Review: Straight Shooter by Heidi Belleau

Posted April 17, 2014 by B. in Contemporary Romance, Gay Romance, LGBTQ, Rating A, Reviews Tags: , , ,

Straight ShooterStraightShooter_500x750
Author: Heidi Belleau
Reviewer: B.
Rating: A-

What I’m Talking About:

Austin Puett is straight. He has to be, right? He plays on his college hockey team, can take a hit with the best of them, and is even next in line to be alternate captain. There’s no room in the game for anyone who’s not one hundred percent heterosexual. His life would be great if only he wasn’t about to be kicked out of his house and lose his job for being intolerant of his flamboyant roommate. And, if all the homophobic trash talking in the locker room didn’t turn him on so much.

Each story in the Rear Entrance Video series revolves around the young men who work at the video store/sex toy shop and the difficulties they endure as they struggle to understand and accept their emerging sexualities. Straight Shooter is Austin’s story, the abrasive, obnoxious, homophobic jock who is so determined to convince himself that he’s unwaveringly straight that he’s offended his roommates to the point that he’s about to be kicked out of their house. Since his roommate’s aunt owns the video store where he works, he just might be out of a job, as well. When his roommates have finally had enough, they issue Austin an ultimatum: accept Bobby as he is and stop acting like a jerk or move out.

But, Austin’s main problem isn’t really Bobby or his other roommates. It’s that he’s been lying to himself for years about his own sexual inclinations, and the inability to reconcile that truth with who he thinks he has to be in order to be accepted is tearing him apart. It is at this point that Austin’s journey really begins, and Ms. Belleau once again does what she accomplished so handily in the previous story—systematically picking apart the need for classifications and definitions of sexuality until the characters finally begin to live for themselves.

Master Puck, or Liam Williams, is a fantastic character as well, and Austin’s evolution wouldn’t have been possible if it weren’t for him, especially in the earlier stages of their relationship. Porn star, pro-Dom, and former hockey great in his own right, Liam is the perfect one to make Austin see that he needs to stop punishing himself for having a kink that’s not-quite-straight. He’s the only person to accept Austin at face value and help him navigate his way through the desperation and shame that have been the source of so much of Austin’s self-hatred.

I think Liam sums it up best during this conversation:

‘So that’s all this is? That’s all that’s wrong with me? A kink?’ 

‘Nothing’s wrong with you, kiddo. I can’t say that enough. Nothing’s wrong with you.’

As much as I liked the previous story in this series, Wallflower, I had mixed feelings when I found out that the next novel would be Austin’s. Fortunately, my misgivings were put to rest very early on, and I was easily able to invest myself in Austin and Liam as they work to build something lasting. I’ve always taken a great deal of enjoyment from tales that question the strict guidelines that have defined sexuality for so long, and this series beautifully does exactly that. Filled with scenes both tender and scorching hot, Straight Shooter is a definite keeper. Austin turned out to be an interesting and endearing character, and I’m extremely grateful to have been able to read such a wonderful series.

Rating:  A- Enjoyed A Lot


About the Book:

This macho jock has a crooked little secret. 

College hockey player Austin Puett is in trouble. Unless he starts treating his flamboyantly gay roommate with respect, he’ll lose his room and his job at Rear Entrance Video. But Austin’s got a not-so-straight secret of his own: nothing turns him on more than insults implying he’s gay—even though he’s definitely not!—and all his old coping methods have stopped working. 

Pure desperation drives him to rent a Mischievous Pictures porn flick about straight men tricked into servicing Puck, a male dominant. Instead of letting off steam, though, it just leaves him craving more, more, more, and suddenly, Austin finds himself at Mischievous Pictures Studios for an audition. After all, you can be Gay For Pay and still be straight . . . right? 

But meeting Liam Williams, the real person behind Puck, confuses Austin even more. Liam really seems to like him as a person, and Austin likes him back. And while Gay For Pay’s okay, what does it make Austin if he still wants Liam when the cameras aren’t rolling? 

Release Date: April 7, 2014
Publisher: Riptide Publishing
Series: Rear Entrance Video #3
ISBN: # 978-1626490895 
Genre: LGBTQ, Contemporary, D/s, BDSM elements
Format(s): Paperback (277 pgs), e-book
Book Source: Publisher

Purchase Info:
Straight Shooter (Rear Entrance Video #3)

Reviews in the Series:
Wallflower by Heidi Belleau (Rear Entrance Video #2)