Beginning January 1, 2013

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Friday, April 20, 2012

All Revved Up by Crystal Jordan

All Revved Up by Crystal Jordan
Publisher: Ellora's Cave
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Short Story (50 pgs)
Other: M/F, Anal Play, Spanking
Rating: 3.5 stars
Reviewed by Dahlia

There’s nothing Andi Manning doesn’t know about cars. Working at Kasen’s Kustom Automotive is a dream job, and it’s even more fun now that they’ve turned the garage into Revved Up, a reality television show for overhauling classic cars. Watching drop-dead gorgeous Dean Kasen work his magic on those sweet rides is no hardship, either. She’s lusted after him, but never had the courage to act on her scorching-hot fantasies.

The network offers Dean the chance for the local show to go national as long as a sexy bombshell helps host it. Andi is perfect for the role—if she’s willing to discard her coveralls and bend over engines in tight shorts, tank tops and heels. Now that she’s gone from cute coworker to sexpot, Dean can’t keep his hands off her. But he feels guilty for sleeping with an employee and Andi has to wonder…the only time they spend together is for sex, so is it her he wants, or just the revved-up goddess of the show?

Women aren't usually known for being part of the grease monkey profession and looking good doing it, but to Dean, Andi is most definitely the exception. Dean's been lusting after her for the last five years, but the whole boss-employee thing is the sticking point that keeps him from making a move. It's a move Dean has no other choice except to finally make when Andi walks in to his office wearing next to nothing.

Andi loves working on cars, but feels as if it might just be time to take it to the next level and get more exposure. There's just one problem. The exposure the producers are looking for involves showing a lot more skin. However, Dean seems to like the new Andi and it isn't long before Andi begins wondering if it's not just her heart she's losing, but herself as well.

The boss-employee angle totally works in this "too short for its own good" story. This is a terrific premise for what could be a fun and sexy extended version. The chemistry between Dean and Andi is believable and served its sizzling purpose in the explosive sex scenes. It's a story that can be read in one sitting and enjoyed for the main character's and their brief journey from boss-employee to lovers to perhaps something more. Without a doubt by the end of the story the reader will be feeling all revved up and wanting more of this author's work!

Serving Serena by Candice Butler

Serving Serena by Candice Butler
Publisher: Noble Romance Publishing, LLC
Genre: Contemporary, paranormal
Length: Short Story (139 pgs)
Other: M/F, F/F, Anal Play, Voyeurism
Rating: 4 stars
Reviewed by Iris

Serena Davies, unrepentant hippie, has a major case of artist’s block. She also has a deadline for the showing of a lifetime. She’s been told the island monastery retreat at St. Catherine of Bologna can work wonders for artists in need of inspiration.

From the moment Teros picks her up on the dock, Serena feels the uncontrollable urge to explore the body beneath his monk’s robe. But she’s still Catholic enough to know seducing a monk is a permanent ticket to purgatory. Ignoring these urges become nearly impossible after Teros tells her he’s there to serve only her. When he reveals he’s not a monk, Serena gives in, knowing this thirty-something hard body will probably break her fifty-eight-year-old heart. What Teros has not revealed is that he’s the Greek god of requited love, Anteros.

Spending her days and nights with Teros amidst the unbridled natural beauty of the island, Serena abandons the landscape paintings that made her famous. Now she finds the other sexy residents of the island make far more interesting subjects. Serena wonders if she can ignore the world’s intolerance for seeing older women with younger men long enough to hold on to the love of a lifetime.

Any book that starts with a stolen glance of a fantastic (nude!) butt and, ahem, hints of male genitalia has GOT to be good, right?! This one doesn’t disappoint.

The basic story is a lovely erotic romance, not just sexual exploits. Admittedly, the monk serving her at the secluded artist’s retreat is the hottest thing Serena has seen in awhile, and the Catholic confusion and angst that follows is a little amusing. Fortunately, it's also dispelled rather quickly.

I was treated to not only the artist’s carnal indulgences, but also those created by her very fertile mind as well as the romantic interludes of various other artists staying at the retreat. There's no shortage of art, good food, or sex on this island!

Two scenes in the book made me laugh out loud. The first is when Serena finds out that George, the cook, practices his art in the nude, and the second is when she finds him at the oven early in the morning. It almost makes you want to find your own baker in a blue apron.

At the risk of spoilers, the ending of the book is not truly a surprise as hints are generously woven throughout the story. It does not in any way detract from the romance of the story or the deliciousness of any coupling described.

