Friday, October 24, 2014

Review: The Inner Room

The Inner Room
The Inner Room by Claire Thompson

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Doctors and nurses exemplify sexy power exchange in erotic novels. Usually it's the doctor giving the orders and the nurse agreeably obeying. In a switch up, Inner Room features a dominant nurse and a submissive doctor. Staying along the lines of a male dominant and a female submissive, it still changes up the traditional roles of who is the doctor and who is the nurse. Dr. Marissa Roberts works a stressful job. She is literally responsible for saving lives. Her decisions can possibly end a life. With this kind of responsibility, she fantasizes about giving away her control. With a kinky interest, she finally accepts a friend's introduction to the wild side. Marissa becomes a submissive in training at a local BDSM club. Apprehensive of the stigma associated with being both a submissive and in an alternative lifestyle, Marissa is relieved when she doesn't seen anyone she knows at the club. When she is assessed, her fears materialize; the experienced dominant is none other than Cam Wilder, a nurse at her hospital.

Ms. Thompson does a lovely job with the BDSM. The scenes are erotic. The training is believable. The power exchange between Cam and Marissa is delightful to witness. The ups and downs of a newbie to the lifestyle is accurately captured in this story. The tentativeness of a new submissive wondering if perhaps she's not normal are all good to see. There is one particular passage which is of concern. Some may agree with this philosophy, this reviewer does not. Specifically, using BDSM as a cure for a past trauma can be possible, just usually not advisable. In the way it's presented in the book, it is makes sense.

If a client came in to see you, and told you she was new to the scene, but had found her soul mate, and D/s had become a central focus of her life, but a recent traumatic event had made her unsure about continuing, what would you say to that client?”

Cam didn’t even have to think about the reply. “I’d say BDSM would be the very best cure for whatever ails her. I’d explain to her that what happened has less than zero to do with BDSM, with the intensity, the exchange of power, the passion.”

“And you’d be right,” Jack replied. (pg. 135)

Ms. Thompson's conflict is seemingly mild at the beginning of the story. Marissa's wariness in exploring her sexuality is understandable. When the main conflict occurs, it is biting and a bit shocking. It's not a huge surprise because Ms. Thompson does a good job of setting it up. How quickly the situation escalated is the shocking part. The traumatic event in this story is all too real. The misconceptions of BDSM are laid out in black in white. The way a kinky person can be persecuted and violated is all too chillingly plausible. The resolution while a bit unrealistic is definitely satisfying. When the men come to the rescue of a damsel in distress, it is heartwarming. Because sometimes, it is nice not to have to solve big problems by oneself. Support through friends, particularly intimidating male friends generates a warm fuzzy feeling. It's the kind where a submissive feels loved, cared for and protected. It is a heady sensation which Marissa definitely appreciates. Recommended for kinky readers who enjoy a protective dominant.

*provided by BDSM Book Reviews

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Thursday, October 23, 2014

Review: No Safeword Matte -- Happily Ever After

No Safeword Matte -- Happily Ever After
No Safeword Matte -- Happily Ever After by Candace Blevins

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Happily ever after it is! Ethan and Sam come home from their honeymoon. The BDSM continues in intensity in this follow up book. Before they left Hawaii, Sam provided a list of fantasies for Ethan. Ethan takes Sam's wishes into consideration and brings it all to fruition. Sam wanted to be mastered, without a safeword and to experience extreme pain. Be careful of what you wish for… because Ethan's creative scenes make me cross my legs, curl up, cringe and whimper. Then again, I'm no pain masochist. As my kinkster friends say, I'm a wuss-ochist - low threshold for BDSM style pain.

Ms. Blevins is hands down one of the best BDSM writers when it comes to realistic SM. The BDSM scenes in this story are more than what most people can handle. I love it. The scenes are well designed with every precaution taken into consideration. It's nice to see how Ethan goes to a mentor to learn how to use a new equipment safely. In addition, he completes additional research to make sure Sam experiences exquisite pain not nerve damaging harm. This all works because of who the characters are - hard hitting physical athletes. As a fan of MMA, this book places me over the moon. The combination between sex and sparring is tailored for a specific type of reader.

