Hannah Stewart’s always been different when it comes to relationships. Monogamy doesn’t work for her. She needs more. And more is something most people can’t handle.
She gets more than she bargains for, though, when she partners up with local brewery owners Mitchell and Ben for a business venture and finds herself attracted to both of them. She proposes polyamory, where she dates each of them with their full consent.
Mitchell Fredericks and Ben Harrington have been “friends with benefits” for years. But with Hannah in the mix, it’s not so easy to ignore emotions. She brings out a side of them they’d never been willing to face head-on, especially as their separate relationships shift into a menage.
Desire, friendship, and boundaries will be put to the test. If they can’t learn to swallow their fear and communicate, everything will fall apart.
Elia Winters is a fat, tattooed, polyamorous bisexual who loves petting cats and fighting the patriarchy. She holds a Master’s degree in English Literature and teaches at a small rural high school, where she also runs the drama club. In her spare time, she is equally likely to be found playing tabletop games, kneading bread, cross-stitching, or binge-watching Marie Kondo. A sex educator and kink-positive feminist, Elia reviews sex toys, speaks at kink conventions, and writes geeky, kinky, cozy erotic romance. She currently lives in western Massachusetts with her loving husband and their weird pets.
Three-Way Split is book one in the Comes in Threes series by a new to me author, Elia Winters.
Hannah Stewart grew up always feeling sort of middle of the road. Like she never really stood out, or did really well at any particular thing. She loved Mapleton, Massachusetts, loved the small town vibe, and decided to open her own business there, a sex toys store.
Hannah enjoyed her independence. She wanted to succeed and know that it was her that did it. She enjoyed sex but had no interest in a romantic relationship. She didn’t want to be dependent on anyone. Her business had been open for four years and she would have been in the green except that the landlords had raised the rent on her building and it was killing her profits. If something didn’t change soon, she would have to close.
Mitchell Fredericks and Ben Harrington have been friends since college. When Ben’s life fell apart, Mitchell suggested they go into business together and buy a pub in Mapleton. They also became roommates. They had been living and working together for seven years now and their business was successful. Both men are bi-sexual and two years ago, they decided to add sex into their relationship. No emotions, no commitments, just best friends with benefits.
Hannah often went into the pub and had been crushing a bit on Mitchell for some time but never let her desires be known. Planning stages have begin for the town’s fall festival and this could be just what Hannah needs to give her business a boost, only she can’t afford the booth fees. So Hannah, Mitchell and Ben form a partnership for the event. This is the first time she really has gotten to know Ben and is instantly attracted. Can she really be this attracted to both men? Sparks soon fly and Hannah explores her attraction first individually with the men and then all together. But she makes it clear that this is just for fun. During the course of their time together, all three of them are forced to assess their feelings for one another. Could Mitchell and Ben have had feelings for each other all along and just never admitted it to themselves? Can they add Hannah into the mix or is trying to form a relationship with three people involved doomed to fail?
“How about you? Do you like mixing business and pleasure?” “My business is pleasure.”
Okay, I have mixed feelings about this book. While I wasn’t head over heels in love with the characters, I did enjoy them. And this book is getting four stars because the heat level is off the charts! Hannah bothered me a little bit with her independence streak. Not so much where it came to her business but in her approach to relationships.
Three-Way Split is a sexy as hell polyam romance with a lot of heart. Elia Winters’s first Comes in Threes book is positively scorching, but it’s the characters and the way they approach their relationships that really makes this story stand out.
Hannah is a fiercely independent owner of an adult store. She’s smart, knowledgeable, flirty and fun, but she also has very realistic struggles, insecurities, and fears. At the beginning of the story, she has the hots for both Ben and Mitchell, but she doesn’t want things to be any deeper than some very hot fun and friendship for the three of them because she’s afraid of having her heart broken. Like Hannah, Ben guards his heart closely. He’s been burned badly by an ex and though he and Mitchell have been friends with benefits for a couple of years, he won’t let things go any farther. Ben is brilliant and so charming that I couldn’t help but smile whenever he was on the page. As with Hannah, I was really rooting for Ben to open up because it’s clear he, Hannah, and Mitchell could have something special. Which brings me to the third member of the triad: Mitchell. If I had to pick a favorite character in this book it would definitely be the quietly dominant chef. Mitchell is perhaps the most openly vulnerable of the three of them; he clearly wants a relationship but is careful not to ask for more than Ben or Hannah think they can give. Mitchell isn’t perfect, but he’s pretty much everything a person could ask for in a partner, only he doesn’t quite see how special he is which just grabbed my heart.
