I so enjoyed chipping away at my erotica shelf that I decided to do it again. This time I made a point to try and hit all the really short ones. So, I got to spend my day with lots of little erotic bites. Jealous? You should be.
All of these were free at the time I downloaded them, but I know at least half of them are perma-free from Amazon.
The first half of this was good, if a little cliché. The poor girl who nabs the billionaire’s eye has been done and done again. Unfortunately, the whole thing fell apart when it took a drastic left turn from its plot up to that point and then just ended at 60%. (The remaining 40% appeared to be a preview of the next instalment. I didn’t bother reading it.) I’m sorry, but that ticks me off. This is not a complete story. It doesn’t end on a cliffhanger, it ends on an incompletion. I was left with more questions than answers and there were more open threads than closed….wait, there were no tied up threads. NONE. At a stretch, it could be considered the first chapter of a longer work, but if you take that route then you’re faced with having to pay for each and every chapter. No. I refuse. The author can obviously write. I have no complaints in that department, but I will not be continuing this series.
Before I get into the meat of this review I would like to congratulate Ms. Tallis on writing a short story that has a beginning, middle and, wonders of all wonders, an ending. This should not be at all notable, but I have read SOOO many stories lately that don’t end. They’re either serials or just cliffhangers. Drives me nuts. So, thank you Ms. Tallis for ending this. It just proves that it can be done, even for stories that have sequels. Where I might otherwise have called this a 3 star read, I ADDED a star for the blessing of an ending.
As for the rest of the story, I rather enjoyed Rafe as a character. She was a hard drinking, hardass of a woman who was willing to do whatever need be to get a job done. I thought some of her risks ridiculous, but it was still a fun read. I have to admit that her narrative style wore on me, however. There were just too many asides to the reader for my taste. For the most, though, part I don’t consider my time to have been wasted.
If I dramatically suspend my disbelief, I could call this a fun read. I didn’t completely hate it, but the fact that I think the idea could have been something really good leaves me disappointed with what I read. The characters had no depth, even worse they were painfully cliché—the ultra dominant Alpha, the gorgeous twink (Can I say that as a straight woman? Hope so.), the hard-up BFF, the servile pack mates, the posh vampires, etc.
The plot was thin, at best. Alpha spots his destined mate, recognises him immediately by his smell and sets about claiming him (no room for plot development there). Said mate is hesitant but really wants to be dominated, too bad he happens to have so much power and wealth of his own. This is where there could have been an interesting inter/intrapersonal journey for the characters. Given another 100 pages or so, this could have been developed into a rich and satisfying story. Instead, it was rushed and blunt in its presentation. It essentially boiled down to a good pounding in bed, a pretty necklace, possessive demands and an inferred happily ever after. Meh!
Meh. I suppose this is a matter of taste. It story is essentially just one longish scene encompassing a husband and wife’s first wedding night sexual encounter. The writing was fine, but I just didn’t find it sexy. Instead, I found the whole thing abusive and thought Rick infantalized his wife and insulted her intelligence. I rather like the occasional spanking story, but though this included spanking, it was much more about enforced submission and male mastery of his possession (ie: wife). Nope, not my cup of tea. There was no fun in it for me.
Again, like the first story, I didn’t particularly care for this. However, I got the two at the same time, so it would annoy me to have the second unread on my TBR list long after reading the 1st. So I went ahead and read it hoping I might like it more than the first. I didn’t. I still found Rick’s discipline to be actual disciple (like a father spanking a daughter) rather than sex play and I disliked it. This is a personal preference of course. I enjoy a spanking scene when it’s encompassed in sex and there is fun to it. But a sobbing woman saying, “It hurts” isn’t sexy to me. Especially when it isn’t mediated by arousal. Here the beating and the sex are two separate incidents and as such I couldn’t over look the abusive nature of Rick’s spankings as I can in other instances. Nope still not my cup of tea.
Some aspects of this I really quite liked. It was sweet in its own way. But I also appreciated that the humans weren’t made out to be universally good. It was clear that their intercessions had been the original reason that the aliens found themselves in the social position to become slaves in the first place. And despite the way the Master is kind to his slave, shows affection even, there is no mistaking his status as a possession. This added a little depth to the story. (There wasn’t much else.)
I did find myself cringing a little at the way the slave was continually referred to as a youth and was so small. It was stated that he had reached his mating age, whatever that be, but he was presented in a childlike way. creepy. All in all it was an enjoyable 20 or so minutes I spent reading it.
When I downloaded this book it was called Seducing the Weeaboo. (A weeaboo being a person who is obsessed with Japan/Japanese Culture/Anime and tries to act as if they’re Japanese, even though they’re not.) And if memory serves, it had a girl in a Lolita-style dress on the cover. (The story actually further defines her attire as Gothic Lolita. Think lots of ruffles, petty-coats, and bows, like a hopped up Little Bow Peep.) So between the title, cover, blurb and my own manga/anime fandom I went into this expecting some serious WTF kind of action. I thought that might be part of the fun. I’m even fairly familiar with some of the motifs spoofed here. Despite that, I just wanted to cry for it.
The problem had nothing to do with any of the anime references. A yaoi cat-boy is pretty classic and I’d probably have been disappointed if one didn’t show up. My complaint was with the not sexy sex and the lack of logic. For example, Jack has to ram painfully through her hymn but the girl owns numerous dildos/vibrators. What exactly has she been doing with these if she still has an intact hymn? Plus, she’s said to be 20 on page one, but 18 late on.
Jack was cruel, vulgar, unconcerned with her pleasure and the fisting was just too blunt to be enjoyable. I’d even let it slide on its lack of possibility if it hadn’t just been stated as non-erotically as a chore list. Now, Ms. Feurouge can certainly write, but this a serious disappointment for me. I’d give it a one star if I used star ratings here.
Darkling Mine, by Andra Sashner
I thought that this was a sweet little fantasy story. There was sex, but I don’t know that I’d qualify it as erotic. There’s only one mild sex scene and a couple inferred instances of sex. But Bjorn and Pet were a cute couple and watching Pet finally accept Bjorn, who had essentially thrown himself at him, was nice.
I’d love to see this expanded into a longer work. The vampire mythos seems to be different than the norm, but I was never quite able to come to terms with it. This was made more problematic because it left me uncertain what Pet’s circumstances were really supposed to be when he and Bjorn met. Was he newly made? Was he born a vampire? Was he struggling for some particular reason? None of this is answerable, because I don’t know the pertinent fact’s of Sashner’s vampires. Similarly, though Bjorn was a Viscount, I have no idea about what the political structure of the country might be and therefore what social power he might wield.
All in all, however, for a 35 page story I enjoyed it.
This was an all right GFY story. I enjoyed the friends-to-lovers theme and I thought watching the men come to their decisions was a lot of fun. Unfortunately, after that it seemed to shift into a high gear and everything went a little too fast for me. Yeah, I get that it’s a short story, but it had room to expand. Plus, I would have like to see both men play both roles, as opposed to just the one. It left the story feeling uneven.