This was a difficult book to put down, and is one of those that has “stuck with me”. For those who prefer a good story with their sex, this is an excellent book to pick up. Enjoy it today!

Their Divine Doctor by Heather Rainier

Their Divine Doctor by Heather Rainier
Publisher: Siren Publishing
Genre: Contemporary, Holiday
Length: Full length (190 pgs)
Other: mild BDSM, M/F/M, Ménage, Anal Play, Toys, Spanking
Rating: 4.5 Stars
Reviewed by Honeysuckle

Emma Guthrie has been playing it safe all her life, watching friends marry and have families. She’s dedicated her life to healing others and now it’s time to heal herself.

Duke Rivers and Gage Randall are intrigued by the blushing doctor, whom they’ve observed in the past making a naughty sex toy purchase. Fate brings them together when Emma treats Gage for an arrow wound to the buttocks. When she moves in upstairs, they decide it’s time to take a chance.

The socially awkward threesome discovers a mutual need to stop allowing life to pass them by, and they embark on a quest to accomplish each item on their “bucket list” together. From the treetops of the North Georgia Mountains to the frozen Canadian Northwest Territories and points in between, they chase their dreams as danger closes in at home. Will Emma pay the ultimate price for loving them both?

Playing it safe has gotten Emma an invite to the local quilting circling and a fear of things outside her comfort zone. Now all she needs is a few dozen cats, a rocking chair, a blanket and at the ripe old age of thirty-seven she’ll be set to slip right on into old age…having never really lived. But ... not if two super cute and awfully sweet geeks armed with a bucket list have anything to say about it.

I simply adore a character I can relate to. It’s not that I have so much in common with Dr. Emma Guthrie on a professional level but I could easily relate to her feeling like she hadn’t done enough, seen enough, experienced enough in her relatively short life. All of that changes when the opportunity to cross off items from her personal bucket list presents itself in the form of cousins Duke and Gage. Not surprisingly, the sexual chemistry was pretty instant; it was the way their personalities matched up so seamlessly on a personal level that really made their story sing.

Do you ever try to picture an actor or actress playing the part of the storybook character? I pictured Sandra Bullock playing Emma. She’s “girl next door” pretty and a bit of an introvert waiting to burst out of her shell. Duke and Gage are the perfect catalyst to literally push her out of a plane, up a tree and into a smoking hot ménage relationship.

I haven’t read many “geek” charming books but if the heroes resemble these cousins I’ll have to reconsider. Don’t get me wrong, these aren’t pocket protector wearing nerds. They’re really just regular (hot) guys who happen to enjoy vegging out with a good Call of Duty game session with friends. Tracking and monitoring potential bad guys can be exhausting so I’d say they deserve some distraction and R&R. Lately, the distraction has been the sexy, sassy doctor downstairs.

Their Divine Doctor is technically a “short story” for Ms. Rainier even though it closes out at just shy of 200 pages. It’s fast paced and covers a long courtship over a short time. The story moves quickly from one month to the next, but Ms. Rainier makes the time change obvious at the beginning of each new section. Emma is a doctor who's on call more than she’s off and the boys tend to work out of town a lot so it wasn’t necessary to throw in conversations, shared meals or quickies for the sake of filling pages. The parts of their story that is given is rich with detail and fun dialogue. Ms. Rainier even works in the background for Gage to give readers a sympathetic understanding of his personality and how he and Duke came to be so close. It’s heart wrenching but with a happy ending.

The main premise of the story is Emma, Duke and Gage getting together and making a connection. However, there’s an underlying, and seemingly innocent, minor plot that causes a major wave in their lives towards the end. Overall, I think it was a necessary experience to show the characters they shouldn’t take their time together for granted.

Mr. Rainer does a splendid job of introducing some new characters and future stories within this holiday romp. I’m particularly looking forward to reading Clay’s story. The young lady who’s injured in front of his store seemed familiar to the clever jeweler and that’s guaranteed to mean fireworks when she recovers. I’m also curious to see if their story will involve another male lead (as all but one Divine story have at least two men) and if so, who will it be??

