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Tuesday, April 13, 2010

An Invitation: Alayna’s Training by Jennifer Cole

An Invitation: Alayna’s Training by Jennifer Cole
Publisher: Loose Id
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Full Length (183 pgs)
Other: BDSM , M/F, Spanking, Voyeurism
Rating: 4 Cherries
Reviewed by Fern

A business card left behind by a regular in her restaurant intrigues Alayna Valerian. While visiting the Web site scrawled on the back, she finds herself submerged into the fetish world of BDSM. She learns the man who has been eating in her café for six months--and sets her libido on fire--is a Dominant, as well as co-owner of an establishment that teaches the art of mastery and submission. As her research deepens, she recognizes her submissive nature and decides the ruggedly, distinguished Logan Abram is the Dominant to show her the pleasures to be attained at the hands of the right man.

Logan Abram is a Dominant without a submissive. Five years ago, he walked away from the lifestyle to deal with a tragedy he had yet to come to terms with. Long-denied Dominant needs surge to the surface, demanding to claim the curvaceous co-owner of the eatery he frequents. Alayna Valerian’s natural submissiveness calls to his Dom on a primal level. All of his control is threatened when Alayna arrives on his doorstep seeking to explore her submissiveness.

An Invitation: Alayna’s Training is a sultry story that will increase your heart rate and stir your blood. Author Jennifer Cole has written a tale about letting go of the past and embracing the future.

Alayna is curious about her submissive side. After she receives a business card left by two regular customers at her café, directing her to an establishment that aides those in BDSM and D/s, she decides to explore her sexual needs. After all, the gorgeous man with dark hair, a gorgeous body, and sinful chocolate brown eyes is a co-owner of the establishment and excites her in a multitude of ways. Unfortunately, upon her arrival for a month long stay of training, Logan is elusive and short with her. Even as she tries to accept the Dom who will train her in the art of submission, he isn’t Logan, and she knows something is missing.

Logan is a Dom who lost a submissive in a horrific accident that was not his fault, yet he blames himself for it nonetheless. Although he yearns for Alayna like no other, he knows he cannot have her. When she arrives at his home which also doubles as a place to train those interested in D/s courtesy of his nosey business partner and fellow Dom, Dane, he is determined to keep her at arm’s length. Yet, even as he tries, he cannot stay away. She is a drug he cannot resist, and when she finally reveals her own intense yearning and attraction, he is unable to deny her what she desires most.

Jennifer Cole’s An Invitation: Alayna’s Training isn’t your average BDSM tale. In fact, the BDSM elements, while present, remain in the background for over three-quarters of the story. This is about temptation and want, as well as confusion and doubt. When Alayna arrives at Logan’s home, she hopes she can lure the man to take her on a submissive. Yet, as time passes and his guilt eats away at him, he pushes her further and further away. While well written (as Ms. Cole’s works always are) the continuous effort not to cave becomes a bit tedious, and I couldn’t help but wonder why Alayna would stay as she’s not aware of Logan’s past but only his obvious disregard for her. She is placed in situations time and again where he shuns her, and while her spunky attitude is refreshing, the story became very predictable, to the point that I had a pretty decent idea of how things would play out and wasn’t shocked when matters were taken out of both of their hands.

Aside from this, An Invitation: Alayna’s Training is both intriguing and enjoyable. The interaction between the characters is fantastic, as is the dialogue and premise. Logan has a lot of baggage to sort through and Alayna is the perfect heroine to guide him on the path of redemption. Also, as a bonus, there are two characters that are just aching for their own story, so I’m sure we’ll see more from Logan and Alayna in the future.

Fans of Ms. Cole are sure to love An Invitation: Alayna’s Training.

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