Red Sunset by Rowena Sudbury

Author: Rowena Sudbury
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Pages: 73
Characters: Brad Fraser, Scott O’Doul
POV: 3rd
Sub-Genre: Contemporary
Kisses: 5


Sequel to Blue Moon

Finding love in the wrestling arena is unlikely, and a relationship based on the illusion of control isn’t easy. Scott O’Doul and Brad Fraser have managed both: one night under a blue moon’s light they found they meant more to each other than either expected. Their comfortable world is shattered when Brad is released, and he must head to Japan if he wants to keep wrestling. The work is exciting but lonely—six weeks seems an eternity. Once Brad and Scott reunite, they vacation at a lakeside cabin and find the miles apart have brought them closer—but they’ll need courage if illusion of control is to become the heart of love.


The first book in this series, Blue Moon, dealt with two pro-wrestlers who forged a convenient arrangement of sex, protection, and companionship—only to fall in love. As a result, in Red Sunset the two men are at a crossroads where they must define their relationship anew, or forget the whole thing. But when Brad is fired and Scott is not, it seems the choice to stay together is taken from their hands.

Brad is a small pro-wrestler to work as counter-balance to the bigger men on the circuit. Scott is one these men, but he is far from a violent macho battle machine. Scott is protective of Brad who is smaller in stature and who has had problems in the past, such as drugs and casual sex. Scott is dominant, yes, but he has a tender, caring side which he shows to no one else but his lover. Brad, on the other hand, craves pain during sex for a lot of reasons, and Scott gives him this, but always mixed with pleasure. As such, they complement each other perfectly. And the sex is super hot!

When the PCW throws Brad out in their campaign to smoke out smaller men in favor of the big muscled guys, the two men are forced into a situation where work puts them in different parts of the world. Staying together long-distance is not what either of them signed up for, so troubles lay ahead.

Rowena Sudbury has a curious plain way of writing that gets to me. We get very little insight into where these men come from, but we see right into their minds and their hearts, into their hopes and dreams. Even apart, the affection these two men show each other is palpable and present. When reading her books I always get the sense there’s more going on beneath the surface than what is shown with words. I like that a lot. The men are real, with real problems, and they struggle to find solutions to them. There are no easy resolutions here, and some things remain unsolved even at the final words. I’m hoping there will be more of Brad and Scott. Their dynamic has shifted toward balance, and I’m left wanting to know more about these two survivors.


Red Sunset is the second book in this series, and as a direct continuation to Blue Moon, I suggest reading these in order.

Reviewed By: Susan


How Rowena “accidently” wrote a BDSM story….

How I Accidentally Wrote a BDSM Novella

I know, right? How does one accidentally write BDSM? Well, if you knew me, you’d know that I usually don’t go about things in the appropriate manner, and many times I end up coming in through the back door (no pun intended ;). So this is the story of how a whim I had turned into a short story, and then a novella with BDSM overtones.

I’m a reader, and I always have been. When I first got the bug to try and write an m/m story, I decided maybe I better peruse The Joy of Gay Sex, just to make sure I wasn’t making any glaring mistakes. Although I found the articles interesting, I do admit I really enjoyed the pictures. They’re beautifully drawn, and convey so much emotion. The picture that piqued my interest the most was the one that accompanied the article on water sports, in other words golden showers. What fascinated me the most is that both parties in the picture seemed to be enjoying it, and I guess I’d always thought it was something “dirty.” After reading the article, I gained a whole new respect for the act, and I knew I wanted to write it into a story.

One night I was suffering from insomnia, nothing new but always frustrating. I started thinking about the picture, and the story started forming in my head, and I had to get up and dig up my laptop. I started writing it while bundled in a blanket in the den. The story evolved of two wrestlers, one saving the other from backstage politics, and ending with a golden shower. The ideas continued to grow, and the next thing I knew I was writing part two with a version of “the mile high club.” Next came early New Year’s Day 2010 and a beautiful puddle of moonlight from a blue moon. The story was complete!

Connecting all these events were healthy doses of kink. Turned out Brad liked to be restrained, and he got off on being beaten with a belt. Scott was more than happy to oblige. In the beginning Brad acknowledged that for him it was all about the protection, and the sex was fantastic too. As they gained one another’s trust Brad finally admitted that he craved this rough treatment, and Scott was the first one that gave it to him without judging him. Brad’s life was spiraling out of control as he tried to balance the tedium of life on the road with the need to let off steam. Scott exercised control over Brad, but he maintained it was just an illusion. Ever the enigma, Scott keeps his emotions locked inside until they spill out one night, surprising them both.

