Review: The Bacchi
The Bacchi by Belinda McBride
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Returning to the UNCOMMON WHORE world is a fabulous adventure. This time, two new species are introduced and boy, are they hot. One is the Valoran and the other is Somian.
Afton is the Valoran who is an officer of the law. He's by the book and kind of sheltered. This is typical of the Valorans because they are rigid and prefer structure. The interesting thing about Valorans is that they have both male and female sexual organs. As a child, they pick if they are male or female. Those who accept both are labeled as gen and considered throwbacks. These gen designations are the artistic and flamboyant ones who the Valorans want to eradicate from their society.
Lefi, the Somian, is on the opposite spectrum. They are sensual with mating habits that offend the Valorans. Somian are always born as twins and they mate with another set of twins. Some of them even have a special sexual organ which makes them high in demand.
In THE BACCHI, Afton and Lefi have been dancing around each other because Afton is a gen in denial while Lefi is one of the highest ranking members in the Bacchi guild. The Bacchi guild encourages and pays for their members to earn accreditations and degrees in higher education. Lefi is not only a therapist, but he is medically certified too. These are all secondary to his first vocation, which is prostitution.
The Bacchi is a respected brothel type guild. It's an interesting concept and not too different from the houses in Jacqueline Carey's Kushiel trilogy. It's also similar to the geisha culture in Japan before the westerners bastardized it. It is also reminiscent of parts of India and their reverence for certain priestess in sexual orders. These were also destroyed by western colonization. While this concept is not new, Ms. McBride did bring a fresh look to it and it's admirable. One can only wish guilds like this existed in real life.
This tale is an erotic awakening and journey for Afton with Lefi guiding him. The self-discovery and sexual scenes are all hawt and moving. It is a shame that Afton's gen designation is considered shameful. He really is the best of two worlds. He possesses a dick with balls at the same time he has a pussy and clit. To have him as a lover would be out of this world. Lefi definitely feels this way as he seduces and falls in love with Afton. The two of them bring out the best in each other and it's a lovely thing to watch. With their special sexual organs, their sex is also kinky hot fun. Ms. McBride writes excellent sexual tension.
This world Ms. McBride created is wonderful. The different cultures with the good, bad and ugly exposed makes it feel so real. The attention to detail in how she creates each alien race enhances this world. It's a Trekkie's erotic fantasy come to life. Her writing voice is smooth and thoughtful. She captures the reader's attention and lures them in until they are totally vested with the characters and plot. The plot itself was well crafted. It wasn't too complicated yet it was enough to add suspense and the required conflict.
This is truly a beautifully written erotic alternate world fantasy novel. One can only hope she returns to this world again. There is hope as the end of the book left a little hook, which implies another book will be written where we would see Helio and Griffin again. This would be marvelous since the ending of this book leaves the reader yearning for more. This erotic novel is highly recommended for kinky folks who enjoy fantasy with aliens.
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