Title: Leather and Newfound Land
Author: CB Conwy
Length: 6,200 words, 24 pages
Genre: m/m Contemporary BDSM Romance
Blurb: Getting a puppy can cause major upheaval, mess, and distraction in your life. Much like getting a boyfriend, come to think about it. And Cliff has to think about it after Mischa (the adorable, but incredibly messy Newfoundland puppy) and Gerard (the equally adorable, but incredibly tidy man) come into his life on the very same day.
It’s a case of opposites attracting — and a puppy making it worse. The dog is wreaking havoc, and in the end, Cliff”s doubting whether he’s going to have a boyfriend for much longer. Then a puppy catastrophe leads to the discovery of Gerard’s kinky secret, and Cliff realizes that they may be more compatible than he ever thought possible.
Review: This was really one of the most adorable stories! I’ve really enjoyed CB Conwy’s writing in the past, and A Russian Bear is one of my favorite BDSM novels. This story is autonomous to that series, but has a clever connection to it that only made me like this story even more.
On the day that Cliff takes home a giant brown Newfoundland puppy, he meets Gerard, a somewhat stuffy and proper interior designer who mistakes the bundle of fur for a bear. The two hit it off trying to name the puppy and finally settle on Mischa. Over the next several months, their relationship grows — and so does Mischa. Things come to a head when Gerard can’t seem to take the disorder Mischa and, by proxy, Cliff bring to his life, resulting in a few secrets coming to light.
I absolutely love puppy stories I thought that this story worked so well because Mischa, the puppy, not only has such a great personality (a flying furball and wreaks havoc on everything!) but also because he is used as a catalyst in the relationship between Cliff and Gerard. Their relationship is a bit of a runaway train like the puppy and like Gerard’s nerves. Seen through Cliff’s POV, Gerard is wonderful but also seems so often frazzled, and Cliff can’t help but see that it is because of him and Mischa’s place in his life. Where Gerard is a creature of order, Cliff is not (I think we know where MIscha stands in that scale). Cliff himself is a great character because he’s the best of all of animal owners and I think that is something most readers can easily connect with.
The story is short, as all of the Charity Sips are, but I thought that the narrative style suited the story best. It jumps around, but in a very coherent way that never made me feel pulled out of the story (as I often feel, for example, with flashbacks). Though the pair have been together for several months, they’re at that stage where the real person starts to show through, and I thought it was rather endearingly shown in this story.
I loved how the story connected to A Russian Bear. This is the first story I’ve read that references another of the author’s works that hasn’t felt like blatant self-promotion in a masturbatory way. I normally hate when authors reference their own work, as a rule, and I got nervous when I first saw that here, but I ended up finding it charming and cute.
This story is prime for expansion. I’d love to see more of this relationship and this is really only a taste of these characters, who were really brought to life in such a short time. Definitely Recommended!