If you’re as totally absorbed by the folks of Divine as I am, you won’t want to miss Their Divine Doctor. It inspired me to create my own bucket list of things I’ve only thought about doing. As Gage, Emma and Duke discovered, there’s a whole world of exciting things to do and places to go if you just set your mind to experiencing life rather than simply talking about it. Pick up your copy today and be prepared to be swept into a world that is simply Divine.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Shepard, Slave, and Vow by Lyn Gala

Shepard, Slave, and Vow by Lyn Gala
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Genre: Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Historical
Length: Short Story (64 pgs)
Other: BDSM, M/M, Anal Play
Rating: 4 stars
Reviewed by Cactus

Bored with the privileges and duties of a member of the first family, Ferro finds himself in the slave tents as a consequence of his antics, knowing he’ll be rescued before long. At least, that’s the way it’s always worked before. This time, though, Ferro finds himself sold as a sheep-tender along with an intriguingly mysterious slave called Lysias. For the first time, Ferro’s met someone who seems immune to his wiles, and he’ll soon learn that Lysias has more to teach him than just shepherding.

Privileged and bratty prince Ferro may just find what he’s been searching for in a surprising place. Ferro has upset his father once again and is off to the slave blocks. Instead of waiting a few days to be collected, Ferro is sold at auction with an animal tender slave named Lisias. Lisias decides to take Ferro in hand and the royal son can’t decide if he’s excited or annoyed. The quiet, self-confident tender may be a slave but his demeanor suggests he knows just how to handle Ferro’s attention seeking ways. Perhaps Lisias is what Ferro has been looking for after all.

Shepard, Slave, and Vow is another novella from Dreamspinner that focuses on the erotica first and foremost but offers an interesting and well depicted setting to keep your interest. I find a lot of Dreamspinner Press’ novellas to be erotica based and most anything else is simply a vehicle to get to the sex as easy and quickly as possible. Shepard, Slave and Vow doesn’t change that formula but it offers a more sophisticated and intriguing backdrop. The ancient fantasy setting is well crafted with a lot of mythological lore woven in.

As the narrator, Ferro can be overly obnoxious. He’s clearly pampered and spoiled but he’s also searching desperately for a place to belong and settle down. I’m not sure his place is as a slave tending animals but the connection to Lisias is very real and very hot. Ms. Gala knows how to write scorching hot sex scenes and even Ferro’s bratty commentary can’t ruin these scenes. There’s certainly enough to please fans and the characters are more developed than most novellas in this nap-sized dreams category.

The second hero, Lisias, is the strong silent type and thus very little is known about him or why he acts the way he does. It would have been nice to see his perspective of Ferro and his thoughts but Ferro is an entertaining and amusing narrator – when he’s not annoying. This duality to the main character allows for a tiny bit of redemption but it also shows the complexity to people. As a quick read, this is thoroughly enjoyable and entertaining but probably more so for fans of mythology and ancient Greek settings.

The Wolf Who Hatched An Egg by Scarlet Hyacinth

The Wolf Who Hatched An Egg by Scarlet Hyacinth
Publisher: Siren Publishing
Genre: Action/Adventure, Contemporary, Paranormal
Length: Short Story (131 pgs)
Other: M/M, Anal Play
Rating: 4.5 stars
Reviewed by Peppermint

Snack or sweetheart? Definitely sweetheart. Or so werewolf Liam thinks when he meets swan shifter Shiloh. Shiloh is everything Liam’s soul yearns for, a gorgeous, feisty spitfire who turns his blood into flame and makes his entire being sing. But Shiloh is reluctant to believe in Liam’s good intentions.

Shiloh has been searching for The One for as long as he can remember. In his quest, he made several mistakes, and now he is reluctant to believe again, especially in a wolf. After all, wolves prey on his kind. How could he possibly entrust his heart to one?

As they struggle through misunderstandings and try to build a relationships, a third member joins their little family—a mysterious swan egg abandoned in front of their door. Will it strengthen Shiloh’s bond with Liam or will it separate them forever?

I can't think of a more interesting story than one about a wolf hatching an egg. Not just any egg but an abandoned swan egg, which would normally mean dinnertime for a wolf. Yet, with his partner by his side, Liam swears to protect the innocent baby from himself and the other predators who may be looking to sneak it away.

Shiloh and Liam make one dynamic duo. Liam may be the wolf and predator in the relationship, but Shiloh is as fierce as they come. He has the heart of a lion trapped in a swan's body. His spunk made him an instant favorite for me. Liam, on the other hand, seems to be the awkward, self-conscious partner in the relationship. This role reversal made these characters entertaining.

