Book Reviews

Vessel (Cutting Cords 2) by Mickie B. Ashling

Genre Gay / Contemporary / Erotic Romance / BDSM
Reviewed by Barb Manning on 29-July-2020

Book Blurb

Five years have passed since Sloan and Cole went from roommates to lovers, but now their blissful life is threatened. Cole never planned to have a child because he feared he’d pass on the RP gene. With the advent of a new form of genetic testing, that risk has been greatly reduced. Now his father is demanding a grandson to preserve his baseball legacy. The surrogate’s been selected and Cole’s expected to do his duty.

Sloan is open to the idea of fatherhood, but not if Cole has to marry the surrogate, even in name only. And not at the expense of his own needs. Cole's been distant and distracted, but Trent Hamilton, fellow model and established Dominant, has been attentive, making it clear that he'd like Sloan to be his.

The clock is ticking and Cole has to decide where his loyalties lie: with a domineering father who might finally be satisfied or with the man who's always loved him just as he is.



This series must be read in order and all four titles will be available by September 2020. HEA guaranteed at series end.

First edition published by Dreamspinner Press, October 2011.


Book Review

Vessel is the sequel to Mickie B. Ashling's Cutting Cords, the passionate story of blind former baseball player, Cole Fujiwara, and high fashion model, Sloan Driscoll. Five years have passed and their relationship is in crisis. Cole wants a child and wants Noriko Evans, a beautiful Japanese-American woman, to be the surrogate. His plans leave Sloan feeling like a fifth wheel. Should Sloan accept Cole's choice, or end the relationship?

The turmoil of the decision sends Sloan into a tailspin. Sloan's not sure how to cope and considers turning to his former mechanism for dealing with stress - cutting. At the same time, his mentor and friend, Max, introduces him to Trent Hamilton, a virile young Dom and fellow model who offers another option.

How these characters interact in such a volatile situation makes Vessel a fast-paced read. Ashling's characters are strong and passionate. Cole's struggle to deal with his blindness and Sloan's desire to maintain his love for him are powerful. Meanwhile, Trent occupies the stage as a compelling Dom and reveals some interesting facets of the BDSM lifestyle to Sloan.

Ashling is a good story-teller and her depiction of copying with blindness is honest. Ashling leaves the reader guessing as to how Vessel will end until the very last. Are Sloan and Cole going to maintain their relationship? Is Sloan going to fall under the thrall of Trent? Can there be a happy ending to this romance?

Vessel is great read with characters that engage and an interesting plot.


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Additional Information

Format ebook
Length Novel, 216 pages
Heat Level
Publication Date 13-July-2020
Price $3.99 ebook
Buy Link