The parallels between the BDSM and MMA training is well done. The fact that the training overlaps and benefits each other is clever. For example, in the bantam class, it is true the fighters are faster and usually more flexible. Watching these fights are always exciting to me because there is more punching, kicking and movement. One of Ethan's wishes is to have Sam in an armbinder. His training to bring her arms sexily together, behind her back help her with flexibility. This is key for fighting because it helps Sam slip out of holds easier than others.

Without giving spoilers, the BDSM I enjoyed are the fisting and the cabin scene. What I also like is the contract detailing Sam as Ethan's sexual property. He can take her any way at any time. This is quite the power exchange. Because it means Sam must trust Ethan to never push to far over her line. In addition, it means she must submit to Ethan because she wants to please him. Sam is not perfect. She struggles with this many times and it's always hard to watch. This is because Ethan will enforce their contract and Sam will be punished. These punishments are harsh and always frightening me a bit. It is because Ms. Blevins writes it so well I can experience it vicariously through Sam. As we established earlier, I don't like that much pain. All I want to do is yell at Sam to STOP. Stop fighting and stop trying to challenge Ethan's authority. Because when Ethan is forced to exert his dominance, there is no walking straight for days. While this is not my kink, I can appreciate it, even if it intimidates me.

The characters in this book are fabulous. The reader continues to see Ethan and Sam grow closer together. The secondary characters - Jerrod and Miguel, their respective trainers add fun to the book. These two help enhance the story. At times, the story may seem too serious due to unforeseen events. The secondary characters help break up it up with humour. Even the characters I may not like so much, without them, the story wouldn't have worked. This is an excellent contemporary BDSM erotic with all the ups and downs of real life. Highly recommended to readers who want to see how a BDSM couple can live the lifestyle and balance it with their work.

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      No Safeword Matte -- Happily Ever After



Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Review: Her Troika: The Complete Story

Her Troika: The Complete Story (Her Troika, #1-5)Her Troika: The Complete Story by Trent Evans

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This is a review long time coming.  Mr. Evans is one of my favourite male authors.  This is saying a lot since I don't normally read male authors.  Yes, I'm a sexist.  The world building in this story is a lovely blend of Penny Birch Pony series and a bit of Story of O.  For those who enjoy romance with their kink, this story will work well for you.  This isn't a light fluffy BDSM erotica.  It is a well written view into the life of a couple who are become more heavily involved in the BDSM lifestyle.

Breanna is a professional woman during the week and a sex slave during the weekend.  Her husband, Kurt, is her dominant and will be pushing her limits.  When they bring their friend, Derek, into their kinky world, it can be a fantasy come true or a nightmare to forget.  The characters in this story are nice because for the most part, they are the average person one would know.  There are a few people who have more money than the average, but still they behave not too differently.  Derek is the fun one to watch as he learns more about the BDSM world.  It's incredible for him and he can't seem to reconcile his desires with his upbringing.

The BDSM is delicious.  Even the bad examples are well done because it's clear the bad dominants are not well received.  There is a nice blend of dominants who are well established as well as ones who are just starting to learn about the lifestyle.  The pony girl element is good for those interested in equestrian fun.  Each scene is lushly described, placing the reader in the scene as a happy voyeur.  This is a world where women are the submissive, no matter who their husbands may be.  The training and humiliation is written in a highly erotic manner.  This place Kurt runs is a fantasy ranch which many a female will want to experience.  This is because it gives them the freedom to let go and enjoy.  Women in all walks of life can shed their public faces and revel in their sexuality. This story is recommended to kinky ménage readers who enjoys pony play. 

*I received this book as a review copy from the BDSM Group's R2R in return for an honest review

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      Her Troika: The Complete Story (Her Troika, #1-5)



Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Review: Wanting It All

Wanting It All
Wanting It All by Livia Grant

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

New to me author, Ms. Grant is one to watch. Her freshman book, Wanting it all, delivers it all. This is a nice blend of dubious con and romance. This story caught my attention because the blurb reads as a cheating wife receiving her comeuppance. Brianna hooks up with an abusive ex-boyfriend to receive a little kinky smacking. Brianna does come across as a very stupid female who needs to be put down. From the get go, I'm disgusted by her and hope she is thrashed within an inch of her life.

