Banks, Maya. Be With Me. (New York: Berkley, 2008). ISBN – 9780425224045.
Main Characters: Regina Fallon, Hutch Bishop, Cam Douglas, and Sawyer Pritchard
Description from book:
Three men, one woman.
Hutch Bishop, Cam Douglas and Sawyer Pritchard were juvenile delinquents with a reckless and wildly sexy side. But they had more in common than that. They had Regina Fallon a wealthy but lonely girl from the right side of the tracks who formed an unusual friendship with the boys. She felt protected. She felt needed. She felt loved. . . for the first time in her life. By all three.
So much closer than just friends.
Today she’s a police officer dedicated to her badge and wary of reigniting her relationship with the hot trio after one night of passion left her confused – and stunned – by what they wanted from her. But when a mysterious attempt is made on her life, Hutch, Cam and Sawyer jump in to protect her again. Now Regina and her three lovers are forming an all-new bond. It’s more exciting, more intense and – as a killer looms in the shadows – more dangerous than ever before.
I’m a bit fascinated by menage stories – on several levels. Usually, the sex is different – and I do enjoy these scenes. But more than that, I’m fascinated by the ways in which the author deals with the emotional aspect. To me, this is especially critical when the menage is more than just sexual – when it becomes the lifestyle for the main characters. Maya Banks has written stories with committed menage relationships before – in particular, Colters’ Woman. While I did enjoy Colters’ Woman, there were several aspects about the plot that I found difficult to accept. In that book, the three brothers are actively looking for one woman to belong to all three. They know that this is what they need or want out of life. I simply thought that this was an awfully specific need and did not particularly buy that three brothers could all desire this without much in the way of angst, jealousy, etc. Because of this, I was very curious to see how Banks would handle this situation in Be With Me.
All in all, I found the way that Banks dealt with the issue of the committed menage in Be With Me much more plausible. Here, three close friends, Hutch, Cam and Sawyer, grow up together with Regina. They are all friends – and they all care about each other. As adults, the men all realize that they love Regina. They also understand that they cannot ask her to choose among them. They are not specifically looking to share a woman; they are adapting to the situation that life has given them. Then, one evening, the three men make love to Regina. She doesn’t know how to deal with the situation, so she hides from all three. However, when Regina is injured in a brutal attack, the men close ranks around their love – and refuse to let her continue to hide from them. They take her to the home that they built for her – to protect her and to force her to come to grips with the situation.
There is confusion among them all. There is jealousy. The men are committed to make this work, but they do have doubts. Banks allows us to see the uncertainty that the men have. They try to hide these doubts because they believe that they need to show a united front to Regina. At one point, however, Hutch allows his doubts to surface after witnessing some rough lovemaking between Sawyer and Regina – something that Regina was enjoying. Hutch went off on Sawyer, hurting both Regina and Sawyer tremendously. This was a situation that they all needed to address. This made the situation much more real to me. There are enough issues between two people in a committed relationship. I can only believe that there would have to be more in a relationship among 1 woman and 3 men.
Ultimately, this is now one of my favorite books by Maya Banks. There was definite emotion between all of the main characters, but even more so, there was definite emotion among the men. I liked seeing the men interact; learning about their insecurities about the situation; and watching how they dealt with the unfolding situation.
Read first November 2008