3 stars adult - 18+ Angst Level artists BDSM Book Boss/employee Christmas Contemporary Exploration Friends to lovers Gay Heat Index Hidden Lovers Kinks Little to no angst m/m May/December May/December Monthly Theme Morgan NetGalley New Adult Novel 140 pgs + (80K + words) Older MCs Part of a Series role play/age play/ daddy play Scorching/high heat speciality kinks Standalone

Kink Month: Permanent Ink (Art & Soul #1) by Avon Gale and Piper Vaughn

Riptide Presents


At twenty-three, Poe Montgomery is going nowhere. He still lives in his father’s basement and spends most of his time tagging with his friends. When an arrest lands him in debt, Poe accepts the front desk job at Permanent Ink, the tattoo shop owned by his father’s best friend, Jericho McAslan. Jericho is nearly twice Poe’s age, but with his ink and prematurely graying hair, he quickly takes the starring role in Poe’s hottest fantasies.

Jericho is known for his ability to transform poorly designed tattoos into works of art, but he was once as aimless and misdirected as Poe. Wanting to pay it forward the way someone once did for him, Jericho makes Poe his apprentice and is determined to keep things strictly professional. Easier said than done when Poe makes his interest—and his daddy kink—abundantly clear.

Jericho can’t resist Poe or their intense chemistry for long. But between the age gap, tension with Poe’s father, and Poe’s best friend calling him a sellout, they’ll need to ensure they’re both on the same page before they can rewrite their rocky start into something permanent.


Man – what a book!

I think at least one “job” a writer has is to make the reader “feel” and there is no question that these authors accomplished that.

There are so many things that I really loved about this story – but there are many (as much?) that I didn’t care for at all.

The Pros:
*Let’s start with that cover – YOWZA that is seriously HAWT and absolutely caught my eye!
* The premise: bratty punk falls for older guy who happens to be his mentor and father’s best friend – YES! That has so much potential!
* Tattooing. (say no more.)
* Street art. This was an unexpected surprise and one that I really appreciated – such a great and unique perspective about a (somewhat controversial?) subject.
* The MCs – separately they had some great characteristics and some great growth throughout the novel.
* The sexual tension in the first half of the book was seriously sweat inducing.

The Cons:
*The Daddy kink. If it’s something that works for you – this may not be a con – but I went into this with an open mind and the dynamics simply didn’t work for me. The balance of power was never equal (IMHO) and despite the fact that the authors (bravely) called attention to it – the fact that Jericho acted like Poe’s dad then fucked him hard never felt good or remotely romantic.
* The relationship. While it may have gained momentum had the story continued past where it ended, it never gained enough strength for me to feel good about it. Poe had a “miraculous” personality change and began toeing the line, Jericho wanted to have sex with him and did, somewhere along the line they declared their love. I didn’t see the actual love really manifest or develop. (Possible spoiler:

Spoiler Inside SelectShow
) While it was kinky and sexy the relationship these guys had never felt authentic or viable. To me, a solid relationship needs some sort of balance – however that manifests – and I saw Poe as never having any power. He was a kid from page one to the end. Jericho may have been able to see him as a sexual partner, but not a life partner – at least not in any way that was demonstrated in the story.
* The “romance”. Maybe this just isn’t a romance. It may have been simply “erotica” and that my expectations for it were off. However, the idea that these guys were leading up to some sort of permanent life sharing didn’t have enough weight behind it for me to buy it. They have a ton of sexual chemistry and a shared kink, a mutual love of art but that was it as far as we could see. Again, maybe given more time this could have changed.
* Poe’s art. (Possible spoiler:
Spoiler Inside SelectShow

So, while I was absolutely involved in the story and I thought the writing was great, overall this didn’t work for me – at all. The Daddy kink, which might have worked if handled differently, only managed to make me uncomfortable and the rough sex never got balanced with any sort of tenderness to make me feel like these guys connected more than physically. I definitely know this is a strong personal preference of mine (I avoid BDSM like the plague because of how it makes me feel) and the combination of the “Daddy/boy” dynamic coupled with sex that was far from “loving” and the sexual component of this story was just not my style at all. Since our MCs really connected as a couple almost exclusively sexually (the other parts of their relationship still felt like mentor/mentee or friends rather than boyfriend/partner) it was hard for me to see these guys as a “loving couple”.

There are definitely people who are going to love this story and I know that a lot of this is personal preference, but there you have it.

I don’t recommend this – and that breaks my heart because I’m a HUGE Avon Gale fan and literally re-read her hockey series weekly – but this didn’t work for me.

Because of the “Pros” I give this 2.75 (rounded to 3) of 5 stars


Morgan - Signature-small
Copy Generously Provided for Honest Review

One reply on “Kink Month: Permanent Ink (Art & Soul #1) by Avon Gale and Piper Vaughn”

I’m always wary of BDSM stories because I don’t know how it will make me feel or particularly how hardcore it will be. May/Decemeber and daddy play aren’t really tropes I like either. I was on the fence about this and I appreciate the review.

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