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One Man's Trash

The Heretic Doms Club, Book 1
Narrated by: John Solo
Length: 12 hrs and 2 mins
Categories: Erotica, Fiction
4 out of 5 stars (12 ratings)

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Summary

After four tours in Afghanistan, Warren Groves couldn’t settle into civilian life. For the last 12 years, he’s survived by working odd and often illegal jobs for some of Denver’s less fortunate. His personal life is equally unsatisfactory. He can barely remember the last time he had sex, let alone the last time he got to use somebody hard and rough, the way he likes. Fate intervenes when a favor for a friend leads him to a pretty, young rent boy named Taylor Reynolds.

Taylor’s spent the last few years on his own, working as a hustler, going home with anybody who’ll give him a warm meal and a place to sleep. He enjoys having a bit of force used against him, and he makes Warren an offer he can’t refuse - all the sex he wants, as rough and dirty as he likes, in exchange for room and board.

At first, Warren thinks he’s struck gold. Taylor’s the perfect roommate - he cooks, he cleans, and he’s dynamite in the sack. But Taylor has some dark demons in his head and some even darker cravings. Falling for somebody as volatile as Taylor is dangerous enough, but when Taylor’s urges turn truly self-destructive, it’ll be up to Warren to decide just how far to let things go.

©2017 Marie Sexton (P)2017 Marie Sexton

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Profile Image for Erryn Barratt
  • Erryn Barratt
  • 17-01-18

As perfect as a key in a lock.

This is a dark book.

I don’t say that lightly. There are scenes that are disturbing, situations that are horrible, violence, and even a touch of evil. Psychological demons and addiction. Mental illness. This is a book that could have a half-dozen trigger warnings or none.

There are none and I’m fine with that. It has a happy ending, but I can’t recall two men having to fight harder for it than Warren and Taylor.

Warren served 4 tours in Afghanistan, leaving him with scars both inside and out. He carries a huge loss on his shoulders and has chosen to work with the downtrodden of Denver rather than with normal people who go about their lives, living in the light and not the shadows.

Happenstance brings rentboy Taylor Reynolds into Warren’s life and he swears he’s died and gone to heaven. Taylor cooks, cleans, and is available for sex. ANYTIME. He also prefers it rough, which is just fine with Warren, who’s a Dom but hasn’t found a submissive who can handle his darker side. Taylor’s enthusiasm makes them the perfect match.

But while Warren’s physical scars are visible to the world, Taylor’s scars are not. His hurts are hidden so deep that they almost never surface, so people don’t see them. But when that pain is triggered, it is heart-breaking and terrifying. Warren has no idea what triggers Taylor’s self-destructive anger, but he’s the first man who chooses to help Taylor rather than tossing him to the curb.

I’ll be honest. These are tough scenes. My heart was in my throat as Warren tried to navigate Taylor’s landmines. I was as bewildered as Warren, desperately hoping he could get through to the younger man. Warren’s methods were, to say the least, unconventional. And, to most people’s sensibilities, unacceptable. The use of BDSM here works, but it does go dark. Yet, somehow, Warren always takes care of Taylor.

Eventually Taylor does open up and tell Warren everything. I think my heart broke all over again. Warren proves to be a caring and loving man, refusing to judge Taylor harshly, which surprises the younger man. Warren draws strength from his friends. His willingness to take on Taylor and others in Denver who need help is admirable, but everyone has a breaking point.

For Taylor, it is just a matter of time before Warren gets tired of the uncontrollable behavior. All who have come before Warren have given up and Taylor has the same expectation for this man. In the meantime, though, Taylor starts to get settled into Warren’s home and live. He makes a friend, gets a job, and plants a rose bush.

Things do go sideways, though, and I had my doubts whether the two men could overcome everything thrown at them. Yet none of the situations felt included just for dramatic sake – it all worked, plot-wise.

Taylor wonders if he might be too broken, but Warren shows him that it’s not true. Warren takes on the responsibility of Taylor while encouraging every step Taylor takes toward autonomy. He pulls Taylor up when he’s been pushed to the bottom. He fights Taylor’s demons, showing the younger man that he does have worth. More than just being a sexual receptacle, anyway. Warren helps Taylor fight his shame. It is cathartic, but it is just the beginning. But that’s the thing about this story – even without an epilogue, I came to believe in these two.

Two damaged souls can help each other.

This is Book 1 and the other Doms in the Heretic Doms Club have been nicely introduced. I am really excited to hear their stories.

I’ve listened to many books narrated by John Solo, but I think this is one of his best performances. He conveys Taylor’s pain – sobs, hysterics, vitriolic anger – and it works. Taylor’s anguish was visceral to me and that was due to a brilliant John Solo narrating Marie’s beautiful story.

5 stars feels inadequate. As Warren says, this is what (man) kills and dies for.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

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Profile Image for Unquietly Me
  • Unquietly Me
  • 15-07-18

dark & emotional but well written and narrated

Very dark but well-written. The audiobook narration was worth 5 stars. This made me cry so bad. But I’m glad Taylor had a strong person like Warren to help him and fight for him. I understand what that anger Taylor experienced feels like, and I understand how it feels to want to self-harm and self-destruct. I know avoidance. Taylor’s outlet was very disturbing but in terms of storytelling it really worked to show how much Taylor was hurting inside. I also liked how the author showed what triggered Taylor’s episodes, because they made sense. It’s very hard to describe all the various, complex, and confusing emotions Taylor feels when he’s triggered. And it isn’t explicitly stated in the story that Taylor has PTSD from what he experienced in his childhood. And I totally get how Taylor was opposed to therapy. Because who would want to talk about something like that? Anyway. This book is super angsty & I would not recommend it for anyone looking for an entertaining, sm**** m/m escape. This book is difficult and emotional and twisted. But the story structure was really impressive with the metaphors and the roses and the broken mended vase. Warren had all these beautiful words, and it was beautiful and heart wrenching when Taylor echoed it back. The whole rent boy finds love and redemption is a popular trope in m/m, but in this book it’s far less glamorous. It’s not a book I’ll ever forget but it’s not one I’d want to reread entirely either.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Profile Image for Sahara
  • Sahara
  • 04-05-18

Read it! Read this book!

I really liked this book. It’s about a troubled man and and even more troubled man coming together and eventually finding love and solace in each other. It’s gritty, and different.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Profile Image for Just Browsing
  • Just Browsing
  • 24-07-19

More Than I Bargained For

Holy cow, this story pulls you in and tugs and twists you up right to the end. Yes, it made me laugh and cry, but there is so much more here than entertainment or a few hours of distraction. I had a real emotional investment by the time the epilogue came. The love, floundring, unprepared and uneducated, trying to overcome the physical and emotional abuse of the past was so heart wrenching.

Jon Solo did an outstanding job of narration. He was able to convey all of the emotion with each character. I felt every smile, laugh, and tear the characters shed. He is one of my favorite narrators.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Starwarslover
  • 01-05-19

wow!

this is an amazing series.. the story.. the characters.. the plot of this story is wow.. and then this narrator did amazing... the personalities and emotions!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Profile Image for Cranky Reader
  • Cranky Reader
  • 22-02-19

Not easy but an interesting take

First book by this author. It’s one big trigger fest, with a some seriously unhealthy behaviors but broken people building a life together makes for a good HEA.

Had a few bits that I thought were implausible or based on really old psychology (old enough to be debunked, not old enough to be timeless wisdom) but I don’t have much personal experience with trauma so maybe I’m wrong.

If you like romances with really messed up people, and another reference to Japanese pottery mended with gold, you might like this one.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Profile Image for Cuba
  • Cuba
  • 28-01-19

Love conquers all

This was a wonderful book both the story line and performance of John Solo was phenomenal. It made me want to cry and I truly enjoyed the ending. This is a must read or hear book it reminds me how lucky I am.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Jennifer
  • 01-12-18

an emotional ride but a really great book,

I really love the book in the narrator was great. This book has a lot of issues that many people may be uncomfortable with, but people deal with these issues everyday. I love how the author handle the difficult issues without being angsty or pushing too hard. thank you for respecting the pain of others by acknowledging it in this book.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Nikki Wilks
  • 01-11-18

very intense but good

I've just discovered Marie Sexton's books. They deal with real and intense matters & I really enjoy them.
John Solo is becoming one of my favorite narrators.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Profile Image for Trio
  • Trio
  • 07-08-18

Amazing Story, John Solo at his All Time BEST!

Fans of dark erotica, rejoice! Marie Sexton has completely outdone herself with One Man’s Trash, the first installment in her The Heretic Doms Club series. Angsty and gritty (with just about every trigger warning I can think of) this is a powerful and heart-rending tale. This story affected me so deeply, just thinking of everything that happened, makes me want to scroll back and experience it all over again.

It is wonderful watching this drama unfold. Marie Sexton made me so happy with the variety of taboo subjects she explores in One Man’s Trash. The characters are complex and interesting, and seeing them grow and change together throughout the story is incredibly moving. As the tension builds, Sexton continues to layer on the drama. This book is dark and erotic and absolute perfection.

I’m completely blown away by the depth of emotion John Solo brings to these characters. Taylor’s anguish, when he breaks down, is absolutely palpable. And Warren’s evolution as the story progresses, as he sheds his bitterness and anger and opens his heart, well I could actually feel it happening. John Solo delivers an incredible performance. This is the best I’ve ever heard him, and considering what a huge fan I am, that’s really saying something!

While the details of Taylor and Warren’s pasts are horrible to learn about (and one of the reasons I’m not saying too much about the story), there are some intensely beautiful moments in One Man’s Trash. I was so moved by the analogy of the mended vase. Warren’s friend Charlie tells Taylor, “‘It’s a Japanese thing. They think when an item’s broken, it doesn’t make it useless. It just adds interest. Becomes part of the item’s history. And the history is what makes it beautiful.’” Though it is broken it still has value, Warren cherishes that vase. One man’s trash, and all that.

Three more books are planned for this series, one for each of the three remaining members of The Heretic Dom’s Club. I can’t wait to get to know each of these men better and find out how they complete their stories. The only thing I’m looking forward to more is hearing John Solo read them to me.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful