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Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Obsessed by Various Authors



Obsessed by Donna George Storey, Kayla Perrin, Portia Da Costa, Logan Belle, Justine Elyot, Emerald, Jennifer Peters, Ariel Graham, Bella Andre, Adele Haze, Charlotte Stein, Kristina Wright, Garnell Wallace, Andrea Dale, Elizabeth Coldwell, K.D. Grace, Rachel Kramer Bussel, Teresa Noelle Roberts, and Louisa Harte
Publisher: Cleis Press, Inc.
Genre: Action/Adventure, Contemporary
Length: Full Length (216 pgs)
Other: BDSM, M/F, M/F/M, Ménage, Anal Play, Fetish, Toys, Spanking, Voyeurism
Rating: 3.5 cherries
Reviewed by Peppermint

Experience the Heights of Passion and the Depths of Desire

We've all been there—so taken by a lover that you just can't stop thinking about him. Your imagination runs wild, fueling your fantasies. You feel hot, feverish, out of control. Your only hope of release is to possess and be possessed. In Obsessed: Erotic Romance for Women, Rachel Kramer Bussel has curated a gloriously explicit collection of riveting romance with an edge. Whether just-blooming passions, rekindled sparks, or reinvented relationships, these lovers put the object of their obsession first. From the almost-divorced couple in "Aftershocks," by Bella Andre, who finally confess their deepest desires during an earthquake to a woman who tells her boyfriend just how much she lusts after another man in Emerald's "Then," these lovers push the boundaries of their trust, and are rewarded for taking those risks. Obsessed lovers don't always do what is rational; sometimes they chase their dreams, as in Kayla Perrin's "One Night in Paris," across the world and across the landscape of their lovers' bodies. Lustful and literary, Obsessed asks just how far you'll go for the man you love.

Everyone has some type of obsession in their life whether it be the pursuit of a secret fantasy, or something we experience that creates the obsession that always pulses just under the surface. An anthology about obsession is perfect for readers who need or want to feel that they're not alone in their compulsions. This book covers it.

Silent Treatment by Donna George Storey

This story makes it evident that you do not need a voice to be heard. It was a good tale to begin the anthology but the obsession wasn't altogether clear. I did enjoy the anonymity of the heroine because it added a mystery to the story. It also allowed me to interpret the heroine the way I would picture her. .Based on the writing, I wasn't restricted to how the author wanted me to view her heroine.

One Night in Paris by Kayla Perrin

This story showed and even demonstrated the theme of obsession perfectly. I was completely enthralled with the storyline from beginning to end. Not only was Vivian’s obsession with her boss explored, but the author delved into her obsession with the fantasy itself. And let's face it, we all love a good fantasy now and then.

Concubine by Portia Da Costa

Even though it got of to a slow start, this story had a very interesting ending. I liked the whole "story within a story" aspect of Concubine. Additionally, these characters connected on a deeper level than the previous tales. It created a nice little romantic feeling to it.

Love and Demotion by Logan Belle

This story was all about raw animalistic sexual urges. Cat is tame during the day, but a sex kitten at night. At this point in the anthology, Love and Demotion was my favorite story. It revisited the secret obsession of sleeping with your boss. The author added a twist to the storyline that really entertained me.

Mephisto Waltz by Justine Elyot
This installment was entertaining, especially the way the author used music to build up and develop the relationship. While I am not a classical music fan, I could appreciate the correlation between emotionally connecting a good piece of music to a good piece of man candy. In the end, Lily gets to thoroughly enjoy both.

Then by Emerald

This was by far the most erotic story within the anthology. Valerie may love Chris, but her body sure wants a taste of Hayden. The reality is, even while people are in a monogamous relationship, everyones eye wanders occasionally. We cannot help but appreciate an attractive man. What's worse for the heroine,Valerie, is this attractive man is constantly being thrown in her face. The sensual tension escalates because she can't touch him ...or can she?

It’s Gotta Be Fate by Jennifer Peters
This story was not only interesting but it set itself apart from the others because of its uniqueness. It encompassed a BDSM theme with an titillating twist. Occasionally, submissives need to know what it is like to dominate someone. By the same token Doms need to experience the feel of someone else’s ties around their wrists. In this story, I get exactly that. What was better, was the hint at maybe a new beginning. This was a light BDSM story, but be prepared because it's emotionally charged.

Hooked by Ariel Graham
This tale was a bit puzzling to me. One thing that really made it difficult was the characters names being Ricki and Jody. Since both names are interchangeable between males and females, I kept forgetting who the boyfriend was and who the girlfriend was. In spite of that, I really enjoyed Ricki’s obsession. Add in the hook and I had a story that truly captured the theme of obsession. However, I would have liked to have actually seen the obsession be fulfilled in the final scene of the story. Ms. Graham needs to do a sequel.

