Roughing It by Holden Wells

Title: Roughing It
Author: Holden Wells
Publisher: Hela Press
Pages: 34,000 words, Novella Length
Characters: Scott, Dwayne, Zete, Johnny Lee
POV: 3rd
Sub-Genre: Tags: abduction, bdsm, bondage, dubcon, kidnapping, mm erotica, mmm menage, pain
Kisses: 1.5


Scott Thompson, guitarist for multi-platinum-selling metal band Flesh Hook, has always been addicted to the adrenaline rush: drag racing, motocross, big game hunts in the African floodplains. He’s broken bones, nearly died of exposure, and seared half his leg in a wreck. Nearing forty, he’s finding it harder to feed the thrill. Enter The Company, an organization specializing in custom adventure rides—the kind where you sign a waiver absolving them of everything short of death before you get on.

Company redneck Johnny Lee loves his job, and he’s damned good at it. He’s run rides for politicians, celebrities, CEOs and trust-fund kids and never broken character or had a complaint. He expects the Thompson ride to be more of the same—another rock star, this one so full of himself he’s signed up for 48 hours, an unprecedented amount of time on the Deliverance set. Rock stars break easily, though, especially the full-of-themselves kind.

Everyone breaks more easily than they expect.

Even Johnny Lee.


When I first read the blurb and the warning tags for this book, I was intrigued the two were so different. Perhaps I should have paid better attention to both before asking to read this book. Let it be noted that I came to this book with no previous knowledge of what the film ‘Deliverance’ was about but I do now know I never ever want to watch it.

In all honesty I find it almost impossible to say anything nice about this book, it isn’t that’s it’s badly written though there are a few missing words / typos that should have been picked up before it was published. But my real problem was the content. I found nothing sexy or alluring in the storyline. What happens to the main character Scott is just plain torture in my opinion and I struggled to keep reading. I appreciated that Scott had paid for and requested the fantasy deliverance scenario but as a reader I just found his treatment repulsive and difficult to stomach.

In the blurb Scott is portrayed as an adrenaline junkie in need of his next higher / harder fix, but this does not come across in the story. All that back story is missing, the only justification we are given for his crazy request is that he has survivors guilt after surviving a car accident that his friend or maybe his lover was killed in. (Sadly I can’t recall which the driver was, nor do I care.)

The writer failed to make me sympathize with Scott but he did manage to make me hate Dwayne and Zete. As for Johnny Lee who was supposed to be the redeeming character, I don’t think we ever got to know him well enough to judge him. There was no lust at first sight from Scott towards Johnny Lee and Johnny Lee’s reluctance to participate in Scott’s treatment just meant he was not in the story enough for me to learn to love or hate him. So his appearance at the end as Scott’s new love interest just felt contrived and doomed to be a disaster.

If you like really hardcore virtually non-con sex, violence and pain then this might be the book for you, but I’m sorry Holden Wells in all good conscience I can’t recommend this book to the vast majority of people.

Reviewed By: Smidgeson.