Here's the thing about Brianna. She's one of those people who cut off their nose to spite herself. She runs on emotion and makes decisions based on her feeling even if she knows logically it's wrong. I can't deal with these kind of people. Seriously, I have two siblings like this and it drives me crazy. I've learned to handle them in a manner which doesn't cause them to do stupid things because of their emotions. This is why I liked Tiffany. Tiffany, Brianna's best friend is worth her weight in gold. Tiffany is a voice of reason and placed in a tough spot.

The one I feel badly for is Markus. He's a loving husband who does everything for his wife. The way she treats him is horrible. Thinking I made a mistake with picking this book, I nearly didn't finish it. When Markus's friend Lukus shows up, this is when the story becomes erotically hawt and interesting. I love Lukus. He is sadistic and yet so loving. This is the turning point in the story. Ms. Grant does a lovely job turning the characters around. The back story as it unfolds is great. I'm hooked and I can't wait to read the next book in this Passion Series.

The BDSM in this story is fabulous. There is more SM than D/s which is nice to see. While I'm a D/s gal who can endure the SM, Brianna is a SM bottom. The way Brianna processes pain is accurate to those who are heavy into impact play. The humiliations in this story is just right. Brianna does need to go through penance for her sins. She is a bad little girl who needs to be punished harshly and this book delivers it. At the end of the story, I do like Brianna and feel sorry for her. She's not a bad person. She made poor choices and it looks as if she is moving in the right direction for reconciliation. If only other broken marriages could go through this kind of counseling. I think more marriages could be saved. My favourite quote in this story is - "Stop trying to poke the bear.” (pg. 177, loc. 2712-2712)

When I see this I know there is a bratty submissive and it can be an interesting journey for the submissive. Because sometimes it is too irresistible and one must poke the bear. This kinky story is recommended those who enjoy SM and a repentant wife finding the man of her dreams is right in front of her.

*ARC provided by Blushing Books

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      Wanting It All



Monday, October 20, 2014

Review: Mastered: 10 Tales of Sensual Surrender

Mastered:  10 Tales of Sensual Surrender
Mastered: 10 Tales of Sensual Surrender by Opal Carew

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Dominant males who seduce a woman into submission is my kind of man. When the male possesses quiet authority, it's even more attractive. In this anthology, a submissively inclined reader is treated to one after another sensual male in panty wetting goodness. The book kicks off with Scientific Method by Joey W. Hill. This is my favourite story in the book.

Debra is a perfect servant. She is smart and the best partner for Brian. She gave up a lucrative life to become Brian's possession. Unfortunately, the relations between a vampire and their servant should not be more than owner and pet. Anything more loving will give the vampire council cause to destroy the servant. This is the law for centuries. When Debra and Brian discover the missing element to create more born vampires, it rocks the vampire world. Yet nothing changes for Debra. Brian still treats her as a thing and the last time she expressed her devotion, he crushed her painfully both emotionally and physically.

This story is so well written, my heart physically hurt for Debra. Her desolation is understandable. She is a candidate for death by heartbreak. Ms. Hill does a marvelous job in the creation of both Debra and Brian. Debra is the one who captures a reader's sympathies. The damage she suffers through willful neglect is inhumane. Suicide is a distinct possibility and I see her point of view and wouldn't begrudge her for ending her heartbreak.

"She almost heard her heart crack. She would have done the unthinkable, scrambled away, run back to her room and close the door, but he tightened his arm around her. He wasn’t done with her. I’ll never be done with you. She might die from the pain of that. She was starting to understand all too well why some servants took their lives. (loc. 1332-1334)"

This story is a beautiful in how it describes Debra's pain. Fortunately, the story ends in a beautiful happy ending. Five Stars for this book and this story alone makes this book worth buying.

Three Secrets by Ms. Carew is okay. This story unfortunately swings the other way for me and I didn't enjoy it at all. One star for me. I nearly put the book down and didn't continue.

His Secret by Ms. Da Costa does not bring any further encouragement to continue the book. It starts out well and fizzes out. Two star for me.

Bondage on 34th Street by Ms. Ryan-Davis & Ms. Leeland is hawt! Oh my goodness is the ménage so good. The sex is delicious and the triad of Noah, Tasha and Ty makes me want to read more. This story leaves a reader yearning for more delicious mastery by Noah. There does seem to be a book for later this fall for more of Noah, Tasha and Ty's marvelous ménage. Four star short story for me. Fall won't come earlier enough.

