Review: Masterpiece

Masterpiece Masterpiece by Jillian Verne
My rating: 0 of 5 stars

The Romance Review

Power and rich men enjoy sexually dominating willing submissives. Said powerful men also create a secret society which brings the elite together based on mutual delight in sexual proclivity. A nice side benefit is a network of businessmen who can connect and make deals behind closed doors. Sounds exciting, doesn't it? This is the kind of glitterkink fantasy lonely submissives dream about. The blurb of this book captures my attention and I want to read about the high society. To my surprise, this story is more about young adult-esque drama than an all-inclusive ticket into sexual debauchery.

This story did not work for me on several accounts, based on my own preferences. Whilst the story is well edited and did flow smoothly, it did take me a long time to get through it. First, from a character perspective, I could not stand either Julianne or Nicolai. Julianne is a burgeoning artist. Finding Nicolai as her mentor is a coup. When Nicolai senses Julianne's submissive tendencies, he wants to show her his exclusive private world. This is pretty exciting. What is not exciting and becomes tedious is how so many characters go on and on about Julianne. It is as if they are trying to convince me she is so awesome. At the same time Julianne is constantly self-deprecating. Her incessant mantra - "Moi? Ce n'est pas possible. Je suis ennuyeux et plaine." This type of annoying setup where everyone has to reassure the delicate bloody flower how incredible she is makes me think otherwise. To make it worse, Julianne is supposed to be so courageous and yet doesn't get why she is so beautiful and talented. Then Nicolai is some master dominant who is sought after and now in love. He is masterful, talented, an excellent lover, etc. Contrary to how many times we are told this, his actions show him to be an out of control crazy man. I would have no interest in being dominated by him. With both main characters so off putting, it is difficult to enjoy the story.

Second, the story dragged on for a long time. Most of this could have been cut down to at least half the length. It is a very slow buildup between Julianne and Nicolai. There are multiple threads going on which could be either cut out or more precision applied to them. For one, Julianne's best friend's sexual needs are a distraction. Another, going to Japan was needed but the going on of how the Trinity of the 3 masters of the Order went on too long. What really went too long for me was the seduction of Julianne and the subsequent meltdown of Nicolai.

Third, the BDSM scenes are overly scripted. For me, this book told too much instead of showed. The inner musings of each of the characters bored me to death. This is how shrinks must feel when they have a patient who cannot shut up about their first world problems. I just wanted to slap them across the face and say, "Just bloody flog/whip and fuck her!" It is almost as if the BDSM was overly politically correct.

Overall, the concept of this story is good. The world building is alluring. The characters detract from my pleasure. The pace of the story is too slow. The BDSM is mild. This story is for those who enjoy fantasy glitterkink.


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