Title: Taking it All
Author: Maya Banks
Chessy and Tate have been married for several years. In the beginning, their relationship was everything she wanted. Passionate.
All consuming. She offered her submission freely and Tate cherished her gift with a tenderness that made her feel safe. Content. Wanted. And loved beyond all measure. But as the years have gone by, Tate has become more immersed in making his business the success it has become, and Chessy has taken a back seat to his business obligations. Growing unhappier with the status of their once blissful marriage, Chessy knows that something has to give. Or they stand to lose it all.
Tate loves his wife. Has always loved her. Providing for her has always been his number one priority. But lately she’s seemed unhappy, and he’s worried. Worried enough that he arranges for a night together that he hopes will reignite the fire that once burned like an inferno between them.
But a business call at the wrong time threatens everything. Chessy’s safety, his concentration, his wife’s faith in him as her husband, a man sworn to love and protect her above all else. Gutted with the realization that he’s going to lose her—has already lost her—he readies for the fight of his life. Whatever it takes, he’ll get her back. And prove to her that nothing is more important than her love. And that if she’ll allow him to prove himself one more time, he’ll take it all. Everything. But he’ll give far more back. Himself. His undying love.
Maya Banks is the queen of heartbreak and reconciliations. She’s also not afraid to dive a bit deeper and explore different aspects of sexuality. Okay, basically she writes bomb-ass BDSM and polyamorous romances that I simply die for. I tried to be eloquent as possible for readers that aren’t really into this particular kind of kink but it is what it is.
As the synopsis states, Tate loves his wife but he’s also a selfish ass and a gaslighter. Chessy is a people pleaser and in my opinion, their marriage is doomed to fail. This is probably the only book I read where I wasn’t rooting for the main couple to stay together. Tate pissed me off the whole time. Even in the end when he was “getting his shit together” I still was side eying him because it literally took for your wife to almost getting raped for you to be a better husband.
Chessy is such a sweet soul. One of those people that it’s so easy to take for granted. What I loved about her character is that she never once tried to blame Tate for everything. She took accountability for the role she played in some of their marital issues while also holding Tate accountable for his shit. I was so glad that her friends and their partners really cared about her and held her down as she went through it with Tate.
By this point, you’re probably wondering why I continued to read this novel if I wasn’t here for the main couple. It was the drama! I was in a mood and I wanted something gut-wrenching and sad. I got that and then some. This novel served one dramatic blow after another and while I felt bad for Chessy I flew through the pages.
The BDSM aspect of their relationship was talked about a lot but rarely shown. Giving the state of their marriage I’m kind of glad Tate didn’t use the fact that he is Chessy’s Dominant to gain her compliance or make her stay when she wanted to leave. It also added an extra layer of drama to the story.
If you’re not familiar with a Dominant and submissive relationship I’ll give you an abbreviated dynamic of Tate and Chessy’s marriage. Tate as Dominant calls all the shots in and out of bed WITH Chessy permission. So while it may seem like Tate has all the control it’s the opposite. Chessy as a Submissive has placed her trust in Tate to always do right by her. To make sure she’s happy in and out of bed. To make her his main priority.
So the fact that Chessy wasn’t happy was not only a blow to their marriage but also broke the trust she placed in him to always see to her needs. Some may think that Chessy is being a bit too much but Chessy went to extremes to please him. To support him in his business and she also questioned herself and her reaction to things. It wasn’t until their anniversary disaster that she snapped.
In the end, Tate did do the right things to get his wife back. If I’m being honest Tate wasn’t a bad guy he just had his priorities messed up and he was a bit of a douche. He does genuinely love Chessy and it shows throughout the novel which was why the story was so dramatic. The ending was quite touching and I was glad Chessy was finally happy.