Things don’t always work out the way you want them to, and that original version of the story was rejected. It was brought to my attention again the reason why I don’t write BDSM stories; I don’t really understand the dynamic. So I slunk off and licked my wounds, but I secretly knew it was a good story. I let it sit for over a year before I started picking at it again.

The criticism was that many of the scenes in the story seemed non-con. I knew they weren’t, but I guess I didn’t make it clear enough that Brad also knew they weren’t. Sadly, one of the first scenes that had to be cut was the golden shower. Lots of other things were changed, and rearranged, until finally it morphed into an acceptable version.

Blue Moon is not a traditional BDSM story; it’s rated in that category because of the kinkiness that still remained after the re-write. Brad allows Scott to do all kinds of things to him, and Scott maintains that if Brad says stop, he will stop. It’s just that Brad never wants him to stop.

There is a sequel for this story, simmering on the back burner. I have this uncanny habit of leaving myself a bread-crumb trail when I write. Blue Moon ends with my magical memory of a blue moon, the sequel will end with a magical red sunset. I mentioned in Blue Moon that Scott was originally from Kentucky. I have spent time in Kentucky myself, and have a magical memory of swimming in a rock quarry there as the sun was setting. Maybe one day I’ll actually have the time to work on it.

So, there you have it: my accidental BDSM novella. I did enjoy these two characters, and I hope you will too!

Blue Moon by Rowena Sudbury

Title: Blue Moon
Author: Rowena Sudbury
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Pages: 70
Characters: Brad and Scott
POV: 3rd
Sub-Genre: D/s, Contemporary
Kisses: 5


Daredevil wrestler Brad Fraser throws his body around the ring to the cheers of the crowd, but when the lights go dark, he throws it from bed to bed to alleviate the boredom of travel. It all comes crashing down one night at the hands of the resident bad guy, but Brad finds himself rescued by the cool, suave Scott O’Doul, and the two men make a pact based on the illusion of control.

Though their relationship begins as an arrangement of pleasure rather than commitment, over the course of a year on and off the road, Brad finds himself trusting Scott more and more. But Scott plays things close to the chest, and Brad isn’t sure where he stands—until the night Scott nearly pushes him too far.


In just seventy pages Rowena managed to not only teach me a thing or two about wrestling and what goes on behind the scenes but she created these characters who are full of life and love and she made me fall in love with them as if they were real live people. Brad Fraser is a wrestler yes, but he’s nothing like I’d imagine what a wrestler would be like. I mean this is a new world for me, so I’m picturing this man doing his thing in the ring like we see of the wrestlers on TV and I’m thinking he has to be pretty tough to do that even if it is staged for the crowds, right? I guess I had a wake up call here too, the men in the rings ARE real men and honestly? I never gave thought to what goes on behind those scenes…Until this story.

Well what happens is that this other wrestler supplies Brad with happy weed as long as Brad gives him sexual pleasures. Then a time comes when Brad is sick of the other guy’s bullshit and Scott comes to his rescue.

Scott is also a wrestler and he’s one that is really “feared” by the other wrestlers on the circuit. These men travel all the time, rarely are they home, so really all they have is each other. Scott keeps to himself and when goes to Brad’s rescue he makes an offer that Brad can’t resist nor does he want to.

Scott takes Brad under his wing and the other bully leaves him alone, mostly because Scott keeps the guy away from him. Scott takes Brad home and slowly begins to introduce him to BDSM, not out and out full BDSM. I’d say it’s more like a D/s situation. He ties Brad’s hands, blindfolds him, spanks him a bit, it’s not intense so if BDSM bothers you, this really is light so you’ll be fine.

The two men are together for a year, day in and day out and they both grow, as people and lovers. Scott takes his time with Brad, he brings the other man into slowly and tells him right from the start…It’s the illusion of giving up control to him. After a year of that illusion they realize it’s a lot more than that.

This story was so well written, the characters very well fleshed out, the details, narrative, all of it was well done. I really enjoyed the two characters together as a couple and the sex scenes were done very well. This is a story that introduces the reader into the life of two men who live the D/s lifestyle, slowly. As for the title, remember what happens under a blue moon….Luck….

Reviewed By: Michele