Remastered by Ms. Ellis is just okay for me. Ms. Ellis's writing never works for me. I've tried several times and this one with rock atars still doesn't do anything for me. What I do like is the warning Ms. Ellis places against those who steal. "Violators will be forced to re-enact that book with my neighbour’s dog, while wearing a corset made of living bees. Twice."(loc. 4970-4971) This is awesome and kind of saves the story for me which is why I rated a two star instead of one.

Working Out by Ms. Harte is erotically hawt. The characters - Mac and Maggie are just okay. She's written better and more endearing characters. Maggie and Mac are a bit forgettable yet their sex is good. A reader can always depend upon Ms. Harte for good sex scenes and funny dialog.

“The Mac I know has no problem serial dating. What was it you said to me not so long ago? To indulge in the holy trinity and forget my problems? Tits, ass and an orgasm. There you go, buddy. You have two more-than-willing candidates still making eyes at you.”(loc. 5653-5655)

This is the first I've seen a holy trinity described in this manner. I like it! Three stars for this story.

Juicy by T.J. Michaels is also not my style. Solie is a bit of an annoying twit. This story is best for those who enjoy friends to lovers. The BDSM is good. The characters are not to my taste. Solie is frustrating and not the kind of female I enjoy. This is a two star for me.

No Limits by Ms. Pearce is out of this world smoking hawt. The club, the gang banging, all of it is amazing. Ms. Pearce is a new to me author who knows how to crank up the heat. Her descriptions are crystal clear for a reader to visualize. After reading this story, I immediately search for more stories in this world. It appears this is the only one. A reader can only hope Ms. Pearce will create more in this world and bring more fantasies to life. This is an author to watch. Four stars for this story.

Ink Reunited by Ms. Ryan pens a sweet lovers reunited story. It's tightly written. It's a sweet romance between three best friends broken apart and then coming together a decade later. There is so much more which can be fleshed out in this story. Ms. Ryan does a nice job of hooking the reader, making them wanting more from her. For those who love the bad boys grown into alpha men, this story is for you. Sassy is a female worth fighting for and she's tough with a heart of gold. Three stars for this story.

This anthology finishes off with Unfettered by Ms. White. Why haven't I read her before? Her BDSM scenes are good and she does something which I haven't seen in a while. She turns negotiation into foreplay. This is an excellent example. Her story is a three star for enjoyment. From a BDSM perspective it is four star material. Either she's in the lifestyle or she is amazing with research. For those who wonder about how to first start off with a play partner, here is a fabulous demonstration of how it can be erotic.

“I don’t like to be spanked, so the bench is out,” Ronnie told him. “What about the Cross? I’ve never been on one, but have always wanted to try it.”

“So spanking’s a hard limit?” Conner asked. “What else?”

He [Ian] listened for another minute, then interrupted. “Not bad, guys,” he said, stepping forward to stand next to them. “You’re communicating clearly, which is good. But negotiating doesn’t have to feel like a job interview, or worse yet, like a shopping list of do’s and don’ts.”

Conner grimaced and Ronnie chuckled. They looked at each other, neither offended or upset by the critique, and both open to what he [Ian] was saying. Perfect. He [Ian] let out a short whistle and everyone in the closed club turned to him. The shopping list was something lot of the newbies did, and every class needed a demonstration. Looked like he was going to do it for this class.

“We gave you guys a list of things that should be covered in an initial talk, but that doesn’t mean you have to check them off like a to-do list,” he said to the group. “Negotiating can be as erotic as any sexual play when done right.” He turned to Ronnie. “May I take your hand and lead you to the stage?”

She nodded, wide-eyed.

“Don’t think of your negotiations as something that has to be done before you get to play, think of it as part of the play. Use all your senses to gain, and give information. Watch, and listen.” When they got to the stage he turned to face Ronnie and smiled, but didn’t let go of her hand. (loc. 12886-12898)

Read the story to find out how to erotize negotiation!

Ms. White states in story in a way that isn't a lecture and hit home for me. This captures how I feel about D/s.

"Dominance isn’t something that can be faked, and I was tired of meeting men who considered it a game. Men who played at it. I want a real man, one who knows that true dominance is mental before it ever comes close to being physical. That my submission can not be demanded, it has to be earned, and when I give it, I give everything.” (loc. 13050-13052)"

Overall, this anthology is great. There are some really good stories and others which didn't appeal for me. The ones which I really enjoyed is what made me decide to rate the book a four star. Recommended for kinky readers who want a taste of ten very different BDSM writers.

