Review: Free Men series by Kate Aaron

OMG...aren't they gorgeous?! I could stare at those covers all day, but I told people I'd share my thoughts on the stories, too, so...

The Slave:
At twenty-seven, Tamelik has been a slave more than half his life, having witnessed his family being murdered in front of him when he was just a child. Naturally submissive, although with a petulant streak, he can’t help but fall in love with the master who treats him kindly.

Tam's dreams come true when his mistress walks out, leaving her husband behind. For six glorious months, he and his master get to be together. Then Tam is ordered to purchase another slave.

He wants to hate Kai for being unruly and ungrateful. For being of the same race as the men who murdered his family. For being his eventual replacement in their master’s bed. But it’s hard to hate a man who cries himself to sleep, flinches at the slightest touch, and blushes beautifully when he’s kissed.

Seducing Kai has suddenly become more challenge than chore, and with his master’s encouragement, Tam finds himself falling for his new companion. Except... nobody can be in love with two people at once, can they?  

My thoughts:
A wonderfully erotic story. Tam's sweet neediness, Kai's developing feelings and growing desire, and Master's delightful ideas all combined into the most deliciously steamy scenes *shivers*

And so much beautiful showing...
Kai's struggle with his new position in life, Master's patience and affection, and Tam's reactions to both men...all made clear through their actions.

Some of my favorite scenes reminded me of ones with Sec and Demetrie from Lia Black's 'Worthy' and ones with Tristan, Jared and Rolex from Witt & Voinov's Market Garden series. If you've read those books, you'll know what I mean. *nods*

The AU story had a historical feel to it, so a few more modern comments and thoughts were a little jarring, but other than that, the writing flowed well for me, keeping me engaged until the end.

The Soldier:
Three months. That’s all it took for Kai to forsake freedom and learn to love his new life as pleasureslave to a wealthy Thirskan Underlord.

Finding himself surrounded by his own people once more, Kai should have been happy: relieved to be rescued from slavery, and out of the clutches of a man who was the sworn enemy of his people. Yet his people are not how he remembers them. Distrustful of Kai, and disgusted by his relationship with not one man but two, they make it abundantly clear he no longer fits in.

Beaten, starved, and tortured, when the chance comes to escape, Kai is barely strong enough to make the journey. Even if he succeeds, how could anybody ever love the thing he’s become in order to survive?

My thoughts:
The first book introduced the characters and set the stage, showing us the attraction and affection between the MCs. This book added a compelling storyline with intense, action packed scenes that hooked me in. It also added an interesting history to the series; a history of the kingdom and of Lysander's family.

The bulk of the story, though, was focused on Kai. Told from his point of view, the story reveals memories from his childhood and the current treatment from his fellow countrymen, including torture that left him questioning his value and place with Tam and Master. It all broke my heart. Poor, sweet Kai. He needed so many hugs.

The pages were full of vivid imagery, words perfectly chosen to describe the scenes and set the mood. There wasn't as much heat as in the first book, but there was sweet emotion and tender feelings as relationships developed and strengthened. A perfect continuation from the first book of the series.

PLUS! A unicorn banner! Could this get any better? I don't think so.

The Master:
Being rescued was only the start.

Otiz lies in ruins. As underlord of the region, Lysander knows where his responsibilities lie. He has an obligation to the survivors to rebuild their homes and their lives. But what about his home, his life?

Kai needs help. The damage inflicted on him goes beyond the marks left when he was tortured, but healing him might require more from Lysander than he’s capable of giving. Of one thing he’s certain: Tam and Kai will never be endangered again because of who he is, even if saving them means setting them free.

All Lysander wants is to be left in peace. To recover from the horrors of his experience at the hands of his enemies. But with pressure piling up from every angle, peace is the last thing he’s likely to find. Suffocated by guilt, Lysander begins to spiral. How can he hold everything together, when inside he’s falling apart?

My thoughts:

While I wanted Lysander's point of view, this story suffered from his conflicted feelings which led to too many internal monologues, reflecting his determination to do one thing even though he desperately wanted to do another.  As he struggled between the two,  he kept deciding on one course of action and then doing the opposite.

The constant back and forth sent mixed messages to Kai and Tam and it made me so angry; one of my MCs was breaking my number one rule, DON'T HURT MY MCs! It makes me crazy when an MC does stupid stuff for someone else's 'own good'. Also, the self-sacrifice got old fast; I had no patience for the martyrdom.

It all dragged on way too long.

Then, finally, it got better. Thanks to Kai. *nods* Kai knew what was what. And eventually the whole story came out and even made sense, kind of. But I was still irritated we had to go through all the nonsense first, and for so long.

All that, and a few minor editing issues I didn't notice in the first two books, and this last story of the series just barely got the four hearts from me, and that mostly because I loved the other two books so much and I wanted my HEA.

As a whole, though, the series is definitely a new favorite of mine.

Find more info on Goodreads.


  1. The cover caught my eye immediately - just stunning. It's already on my list, you've just confirmed that it was the right decision ❤️

  2. Yes, you do, Cupcake!

    and Lorraine, I hope you enjoy the series as much as I did :)