Tempted by Two by Portia Da Costa

Tempted by Two

Grade: B
Hotness Level: Inferno
Kink Level: Mild Kink (light bondage and spanking)
Genre: Contemporary, Ménage 
Reviewed by Anne
90 pages
“So are you two a pair of tag team bluebeards who regularly use that painting to seduce unwary women into your… um… combined clutches?”
Marcus laughed too, and Owen just grinned.
“Busted.”  p. 12
Katie is on vacation and she’s checking out some paintings by her favorite artist, Marcus Dane.  She’s alone, admiring a particularly explicit painting of a trio of lovers when she’s approached by Marcus.  Happily caught off guard and star struck by the attractive artist, she accompanies him back to his place and meets his partner, Owen.  They invite her to join them for a ménage like the one pictured in the painting she was admiring.  Though initially hesitant, Katie agrees and the story takes off from there.
This novella weighed in at 90 pages on my reader. A HEA ménage seemed like a lot to take on in that situation – especially given that Katie was a stranger to Owen and Marcus. So, I went into this thinking it might just be an encounter or have a HFN ending. Happily, it was a true HEA. However, it had sort of a fantasy feel to it for me, because I think a HEA triad is a complicated thing to pull off. It happened in 90 pages here because things were simplified. I was happy to suspend disbelief for this one, though.

Da Costa writes great sex scenes, and I enjoyed them here. Marcus and Owen were open with each other and with Katie, which was refreshing.

There wasn’t much discussion of relationships. There was some talk about how they loved each other, but it seemed to me that more discussion was warranted: between Owen and Marcus – How will our relationship change? Do we both want to add a third permanently? and between the guys and Katie – What will it be like to live as a triad? Who pays the bills? Are we out in the open or not? 

What will our families and friends think? None of those conversations happen in this novella.

The same applies to the BDSM scenes in the story. They come out of nowhere and we don’t see much discussion about them. Was this something Katie had done before? Who wanted it?  Honestly, it was a little jarring and almost out of place.  They were still well written and hot, though.

I think my biggest problem was that I wanted more. I wanted it to be longer. (ha!) and I wanted it to go more in depth. That’s probably asking too much from a novella. I’m wavering between a 3 and 4 star grade. I know I went on a bit about the things I missed, but the stuff that was there (mainly sex) was really good. So I’m going with a 3.5 star grade.

*Note – I nearly had to knock this down a grade for use of the term “love-eye” (no, really, it’s in the book! p. 47) but I don’t want to hold my language issues (and my laughter) against the story, so I’ll leave the grade as is. 

So, how about you?  Do you enjoy ménage?  Does the term “love-eye” work for you?


2 thoughts on “Tempted by Two by Portia Da Costa

  1. I flagged “love-eye” too when I read this one, so I was glad to see it bothered someone else. But still “love-eye” is better than the “piss-slit” I ran across a few weeks ago. *shudder* I don't know what the anatomically correct term is, but I am guessing it has to be better than either of these phrases.

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