As individuals, Mitchell, Ben, and Hannah are compelling characters. When they get together, either in twos or threes, Three-Way Split is seriously hot. A fun, sex-positive m/m/f erotic romance would be enough, but what took this book to the next level was the way it discussed polyamory. It’s not just hot times in the bedroom (among other places) and I loved the realism woven into the fantasy. As Hannah, Ben, and Mitchell become more serious, they take the time to learn more about polyamory, what it means, and how to communicate with your partners, especially when it comes to your wants, fears, expectations, and feelings. This gives the book and the love stories such wonderful depth and works perfectly with the kinky good times. The only downside of Three-Way Split is that I finished it wanting the next Comes in Threes book because I loved the characters and romances in this one so much.
FTC Disclosure: I received this book for free from the author in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Affectionate flirting between small business owners develops into something more once they take a hard look at the type of relationships they actually have and what they really want. Hannah is trying to maintain a struggling business while Ben and Mitchell own a nearby restaurant and brewery. Ben and Mitchell are bisexual and in a casual relationship with each other and Mitchell and Hannah have been flirting for ages. When they enter into a business relationship their personal lives entwine as well.
This one is a bit slight, but enjoyable enough. A lot of these menage romances have a large amount of tab A slot B descriptive sex scenes and I think it's a real challenge to keep a plot going around that. In my opinion, this doesn't always succeed. It makes some interesting points around commitment and insecurity, but not particularly original ones.
CW: graphic sex, negative reaction to someone coming out
I know I've gotten into reverse harem this year, which you could argue can be a form of polyamory, I'd say the subgenre is still very much a sensual/sexual fantasy geared towards women who like the idea of multiple men fawning over them. And who can blame them? It is a lovely fantasy! But I seem to have stumbled upon a menage romance that is actually about polyamory, where the two men are not there to worship the woman but actually have a relationship between them. And it helps to know that the author has actual experience with polyamory. Because the end result is a book that's both red-hot and pretty educational!
I think the first big thing to note about Three-Way Split is that the book is very heavy on the sex. I mean, I'm not going to complain because it was really sexy, but this definitely counts as erotic romance fiction because there is a lot of graphic sex that the plot relies very heavily on. As in, you wouldn't be able to have this story without the sex. That's not to say that there isn't a plot or deeper emotions, but the relationship between the three main characters is built first on the physical connection before emotions are layered on top, and because of who the characters are as people, they would not have been able to build up to their emotional honesty without first laying a foundation of mutual attraction.
In fact, that's what pleasantly surprised me about the book. At first, I thought this was turning out to be just a book about sex, be it sex between the woman and one man, between the two men, or between all three. Because the author put a lot of that in, and we're talking everything from anal to mutual masturbation to DP. And then the feelings slowly started to sneak in through moments of intimacy and self-doubt. And while the sex remained on the page and still hot as hell, so many emotions built up and exploded as time went on. Our three main characters each had reasons for not wanting a relationship, and they each had to confront their own personal demons – fear of abandonment, a need for independence, past hurts – before they could fully surrender to the inevitable relationship. Because it did really feel inevitable.
Like I said, this book was about real polyamory. In a very natural and easy to read way, the author explored the nature of one type of polyamorous relationship: the closed triad. (Yes, I did learn this term from the book!) Thanks to the influence of a secondary character doing a PhD on non-monogamous relationships, Hannah, Ben, and Mitchell were able to learn about polyamory and explore the possibilities while also showing the very real fears of people who are considering polyamory but aren't sure if it's right for them, or who have concerns about it. For example, one thing I would be afraid of is feeling like a third wheel, and that does come up. By reading this, I felt like I was being educated alongside the characters and able to work through my own questions. I was afraid that this wouldn't be a true representation of polyamory, and it probably won't represent everyone's experience of it, but it helped to read in the author's acknowledgements that she has personal experience, which helped me to trust in the lessons I learned while also having to mentally fan myself repeatedly while reading.
A special mention to something that I particularly enjoyed: the professions of each main character and how they intertwined so perfectly and creatively during the festival. It made me want to go to my nearest sex toy store and get to know the people who work there, for a start.
So if you like your books on the VERY spicy side and are curious about polyamory, take a bite out of this!
I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
Wow! I really enjoy this one! Nice polyam rep, plus good writing plus sexy sexy sex scenes. Recommend for people looking for queer polyam. (The woman in the trio is straight and the guys are bi, and longtime friends.)
