TJ Lipton returned from Iraq a changed woman. She has nightmares, doesn't sleep well and has problems concentrating at work. Her partner encouraged her to seek counseling for PTSD but TJ while attending the sessions isn't truly participating. Added to all that, TJ has discovered that straight sweet sex just isn't doing it for her. She wants it rough. She wants to be punished.
After a quick session of sex with a really nice guy, TJ realizes that she needs more and that this guy is not going to do it. After collecting her purse, she head home only to find a business card with the phone number 1-800-DOM-help. She gives it a call and the operator gives her direction to the BDSM club Unfettered.
Cross McNally is a cop and he's seen TJ and her desire to be punished. He's also been a Dom at Unfettered for about a year. He put the business card in TJ's purse and made arrangement for her entrance. Now, if he can just gain her trust. Cross is sure he can give TJ what she wants and needs.
Can TJ take the chance? And, what will happen when TJ realizes that Cross met TJ in Iraq?
I absolutely loved this book and mostly because of TJ.
TJ's character was very complex and very realistic. She spent time in Iraq and came back changed. On the outside she looks the same but inside, mentally, she's not the same person. Her unwillingness to deal with the counselor and taking medication is also prevalent among OIF veterans. Her need was real, even if she didn't understand it.
Now, that isn't to say that Cross's character wasn't equally as well done. It was. He cared and it showed. He also wanted to push TJ as far as he could. The thought that he could break her down to build her back up, similar to what a drill sergeant would do, was explained.
With these two dynamic characters, the emotional pull of this story was outstanding. TJ's frustration came through. Cross's determination was right there with it. As TJ dealt with her nightmares, the horror came across and the reality of war slammed out. Emotions ran the gambit and reached out to draw you in.
The sex was real. What TJ wanted and needed was more than some men could give her. Cross, with the help of a friend, pushed TJ. Cross was able to give TJ what she needed and once she was able to give him her trust, she found herself in a place she wanted to stay in.
As I said, I loved this book and I especially loved the character TJ. As an OIF veteran and by talking to many other veterans, many of us came home with different issues and some problems with PTSD. While everyone doesn't need what TJ does, each does need to find a coping mechanism.
This book also sent me on a fantastic journey of learning. TJ was positive that she didn't belong in the BDSM lifestyle. Her realization that maybe that lifestyle wasn't everything she thought it would be was great. That Cross brought along a friend to help was so terrific. His desire to help TJ and fulfill her needs was bigger than him.
This was my introduction to this new series and I couldn't have asked for a better introduction. Apparently the Unfettered Club disappears once you don't need it any longer but I sure hope that the stories going on in it don't disappear.
She needs punishment…before she deserves pleasure.
Tragedy scarred TJ Lipton. Now the only way she can find pleasure is when it’s delivered with a heavy-handed dose of S&M. But finding a lover who can give her what she needs proves an elusive quest—until she finds the sex club Unfettered and a Dom named Cross McNally.
Cross understands all too well what drives TJ. He takes command of her body to give her everything she needs—restraint, the stinging kiss of a flogger, the thrill of a three-way—a sexual adventure that pulls her beyond her painful past and has her begging for more of his tender brand of domination.