to their needs. He was beyond excited when he got accepted to work at The Retreat. He had learned quite a bit at the hotel he worked at but it didn’t give him the opportunity to serve one-on-one that he craves. Not to mention the Dom/sub lifestyle he longs for. Meeting Lorcan begins Rowan’s journey and he finds it very difficult to keep his emotions from becoming involved the longer they spend time together.

This first glimpse into the world of ‘The Retreat’ was quite marvelous. As much as I liked Rowan and Lorcan, I’m far more curious about the secondary characters, in particular Luke, the house manager, and Tor, the chef. Something tells me their stories will be well worth the wait! A very good beginning that I hope the author builds on and expands.





DISCLAIMER: Books reviewed on this site were usually provided at no cost by the publisher or author. This book has been provided by Pride Publishing for the purpose of a review.

Additional Information

Format ebook and print
Length Novel, 151 pages/57670 words
Heat Level
Publication Date 24-July-2018
Price $3.99 ebook, $10.99 paperback
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