The plot line of this story was anything but dull. Not only does the pair need to figure out how to make their unique relationship work they have to also deal with the shifter world accepting them. Additionally, they are faced with ex lovers popping up and an egg to care for. Though the odds may seemed stacked against them, they still manage to make their relationship work and sneak a little playtime in as well. I could sympathize with their relationship and how it their lives were so crazy, continuously twisting, and turning. I could not wait to see them get past everything and have the happy conclusion they deserved.

While I did not have the pleasure of reading the first Mate or Meal story, I still enjoyed meeting the main characters from it. It made me want to read the previous story in this series as well as read any others to follow. Especially, if I get to experience Shiloh and Liam occasionally popping up. They are two men I adored by the end of The Wolf Who Hatched An Egg.

Love and the Farmer by Sean Michael

Love and the Farmer by Sean Michael
Publisher: Torquere Press
Genre: Sci-Fi/Fantasy
Length: Short Story (26 pgs)
Other: M/M, toys, bdsm, anal sex, spanking
Rating: 3.5 stars
Reviewed by Nymphaea

Love is the best, and brattiest, sub at the club. Punishments are fun for Love, as long as he's the center of attention. Then Freddie comes along. Freddie agrees to take Love on, and Love's furious at being taken in hand by this country bumpkin, but he learns soon enough that Freddie is far from a bumbling farmer.

A pretty face will get you pretty far... it might also get your bottom bruised.

If you happen to be Love, then a raw bottom isn't a bad thing. Who is Love? Love is the pretty sub in Sean Michael's Love and the Farmer.

Sean Michael is one of my go-to authors. I know when I open one of his books, I'm in for a HOT time. I don't just mean, hot, I mean on flames in a combustion chamber melting the sides off hot. Mr. Michael doesn't hold back in his descriptions or the use of toys in the stories. This read might be only twenty-six pages, but there is a lot going on in those few pages. Definitely a spicy one-sitting read.

There is one niggle about this work. It should come with a label. I understand when I read a Sean Michael book, there will be creative use of toys. But if the reader doesn't know what a sound is or how one is used, it may come as a shock. It's not a bad thing, but might not be for all readers.

Love knows he's hot. He knows he's desirable. He also knows he needs a firm hand. I liked that he knows what he needs. Watching him get that was the fun part. Freddie is as the title suggests, a farmer. The description let me see him perfectly. Yes, he's not opposed to a little punishment, but there's something more in what he does--a sweetness that's not present in most of Love's life. I enjoyed seeing these two characters get together and the outcome. Totally worth it.

If you want a blazing hot book, then you need to get a copy of Love and the Farmer

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

A Modest Proposal by Felicitas Ivey

A Modest Proposal by Felicitas Ivey
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Genre: Action/Adventure, Sci-Fi/Fantasy
Length: Short Story (118 pgs)
Other: BDSM, M/M, Anal Play
Rating: 3 stars
Reviewed by Cactus

Hagar is the captain of the cargo ship Midgard Serpent. Most of his shipments are legal, but he has a reputation for being an honest smuggler—a reputation that lands him some troublesome cargo. Shibito, an exiled member of the Nipponese imperial family, meets Hagar on Dunmore Station. Keeping his true identity secret, Shibito tells Hagar he'll do anything to get out of there. Never one to turn down an offer like that, Hagar accepts.

But Shibito doesn't have just any destination in mind, and Hagar is furious when he discovers that his mysterious passenger has altered their course without telling him. With no way to change course a second time, Hagar has no choice but to trust—and face the temptation of Shibito’s request for some rough handling, a proposal Hagar isn’t sure he can resist.

Far from home and trying to return, Shibito offers ship captain Hagar a deal he can’t refuse. Penniless and lost, Shibito knows he doesn’t have much to offer Hagar for a ride on his somewhat illegal shipping vessel. However Shibito doesn’t let that sway him as he offers Hagar the one thing the captain can’t refuse – free use of Shibito’s excellent body. The voyage turns out to be an experience neither man expected nor one they want to give up.

A Modest Proposal is a fun and entertaining erotica trip with just enough background and setting to keep the story interesting between numerous bouts of sex. The main purpose of the story is erotica and a lot of it. Shibito offers Hagar free use of his body in any way the other man wants. This leads to a pseudo D/s relationship with Hagar calling the shots. Shibito is all for it though and in fact he’s just as greedy and wanting as Hagar. Together the two have explosive and kind of repetitive D/s laced sex. It’s not heavy BDSM. It’s really light and only hinted at; a situation both men enjoy quite a bit.

