Series: Gladiators 04
Author: D.J. Manly
Genre: Historical, Ancient Greece
Length: Novel (157pgs)
Publisher: Total E-Bound (10th October 2011)
Heat Level: Explicit
Heart Rating: ♥♥♥♥4Hearts
Blurb: To follow in his father’s footsteps, Gold’s son will need to defeat Ariston in the arena to become champion…but Ariston might be the love of his life.
Nicolaus has lived in the shadow of his father all his life, a father who was the greatest gladiator of them all. His desire is to prove himself in the arena, even though it is against his father’s wishes. He also has other desires, forbidden desires for his father’s lover, and a love/hate relationship with the slave he must defeat if he is to reign victorious as a gladiator in the arena.
Ariston falls in love with Nicolaus the moment he sets eyes on him. A slave all his life, he has never known freedom but he is the unbeatable champion. The fact that Nicolaus can’t decide whether to bed him or kill him greatly complicates his life when he becomes the newest addition to Gold’s ludi.
Review: This is a perfect example of a well written story. Nicolaus wants to be the champion and resents his father for denying him the chance; he sets out to prove himself and refuses to listen to anyone. Ariston falls hard for Nicolaus and will do anything to be close to him, even if it means training Nicolaus so he will eventually fight him in the arena.
This story draws you in slowly; sneaking up on you and making you want to keep reading. Nicolaus comes across as a spoilt child at first and it was amazing to see how he developed from a childish 18-year-old brat into a grown 18-year-old man as he trains to become a Gladiator to prove himself to Gold but along the way he loses his heart and tries to ignore it. Ariston admits his feelings early and is left feeling bruised by Nicolaus and is determined to not let it happen again. We also see Gold and Samson as secondary characters and all isn’t rosy for them either.
Now at first this story just didn’t rock my boat, but then before I knew it I wanted to know what was happening next. What was Nicolaus going to do? How had Gold and Samson come to this point? What was Julian playing at? And just what would Ariston do about Nicolaus? I really don’t know how it happened; one minute I did not like it and the next I couldn’t put it down. The storyline was really good, the characters were great, the sex was hot and the love story was a rollercoaster ride.
I will recommend this to those who love hot sweaty Gladiators who are glistening in oil, flexing their muscles, wearing little loin clothes, rubbing up against other hot sweaty gladiators and…. Err *cough* sorry lost my train of thought there *cough* yeah, so anyway, I recommend this for the men, the hot sweaty Gladiator sex, the great storyline and the love (but mainly the hot sweaty Gladiators).