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REVIEW: “Special Needs #1” by K.A Merikan


— Caretaking. You’re doing it wrong. —

Liam slept with his boss. Again. And lost his job because of it. Again. Set on changing his ways and tired of sleeping in his car, he applies for a job as a live-in caretaker, even though he has no experience in it whatsoever. He has a lot of practice in lying his way out of any situation though. Only problem is, his new boss – wheelchair bound owner of a sex hotel – is gay, cute, funny and oh, so fuckable! There is only one logical solution to Liam’s dilemma – pretending he’s straight. Brilliant!

When Ryan inherited his aunt’s B&B, he thought he’d hit the jackpot by changing it into a fetish sex hotel. Things didn’t go as planned though, all of his marketing efforts seem to fail, and the debt is mounting up. Being a wheelchair user doesn’t help in actively promoting his hotel, but his luck starts to change when he hires a new caretaker. Liam is open-minded, helpful and caring. All that Ryan needs from a caretaker to kickstart his business, but things would all be a lot simpler if he didn’t start crushing on his new employee. And even if, in some other dimension, Liam did return his feelings, how long can Ryan keep his fetish a secret?

The web of lies they weave around each other is more bondage than any of them enjoy.

“Special Needs” is book one of a two part series.


I got to tell you all (if you didn’t already know) that I am not a very forgiving reader/reviewer.  Appalling editing, long draw out storylines, mundane events, a failure to deliver on the promised kink and CLIFFHANGERS (!!!) really, really make me very unhappy.

There is so much wrong with this book in terms of execution and marketing. Firstly, shouldn’t the term be caregiver not caretaker? Secondly, this book is a serial not a series. Thirdly, the promised kink is mild apart from a scene or two. It’s all suggestive teasing talk, no show, not yet anyway.

But you know what? Despite the faults, I still liked it. And strangely enough I found myself being quite forgiving. Here’s why.

  1. Ryan and Liam are flawed characters, but they are real and unique characters. They annoy me, they push my buttons and they screw up. Especially Ryan, Ryan’s moral compass with regard to his little secret is completely fucked up. His deceit sickens me and yet I think I know why he lives it, believes it and NEEDS it. He is one messed up man. But together these guys are entertaining enough and credible in their affection.
  2. This is a self-published work and I fully understand the difficulties faced when you don’t have a professional editor to guide you. I always make allowances for this when starting a self-pub work.
  3. English is not this author’s first language so I feel I should make further allowances and remark that she does a good job, considering.  It is still not easy to ignore the switching of tenses mid-sentence, the bad grammar, lack of conjunctions, and the use of incorrect words in places.
  4. The premise is unique and daring. This author takes a risk in dealing with handicap/disability (is that the right term?) kink and I applaud her for it. It’s not going to be for everyone but to me, it’s a fascinating study of what drives this particular fetish.

This story is long and yes, sometimes dull, but sometimes exciting too, it’s a slow, slow start to this love story and I do feel invested in the outcome. The chemistry sizzles and the banter and rapport between Liam and Ryan is what keeps it fun. I think I just expected more; I thought the sex hotel would provide some amusing anecdotes but it doesn’t – not yet. I thought there would be more to the medical kinks, but there isn’t. I thought the relationship (sexually) would evolve faster, but it’s not over yet so I have lots to look forward to.

The ending is a firecracker (ha!) and now I need to know what happens next. Ryan and Liam have gotten to me and hopefully I will no longer have to suspend my disbelief over issues and finally get some answers.  This has lots of potential and I did like it after all.



Title: Special Needs
Author: K.A Merikan
Publisher: Self-pub
Pages: 208 (Hmm …dubious, I think more) 
Release Date: 19 June 2013
Purchase Links: Smashwords, ARe, Amazon.com


3 comments on “REVIEW: “Special Needs #1” by K.A Merikan

  1. Sheri
    December 13, 2013

    Hmmmm, so my question is….
    Are you going to read the next book?
    I’m somewhat interested in this one. Would you predict I would want to read the squeal immediately?

    **the cover makes me sudder


    • shelley
      December 13, 2013

      I’m reading the sequel right now! And yes, with that cliffhanger you need to continue straight away.


  2. katinka
    December 14, 2013

    Beh….I was interested in reading this one. Maybe the sequel will lift this from ‘okay’ to ‘hell yeah’.


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This entry was posted on December 13, 2013 by in Contemporary, Reviewer: Shelley and tagged , , , , , .

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