The backdrop to all the sex is Shibito’s journey home and confrontation with his cousin, the man who psychically injured Shibito and shipped him off to a far away planet. There's a sci-fi element in that the setting is clearly futuristic, more so than science fiction/fantasy. The writing is very good and tries to include some complicated personal dynamics between the various relationships. This is all a backdrop to the focus, which is the sex and burgeoning relationship between the two men.

The ending is left somewhat hanging as Shibito’s future is uncertain and the two men are off on an adventure. What will happen to them and Shibito’s people is presumably going to be addressed in future stories. The characters are somewhat developed but, like the actual plot, this all seems to be secondary to the sex scenes. The world building is perhaps the best aspect of the story and the sex is hot and plentiful. I prefer the author’s more developed, complex novels and this novella fell short of my expectations with its focus on so much sex and not enough character development. However for a short novella, fans of D/s-tinged erotica may like it.

Lydia’s Twin Temptation by Heather Rainier

Lydia’s Twin Temptation by Heather Rainier
Publisher: Siren Publishing
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Full Length (318 pgs)
Other: M/F, M/F/M, Ménage, Anal Play, Toys
Rating: 5 Stars
Reviewed by Honeysuckle

Lydia Webster is stranded in west Texas, waiting tables to earn money to escape Fort Stockton and the clutches of her lecherous boss. Circumstances have brought the professional chef to west Texas and left her high and dry.

Distance means nothing to Chance Carlisle when he recalls the beautiful waitress's smile and blue eyes. His brother Clayton doesn't believe in long-distance relationships, even though he is attracted to Lydia, too. Chance offers her a position as their chef, but it's Lydia herself who he wants. Despite numerous disruptions, the attraction between Lydia and Clayton grows, along with her love for Chance, until passion blazes out of control like a Texas wildfire.

Lydia had longed for life in a small town and loves Divine, but there's just one catch. Her overprotective big brothers live in Divine, and there's going to be hell to pay when they find out why she's there.

“Sometimes it’s best to just jump on in, baby.”

Lydia doesn’t simply give in to the temptation of Chance and Clayton Carlisle, she embraces their love with her whole heart.

Are you in the market for one of those books that’s chock full of sweet “awww” moments? You know the type of book I mean: the ones where the characters don’t drive the reader nuts by spending more time fighting their attraction to one another rather than enjoying the chemistry. The books that don’t expend vast amounts of time on correcting misunderstandings just to tie the characters up into a new emotional pretzel every other chapter. Conflict is fine, even necessary, but some authors wear the reader down with never ending angst. If you prefer the books that steal your breath with their passion and sensual romance, I have a treat for you.

Lydia Webster is determined to live her life by her own rules and make her own way. She loves her “mama-bear” big brothers but they have their lives and she doesn’t want or need for them to interfere in hers. Not to say she’s opposed to all men being helpful or supportive. Take the deliciously sexy, sweet and generous Carlisle twins. More specially, Chance Carlisle. Just when Lydia thinks she’s hit rock bottom, Chance is there to bring her home and surround her with love times two.

Ms. Rainier has the perfect quote to describe the difference in identical twins Chance and Clayton. They are “two totally identical men who were completely different. Chance, who was her sunshine and air. The one who had saved her. And Clayton who was her moonlight and passion. Her lover.” See, I bet you just said “aww”. You’re welcome.

The road to Lydia, Chance and Claytons’ HEA isn’t completely without issues. A gold-digger, an old flame and mouthy jerk each put some effort into creating a stumbling block for the lovers. As with all true love stories, these useless individuals are more annoying than actual trouble. Actually, it’s one of Lydia’s big brothers that cause Chance and Clayton any real pain. *Sigh* They never saw it coming.

I could literally go on and on about the clever dialogue, creative plot, the fluid storyline, built in soundtrack (my personal favorite touch by Ms. Rainier) and so on. This book is fulfilling on so many levels. Did I mention these three know how to set the sheets on fire? You aren’t just in the room when things get hot, you’re with them on the bed, the counter, the chaise lounge, the pier…bring a fan. Clothing optional.

Even if this is your first trip to Divine Creek, I have no doubt you’ll enjoy Lydia, Chance and Clayton’s story. There’re several returning characters and some storylines from other books that are brought in but that should only whet your appetite to go find the other books and not preclude your enjoyment of this book.

