Daddies: Gay Erotic Stories
Daddies: Gay Erotic Stories collects together 15 stories about men in "Daddy" relationships. Sometimes the dynamic is all about "father/son" mentoring; sometimes it's about domination and submission; there are even "bears" and their "cubs," relationships in which elements of D/s come into play along with issues of father figures and security.
The "daddy" is often significantly older than his partner, but not always. Frequently, there are "daddy issues" at work, which, whatever the ages of the men involved, take one participant into a psychologically under-developed state: men, young or older, who have experienced abuse or rejection at the hands of their own fathers seek to redress a gaping lack at their emotional cores, and in this dynamic there's a place for protectiveness and tenderness, even in the most pointedly D/s-centric pairings.
This collection is perfect for a writer like Jeff Mann, a top who takes pride in his mountain-country heritage. In Mann's story "Lost River," the narrator and his partner head off to a gay retreat, where they work out the latest wounds inflicted by the "boy's" biological father. When Mann's narrator trusses up his "boy," he's not restraining him: rather, the bonds allow the younger man to relax and let go of the effort to contain himself emotionally.
Doug Harrison's "Jungle Daddy" is similar in showing how a younger man seeks a sense of protection in being tied up and spanked. His "Jungle Daddy" (named after his remote home in the Hawaiian rain forest) commands respect; Harrison's pliant narrator gives it to him, relishing every "Sir!" that he utters.
T. Hitman's "The Die is Cast" takes things a bit further: the "daddy" in this story is a tough old cop, bound by his younger ex-lover who has returned to do the old man one last intimate favor. In a new twist, the dominant older male is now the (unwillingly) submissive one, but the dynamic follows the father/son road map to its inevitable reversal, as the "daddy" comes to rely upon the "boy."
Maturity is a recurring theme. A "cub" undergoes an initiation into adulthood in Xan West's "Missing Daddy," and Simon Sheppard's "Daddy-O" looks back at a fling with a member of the Beat writers.
But in some ways, of course, men never grow up: they remain boys in perpetuity, which is what makes a story like Dale Chase's "Coach" an example of a classic sub-genre: a grown man is transported by proximity to, and intimacy with, a boyhood sports hero.
Here and there are departures from the usual script. "Moving Past Pefect" by Elazarus Wills is less about a "daddy" and his "boy" than a middle-aged man mourning the loss of his life partner, only to rediscover love with a man half his age. Neither party is dominant nor submissive: the two are a perfect fit, and it's only the issue of years that causes the older man to hesitate. His eventual decision is a sweet and happy one.
Indeed, for a book so full of canings, rough sex, and bondage, "Daddies" offers a surprising number of moving stories about relationships that find their own lasting perfection: these men adore one another, however gruff the manner in which they might show it.
by Richard Labonte
Publisher: Cleis PRess. Publication Date: April 7. Pages: 200. Price: $14.95. Format: Trade paperback original. ISBN-13: 978-1-573-443-463