Book Review of Shibari Auction House: Leaf by Sean Michael

    Shibari - Leaf (Book Cover)Reviewed for Blackravens Reviews
    Publisher: Changeling Press
    Cover art: Rene George
    Image courtesy of Changeling Press
    Genre(s): BDSM, Erotic Romance, M/M Romance, LGBT
    Series: Shibari Auction House (#4)
    Length: Novella
    Page Count: 48

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    Shibari Auction House: Leaf is another chapter in Sean Michael’s BDSM series that focuses on the activities at a high-end auction house that provides a venue for young handsome men to sell their sexual companionship to the highest bidder. This latest book tells the tale of an encounter between Leaf deCosta and James Carson.

    Leaf is always coming to the rescue of his twin, River and he shows up at Shibari Auction House determined to do the same thing again. Leaf finds himself replacing his brother on the auction block and agreeing to provide a week of BDSM services and companionship to the very wealthy James Carson. The short story is about their sexual encounters during their first night together. This book is like all of the others in the series. James is a rich Dom and Leaf is a young, inexperienced Sub.

    Having read the previous three novellas in this series, I didn’t find anything new in this book. The characters, while likable are almost interchangeable with characters from other Shibari books or Hammer Club series books. James is a confidant and protective Dom, while Leaf is the essential shy, virginal and inexperienced twink. Although, the book is all about the sexual encounters there are no hard-core BDSM scenes in Shibari Auction House: Leaf. Details regarding the lives of the characters beyond the sexual scenes never emerge. James and Leaf are shadow characters, stand-ins for every other BDSM couple in almost every other Sean Michael story.

    Michael is a good writer, despite the occasional lapse in editing, and can create rich characterizations with depth and intricacy. Other books by Michael such as the Between Friends series or Unlikely Hero are great reads with strong plots and full-bodied characters.  Shibari Auction House: Leaf is not one of Michael’s best efforts. The scenes are bare bones in description. Leaf and his twin brother, River has some history and background, James, on the other hand, is a virtual unknown. What does he do outside of Shibari or his home? Who are his friends? Does he have family? Shibari Auction House: Leaf answers none of these questions. It’s worth 3 stars, mainly because of the mechanics of the book. I continue reading Sean Michael because of past gems like Unlikely Hero and Between Friends and I’m hoping for better fare in the future.