Read my reviews of the previous books in The Game series: | book cover of Doll Parts (The Game #4) by Cara Dee

This book is a very different type of story from the previous installments in this series, but it definitely follows the same theme Dee laid out from the very beginning. Love and kink can be completely entwined in a “perfect” relationship, but that doesn’t mean everything always aligns properly in real life – even the relationships themselves. Part of what I love most about this series is that the community established around House Mclean is the aspirational bit that makes reading romance books so much fun. Everything else about the characters and their dynamics leans harder into realism (while still being compelling) (and super sexy).

For such complicated relationship combinations, Dee spins a relatively low-angst tale by setting up the history and potential between all the characters through appropriate use of prologue. Then, she starts the main story line and lets readers enjoy the bits where they slam together instead. In the same vein, this book probably could have been four times as long if every bit of the interpersonal relationships were explored from all angles. Instead, the story flows through in waves, showing us the full scope of the changing world now to be shared by Noa, Cam, KC, and Lucian in a lovely mix of spicy scenes and poignant context. Lack of angst does not mean lack of tension, and I thoroughly enjoyed the way Dee crafts the narrative around the way these four men build toward a stronger future together.

This book can be read as a stand-alone, but plenty of cameos are made by previous heroes of this series. I especially enjoyed seeing the intricate Game plans being stalled once again (poor River) by a certain collection of delightful brats. Dee’s knowledge of the best way to portray kink is a pretty cool element of this series, but where this writer always shines is in her excellent depiction of all characters, both primary and secondary.

As much as I loved everything Dee published in 2021, I’m beyond thrilled that it looks like 2022 will return to this particular world for a time. The Games are a ride I won’t tire of anytime soon.

Rating: 4.5 (out of 5) stars. Cross-posted to Amazon and Goodreads.

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