Description from Goodreads:
Miranda Betts works as a waitress in a roadside diner in Oklahoma. Her life will change when a mysterious female customer leaves an ornate necklace in lieu of paying her check. Later, alone in her trailer, she tries on the necklace and is transported to a strange land full of people who can shift into other creatures, including fearsome dragons. And everyone thinks she’s someone she’s not.
Corban Everfrost leads the clan of blue dragons and rules the Icelands after the mysterious disappearance of his father. While investigating the appearance of strange interlopers from another world, his sister informs him that he is to be wed to the daughter of the Wildfire clan who has been in exile on Earth since she was an infant. Corban wants nothing to do with a new bride or the Wildfires. But when he sees the dark, fiery woman brought to his world via a magic necklace, she stirs something within him.
At first, Miranda thinks Corban is a jerk. He thinks she’s an outcast from a clan he despises. But soon they will learn each other’s secrets, and as they learn to love each other their relationship may be the key to saving all of Xandakar from dark forces from another world.
WARNING: This review has spoilers and swearing.
OK, look, I knew when I picked this book up that it wasn’t going to be grand literature. I knew I was in for a little pulpy, erotic fiction/romance. But I just can’t with this shit. I JUST CAN’T.
The romance…how to say this….fuck it, it isn’t. This is in no way a romance. The writing isn’t bad. The editing wasn’t abysmal. The pacing is rushed, but in this sort of book it often is. Just like the fact that the plot is so paper thin I could see through it is not unusual. All of that I was willing to accept as par for the course.
But that this is some author’s idea of romance…Fuck you. No it isn’t. (And there’s no where near enough sex to make it erotica either.) Here’s the spoiler: she pointlessly shows up naked (because of course she does, women always seem to have to be put in an embarrassing and uncertain sexual position for no conceivable reason), he insults her and walks away. He then calls his sex slave (the book calls her consort, but she doesn’t seem to have the option of saying no when he calls her for sex and she appears to live in a sheer dress with no characteristics but sex, so I’m going with sex slave) and makes sure she sucks him off with her ass in the air toward the door, such that he smugly comes just as Miranda enters the room to ensure she knows her place and that she isn’t needed or wanted. (Said sex slave is then just dismissed with his cum still dripping off her lips, no consideration for any desire she might or might not have.) He and Miranda exchange a few insults and then she too is dismissed. The next afternoon she approaches him and flirts for some unfathomable reason. Why would she do that? He kisses her and shoves his finger in her vagina and suddenly THEY ARE IN LOVE. People that is literally their entire ‘romance.’ And I’m using literally appropriately here, not hyperbolically. There is not a single pleasant word between them. There is no concession on his part that he’s been an ass and should apologize to her. There is no point at which either opinion of the other has reason to change. NOTHING.
That’s not romance, that’s abuse dresses up as romance. So, fuck off, fuck off, fuck off, fuck off for trying to pass it off as love. I thought there was nothing worse than insta-love, but I was wrong. Love that’s presented as having ‘grown’ between two people when it very obviously has been planted in such barren ash and hasn’t, is in fact worse. Who knew? Fuck it, again, I just can’t with that shit. I’m all ragey.
Then there is the rest of the book, what little there is. Every obstacle is overcome with a deus ex machina solution. EVERY SINGLE ONE. Miranda makes allies of her enemies with nothing more than a hug and easy coincidental solutions present themselves left and right. Bah!
I did appreciate the lesbian (or bi) side character and the heroine’s apparent bisexual leanings, even if it’s obvious she’s never going to pursue them. Having them there and legitimized was nice. I also appreciated that Miranda was given her own sexual agency and not made out to be a slut for having sex for pleasure. (Though this was compromised a little by her calling the sex slave a slut. Guess she can’t give others the same courtesy she receives.)
The only thing I found interesting was the epilogue setting up book two. But I won’t be reading it because I can just imagine all the ways the author could find to ruin it.