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Publisher's Summary

Raised among humans, Ori Jones only discovered he was an avian shifter six months ago. Unable to complete a full shift until he reaches his avian maturity, he still can't be sure of his exact species.

But with species comes rank, and rank is everything to the avians. When a partial shift allows the elders to announce that they believe Ori to be a rather ugly little duckling, he drops straight to the bottom rung of their hierarchy.

Life isn't easy for Ori until he comes to the attention of a high ranking hawk shifter. Then the only question is, is Ori really a duck - and what will his new master think when the truth eventually comes out?

©2010 Kim Dare (P)2016 Audible, Inc.

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Profile Image for Donald
  • Donald
  • 01-04-2017

Interesting...

Interesting story! I was not real sure what this book was all about but because I cannot seem to get enough of shifter stories, I was intrigued. The story of Ori and Raynard is an interesting one. The shifter dynamics, along with the submissive storyline took me a few to get into but as the story progressed, I found it predictable...not that, that is a bad thing. The underlying love that developed between the two protagonists was sweet and the angst added to the story. I liked the story, once I got into it.

5 people found this helpful

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Profile Image for Erin S.
  • Erin S.
  • 03-04-2018

Duck, Duck, Duh, Swan.

Would you listen to Duck! again? Why?

No. Based on the Amazon reviews I had a strong feeling I wouldn't like the book much, but it was in the Romance Package and I had a free month, so it seemed the perfect chance to listen to books I didn't expect I wanted to pay for. I love Shifter books so I thought I would see how accurate the other reviews were. Heed them.

What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

Most interesting? A focus on non-wolf shifters. When it comes to birds, I think the only other shifter book I've seen is Control. And holy hell is Control good. So... yay, more birds?

Least? Passing off sex slaves as "submissives" and the most ridiculous premise with far too many holes that could have been dealt with. For one, Swans are revered. The second you see this title, you know damn well it's an Ugly Duckling to Swan story. So, if one type of waterfowl is revered, and another is treated like absolute dirt, who in their right mind treats an unknown waterfowl as dirt?? He could be a duck, a goose, or a swan. Even if it's a 1% chance he's a swan, why would they be horrible to him? You could try to solve this by removing the whole "half-shift" garbage. Just make it so the blood test indicated he was avian and they have no idea what he is. Then they would only know when he fully shifts. Granted, then you have every avian species under the sun that he could be. But at least that's better than him possibly being the most important avian species in their world. Or just make it so all unknown are considered the lowest until a full shift. Going "he's probably a Duck" when Swan is _an option_, in any regard, drove me absolutely batty. Of course, then it wouldn't be an Ugly Duckling story, but last time I checked The Ugly Duckling wasn't about sex slaves, so it's not like it had to follow a children's tale.

Have you listened to any of Rod M. Maskew’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

No, I have not. This was the first time I listened to one of his narrations. His performance was great for what he had to work with. He did an amazing job for such different characters.

Who was the most memorable character of Duck! and why?

Honestly, it was probably Everett, but that was more so because I had recently developed a character with that name so the association to it was strong. And he wasn't a slave master (in this book), or a sex slave with a pathetic outlook on life.

Any additional comments?

As most other reviewers have stated, the book is trying to be BDSM, or more specifically Domination/Submission, but is really just sex slavery. While it doesn't actually claim any ties to the BDSM world from what I can recall, the use of the term "Submissive" (and Master) is prevalent and does naturally lead one to that assumption.

This is not the case at all. Raynard owns Ori. Ori is a slave, not a servant, or playing a role for mutual enjoyment. He is a slave at the Nest and he is a slave to Raynard. While he is given the "choice" to be a slave or a "Submissive" there is no real choice. Raynard is in a position of such power over Ori that he really cannot say no. Raynard makes it clear he wants Ori to choose "Submissive" and uses Ori's attraction to him to influence the decision, making Ori think it is a good thing. After the decision is made, Ori has even less choice as this role of "Submissive" gives complete ownership and control to Raynard. There is no safe word. There is no ability to say "no". There is no break from a sexual game. There is no equality. It is straight up slavery and no matter how much they attempt to make it "okay" with turning their relationship into one of "love" it is just really gross.

