Normally I don’t read Motorcycle Club romance’s. I’m not sure exactly why. I am a huge fan of The Sons of Anarchy, which would lead you to believe that it’s a concept I may enjoy, yet I never read them. So, when it came to picking up Outlaw MC it wasn’t a decision made because the books were about an MC. My decision was based on the concept that this was an MC that was on Mars, and that they rode hover bikes, and that they lived in a extremely corrupt society and as Outlaws they were actually the good guys. It was the Sci-Fi aspect that hooked me.
I’m not going to lie, the stories are very erotic. The members of the Outlaw MC are almost all a little bit pervy, but it fit in with the characters and the lifestyle, at least in my imagination. The guys were pervy on SoA too. The installments are all also short stories. Not one of them hit 100 pages, which I actually didn’t realize when I chose to review them. I don’t read a lot of short stories, so I got around that by reading them all back to back, so it felt more like each member’s story was a different ‘part’ of the whole.
Whatever course of action I took, I enjoyed the quick reads and thought the M/M, Sci-Fi, Dystopian Erotica’s would make an interesting topic for our Sci-Fi Saturday feature.
Chaos Unchained is Chao’s story. He’s been busted drinking alcohol. The penalty for his infraction is 6 months in the mining prison on Earth. There he meets Beau, a prisoner with a goofy smile that he can’t seem to stop thinking about or seeking out. The synopsis asks if they can survive the months apart after Beau is released, but I think that it was more about finding a connection even in the worst of places.
First off, I really loved the start of the first book. The Prologue was incredibly intriguing with Chaos being sent to prison on Earth in a pod, where he was strapped down and zero control if anything happened to him as he was shooting through space toward prison. It isn’t hard to imagine the fear that would consume you, all alone in a tiny space pod that I pictured as not much bigger than an MRI machine, feeling yourself hitting meteors and so sure that you’re going to be knocked off the path and left to float out there all alone. Fricking terrifying.
Earth’s prison was pretty unique. With the jailers not caring what happens on Earth, so long as the mining is finished, I can imagine that the set up and hierarchy would be pretty close to what Mr. Cox created. Fight, fuck, or work in the mine. Chaos, being the natural badass that he is obviously becomes a fighter, which is basically what you think. If he wins a fight, those who bet on him win stuff. Honestly, I liked the set up in prison a lot, so I was very nervous for future books and what would happen when the reader joined the other MC members on Mars.
Of all of the books, Chaos was definitely the MC member that I found ‘hottest’. Beau was really cute, too. The goofy things he would say, and how cute Chaos thought silly Beau was. They were adorable. I think that Mr. Cox was pretty good at keeping his characters in character no matter what was happening. It’s not an easy feat, not losing yourself in the plot and having a character respond outside of the personality they were given.
The only thing is, and I knew this was a short story series before I started, I wished that this first book had been longer. I would have enjoyed reading more about the Prison time, rather than have a jump from the first few weeks to three months in, then again to the final days at 6 months.
Rating: = B+
Underneath his Armor is the story of Knox, or Outlaw as the club calls him, who is the President of the Outlaw MC. His history led him toward a deep passion to bring down the corrupt government that rules Mar’s society. His dedication is so great that he holds his VP, Liam AKA Lover and life long friend at arms length, refusing to give into the love that they both have for each other. Again, in my opinion, the book isn’t quite about Liam getting hurt. It’s more about allowing yourself a love you deserve, no matter how terrifying it may be.
The second installment brings us back to Mars, and really starts to get our hands dirty in the battle for revolution. While I definitely liked the setting of the first book more, I did enjoy the parameters of the world on Mars too. It’s where we first get a taste of the slaves and the breeders, and it’s a very very dark place.
I liked Liam (Lover). I liked who he was for Knox (Outlaw). I thought that their friendship, particularly how it all started was really kinda awesome. Especially when the time came that Knox needed him more than ever, Liam stood for him and had his back. Even though we didn’t get to read it, the fact that they were sent to Earth’s prison at the same time and protected and supported each other was a good representation of exactly what their friendship was about.
In this one, Underneath His Armor, I thought the strength of this story was in the friendship. Things transpired in Liam and Knox’s past that made them the men that they are today. It created the Pres and VP who created the Outlaws in the first place, and stoked that fire to give the people back their freedoms.
I think Knox and Liam are the true heart of the entire series.
Rating: 1/2 = B
Behavior Problem tells the story of Deviant, the beast, as I thought of him while I was reading. With a sister who became lost to him, his temper is pointed at anyone who dares mistreat a woman. That gets him into some hot water with the club, and Outlaw sends him off to one of their contacts to act as a bodyguard for women who have escaped and to teach them how to ride their Hover Bikes. The women want to start their own illegal MC, which they aptly name the Amazons. There Deviant meets Tage, the extremely well dressed, well spoken, man who has helped to free the women. The synopsis of this one is pretty spot on, because it’s about learning that love isn’t weakness.
This one was just as good as the first one. The story definitely ups the ante in terms of the club’s endgame, which is saving the citizens from Wexmen. It also focuses more on the ‘women for breeding’ aspect of the world.
I think my favorite aspect of this installment, however, was Tage. I know I mentioned that in Chaos Unchained I liked goofy Beau, but Tage trumps him. Tage is white collar, prudish, and shy. Which makes for an interesting recipe when pared with the boys of the MC who are anything BUT prudish. I chuckled along with Deviant every time he made the poor guy blush, which was just about all the time.
And, the best part, we got a tiny little happy ending in this one which was great. Unfortunately that happy ending was balanced with the story taking a turn for the worst for Outlaw MC‘s heart, Knox and Liam.
Rating: = B+
In the fourth and final installment, With Tongue and Teeth, Romeo has been busted doing the worst possible thing, having sex with a man. The punishment, kill on sight. Romeo has no options left but join up with the Underground MC, which is made up of those who have escaped slavery and are living in tunnels outside the city. Romeo is devastated, until he meets Justice, the new MC’s president.
The Underground MC, along with the Amazon’s and Romeo’s own club the Outlaw MC, are all working together to dethrone Wexmen and free everyone who has been enslaved. Justice has decided that it’s time to really push back against the government by one big attack of force, erecting walls, and declaring open war. I’m not sure how many installments this series will have, but this book felt like it was creating the basis for the final stand between the rebels and the corrupt laws.
Honestly, of all of the installments I think this one was my least favorite. There wasn’t anything in particular that bothered me, I just think that the previous books were more solid. What I did enjoy was Romeo himself. So far all of the MC members have been almost indestructible. Sure at one point Deviant did something impulsive, but it was for a good reason. Not Romeo, he makes stupid mistakes for stupid reasons, and that felt really believable. It wasn’t just the first one either, getting busted having sex, it happened another time during the book too and I liked that he got called out for it. That’s not to say he wasn’t tough in his own right, he makes heroic decisions too. It was just nice to read about a character who was a bit irresponsible. One who wasn’t always perfect.
Also, this book had the best dedication! It made me laugh out loud when I read it. “This is dedicated to the biters out there. Keep life kinky.” Awesome.
Rating: = C+
Final Thoughts: Obviously the series isn’t over. There are more characters that we haven’t gotten to, and I imagine that, following the pattern, they will get an installment also. A few questions I have that I’ll be waiting for: What about Prospect? Will he get a short story, or is he there as a side piece? Will we ever find out anything concrete about Chaos’s father? More of Justice’s history?
These are the questions that will keep me reading.
Thank you to James Cox for providing copies of Outlaw MC in exchange for honest reviews.