It has been quite some time since I read this, but it has been a story that stuck with me.
I want to be clear- I did not rate this story as a standalone. If I had, I may have one-starred it, simply because the BDSM so wasn't what I thought it should be. I hated it. It wasn't respectful, focusing in character development, or respectful of the sub. Fortunately, I have the pleasure of hindsight. I've read all books in this series. Having done so, I understand that this isn't meant I be in the 'perfect' BDSM world.
So. How do I rate this? Well, I'm doing so considering all three stories as one. Doing so, I can only say I LOVED this series I wouldn't have said so after reading only book one.
Jeff Erno is soooooo talented at evicting emotion. Throughout this story, I not only read about the character, but I lived in their skins. Sadly, I felt their love, pain, guilt, and happily, I felt their love and joy. To me, this is the mark of a great author. If I 'am' the character, then the author has succeeded. Erno succeeded in spades.
So- if you just read this, and kind of hate it, I encourage you I read on. This isn't the sort- this is a chapter in the story. Is it perfect? No. There is some repetition ) I suspect this started as a serialized novel, an this is evident in the story. Still, this is a piece of the story. It's rough, but it's not complete. Keep going. There's amazingness to come.