I have enjoyed mmf romances in the past and I am always excited to discover new ones, so I have been looking forward to star "Three-Way Split". I also found it pretty interesting as well that the author is in a polyamous relationship herself.
The book started out well with getting to know Mitchell and Ben who are business partners and friends with benefits as well as Hannah. It was an interesting setting with the businesses of the three and Hannah getting to know each guy separately but I thought that their relationship lacked in chemistry. There was a lot psychological explaining of a polyamous relationship but I really missed the emotional side of their relationship. Sometimes I also had the feeling that the romance concentrated more on Mitchell and Ben.
There were some pretty steamy scenes which were good to read but I thought that the focus wasn't on the sex only. The book was enjoyable but I expected a bit more from the story and the characters.
This is my first time reading this author and i really loved this book. The writing style pulled me right in. I loved the chemistry between Ben and Mitchell but neither of them want to look to closely at what they really feel for the other. Haley has adored Mitchell from afar for a year but has her own reasons for not wanting a relationship. I loved the chemistry between Ben and Mitchell and the three of them together. I loved the banter between all three. This was refreshingly well written and I thoroughly enjoyed it.
**ARC Provided by the Publisher in exchange for an honest review**
Excuse me while I fangirl out! I read romance and erotica a LOT but rarely find one that has the right balance of character development/plot and steam. Don't get me wrong, if a book is heavy on one or the other, I'll enjoy it, but when there's a perfect balance I've hit the jackpot!
This book is the jackpot! First of all, I'm in love with Mitchell. He's serious and strong but also a great cook and quite dominant in the bedroom? Yes please! But he doubts himself and worries he won't be enough. Ben is a huge teddy bear who's had had his heart broken and is terrified to feel anything "romantic". Hannah is a super-independent woman who runs a sex toy shop--fun!! Her independent streak hinders her ability to be open to leaning on others.
Ben and Mitchell's love was beautiful. Watching Hannah fall in love with both of them was awesome. I can tell the time and effort the author put in to ensuring the characters were well developed and took a believable journey. The darn book is just awesome. If you like romance, erotica, great characters or all of the above, add this to your TBR!!
Set in small town Massachusetts somewhere, local sex shop owner Hannah flirts shamelessly with hot local chef, Mitchell, looking to get some casual dicking from him. She finds out that local hot beer brewer, Ben, that him and Mitchell are more than just business partners and room mates. They also fuck each other on the side, for two years! Small town USA, you’re constantly surprising me! Who knew.
Anyway, this erotic romance was alright. I did not empathize with any of the characters in particular and especially did not like Hannah. I felt the chemistry more between the guys since they’ve actually known each other for much longer, working and living together. The relationship between Hannah and the guys—together and individually—was flimsy and forced.
If you ask me, Ben and Mitchell should kick Hannah to the curb and live happily ever after without her.
I read this under the recommendation of some members in the Romancebooks Reddit sub. This subgenre is not typically the kind of book I read, but I enjoyed this because there's character development for all characters involved, and the book isn't just about smut. The pacing is good, the plot works, and the characters are endearing.
Three very compelling characters on their own, when Hannah, Ben, and Mitchell figure out how to be together, well, the possibilities are endless! Check out my full review on Scandalicious Book Reviews:
Hannah is the owner of a sex-toy shop in a small MA town, and she's been crushing on local chef Mitchell. But she's also attracted to Mitchell's roommate & business partner, Ben. What she doesn't realize is that Ben and Mitchell are fuck buddies. Ben and Mitchell have kept their relationship low-key and open, but when Hannah enters the picture, they each start to have feelings for her and this allows them to admit that they also have feelings for each other beyond casual sex.
Pluses: everything. I loved this book. It's super sexy, but it also clearly A ROMANCE. Winters develops each pairing, but also carefully explores their evolution as a polyamorous threesome. Each character has their own arc, too! It's so well done.
Wishes: I feel like there's a lot of "explaining polyamorous relationships" which sometimes seems like it's for the reader more than Ben, Hannah, and Mitchell. But overall, that's such a minor issue and fuck...I learned some things, so great.
Copied & Pasted from Twitter as part of a project where I'm reviewing the 2019 RITA finalists.
Winters always provides great characters and witty dialogue; this seems to be a mash up of a polyamourous romance and the Gilmore Girls’ Stars Hollow, and I mean this in the very best way. (What if Miss Patty ran a sex shop!?)
