Review: Dark Horse Bundle by Kate Sherwood

Dan Wheeler thought he’d found lasting love and stability, but when it’s all taken away, can he take a chance on something new? In Dark Horse, Dan meets Evan Kaminski and Jeff Stevens while selling a horse and finds himself drawn to the pair of lovers. In Out of the Darkness, Dan is building a new life for himself in California with Evan and Jeff, but can the three of them find balance in their tumultuous relationship? In Of Dark and Bright, Dan, Evan, and Jeff have found their happily-ever-after—mostly—but when Dan’s long-lost sister shows up on their doorstep, the pressure may crack their foundations.

I was going to review each story individually and give each book an individual rating, but after the first book, Dark horse, I was torn. I would not have a enjoyed that book as a standalone and probably wouldn't have continued the series if it wasn't in a bundle. But because I went into this thinking of reading the bundle straight through as one book, I really liked ‘Dark Horse’ as an ‘introduction’ to the relationship and characters. So I'm going to review the bundle as one novel.

Argh. This series was simultaneously wonderful and fucking frustrating. I'll start with the good stuff. The characters were amazing, and the relationship building wonderfully detailed. This series really touched on some of the finer issues involved in commencing a threesome, especially with an already established couple. Each man had to work through insecurities and jealousy to make the relationship work. We also saw how each of these three men complimented each other, and how no two men would have been able to make a relationship work without the third.

The sex did take a little while to get started, but if you're looking at the bundle as one novel, it'd only be about 35% in, which isn't too bad. The sex was always always super hot, although I did have issues with some off page ‘first times’ which I'll get to in the negatives.

This series was also super high in the feels department! I actually loved reading about Dan's healing after Justin, and how Jeff especially helped him through it. That was beautifully written.

On to the negatives, *takes calming breath*. I hated the first sexual encounter that occurred between any of these characters. I won't give too much away but it was between Dan and one of the other men and it was done vindictively, to hurt the third. God it made me so angry I actually skimmed that sex scene and it was THEIR FIRST TIME! Also, there is a fourth guy who Dan is interested in at the beginning, it made sense to his character and development, but I didn't particularly like the segway.

Don't even get me started on the sooo many important relationship milestones that were missed in the gap between the second and third books. The entire middle half of the bundle was about issues Dan and Evan had with each other, and then trying to work out how to make the threesome work. The second book ends with Dan coming to an understanding that he wants to make the threesome work, then suddenly it's 2 years later and we've completely missed everything good. This includes everyone's first ‘I loves yous’ and Dan's first time bottoming, which he was completely adamant about not doing in the second book.

I think I'll remember this series as one I enjoyed, I mean the characters and relationship building are usually what makes or breaks a story and they were done very well here. But I will never forget about the massive annoyances I had with this book, therefore I doubt I'll read it again. Definitely glad I read this once though as it is one of the classic gay polyamorous stories.

A review copy was provided in exchange for an honest opinion.

Find out more on Goodreads & Dreamspinner Press.

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