Firecracker by Jaye Valentine

Issac Lang is deeply in love with his live-in life-partner, Baltimore City police officer Jeff Taylor, and has a serious kink for risky role-play sex with strangers. Jeff finds Isaac’s wild ways incredibly hot, and he’s more than willing to help facilitate Isaac’s lustful cravings.

Jeff trusts Isaac to be emotionally faithful despite the sexual experimentation, and Isaac trusts Jeff to watch his back and keep him safe from harm. Not a lifestyle everyone might aspire to or could successfully manage, but Isaac and Jeff make their quest for kink work to keep the sparks flying in their relationship.

I have often heard from authors that the writing of the short story is in certain respects more challenging than that of the full-length novel because in some twenty to thirty pages the writing must ensure a well-developed and compelling plot and multidimensional characters, including any references to back story, that should grab the reader within the first few pages. There are a handful of authors that have the ability to meet this challenge head on and Jaye Valentine is one of them.

Jaye Valentine has demonstrated his ability to achieve this and more under the guise of his other writing persona as Acer Adamson with his short stories Only Words and Any Excuse in which he breaths life into the unique and unforgettable characters of Max and Skyler through only brief glimpses into their life and story. He achieves the same with Issac and Jeff in his recent release Firecracker. In some 12,000 words you know exactly who Issac and Jeff are and how they live and love.

In Firecracker, Valentine explores the kink aspects of Issac and Jeff’s relationship with honesty and humour. What I found most striking and a breath of fresh air really, was the unapologetic open exploration of their sexual lifestyle. It is real, it is lust, and it is altogether human. There is much elaborate planning and preparation that goes into their role-playing escapades, and one in particular preparation involving a shopping spree for the perfect costume had me laughing out loud.

Firecracker starts off with a sexually intense and charged scene that I found to be beyond arousing and one that I attribute, in part, to Valentine’s staccato cadence in sentence structure and length in achieving this effect. With a few short phrases his writing nearly knocked me off the couch I was sitting on while reading:

“They’d all seen him inside the bar, knew what he wanted, knew what he offered them.

Light blue, right side.

Cocksucker.”

But Issac and Jeff’s story is not only about hot sex with strangers. Scratch the surface a little and what you ultimately find in this story is a day in the life of two men who love deeply, are committed and trust each other no matter what.

“Jeff tilted his head and looked at Isaac. ‘What if I asked you to stop? What if I asked you not to go walking on the edge of cliffs anymore?’

‘You won’t,’ Isaac said, and he planted a hard kiss on Jeff’s cheek. ‘You get off on this shit as much as I do, and I’ve got your dirty jeans in the laundry basket as proof.’

‘But if I did ask?’

Drawing his arms tighter around Jeff’s chest, Isaac said, ‘Then we’d never do it again.’

‘Simple as that?’

Isaac nodded, nuzzling against Jeff’s neck. ‘Simple as that.'”

There is emotional sophistication, playfulness and above all a deep caring for each others well-being in this relationship. These characters have captured my imagination and I sincerely hope that we get to read more of Issac and Jeff in the future.

Firecracker by Jaye Valentine is available at All Romance eBooks, OmniLit, Diesel eBook Store, Books On Board, Powell’s and at Amazon (US and UK).

Music: Break for Love – Peter Rauhofer/Pet Shop Boys [Friburn + Unik Tribal Mix] (QAF Club Babylon, 2000)

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