Raynard himself is not a bad man, and clearly this is something that is rather common in their world. It is not him that is at fault for this aspect of the story, but the author's. I do not know if Dare simply had no concept of how a BDSM relationship actually works, or if she was legitimately trying to make sex slavery hot. And honestly, I've seen sex slavery made hot because they didn't try to make it something it wasn't. And it was in a time period where harems were a thing.

Another ridiculously infuriating thing is Raynard's reaction to Ori completing his full shift and everyone learning he is a Swan (expect Ori, for ages, which is also annoying). Raynard, who has made Ori dependent on him, who has trained Ori to think he is very important to him, who made him write 1000 lines of punishment about how precious Ori is as his "Submissive" buggers off. He sees Ori is a Swan. He goes "wah wah wah, I can't dominate the Swan Prince" and flounces off to have a pout. Ori's shift was painful, he was scared, he comes out of it and his "Master" is gone. He's been worried most of the book his full shift will reveal he is something Raynard may not like. And when he comes out of it, the one single person he has been trained to rely on and trust _is not there_. And then everyone just calls him "Sire" and not one goddamn one of them can say, "Oh, Ori. I'm so sorry about the mistake. You are a Swan. Since you were not raised among avians, I will tell you now that Swans are very important and very special. This must be a lot for you right now. Let us go put you somewhere to rest and we will go find Raynard for you right away because we all know how goddamn isolated you've been over the last few months and he's probably the only person you have interacted with since you left the Nest."

Hell, maybe the Eagle is the best character in the book because at least he mentally smacks the both of them upside the head and tells them that "royalty" can damn well be dominated if that is what they want, and you can have a damn DS relationship between "equals".

The relationships are infuriating.

5 people found this helpful

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  • Lector Spectre
  • 22-07-2019

Great Submissive Story!

Another great book by Kim! I’ll say this one criticism... I probably would have enjoyed this more if I’d not read Axel’s Pup first.

Axel’s Pup story was absolutely incredible. It may have set my expectations a little high for this “shifter” story. I so enjoyed the full world that was created with Axel’s story - I felt like I really understood how that “world” worked.

This one, while still full of great characters and good set up - there were so many questions left. Maybe they are resolved in the sequel - maybe not. We’ll see (I’m starting it now).

I think if this had been the first book I’d have read of Kim’s I’d have been pleasantly surprised! It’s still got some very sexy scenes and a good play out of a dom/sub relationship may play out - but I was left with a lot of questions - not just about the two front characters, but the world itself and the rules of that world.

Still, that is not to downplay this book at all! I quite enjoyed it and hope some of the questions I have will come to light in the next installment.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Manganese
  • 23-10-2020

Very blah

The main character has literally zero personality beyond his “submission” even tho he had life before he found out he was a shifter. The story was so one dimensional. Both the main characters are just frustrating

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  • Anonymous User
  • 28-08-2020

DNF at chapter 2

not a fan of the narrator or the storyline. only got to 22 minutes in chapter 2

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  • Lily Bear
  • 26-07-2020

Solid Shifter Romance

A solid shifter romance with a fun ugly duckling theme. In this book Ari discovers he is an avian shifter and goes to find a home with his own kind. The Nest he finds has a shifter hierarchy and he, as a novice duck, is at the very bottom. Though he only thinks he's a duck he won't know for sure until his 21st birthday. Until then he plans to endure the cruel treatment other birds decide to inflict on him. You can see where this is going right? 🦢 But one bird defends him. A hawk shifter takes him as servant to shield Ari from the cruelty of the Nest. Before long he finds himself in sub-dom relationship with the hawk and learns what happiness is.
I must admit when I read BDSM in the description I braced myself for some ghost pepper level of spicy. This was more a sprinkle of red pepper flakes. Like I could just barely taste the heat when I was expecting to get burned. The ugly duck thing made me think the ending would be obvious, but I was delightfully surprised. While I appreciate the extra drama I felt Kim Dare could have elevated it to the next level if she added even more drama. E.G. An added layer of depth could have been gained if lesser birds like Ari wanted to change things and fight for themselves.
Maybe the next book? Regardless, it was a fun read and I thought the world building was on point. Great shifter romance.