Author Heather Rainer pens some of my favorite full length ménage romance novels. I know each time I return to visit Divine Creek I’m going to meet and fall in love with a whole new and unique set of men and the woman lucky enough to catch their eye. With each new story I tell myself “this is going to be my favorite grouping” and then Ms. Rainier proves me wrong with a new installment to the series. The hallmark of an excellent storyteller is the ability to create a world where her characters continue to live on after the last page and where her readers beg for an opportunity to visit time and again. Lydia’s Twin Temptation is a fantastic read and not to be missed.

Taking It Back by Zenobia Renquist

Taking It Back by Zenobia Renquist
Publisher: Changeling Press
Genre: Contemporary, Paranormal
Length: Short Story (65 pgs)
Other: M/F, Anal Play
Rating: 4 stars
Reviewed by Xeranthemum

Nami is in Vegas for a business seminar. Kosuke is a tentacle monster in search of a cure for the affliction keeping him from eating. While she may not make him better, Kosuke is more than willing to put that aside to enjoy the other things Nami can do for him.

A little unusual kink goes a long way in perking up a person’s boring humdrum routine and this little book should jump start a reader’s interest from zero to sixty in the first chapter.

The blurb certainly piqued my interest but it can only take me so far. The book had to deliver more than the lure of unusual sex; it had to engage my emotions on behalf of either the heroine or hero. I’m happy to say that the author succeeded.

Kosuke is the male protagonist and he’s certainly the one of the most unique and unlikely type of heroes I’ve read about in a long time. He should have been the stuff of nightmares but instead turned out to be a sympathetic character. He’s not only starving, he’s facing death and there doesn’t seem to be a darned thing he can do about it. In fact, there’s something else he can’t seem to control and it opened up a whole host of possibilities he had no choice but to investigate. This being the type of story it is, I was hoping for a good time and Ms. Renquist delivered.

I liked Nami. I liked how the author let me into her head so I could see that she was a pretty pragmatic and open minded person. She wants that intimate connection with another person and doesn’t turn down opportunities to seek out and experience what she’s craving, but so far, she’s coming up zero. Less than zero actually because all the guys seem to be morons in one way or another. I enjoyed her feisty attitude in the beginning. She was clear, assertive and her dialogue seemed real. Her feelings of guilt and curiosity seemed logical for her character which led her to make that one final fateful decision that changed her outlook on dating and sex in general. The best thing? She didn’t freak out or put on prim and proper airs. That’s not her. She knows what she likes sexually and isn’t afraid to go after it. What sealed my approval of her character was when she was bossing Kosuke around. It was adorable.

Here’s where I question the term Shunga. The publisher has it labeled thus but I interpreted the story as having more of a Hentai leaning – being restrained by many tentacles. Perhaps it’s Shunga because of how he described himself when they first met. I can’t be sure. However, the fact that Kosuke isn’t a mindless, oversexed and rampaging monster but a polite, assertive, certainly inventive but intuitive lover might be where the difference is. He has certain needs without a doubt, but there’s intelligence and heart behind it all. That’s why this story worked for me, no matter how many tentacles he had, or used. He was a male with dreams, hopes and feelings. The author made that quite clear to me and that is one of the main reasons I enjoyed this story so much.

One thing I am unsure of is whether to call this a paranormal or sci-fi fantasy. I’m leaning towards sci-fi fantasy because he’s not human. His natural form is completely other and his mode of transportation, though biological, seems also otherworldly. Certainly he’s nothing like anything on this planet. I like it though because it’s unique, fresh and full of possibilities.

I understand that having a villain is sometimes necessary but in this case, it didn’t matter to me. The bad guy wasn’t truly evil; he was just a desperate alien who chose to be a jerk about things. Instead, I would have been perfectly happy with the internal conflict. It carried most of the story already so the little altercation didn’t add much to the plot.

Don’t let the idea of a ‘creature’ seducing a human female put you off from reading this fascinating and entertaining story. He’s mostly human, with accessories, an interesting color and he smells wonderful. Kosuke has a dad and mom who love him and who he loves and respects in return. His personality is complimentary to Nami’s and I enjoyed watching them fall in love. Yes, there is a bit of the paranormal aspect when it comes to recognizing one’s future partner but they have to work on it the old fashioned way and that’s another reason why I enjoyed the novella.