Three – Way Split is a realistic romance that features polyamory and how the strong, convincing characters handle the emotional and moral ramifications of such a relationship. The romance starts off a bit on the fun side when Hannah decides that monogamy is not for her and she wants more but doesn’t really want the whole committed relationship, while Mitchell and Ben have been ‘friends with benefits’ for years and are comfortable with that. The emotional turmoil and questioning of decisions made becomes complicated when Hannah enters into a relationship with Mitchell and Ben, all of the turbulence that these three experience is portrayed in such a way that it adds the realistic feel to the story. It gives an in depth look at just what the characters feel and how they handle what they go through.
The story is steady paced with lots of sweet, friendly elements as well scorching hot passionate scenes in a variety of ways while it also shows the characters in their lives with enough details to make it easy for the readers to get to know these characters and what makes them tick which in turn means that readers understand the decisions and turmoil that the characters undergo once entering into the polyamory relationship and since all three characters fight giving in to ‘love’ there’s plenty of suspense in the story as well as readers wonder if they can swallow their fear and reach for that happily ever after.
Three Way Split is a very sweet and sexy read, that is essentially two overlapping stories combined. First, we have the tender M/M plot line of "friends with benefits becoming lovers". With Mitchell and Ben. Then, there is the M/M/F plot line of "friends with benefits becoming something more, with a ton more drama". With Mitchell, Ben, and Hannah. While it is true that this is a very fast read as a whole. The true draw here is without a doubt THE SEX. And all the emotional interplay surrounding the sex. In fact, it is Ben and Mitchell's relationship that carries the book. With the triad providing a nice bit of spice. That being said. The plot line that is not sex inclusive. Is a little weeeeellll... Lets just say that things are more than a little forced. At least as far as Hannah is concerned. There is two much of trying to make her a standout character. She bosses the men around, puts up paper-thin walls of emotional detachment, and won't accept help due to pride. But will allow her body to be used in whatever way, whenever, and however. OK... No one should have to fight that hard to justify themselves. When it is already more than clear that they are the apple of every eye in the situation. MORE SEX PLEASE?
In short. If you are looking for a fast, sweet, and oh so sexy read. STOP HERE! If you love M/M M/F and M/M/F sex scenes STOP HERE! If you love...LOVE STAY HERE...FOREVER.
**ARC Provided by the Publisher in exchange for an honest review**
Hannah Stewart has been adoring Mitchell Fredericks from afar for the past year. He's the young co-owner of a local bar, while Hannah owns the local toy store. And I don't mean kids' toys. She's sure Mitchell is a relationship kind of guy, and Hannah's a little gun shy about pursuing him for anything casual, so she's kept her distance. Until the monthly Chamber of Commerce meeting happens, and Mitchell's partner, Ben Harrington enters the story. Ben's immediately just as enamored with Hannah as Mitchell secretly is, and these three embark on a beautifully told story of friendship, love and getting everything you've ever wanted.
This was my first Elia Winters book; and when I went to Netgalley to browse, I was in the mood for a good triad story. That's exactly what I found! This was refreshingly well written and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Sometimes these books can be a little cheesy, or all about the smut--which, don't get me wrong, sometimes I'm totally in the mood for. But this was the perfect mix of both, and it took this topic seriously rather than making it into a 300 page porn book. I'm hoping she decides to continue this series!
I accidentally requested the sequel before the first book (though I later found out you don’t need to read them in order but ANYWAY) so I read this book first. This was my first threesome MMF romance/erotica and I wasn’t sure what to expect. Well, it wasn’t what I expected. The language in the book for the “parts” was vulgar and not literary which was a bit shocking at first. Sure the sex parts were a bit steamy but at the cost of using vulgar terms for the “parts”. Also I guess I’m not into threesome romances because there aren’t 2 people considering their feelings and hiding the fact that they want more than just sex from each other, there’s 3 and that makes things more complicated. There was like no plot in the book it was all just sex after sex and everything fell too easily into place. If you want a book just for the smut, this is okay to consider. Literally just skimmed the last half of the book or so. Not my cup of tea.