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 29-05-2020

another fantastic book by Kim Date

great narrator paired with a great author. sweet plot line in the BDSM genre. I loved it. as I've loved all her books.

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  • Just Browsing
  • 28-05-2020

Unexpected

I did not expect to so thoroughly enjoy this book. I thought it would be a cute read, but it was so much more. The narrator is awesome as well. I've actually listened to this book 3 times now. It's one of my go-to stories I can just turn on and tune out.

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  • Dami Roswell
  • 21-01-2020

Wow!

I love love the the story! I’ve always loved shifter books (werewolves, tigers, etc) but I’ve never heard of avian. I was intrigued and after starting it I couldn’t put it down. I’ve gotten the two book as well and can’t wait to listen to it :3

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  • Sarah
  • 26-12-2019

Didn't finish, unsure...

I am struggling with this review. I haven't finished the book, so I feel like I should reserve judgement, but at the same time I don't particularly WANT to finish it and that should count just as much.

First, I enjoy a power exchange story, even extreme Master/slave lifestyles. I can suspend my own personal desires in a relationship and recognize that the desire for truly D/s relationship can be legitimate and healthy. I find the dynamic interesting. I've even enjoyed stories where there's a power disparity between employer/employee and the like. In those stories the power exchange works when the parties are depicted as complex, well rounded characters who have personal value and identity outside of the exchange. then, when they choose to step into that dynamic there's truly power to yield to one another. This story irks me because Ori has no self-value or personal security AND Reinard hasn't done anything to reassure him that he HAS value and an identical beyond being perfectly submissive. Therefore, Ori isn't truly giving anything up or receiving anything in return. Even though he may be naturally inclined to submission and get some pleasure from it, which is totally great, that's not what is actually happening.

Or, at least it hasn't happened so far. I'm not encouraged by the fact that Reinard hasn't picked up on the fact that Ori has no self-value and or learned how to make him secure. Given the caste system of the Avion world, Ori's behavior seems pretty natural. So either Reinard is just a really dense Dom or this is the natural order of this in the Avion world and he never WILL understand Ori's insecurities and needs. I can't get past that.

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  • Mrs. E. J. Curtis
  • 17-08-2021

Interesting Story

The concept is interesting and well written. The characters are likeable and the narration is good.

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  • Kindle Customer T
  • 26-07-2020

LOVED EVERYTHING ABOUT IT

I almost didn't get this book because the sample sounded really odd for some reason, but all the great reviews made me try anyway and I'm so happy I did.

I came to know Kim Dare's work from Axel's Pup(which if you haven't tried already, you must try IMMEDIATELY) and I was really excited to try some of her other works.

Duck did not disappoint at all. What a truly beautiful story between shifters that develops so nicely. I loved both characters and how Ori grew with his hawk at his side while learning to accept and love whoever he may turn out to be.

If you're on the fence, I recommend you do yourself a favour and try this lovely piece today.

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  • Cefwyn
  • 29-06-2018

Loved it!

I love Kim Dare's stories. I've now read this book and listened to it. I very much enjoyed Rob Maskew's narration.

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  • MaryD
  • 03-10-2017

Fairy Tale Perfect

Lovely take on the ugly duckling fairy tale. Ori is a clumsy duckling rescued by Raynard who is a Hawk shifter and a submissive relationship develops.
Rob M Maskew does a fantastic job of portraying hesitant Ori and superior Raynard, as well as crows and an Eagle. All the voices fitting each bird so well.

In the spirit of reconciliation, Audible Australia acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of country throughout Australia and their connections to land, sea and community. We pay our respect to their elders past and present and extend that respect to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples today.