Taking it Back is a highly kinky read that delivers what erotic romance readers look for with extra spice. I appreciate how Ms. Renquist handled such an unusual hero and gave him a heroine that was more than his match. I enjoyed watching their relationship develop. Despite the short length of this story, the author managed to fit everything that was important to make this a book worth reading. It’s fun, surprising and has some emotional depth to tie it all together. If all tentacle monsters are handled as well as Ms. Renquist’s in this book, then I’m game for more.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Pleasing the Boss by Emma Shortt

Pleasing the Boss by Emma Shortt
Publisher: Evernight Publishing
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Short Story (81 pages)
Other: M/F
Rating: 4.5 stars
Review by: Lotus

A chance meeting in a bar leads to the most erotic night of Pam's life. Only when she awakes, Gabe is gone, and naturally she doesn't expect to see him again. Until Monday morning that is, when she arrives at the office...and meets her new boss.

For Gabe, one night was never going to be enough. He wants Pam again and intends to have her. Will she be able to look past their working relationship? And if so, will she be able to please her boss?

For a sizzling erotic story that involves dating a coworker who happens to be your boss, Pleasing the Boss is THE story!

Pam was not looking for anyone, much less a one-night stand, when one thing led to another and she ended up in bed with Gabriel. Pam is the hard working head of the research department at Ixon which just changed ownership. Gabriel is one of the new owners of Ixon, Pam’s new boss and a great guy who acts as a knight in shining armor for her. Pam had always ruled out romances with coworkers and is horrified to find out her one-night stand is her new boss. Gabriel has to convince Pam they can make this relationship work. How they navigate the work day and their landmine of coworkers/friends issues makes this story a very interesting and exciting read.

Some supporting characters make the story even more enjoyable. Lucy, Pam’s friend, hooks up with Nick, the other Ixon owner, either knowingly or unknowingly. Lucy may or may not be Pam’s true friend, since her actions are questionable, including flirting with Gabe. Nick is a perpetual playboy, finding and discarding women casually throughout his friendship with Gabe.

Ms. Shortt’s writing is witty and engaging, making every word count. She packs lots of meaning into each sentence and does not waste time with unnecessary wording. I laughed at many things Pam was thinking because they were things that I too would have thought. Also, I loved that the story was written in both Pam’s point of view AND in Gabe’s point of view. Each chapter is from the POV of one person, prefaced with a quote/thought from that person. It makes the reader feel close to the action.

Ms. Shortt is a British author, so expect a few British slang/phrases. I actually love British accents, so I spent the whole time reading the story with a British accent for all the characters. This story does have some distracting editing errors. Nevertheless, do not let this deter you since this is an awesome, erotic, and humorous story that is really worth reading.

For an erotic office story packed with humorous narrative and sizzling antics, buy Pleasing the Boss as soon as you can!!! This story put smiles on my face for more than one reason. I will be looking for more from Ms. Shortt since I enjoy her writing so much!

Sweet as Fire by Aurora Rose Lynn

Sweet as Fire by Aurora Rose Lynn
Publisher: Total-E-Bound Publishing
Genre: Historical, Paranormal
Length: Short Story (81 pgs)
Other: M/F, F/F
Rating: 3 stars
Reviewed by Plumeria

Desperate to escape the confines of a pending marriage, Lady Godiva wants one night of sex she'll never forget.

Have you ever heard of the erotic tale of the beautiful Lady Godiva? Sweet As Fire is a paranormal alternate reality retelling of this old legend brimming with witch fire, evil deeds and love at first sight.

Godiva is desperate to escape the confines of a pending marriage to a man much too old for her. In an attempt to seek comfort, Godiva demands her friend, a witch, find an attractive man for one night of prolonged sex during the Beltane festivities in the England of 1070. The witch complies even as a Hidden Observer covertly watches Godiva with wicked intentions of his own towards the determined noblewoman. Godiva finds herself in a lightning fast relationship with a handsome peddler who has long buried secrets of his own and is on the run from the law. Can their erotic encounter last beyond the intricacies of the evil about to submerge them?

Reader Advisory: This story contains one scene of female/female intimacy.

Whatever is a young maiden to do when she’s being forced to marry a nasty old man? Find herself a sexy stud to service her, of course!

Having the knowledge of what pleasure is, Lady Godiva is devastated when her step father announces she must marry a fat, old, rat looking lord. She’d rather be a nun than allow that old lord to touch her. Well, not really a nun, Godiva is too much a free spirit to just take this laying down. Pun intended.