*provided by NetGalley

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      Mastered:  10 Tales of Sensual Surrender



Sunday, October 19, 2014

Review: Sex Boot Camp

Sex Boot Camp
Sex Boot Camp by Paisley Brown

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

The Romance Review Second Review

A free get out of jail card to have sex with other people whilst in a committed relationship is something some people want. To have a few days off spending it in an orgy like environment is even better! This is, unless your boyfriend springs it on you out of the blue and you have no interest in an open relationship.

Cara just wants a few days off to rest and relax. She wants some quality time with her boyfriend. Instead, he drags her to a remote camp where he's separated from her. The camp is to educate her on how to be a better lover.

The premise of this story is hawt. The camp itself is interesting and sounds like a blast. The sexual training in this story is also decent. What makes this a difficult read is the loathsome characters. Cara's boyfriend, Braeden, is an asshat. This is clear from the beginning of the story to the end. That's okay since it's clear he's the one the readers are supposed to hate. Cara is pathetic and whines too much. So her boyfriend wants to cheat on her--better to know now than later. Her attitude and how she treats others in this story is juvenile and petty. She's a brat and really needs to be spanked. It's understandable she's hurt and mad. Apparently her lack in age excuses her to be mean when others are only trying to make her feel more welcome. This is what killed the story for me.

The twist at the end came out of nowhere. This character which was previously never introduced just magically showing up is abrupt. Being never fond of deus ex machina, this ending feels forced to me.

My recommendation is to have a little more set up with this character at the beginning. Or even in the middle, have Cara flashback to a scene with the new character. Another suggestion is to write the story in third person. When the female lead is immature and bratty, having it in first person will cause a reader to subconsciously try to associate their own character with the female lead. This generally tends not to work well and causes a reader not to enjoy the book as much. This is because many female readers don't have the same tendencies to be quite so annoying. And if they did, they don't want to be reminded how they could be coming across to others. When the female lead is written in third person, it feels more disassociated.

Overall, the concept of this story is good. The sex is good. The characters were a bit rough.

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Saturday, October 18, 2014

Review: Accursed

Accursed by Belladonna Bordeaux

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

The Romance Review

A fairy tale retold in a paranormal romance setting can be so good. When it's a beloved Beauty and the Beast retelling, I'm looking forward to reading it. Full disclosure, I've not read the first three books, but I believe this book can be read as a standalone.

Alexandra Common is a pure blooded royal strigoi who knows the days are numbered for the strigoi because of their self-proclaimed king. Whilst she possesses more royal blood than any of the other ruling strigoi, she is under their thumb, constantly degraded and bullied.

The characters in this story are annoying. Even Alexandra is unappealing in her melodramatic decisions. Her friend, Cornelia, is a fluffy airhead who undergoes a personality change half way through the book. It's passed off as a cover so the evil villains don't attack Cornelia. It's not believable. The villainous characters are vile with absolutely no redeeming qualities. On top of it, they are stupid. They play off as being so smart but it's a joke. Ms. Bordeaux does do this on purpose so it's not that it's wrong. What it does is create flat one-dimensional characters. All of the characters save The Beast are boring and tedious. It makes for a difficult read because the entire time, I'm hoping the lot of them are killed off.

There is a lot going on in the story. It's not so much as plot within in a plot for added layers of complexity. Instead, it's a bunch of ideas thrown together which don't blend well together. Individually, the concepts are fine. Throwing it in haphazardly to explain a situation comes across as messy to the reader. For example, there is a curse to break, a pact with Satan, three different males trying to wed Alexandra and unresolved killing of Alexandra's father and brother. These are all explained away with a sudden reveal of Alexandra's lack of wielding powers. Sometimes, it feels as if a thought is half-finished and we flit to another topic. The transitions are jarring between scenes, which makes for a bumpy read.

Overall, it's an okay read. It would be better if the teenage young adult drama lama is removed. Taking away the forced Scottish dialogue would help too. To compare this to a recipe, the ingredients are all there. The way the story is cooked, the ingredients are competing against each other instead of blending into a cohesive dish balancing all the flavours.

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