Every once in awhile I like to share my opinions on a good erotic romance I've read. Part of the reason that I started this blog, is that there is so much out there that is quite good, but then there is so much that is truly awful. While I love that it is easier than ever to connect with new authors through the ebook revolution and self-publishing craze; it can be quite a chore to decide what to spend your pennies on.
Even the cost factor can be tricky. You know the old cliche, you can't judge a book by it's cover? This is very true, and you also can't judge it by its price. I won't go into a long diatribe about the various reasons why authors choose different price structures - we can save that for another day - but whether a book is .99 cents, $5.00, $10.00 or even free, that alone is rarely an indicator about the quality of the book. I have read erotic stories from reputable erotica publishers/authors that have bored the crap out of me - and even had errors in grammar and formatting - and then read others by newbies that I thought were terrific.
That's why I love reviews. I read Amazon reviews, blog reviews, goodreads reviews, facebook & twitter reviews - you name it! So today, I'm going to add to the noise by reviewing "Begging For It", by Delilah Devlin, published through Ellora's Cave. It was ebook published May, 2011, and it is not listed (that I could see) at Ellora's Cave. But it can easily be found at Amazon for Kindle here:
Here is the perfect example of a book, really - a long short story - that is pricier than most that are available in this word count range.(about 10,000 - 12,000), It is discounted down to $4.48 from an original price of $5.60. I typically prefer not to pay more than $2.99 for something shorter, but the 3 good reviews on Amazon and story summary made me give it a go. I will have to say I'm glad I did.
I don't want to give away too much of the story, but it basically revolves around a young woman, TJ, who has recently returned from combat in Iraq where she suffered a traumatic episode. She is trying to cope with returning home, and numb her survivor's guilt by seeking out quick fucks where she insists her partner punish her. A mysterious man shows up and suggests she tries 1-800-DOM-help. She shows up to this sex club where big and sexy mystery man starts to give her just what she needs. There are hints at a connection between these two, and it becomes clear that he's in it for more than just a cheap thrill. But will she ever be able open her heart to him?
I liked the characters of Cross and TJ; I felt their connection and they seemed like a good match for each other. I think I liked Cross a little better - he had that delicious mix of big and strong he-man, but soft and tender at the same time. I didn't feel TJ quite as much - she was a little too one note - which is why I didn't think they were a great match. He seemed way more into her than she was with him - which was fine - but it wasn't fully fleshed out why he was so gaga over her. The secondary character of Tanner was quite good - it shows an author's mastery when they can make their side characters compelling. I'd like to see Tanner in another story, which may already be out there; the 1-800-DOM-help is supposed to be a series for Devlin.
This was a great plot; and I imagine tough to write due to the seriousness of the subject matter. It was different for this type of genre, but made perfect sense, and was handled sensitively. I was invested emotionally in finding out what was going to happen.
Some very good BDSM scenes, but I could have used a little more oomph from them; each one was pretty quick. The best one involved the introduction of Tanner's character, and a great use of public display/shame. It was HOT. Special note for readers: In addition to public display and BDSM, there are scenes of M/F/M.
I did not feel cheated at all by paying a little more for this ebook. It was well-written by a capable author, and I would not hesitate to look into more of Devlin's work. There was some good heat throughout, (although I could have used a tad more!), and the eroticism was tempered with a good romance and involving plotline. TJ's character wasn't as striking to me as Cross and Tanner's, but overall if I were to rate it, I would give it four stars out of five.
Alright my little kittens, I need to get back to work. Until next time - go read something filthy ;-)