This book was both more and less than I expected. I expected fun and playful, which is what the title, cover and blurb imply. That’s not what I got though. At all. I was prepared for a light-hearted, naughty read and not much else. And yes, I guess Kneel Mr. President could be called naughty. But it wasn’t even a smidge easy-going.
Synopsis: When the President of the United states – James – is about to buckle under the pressure of his office, his wife Carlene decides that the best way to settle James is to bring their head of security into their bedroom. Kent, an ex SEAL and James’ former lover agrees to Carlene’s proposition and all sorts of naked activities ensue. Angst, jealousy, orgasms, more angst and some blowjobs. The end.
I was impressed by the beginning. It was a surprisingly in-depth portrayal of the characters involved. They were three-dimensional and real in a way that was as refreshing as it was unexpected. James, Kent and Carlene all felt very authentic with distinct and complex personalities. Their ambivalence and their fears were perfectly described through the alternating POVs. They all truly had their own voice and mind. Carlene’s struggles to accept the changes in dynamics were especially captivating.
Basically, this read delivered more depth than I’d expected. And Gallagher did a great job in laying the ground-work and making the story-line as plausible as could possibly be expected from this particular trope.
But unfortunately, once the shenanigans finally started, it wasn’t particularly tickling. It was actually quite disappointing. I mean, the mechanics of it all might have been hot if there had been more affection and genuine emotion between the three. But instead there was always this tension from at least one of them. Jealousy that was simmering beneath the surface. And call me old fashioned, but I don’t think it’s hot when there’s such an obvious imbalance within a threesome.
In Kneel Mr President, James always had the emotional leverage in having two other people loving him. While both Carlene and Kent were at a disadvantage, Kent more so than Carlene because of him – obviously – being the outsider. And even though the story tried to portray some kind of growing affection between Kent and Carlene, I wasn’t convinced. So the second half of this book I was mostly uncomfortable and put off. I just can’t stomach a threesome with that kind of inequality.
Yes, there’s a happy ending. Not a HEA though, more of a happy for now. That wasn’t quite enough for me though. The ending felt forced which maybe isn’t all that surprising. Inventing a happy ending for a threesome involving the US President surely sounds tricky.
So, for me, this book started with surprisingly impressive depth and ended with a disappointing and uneasy feeling in my gut. Not what I was hoping for when I selected this read.