Otra de esas novelas que leí durante el confinamiento, cuando estaba gratis. Mitchell Fredericks y Ben Harrington son socios comerciales y amigos con beneficios. A ambos les atrae Hannah Stewart. Una erótica a tres bandas en las que la parte sexualmente explícita me parece muy bien relatada, y mira que escribir escenas sexis es siempre difícil… Eso lo equilibra muy bien con la exploración de la parte emocional. Cómo puede una persona enamorarse de otras dos al mismo tiempo. Hay una explicación consciente de cómo puede funcionar el poliamor. Lo menos interesante fueron los protagonistas en sí, gente bastante anodina. Ganó el premio RITA en la categoría de romance erótico, y sí, sin haber leído las otras finalistas, me parece que está suficientemente bien como para merecerlo. Crítica más extensa, en mi blog.
4.5***** This is was a mix of romance and MMF erotica and was such a great story, I wasn't expecting to enjoy this novel as much as I did. Mitchell and Ben are in a undefined relationship , both wanting different things or so it seems. Along comes Hannah who both guys are interested in. And so begins the start of a potential unconventional relationship. The characters all had fabulous chemistry between them and I really enjoyed the unfolding of their relationships and the way the author dealt with the idea of being in a polyamory relationship (I never knew it had a name). I loved how each character had to deal with their own issues both as a person and in terms of being in a relationship. I had to keep reading this book to see how it all turned out.
Thanks to NetGalley and Entangled Publishing - Scorched for a copy in return for an honest review.
This was a bit different than what I had expected. Roommates, best-friends and business partners Ben and Mitchell have a sweet arrangement. No emotions are needed other than friendship. Both of them are bi and non-monogamous for different reasons. They both find Hannah attractive and want her both to share together but also one on one. An odd relationship/friends with benefits thing develops between the three of them. There is some really hot and steamy parts for which help with the oddness of their non-relationship relationship. I do like how they are challenged by the meeting that Hannah's friend Lori hosts. And seeing all three of them working through their hangups and fears of commitment and how they all can logistically work as a triad was good. Overall it wasn't a bad read, I just found their connection odd.
ARC kindly provided by NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
A well-written erotic romance. The story deals with two guys that own a bar/restaurant. They are both bisexual and have a casual, but on-going, m/m relationship. Hannah Stewart owns the sex toy shop in the town. Gradually the three begin to mix business with pleasure and form a bond.
The book does a good job of dealing with the issues (emotionally and physically) involved in a polyamorous relationship. While similar to "normal" relationships, there are some new dimensions with three people. The author digs pretty deep into the characters insecurities. While a little preachy at times I think the author wanted to cover the subject thoroughly. There was plenty of story beyond the sexy bits so it was a well-rounded book.
I really enjoyed this polyamourous mmf romance between 3 business owners. They started everything out very casual and had lots of chemistry and an easy way with each other and only went into it for sex but it develops into a very emotionally fulfilling relationship. I really enjoyed the use of a workshop to introduce them to poly relationships and the friendship between the 2 men.
It was fun but it's pretty forgettable. The sex scenes were pretty good and I loved that the Mc was a sex shop owner.
I've followed Elia Winters on Twitter for a while, and she's hysterical and gives excellent advice about sex toys. So, when this book went on sale recently, I pounced. I loved the set-up with Hannah and Mitchell, as well as how Hannah and Ben met and went on their first date. The love scenes, in every iteration, are scorching hot and a delight to read.
If you're sensing a "but" - yeah. There's a "but." While it provided fantastic information and proved a key catalyst for each of the characters, the polyam workshop they attended had a very different tone than the rest of the book. It felt almost heavy-handed, used the word "unpack/unpacking" far too many times, and felt like it was trying too hard to normalize something that is perfectly healthy and...dare I say, becoming more and more normal. I was really enjoying this book, until that scene. It took me several days to get past that scene/chapter, then it went very quickly and I still enjoyed the book.
If you're looking for an introduction to polyamory, this is a great first book. I look forward to reading more by this author and more in this series.
Three-Way Split is a fun, low-angst queer polyamorous romance that's perfect for those who have never read polyam before. Wondering why someone would seek out more than one partner? The role jealousy can play in the relationship? ...what sex between two guys and a gal looks like? You're more than covered here.
Sometimes it's almost too on the nose - I mean, our triad goes to a literal Polyam 101 class, and the heroine's best friend is studying polyamory for her Ph.D. Still, the emotional beats work out nicely and I was cheering for the relationship from the beginning - all in all a solid romance.
I picked this one up based on a 2018 best of romance list. This was a 3.75 for me and I think this author has potential. The first half of the book moved a little too fast for my personal taste but the last half slowed down a bit and saved the day. I know the erotica was the main thrust of the novel but the parts I enjoyed the most were when they talked to each other. Watching their emotional growth was very satisfying.