Caged (Baal’s Heart Book 1)

Caged (Baal’s Heart Book 1)
Sheltered and lonely, Jon’s life changes drastically when a strange ship sails into the harbour of his small port town one day. Trapped between the possessive pirate captain and his murderous first mate, he must learn to adapt or he will lose himself completely. An epic tale of love and jealousy, treachery and revelation, this first installment of the Baal’s Heart trilogy brings you into the lives of three men so bound together by jealousy and lies that they must sail to the very ends of the earth to find forgiveness. Deckard’s first novel is a masterful portrayal of sorrow, hope, and passion, with a narrative that twists the reader through a world set in the Golden Age of Piracy.


4 stars

Caged follows the story of Jon, a meek young man who possesses an unusual ability to read people. Pirates kidnap him from his hometown in the hopes of utilising his abilities in their business deals. This plot is quickly sidelined as he soon becomes enmeshed in a love triangle with Captain Baltsaros and his first mate Tom.

Caged is a decent erotic fantasy with characters and story that are more developed than usual for the genre, but it’s not extraordinary. There are extremely frequent and graphic sex scenes between the main characters that often involve bondage.

The prose is passable, but some passages are overwritten. When I came to “pearls of desire” I snickered. Caged kind of reminds me of the trashy novels I used to filch from my stepmother when I was too young to be reading such stuff. Although the sex in them was straight, not gay, the descriptions pretty much followed the same pattern, and the tone was the same, emotional and romantic.

Structurally, I didn’t feel that there was much of a plot. Rather a collection of small events happened with no clear goal and no obvious antagonist until 80% of the way through. I found the pacing very slow, but the focus is on the erotica. The scenes tended to jump around in time, which I sometimes found confusing.

Reviewed by Starr

5 Stars

The first two books of the Baal’s Heart series are in my all-favorite list. Bey is a fabulous writer. I could feel myself seeing this world. I could feel what the characters were dealing with. This is not dime-store erotica. This is a deeply emotional dive into the human psyche. The characters are well fleshed out. I love all the main characters, but Tom… How I wish I could bring that man to life. This book is sexy… even for someone like me who doesn’t even read erotica. I can just imagine the genius it takes to create an entirely new world and such beautiful characters… such a beautiful story. Bey is a force to be reckoned with.



The Plague

The Plague
Published: January 22, 2014
The Admiral of the Democratic Assembly. His right-hand man on a search for redemption. The lone survivor of a terraformed planet. A Defiled rebel unplugged from the Feed. And a memory of a time long ago. Five lives witness change in a universe that forgot it was possible. In the distant future every species is given a single vote to coordinate its existence. Humans, who sit at the top of this Democratic Assembly, require constant planetary terraforming to accommodate their booming population, which now includes naturally occurring genetic duplicates for every living sequence. This is the way it has always been. But when the one-thousandth Alien pyramid is found on a distant planet, and the murder of the marines who discovered it is broadcast across the public Feed, it seems change has finally come. Some would do anything to promote it, while others would die to prevent it. No one is ready for the truth: that change may come at the destruction of everything, and the ancient realization that “we are not alone” is about to take a whole new meaning.

Each Character is Well-Drawn and Complex

4 stars. 

The Plague is an entertaining and generally well-written science fiction story about a future where humans are a plague on the universe. It has all the elements that sci if fans will love – intelligent alien monsters with squishy tentacles and glistening scales, technological wizardry, deadly space battles, and even a touch of romance and a smidgen of magic.

Earth was destroyed long ago, and now New Earth has gone the same way. Humans are once again shifting planets.  I’m unsure of the time frame of this event, because though the author labels this part of the story The Near Future,  whether that is near to me, or near to the rest of the story, I’m not sure.  I don’t think it really matters that much in this somewhat disjointed form of story telling.

Four characters start in different places during the same time frame but in different, seemingly unrelated, situations, their only link the world they inhabit. But as the story continues, some of these characters come together, and each story informs the other.  Added to that are scenes from The Near Future and The Far Future which complete the story by giving us a view over a long period of human future history. Instead of these scenes coming at the end, they are peppered throughout the story. Some may not like this leaping about from character to character and between time periods, but I think it gives the story an interesting dynamic with the  glimpses of the future juxtaposed against the events that set the future along that path.

Each character is well-drawn and complex and their individual stories are strong, but the overall plot is not as strong as the individual strands that make it up. Near the end, the threads do start to converge and give of sense of an overall thrust to the story as the characters fall on different sides of a battle between the Defiled and the Assembly. I assume there will be sequels because the individual stories paused rather than ended, and the book clearly set the scene for future developments.

The book is sleek and well-edited, the only difficulty I had with it was the beginning. I simply had a hard time getting into it. The first and second scenes suffered from a lack of description, so I couldn’t get a visual of the setting and very little on the characters. The author didn’t introduce a central character up front either, so I didn’t know who the story was actually about until some way into the scene when I discovered that it was a first person narrative.  Even then, I couldn’t figure out who the narrator was and what role he played in the scene. His relationship to one of the other characters only became apparent at the end of the scene. Perhaps I simply missed these things, but I doubt I would be the only one who finds the beginning scenes a little vague.

The second scene also introduced many terms for aspects of the world but without any explanation, so I could only guess what on earth (or not on earth in this case) the narrator was  referring to. The author also introduced many characters in a short space of time and before the central character – another recipe for orientation difficulties.

Scene three, however, I found excellent. The main character was introduced up front, the threat was real, the visuals clear, the writing immediate and engaging, and by the end of the scene, I was rooting for Forge and the Flora. Things were looking up. And that standard continued throughout the rest of the book.

The author has used the characters and the world of his cartoon series for this novel, which  explains, but doesn’t excuse its early problems. Graphic fiction has pictures, but novels need description to create those pictures in the readers’ minds. Much about a world can be seen and understood in a glance with a picture, whereas it needs to be explained in a novel without associated graphics. The author provided me with the comic as well as the novel, but the novel should stand alone.

All up, if you can hang in at the beginning until things start to come together then the rest of the ride is great.