I really enjoyed "Pouring a Brick"
by Tray Ellis. The idea of combining a romance with martial arts had me intrigued. Will is easy going and enjoys the sport. Will meets Spence, a new student in the class and helps him with some of the techniques. Where Will is calm and relaxed, Spence is focused and intense. While practicing one day, Spence is having a hard time with a certain move. Bennie, their instructor tells Spence about a saying they have, “You can’t pour a brick”; explaining that “Sometimes you need to be the brick. You want to flow. Apply strength when you need it, not all the time”. This analogy is central to the tone of the story and defines the personalities of both men.
I really enjoyed the way the author takes us through the mechanics of Brazilian Jiu-jitsu while allowing us to get to know Spence and Will. There is depth to their characters and the friendship builds nicely before moving into a relationship. I loved the way the author really brought the personality of her characters into focus when she was presenting a scene from their individual perspectives. You could feel the energy or calm depending on who it was. The sex is subtle, mostly off page and a natural progression to the storyline. Even if you are not a fan of martial arts this is a great story. I definitely recommend it!