Title: Bullet (Blue Boy Studio: Book One)
Author: Garrett Leigh
Length: 105 Pages
Category: Contemporary Erotica
At a Glance: There are more than a few super erotic moments in Bullet, and Garrett Leigh’s moody and broody MCs bring no small amount of angst to this short and sexy novel
Reviewed By: Lisa
Blurb: Levi Ramone entered the gay porn market for one reason, and one reason only: he needed the cash to pay his momma’s spiraling gambling debts.
Seven years later, he’s a veteran with a reputation as one of Blue Boy Studio’s most ruthless tops, and when his boss suggests it’s time for a change, he finds himself staring down the barrel of a gun. Figuratively speaking, at least.
Enter Sonny Valentine, a go-go dancer at Blue’s sister club, Silver’s. Levi has secretly admired Sonny from afar for years, but there’s a problem. He can’t stand Sonny and the feeling is entirely mutual. When Levi learns Sonny is to play the third part in a scene he already considers his worst nightmare, he figures things can’t get any worse.
But when preparations for the scene from hell collide with tragic events in his personal life, he finds his fast-growing, red-hot attraction to Sonny just might be the only thing left between him and a bullet.
Review: I first read Bullet in its original incarnation back in November of 2013. This novella was my first foray into the world of Garrett Leigh’s fiction, and it left an impression, even all these years later.
In a business where the natural tendency is to objectify the men who are paid to have sex on camera, Levi Ramone has gained a rabid following. But when the camera’s on, Levi throws up his barriers and checks out. As a prodigious and committed top, he’s gained a reputation for being a real douchebag, treating his bottoms as little more than a convenient means of getting off, dismissing them as soon as the camera stops rolling. He does exactly what he’s being paid to do—deliver the cum shot—and then he cleans up and goes home, alone.
Leigh touches on some of the various reasons porn is a practical—if short lived—career option for her characters. Levi’s need for an additional income source leads directly back to his mother and her weakness for both alcohol and gambling. He’s the faithful son to a bitter woman who loved her boy at one time, but drank away her rights to his loyalty when she became both verbally and physically abusive. The stress of keeping up with his mother’s debts is a burden Levi shoulders, which probably goes some ways toward explaining why he likes order in his private life. It’s the porn that offers him not only a reasonable financial cushion but a little human connection as well, even if he does disconnect emotionally during his scenes. As Levi’s vocal fan base escalates their demands for him to bottom on camera, the conflict in the story comes into play. There was never enough need, or money offered before, to convince Levi to give in to that call…until, suddenly, there is a need, and Jon, the owner of Blue Boy Studio, makes Levi an offer he can’t refuse. Even if it means Levi will be shooting his first bottoming scene in a three-way with one man who has a bad rep for liking it rough, and another man that Levi hates—a feeling that’s entirely mutual.
Sonny Valentine has his own reasons for using porn as a means of extra income. The difference is that Sonny likes working at Blue Boy while Levi uses it as a means to an end. But then, one scene between Levi and another actor changes everything. Sonny and Levi’s relationship starts off as nothing more than an impersonal and clinical necessity to prepare Levi for their scene, but ends up with the two men sparking a huge amount of sexual chemistry between them. And then Levi isn’t so detached anymore—neither from the job nor from Sonny.
As you’d expect from a story set in and around the porn industry, there are more than a few super erotic moments in its pages. Garrett Leigh’s moody and broody MCs bring no small amount of angst to this short and sexy novel. While I wish some of the niggling little continuity errors that were missed in the first publication had been caught before its re-release, those gripes aside, there’s no denying that Leigh knows how to write her way around a sex scene. The interactions between Levi and Sonny are tension-filled, eventually evolving into an intense lust—which becomes what promises to be a deeper emotional connection between them. There isn’t an ending to this story as much as there is the hint of a beginning for these guys, which I so appreciated. Anything more than what Leigh offers would’ve required a lot more storyline to make it believable.
You can buy Bullet here: