Temperance (Damned Connections Book 3) by Lark Taylor

Temperance features a vampire Dom and a fire mage made to be his sub. Perhaps there's no such thing as a fated mate for vampires and mages, but Toby and Blaise can't help but yearn to make each other their chosen mate.

From the blurb:

A fire mage who believes he’s broken. A vampire who believes he can fix him. A contract that’s going to change everything.


I’ve never been good at doing the right thing.   

A series of bad choices have left my life in tatters. Everyone is telling me to move on, but how can I? What I did was unforgivable, even if some believe otherwise. My whole world imploded the night I left a human dying on a classroom floor.

I don’t deserve anything good in my life, I know that. But I’m desperate for peace. Just a few moments where I can escape from everything I’ve done.

When Toby offers me a solution that promises just that, I jump at it. I never imagined having a Dom, but with Toby in that role?

Nothing has ever felt so right.

Problem is, this isn’t a relationship, it’s a contract. A temporary one.

Which means I need to guard my heart and stop myself from falling for this enigmatic vampire.

Like I said, I’ve never been good at doing the right thing.


I never learn.

Every time I see a needy sub, I can’t stop myself from offering my help. Every time, I forget that it’s a contract and fall too hard and too fast.

I’m the one who fixes them, never the one they choose to spend eternity with. That’s the way it always goes.

When Blaise bursts into my life, I already know how it’s going to end. I can’t stop myself from wanting to help him, but this man has the capacity to break me in entirely new ways. Maybe if I keep the boundaries strict between us, I can walk away at the end without another scar on my heart.

Like I said, I never learn.

Temperance is the third book in the Damned Connections series. Featuring a needy sub and a Dom who’s trying to avoid heartbreak, this spicy MM PNR romance will pull at your heartstrings. Although this series can be read as a standalone, it’s better enjoyed in order. Each book follows a different couple and has a guaranteed HEA.

Angel's Review:

I love Lark Taylor's stories, the characters she created are so personable and such a joy to read about. It blows my mind how she consistently creates characters, storylines, and worlds, that are out of this world good!! What I really enjoy about her stories and the way she writes is how she brings back the characters we've read about previously with each new additional character. I love that she does that!! It really helps evoke the found family feeling that her books have.

I'll prefix this by saying I don't typically read books with Dom/Sub elements, it's just not my personal preference. However, I really wanted to read Toby and Blaise's story, along with seeing Lark's take on writing about a Dom/Sub dynamic. I have to say I was really impressed! There was so much communication and Toby's character made sure to go through everything with Blaise, and made sure he knew what everything meant. The way Lark wrote their dynamic let me see that power dynamic in a different light than I have previously. I really enjoyed about Toby and Blaise's journey figuring out what works best for them, and what doesn't.

These two burn hot and heavy and are exactly what the other needs, even if they don't realize it yet. Lark is known for creating amazing characters that you can't help but fall for, even when you think they might be unredeemable, she makes you love them anyway. She's also known for
high angst, pulling at her readers heart strings making you think a relationship is doomed, only for it to work out beautifully in the end. I thought this story was incredible, it had me engaged throughout the whole story. I enjoyed being able to go back in time and see all the big events told from different perspectives, that was really interesting! I also liked the glow of this story, it was done so well!! What I loved the most is all of my favorite lovable and troublesome characters making frequent appearances!

I thought this book was written well, had excellent flow and pacing, wonderful characters, a great plot/premise, and was a wonderful, and insightful way to write about a version of a Dom/Sub dynamic. I'm really interested to see who's going to be next, and what other mischief these men are going to get up to next.

SNiK's Review:

Third in series (Damned Connections), best if read in order. Paranormal. Hurt/comfort. D/s. Light BDSM. Dual POV. Heed content warnings.

Toby knows Blaise is struggling so he offers the fire mage a contract to be Blaise’s Dom, hoping that with an end date he can avoid falling for the man that pushes all his buttons. Blaise doesn’t realize he desperately wants to submit and be cared for by Toby, but he embraces it and revels in their relationship, even though he has to keep reminding himself there can be no feelings.

There is plenty of steam with the D/s element, but there is also a beautiful start to how deeply both these men learn to feel more than just lust for each other. With Toby’s help Blaise finds personal growth and Toby discovers how to rely on his sub equal to the amount of care he provides. There is some supernatural action, very likable main characters, supportive secondary characters, and although the story slowed for me in the middle, there is a very satisfying HEA to Blaise and Toby’s relationship.

Jacqueleen the Reading Queen's review:

"𝚆𝚑𝚎𝚗 𝚘𝚞𝚛 𝚌𝚘𝚗𝚝𝚛𝚊𝚌𝚝 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚞𝚙, 𝚑𝚎'𝚍 𝚋𝚎 𝚑𝚊𝚙𝚙𝚢. 𝙸 𝚌𝚘𝚞𝚕𝚍 𝚠𝚊𝚝𝚌𝚑 𝚑𝚒𝚖 𝚠𝚊𝚕𝚔 𝚊𝚠𝚊𝚢 𝚔𝚗𝚘𝚠𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝙸'𝚍 𝚍𝚘𝚗𝚎 𝚠𝚑𝚊𝚝 𝙸 𝚍𝚒𝚍 𝚋𝚎𝚜𝚝.

𝙸 𝚓𝚞𝚜𝚝 𝚑𝚊𝚍 𝚝𝚘 𝚙𝚛𝚊𝚢 𝚝𝚑𝚊𝚝 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚌𝚘𝚜𝚝 𝚠𝚊𝚜𝚗'𝚝 𝚐𝚘𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚝𝚘 𝚛𝚞𝚒𝚗 𝚖𝚎 𝚒𝚗 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚙𝚛𝚘𝚌𝚎𝚜𝚜."

Well, there was quite a lot to unpack here in Blaise and Toby's story, starting with the fact that both MCs appear to be suffering from mental health issues, albeit in different ways. My heart broke for Blaise. He was so lost in his depression and self-depreciation that he couldn't see a way out. He'd essentially stopped living. Blaise spent his days going through the motions, but never truly feeling anything but hopelessness. It got so bad that if Toby hadn't noticed how much he needed help that I don't think Blaise would have made it much longer.

I didn't realize that Toby was going to break my heart too. He came off so strong and confidant in who he was. Knowing Toby was a Dom, I expected that to be who he really was, but appearances can be deceiving. Toby wanted nothing more than to find a mate/sub of his own for keeps, but after a few bad experiences he'd given up on that dream. He'd convinced himself he was content helping others on their way to a happily ever after with someone else.

"𝙸 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚖𝚊𝚗 𝚠𝚑𝚘 𝚏𝚒𝚡𝚎𝚍 𝚝𝚑𝚎𝚖, 𝚗𝚘𝚝 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚘𝚗𝚎 𝚝𝚑𝚎𝚢 𝚌𝚑𝚘𝚜𝚎 𝚝𝚘 𝚜𝚙𝚎𝚗𝚍 𝚎𝚝𝚎𝚛𝚗𝚒𝚝𝚢 𝚠𝚒𝚝𝚑."

These two drove me nuts with their inability to communicate their true feelings, despite having a contract that required exactly that! Bad form boys, bad form! So much angst could have been avoided if just one of them told the other how they felt. However, I did understand why they didn't. Toby had a history of it blowing up in his face and Blaise had dealt with Toby reminding him on a consistent basis that their relationship was actually not a relationship at all. Honesty is one of the most important parts of a kink contract, so Blaise accepted Toby at his word.

The spice in this one was HOT. I loved the fact that tiny Toby was a Dom, while brick shit house Blaise was a sub. Take that stereotypes!! I also loved how Toby was the sweet kind of Dom who liked to dote on his subs. Blaise needed that in his life, and I think they complemented each other well as a couple in the end.

Temperance is currently available as an e-book and paperback and can be read as part of your Kindle Unlimited Subscription