Aftershocks by Bella Andre

Some relationships need a little jolt to get back in track. The lack of communication displayed by Celeste and Darren is a trap many marriages fall in. They are so afraid of each other’s reaction they fail to realize they both want the same thing. This highly erotic BDSM story was inspirational in more than one way. Secret Places by Adele Haze Until we fully trust someone, many of us keep our secrets to ourselves. That is what this story was about. The only drawback about this tale is the author focused too much time and energy on Dan's music playing. It took away from the the relationship development. Because it is so short, the secret was discovered using a typical technique. but ultimately I did get to see Dan and Marian reach their happily ever after. Best of all for the protagonists, there were minimal secrets going forward.

Loser by Charlotte Stein

This story inspired mixed emotions, but in a good way. One moment I was completely awed by the fact that Mallory would even be attracted to Billy in the first place. The next thing that threw me was when Mallory talked about how good he was in the bedroom. I thought, "Wow,what a catch!" I am sure this is what the author was going for and she certainly succeeded in her goal. Now, I don't think I will ever again walk past an average person and think what a loser they are.

Here In Between by Kristina Wright

'Strange mysterious man finds stranded woman on the side of the road'. It certainly sounds more like the beginning of a horror movie than an erotic tale, doesn't it? Well, not only does that sentence begin this story, it also ignited something deep inside me. You know, the part that wants to be that damsel in distress who is rescued by the knight riding on a magnificent stallion? I just hope my knight is as sexy and charismatic as the hero is in this story.

Spellbound by Garnell Wallace
This story touched me on a few emotional levels. I absolutely loved that the heroine, Kia, was able to find herself but it took her going to Haiti to do it. The nice twist was she found the love of her life while she was trying to connect with a part of herself her family denied. What I liked too was the heroine was put into a situation that was different. It inspired her to really look within for answers. What really spiced up the story were the hot erotic scenes. I'm being deliberately vague because it's a story worth reading.

Raven’s Flight by Andrea Dale

Forget the girl next door when you can have the sexy Celtic next door. Ciaran is the type of neighbor we all dream of; sexy, intelligent, and likes to walk around shirtless. I also enjoyed the link the tattoos played in Ciaran and the heroine's journey through life. I appreciate symbolism because I have always felt it adds a touch of depth to a story. The author effectively illustrated that with the use of the tattoos.

Raindrops and Rooftops by Elizabeth Coldwell
This story was a bit more sexual and the focus on obsession was not as heavy as with the previous tales. I like that it added a little bit of lightness to the obsessive side of people. Another thing that intrigued me was Keeley going to New York in search of one thing and ended up finding something completely different. For a lot of people, the scenario plays out just like that in real life. We do not realize what we are looking for until we find it.

Topiary by K.D. Grace

At first, I was a bit confused on what the author of this story was talking about, but after a few chapters, I was able to figure it out. I have heard of vajazzling, but this takes pubic decorating to a completely new level. While this story did fully explore the obsession people can have regarding a woman's parts, I did not really connect with nor fully appreciate the relationship. It seemed as if Aden only cared about one part of heroine's anatomy, and not necessarily for her as a person.

I Want to Hold Your Hand by Rachel Kramer Bussel

This story was very romantic. All Shelly really wanted to do was reconnect with her husband. While it had a strong erotic element, the story left a warm and fuzzy feeling inside by the time I finished it. Ron was eventually revealed to be the perfect husband that all husbands should be.

Storm Surge by Teresa Noelle Roberts
This story was a bit difficult for me to read. While if fully captured the obsession of the character, I just felt confused because the obsession almost trumped reality. Additionally, it was another story that I felt the couple did not really connect as deeply with each other as they could have. What came across instead was their total involvement with their mutual obsession.

Undercover Kink by Louisa Harte

This final tale was a great one to end this anthology. We all have some undercover kink somewhere buried inside, and Natalie, the heroine, had to fulfill the kink she has secretly obsessed about for a long time. What was even better is that it even fulfilled a few kinks I don't think even Natalie realized she had until that moment. It's the element of discovery that made it so worth it.

This entire anthology really displayed the many forms obsession can take. Though voluminous, this book has stories to match anyone’s needs or curiosity about obsession. Because there are so many different tales, surly everyone who reads this book will find something they love. I did.

1 comment:

Dayle A. Dermatis said...

Thank you so much for your kind words about my story!

Cheers,
Andrea Dale