Review: Thrones of Desire: Erotic Tales of Swords, Mist and Fire
Thrones of Desire: Erotic Tales of Swords, Mist and Fire by Mitzi Szereto
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Swords, magic and dragons entwined with erotica sex, what could be better for a fantasy lover? Perhaps a story with a beginning, middle and end would help. Collections are sometimes really good with stories to lure the reader in and find new authors. Generally with erotic fantasies written by romance writers, the readers is satisfied with smexy hot sex scenes and a lot of romance. The sci-fi fantasy part of it is very light. If a science fiction writer delves into this genre, the reader is treated to a magical world with little emotional development. It feels cold as the characters are not engaging.
The foreword in this book by well known author Piers Anthony also mentions a few other stereotypes based on where the writer comes from. He proposes this book of erotic tales will be different. It is with regret that I say it's a typical sci-fi fantasy anthology leaving an erotic reader high and dry.
The writing is polished and stories are all well edited. This collection is well written, there is no doubt about it. Manuscripts for biological functions can also be well written yet they are so clinical it leaves a reader empty of emotion. The issue I run into with many science fiction or fantasy writers is when it comes to a short story, they spend so much time trying to create an elaborate world, the story is missing. Where is the beginning? Why is this happening? How do the characters relate to each other? Why would a reader care about them? What is the motivation of the character? Where is the sexual tension? If it is erotic, there must be sexual tension.
In this collection, most of the stories threw the reader in the middle of a scene and there was neither an ending nor a resolution to a conflict. I find this to be a standard writing protocol in fantasy writers and it leaves me extremely disgruntled and dissatisfied. Or in erotic terms, I receive absolutely no foreplay and before I'm ready to go over the end and climax, my lover disappears without a word. Some of the short tales in this book, I don't even know what my lover is doing or how I met this lover until the very end.
The book started out well with Hot as a Dragon's Blood. We have a world, characters, dragons, conflict and some tasty if mild sex. From there, it went downhill for me. Either the tale lacked foreplay or the characters were as emotion-filled as a robot. I still rated this book a three star overall because the world building saved it. This book is recommended for science fiction and fantasy readers.
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