Godiva has been taught by her closest friend, who also happens to be a witch, what pleasure was and has come to crave it. Deciding on a plan to get out of her marriage, she heads into the village for May Day and good ol’ sexy fun. Kerrick's a nomad who travels town to town selling his trinkets, waiting for the time to slowly tick by before he can regain what he lost as a boy. When Godiva’s friend makes him an offer he can’t refuse, he of course bites off more than he can chew.

I actually really enjoyed this retelling of a historic tale with a twist. The author added in a paranormal aspect to it, not too much but enough to give it a mystical feel. But I felt like I was missing something when it came to the witch and her place in the plot. I also felt like there was a forced abrasiveness that may have fit the time, but not so much the story.

Regardless, the story was entertaining and worth the read. Readers who love historicals will be more pleased with this book then those who are strictly looking for a paranormal element.

Someone Like You by Wendi Zwaduk

Someone Like You by Wendi Zwaduk
Publisher: Total-E-Bound
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Short Story (66 pgs)
Other: M/F, Anal Play, Toys
Rating: 4.5 Stars
Reviewed by Honeysuckle

She’s the one he wants, he just doesn’t know it yet.

Arran Mayes-Confirmed bachelor. Loves a good bottle of wine, hearty conversation and men. Determined to open his own pizzeria, he’s not looking for love or a woman.

Then he sees her. Can a tomcat playboy settle down in the arms of a good woman?

Mindy Dawson-She’s not interested in relationships or dating after having been through the wringer more times than she can count. Attending college is for a BA...not an "MRS" degree.

Until she sees him. Is she woman enough to tame Arran’s ways? Or will their love affair burn out before it gets started?

Reader Advisory: This story contains lovers who didn’t know they connected, finding their mutual satisfaction with anal sex and a few toys for fun.

Mindy and Aaran eventually get Tangled Up with Sav but that’s not where their beautiful story began.

A year or so ago I had the privilege of reading/reviewing my first short story by author Wendi Zwaduk. Tangled Up begins at the turning point in a relationship that involves a young married couple, Arran and Mindy Mayes. Why, yes, her name does sound like a porn star. Why do you ask? Sorry, inside joke, you’ll need to read the book to understand it. Arran and Mindy have been married about nine years at that point in their story. Mindy’s known from the very beginning that Arran is gay, or at the very least, bisexual. It’s an incredibly breath-taking story but this review is about its prequel, Someone Like You. Where it all began.

Ms. Zwaduk listened to her fans and gave us the “how they met” story. Since I’d already read the “what happened later” with Tangled Up, I wasn’t sure I could enjoy Someone Like You. It felt bittersweet before I even turned a page but I had to know. Another worry I had, initially, was whether or not the author would be able to recapture the personalities of the main characters. It had been more than a year and many other books for Ms. Zwaduk since Tangled Up had been released. I was very pleased to see that Arran was just as loving and honest in the prequel as he was in Tangled Up. Likewise, Mindy was just as giving, smart-mouthed and open-minded in college as she was after nine years of marriage and no small amount of heartache. As a fun aside, we also get to see Savion before he hooks up with Arran and Mindy as well as a young Nate Waterford being the charmer and playboy even during his college days.

Ms. Zwaduk pours so much passion into her characters it was easy to see how they fell in love with each other. It’s so evident how Arran very much loves Mindy for who she is and not what she can do for him. Which, thanks to a bitter stipulation in a will, turns out to be quite a lot, but Arran doesn’t try to force or coerce Mindy into helping him achieve his dream. He doesn’t have to. Mindy's the type of person who thinks of others and has had her heart stomped on more than once by men who take advantage of her caring nature. Through Ms. Zwaduk’s poignant writing I could truly feel for both Mindy and Aaran.

If you’ve read Tangled Up you NEED to read Someone Like You to get the bigger picture. The way Mindy and Arran meet and ultimately fall in love is real and beautifully depicted. They have an honest uphill battle to be accepted for who they are and not who others want them to be or think they should be. What makes them special is their inherent honesty towards one another and the fact that they don’t try to hide or run from their feelings. If you haven’t read either story, I would suggest you start with Someone Like You and then read Tangled Up. I’ll throw in Must Be Doing Something Right as well if you want to see who manages to get Nate Waterford to the altar.

Someone Like You is a short story but loaded with heart. Pick up a copy today and be prepared to get lost in a beautiful beginning. Read their continuing story to enjoy the untraditional and yet perfect ending.