Modus Vivendi
by Emery Sanborne, historical (2007)
Samhain Publishing, $5.50, ISBN 1-59998-604-3


Modus Vivendi, which means a compromise between parties who disagree in order to coexist together, is yet another two-guys one-gal ménage à trois story. You know the drift, I'm sure. Guy shags guy, both guys love the gal, the usual. However, Modus Vivendi is a little different in that it is set during World War I. The author also tries to introduce some character development in her story, although she doesn't always succeed.

Good friends Aidan Morrison, Virgil Craig, and Drea Samuels are teenagers in 1917 who will be separated soon on the account of Aidan and Virgil enlisting to join the army and shoot people in France. Drea is not pleased that Aidan and Virgil drop the news on her at the last minute, but she is more conflicted than ever when Aidan proposes to her before he leaves. She gets even more troubled when she subsequently loses her virginity to Virgil in one of those "Oops, it happened before I knew what was happening!" moments. Wait until she finds out that Aidan and Virgil are also going at it behind her back, heh. Or even better, the two men know what the other has done with Drea.

War forces people to change, however, and soon Virgil and Aidan are back in Drea's life, older and maybe wiser, maybe not. What will happen now?

In this story, there are some character development for Virgil and Aidan, although these are quite superficial in nature. Virgil is the bad boy while Aidan is the more sensitive and cool-headed guy in comparison. However, poor Drea is so poorly written that she comes off like a one-dimensional hot head who is always pouting or acting sulky because things aren't going her way. I have no idea why the two men will want anything to do with her. I don't even know what she is doing here in the story since Aidan and Virgil have much stronger chemistry with each other than with her.

Because this story has three to tango and one of them is so poorly written compared to the others that she is indeed the weakest link, Emery Sanborne doesn't quite succeed in pulling things off nicely in Modus Vivendi.

Rating: 64


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