📖 Review: Putting Out for a Hero – C. Rochelle

Putting Out For a Hero - C. Rochelle

Series: Villainous Things

Pages: 460
Time to read: 1h58m
Pages/hour: 234

Date read: Fri 14 July 2023

Rating: 🦹‍♂️🦹‍♂️🦹‍♂️🦹‍♂️🦹‍♂️

Little did they know, all I ever wanted was to stick my dick in my rival’s tight end.

Enter: the actual himbo

Not gonna lie, I wasn’t at all interested in Baltasar as a character until the last few chapters of Gentlemen Prefer Villains, but then that’s probably because I didn’t know much about him before then. His appearances in Not All Himbos Wear Capes were brief, with Wolfy taking much more centre stage out of all the Suarez siblings, so it was difficult to even get a read on him.

And up until those final chapters of Villains, I don’t think I was even that sure what his superpower was. (No shade if it was mentioned – 100% I wasn’t paying attention!) But then it was funny, and he was super sweet to Simon – as well as the appropriate amount of terrified of him – and I was suddenly way more excited for his story.

Zion was similar, of course, having popped up earlier in Wolfy and Simon’s story, but we knew even less about him.

What a journey the two take us on! I’d argue that Balty is far more the himbo than Butch (and, oh, I have THOUGHTS about Butch in the spoiler zone below!), being all big and sweet and thinking he’s a little bit slow – when really, he’s just as messed up as the other Suarez siblings, honed to be a weapon as they all have been. He’s awkward and anxious and perfectly adorable, which leads to his and Zion’s relationship having a dynamic I wasn’t quite expecting, but loved all the same.

It’s not that often I read a bi-awakening; it’s definitely not something I particularly go out of my way to look for, though books featuring this trope are always fun. In this one, I liked how into Balty Zion was – there’s very little pining on Balty’s part because Zion is in charge and ready to take what he wants, so long as he knows Balty wants it too. It shifts the goalposts for what the stakes are, and what everyone else is after, and I think made for a much deeper story in that sense.

Oh, and of course, the plot thickens in this book as we get closer to what I imagine is going to end in the next one. I was so glad I re-read the first two, because I really needed to have that knowledge to grasp the weight of certain revelations (or even to understand them at all!), and it made it soooo exciting.

I smiled so wide, Captain Masculine probably felt my dimples pound his dimples into submission from across the country.

Love some multifacetedness

Spoilers ahead!

Let’s have a chat about characters!

Now, it’s hardly a revelation that when you’re shifting POV character from book to book, then the way the reader views characters they’ve already met should change slightly. If we move into book two and book one’s MC is the rival of the MC of book two, then that’s definitely going to be a different dynamic.

And I love this. It’s one of the things I really enjoy about this standalone-but-interconnected format of romance series, and there are some authors who really (can) dig into it more than others.

Rochelle killed it for me here.

Look, I love Butch. Xander is my favourite (still true!) but Butch is so sweet and we know how mistreated he was and he needs Xander looking out for him – and I can even forgive him for wanting to just dispose of Simon’s body in Villains because, duh, it’s not like anyone knew Simon would survive Wolfy touching him.

So tell me WHY I wanted to murder this sweet superhero in this book?!

That scene where Butch is harassing Daisy had me STEAMING – I was 100% with Balty, ready to throw down, and godDAMN that’s amazing! Like I was mad, but also, I get it? That’s his character! We only saw him go – to quote Rochelle herself – Blade Runner Butch on villains in the first book, and though that one brings into question what being a villain means, they still weren’t people we focused on.

This really hones the focus and even though Daisy is fine and (I guess) there’s no lasting damage, I’d honestly say it’s one of the darker moments in what I’d call an edgy-but-not-super-dark series. (Dark romance is so much… grimmer, often, for me. This isn’t light-hearted as such, but I think it tips more often into dark comedy than true darkness.)

And THEN. Skip through to the end and we have the Epic Villain Showdown between Zion and Wolfgang, featuring Balty as an unwilling chess piece. Me: also fuming! Two reasons for this – the first being, Zion please, please do not undo all the hard work that Xander is definitely putting in to make sure his siblings slowly turn into well-rounded evil beings. It took Wolfy all of his book to recognise it was okay to be a little softer about his protectiveness of his family, and I don’t think Zion gets to pretend he’s on top for taking advantage of that, especially when Wolfy wouldn’t truly consider going after Daisy (Simon would) and that we know Zion wouldn’t truly hurt his mate (again, Simon would know this). The second – Zion, baby. Simon will murder you, giant lizard king or not, and so I was infuriated for Balty, who doesn’t want to be in the middle of this, and who feels like he is losing something, a little, by choosing to be with Zion; and angry for Wolfgang, because the Suarez siblings have worked too damn hard to truly be brought down a peg like this.

But it makes sense! That’s just how the world is, and the Suarezes can’t be on top of it forever!

Also… I am concerned about the mention of the lesser villains and what that’s going to mean for our clan because, you know, they’re all probably right. We love an underdog, and the Suarez siblings were the underdogs in the face of their parents, but with their parents gone… I don’t mind rooting for the villains, but I don’t know that they don’t as a whole deserve to face the consequences of the life they’ve reaped from the work of others.

It’s all so complicated! God, I adore this series.

I purred in satisfaction and closed the distance between us again. “Oh, I saw,” I growled in his ear. “You protected my salacious secrets and defended me—like a good little mate.”

On a highway to… who knows?

Overall thoughts?

This is yet another spicy foray into the world of morally dubious people with superpowers, and though I think Balty and Zion’s story is in many ways less extreme than Wolfy and Simon’s (the kinks, I mean), it’s still ranking way up there.

I loved the way the external plot came together in this one, and the questions everything raised for me. Things are getting very complicated, but I love that. There are ideas and concerns I have that I’m wondering how Rochelle will address, especially considering…

The next book is all about the twins! And I think it might be much darker!

No, but the next one seems fascinating, especially considering who I think the twins’ love interest is (yeah, seems like they’re sharing a guy) and this might truly be the villain/villain(/villain) combo we’re after.

(No, Simon and Wolfy don’t count, Simon is the villain but Wolfy is along for the murderous ride.)

But yes, as usual, I can’t wait for the next instalment!

It’s how the game is played. But I don’t want to play anymore.

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