Review: Torin by Lance Withton

Torin’s anxiety has made it difficult for him to navigate romantic relationships, so instead of trying, he keeps himself occupied with his work. But just because he doesn’t chase relationships doesn’t mean he doesn’t want something, even if he has to get it with a dash of taboo.

At Pillar, the only all-male brothel in the city, Torin makes an appointment with a charming sex worker who goes by the name “Davies.” It becomes hard for Torin to keep his emotions out of the intimacy, and his feelings become more complicated when a designer he works with starts to let on that his interest is more than platonic.

Shy guys are my kryptonite.

This story starts with Torin booking time at a brothel to do some kissing. We aren't told why he's made this decision within the pages, and it doesn't really matter overall. Torin has some deep insecurities, is shy, awkward, and stammers most of the time. He is sweet and endearing as a character. He has clearly been brought up with very conservative beliefs, although the particulars are not explained. It's just there in some of his internal thoughts. None of that matters when he is spending time with Davies.

The story is told from Torin’s point of view so we don’t get to know Davies outside of his role in Torin’s sexual adventures. Even so, he isn’t flat, and his personality for the role he is in is pretty clear. He’s sexy, considerate, and very good at his job. There was nothing I didn’t like about Davies, and he was captivating enough for me to want to know him outside of the context he was in.

For a short story this worked really well. While the timeline jumped from one encounter to the next, I didn’t feel like I was missing anything. I enjoyed going on this journey with Torin, and reading him learn about his sexual self. His awakening was smutty and lovely. There is some light humiliation kink interwoven with some high level heat. There is no mistaking that this is erotica, good erotica. I loved all of the scenes, and I could have happily continued to read more. Torin turned out to be a dirty, dirty boy.

There are some issues I had with the language used towards Davies. I felt like the story was supposed to be sex positive but was slightly contradictory. It was off-putting, and that’s why it doesn’t rate as high for me as if that specific confusion wasn’t in there. Some people may find it sexy and edgy, but it didn’t reach me in that way. Overall I really enjoyed this story though. The author had a very clear idea of what this was about, and delivered it well.

If you’re looking for something short that doesn’t feel bite sized, with some high heat erotica, this is the story for you.

I received a review copy for an honest review.

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