I swear, when I picked up Breeder in a recent Loose Id discount sale, I wasn’t looking for a deep story. I like breeding and slave kink stories. Many of them can be extremely problematic, rife with sexist stereotypes, misogyny and just generally poorly written. Still I continue to search, ever hopeful that one day I will find a well written stories, with all the kinks I love, that doesn’t make me cringe.
Enter Breeder by Cara Bristol.
The science fiction erotica about Commander Dak, and his breeder, Omra. They are Parseon, a very human like alien species who live in the quintessential Patriarchal society. The Alpha male masculine ideal isn’t just an idea, it’s the basis for the entire society. Dak himself isn't just an Alpha he is The Alpha Commander of his district. One of only a handful of ruling Alphas on his planet.
In accordance with Protocol, the social laws of Parseon culture, he has a male companion, a Beta, because another man (who is a lesser) can be the only suitable companion for an Alpha male. Protocol also gives allowances for the propagation of the species, and that is where Omra comes into the story. She is the breeder Dak chooses to “incubate his offspring.” Both their worlds are turned upside down when Dak starts to feel what is considered deviant desires, for Omra and starts to question the truth of Protocol and the very foundation of Parseon society.
While Dak without a doubt an Alpha male, he has a depth, compassion and intelligence that sets him apart from the cliche he’s based upon. We watch his facade of dominance and strength slowly fall away to reveal a man who feels the weight of his responsibilities and the strain of maintaining the unnaturally guarded state in every avenue in his life. Omra is a slave, there is no doubt about that, but she has a similar kind of empathy for others and intelligence, though she doesn’t credit herself for it. She has surprising dimension, and pragmatism, while she accepts the oppressive world she’s born into, she doesn’t like it.
It was so refreshing to see real people beneath these archetypes of the Master and slave. I especially to see safe, sane, BDSM play integrated into the story in a way that highlighted how different it is from the violent brutality of the real slavery in the world. It’s a tricky line to walk, but I think Bristol pulled it off with flare.
What stood out to me was how this story really shows how disparaging and damaging a patriarchy is to both men and women. Parseon is a misogynist’s wonderland, where women are chattel, and masculinity is the epitome of superiority in every way. While Alpha’s have male companions, who they have “appropriate sex” with, these are not portrayals of homosexuality. Which is such an important distinction to make.
The Alpha/beta dynamic in Parseon is similar to the mentor/boy sexual relationships of ancient Rome. They are not heathy relationships based on equality and love, but a powerful man using a less powerful man as a sexual object. (I’ve being trying to explain the difference between this oppressive abuse of power, that is essentially socially acceptable rape, and homosexuality for years.) There is no give and take. A Beta is always a bottom, and must comply even if they are heterosexual. In fact, according to Protocol heterosexuality is the ultimate sexual perversion. An Alpha should only ever engage in sex with a woman to procreate, in the hopes of producing a son. Proving that true homosexuality has no home in Protocol either.
Breeder demonstrates how no one is happy in this kind of society, aside from the privileged few, the Alphas. In fact, it is Omra who comes to this conclusion in the narrative, as she begins to better understand the politics of her world. Once Dak opens his eyes to this reality too, and understands that not all Alpha treat those beneath them with the consideration and care does he begin to see the true horror of Protocol (aka Patriarchy).
All of this, and we get some sexy Dom/sub play, spanking, and with a growling Alpha male overwhelmed by his intense desire to plant his seed. Not to mention more cunnilingus than I have ever read an erotic novel in a long time. I'm talking lesbian erotic levels of going downtown.
Seriously at one point Dak is so turned on by how wet Omra is, he literally rubs his face in her pussy. *cue me sliding out of my seat into a puddle on the floor*
If any of these kinks appeal to you, check out this book.