One with You by Sylvia Day

This is supposedly the last book in the Crossfire series. Or so they say! You can never really know for sure, can you?

What’s it About?

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Gideon Cross. Falling in love with him was the easiest thing I’ve ever done. It happened instantly. Completely. Irrevocably. Marrying him was a dream come true. Staying married to him is the fight of my life. Love transforms. Ours is both a refuge from the storm and the most violent of tempests. Two damaged souls entwined as one.

We have bared our deepest, ugliest secrets to one another. Gideon is the mirror that reflects all my flaws … and all the beauty I couldn’t see. He has given me everything. Now, I must prove I can be the rock, the shelter for him that he is for me. Together, we could stand against those who work so viciously to come between us. But our greatest battle may lie within the very vows that give us strength. Committing to love was only the beginning. Fighting for it will either set us free … or break us apart.

First Impressions

I can’t really say for sure why this series was dragged out to incorporate five whole books. Well, as a matter of fact, I think we can all guess at the real reason behind that decision ($$$). In my very humble opinion, there was no real need for the last two books in this series. I think the overall story would have fared much better as a trilogy, as was initially intended. Even if there was the need to expand beyond a trilogy, I think books four and five could have easily been condensed into one. It seemed to create an unnecessary drag of the story line.

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Welcome to Adulthood

That being said, I feel like we have seen some actual growth for our two main characters. And by growth I mean they’re finally starting to act like adults. Gideon is finally opening up more with Eva, and she isn’t as quick to shun him when he undoubtedly does something stupid. Like hide the fact that someone close to Eva has been seriously injured.

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Hands down, my favorite character in this novel was their therapist. Finally, FINALLY! We have someone who asks Eva and Gideon the all important question: “What’s the rush?”. Sure, it’s fantabulous they met, fell in love, and got married in about the span of a month. But why can’t they just live together for a while? Or date?

Surprise!

Towards the end of this novel we see what other readers warned me was a delayed “plot twist”. I mean, I guess it was a twist? But I felt it wasn’t all that interesting of a twist. Maybe I was just ready for the series to be over, or others really built up this surprise, but instead of it being an “Oh, sh*t and crackers” moment, it was more of a “Meh, ok” moment for me.

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Series: Crossfire, book 5.

Should you read it? It was nice to finally see a bit of growth and maturity from both Eva and Gideon, although you can’t deny that they both still have their issues. I wouldn’t really say this is a “must-read” series, but there are some hot and sexy moments.

Smut Level: No sex swings in this one! They attempt to stay abstinent until their vow renewal, but we all knew that wouldn’t last.

Get it on Amazon: Click Here. $9.99 Kindle Price. St. Martin’s Griffin. 482 Pages.

Hardwired by Meredith Wild

First of all, this guy’s name is Blake. You just know he’ll be amazing in bed and an alpha male, through and through.

What’s it About? 

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Determined to overcome a difficult past, Erica Hathaway learns early on how to make it on her own. Days after her college graduation she finds herself face to face with a panel of investors who will make or break her fledgling startup. The only thing she didn’t prepare for was going weak in the knees over an arrogant and gorgeous investor who’s seemingly determined to derail her presentation.

Billionaire and rumored hacker Blake Landon has already made his fortune in software, and he’s used to getting what he wants with very little resistance. Captivated by Erica’s drive and unassuming beauty, he’s wanted nothing more since she stepped into his boardroom. Determined to win her over, he breaks down her defenses and fights for her trust, even if that means sacrificing a level of control he’s grown accustomed to. But when Blake uncovers a dark secret from Erica’s past, he threatens not just her trust, but the life she’s fought so hard to create.

First Impressions

Although a lot did happen story-wise in this novel, it sort of felt like the majority of the book was setting up for a sequel. Don’t get me wrong, overall it was an interesting story, but almost every single aspect of the plot was left unfinished. Kind of frustrating! It’s like baking a beautiful apple pie and not eating it. Or stripping a handsome cover model of all of his clothes to just walk out of the room. I mean, come on already!

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Romance Themes Galore

There are multiple aspects at play in this novel, all of which are interesting in their own right. It’s almost like every romance theme was rolled into one book. We’ve got a d/s relationship, trying to find a long lost father, a bitchy ex, Blake’s secret past as a hacker, Erica was raped in college, and now she’s starting an internet start up. Each element could be the main focus of the book, but when you have so many different stories going on at once it’s kind of overwhelming.

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In addition to the whole book being one big build-up, their sexual relationship was also a build-up. It’s not that they waited very long to have sex, but throughout the novel we start to see the hints of a few BDSM tendencies. There’s some spanking and light restraint, but you can’t help but wonder if there will be even more kink in the next novel.

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Series: Hacker, book 1. I’ll probably give this series a go.

Should you read it? There was so much going on in regards to the various plot points at play that the majority of the relationship we see appears to revolve around sex. There’s a lack of depth to their relationship, and at times Blake is almost too overbearing outside of the bedroom. Although, I am intrigued to see if they are able to make a deeper connection in the subsequent novels.

Smut Level: The man has a way with words. Dirty ones that is.

Get it on Amazon: Click Here. $7.99 Kindle Price. Forever Publishing. 281 Pages.

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Hands on the Wheel by Margaret Harlowe

We’ve got a woman craving after the trucker lifestyle, not to mention a sexy cowboy steering that big rig of a semi. Ladies and gents, start your engines!

What’s it About? 29333229

 

Sara knew Hank was trouble from the get-go. Delicious trouble. His metallic purple Kenworth sparkled in the Wyoming sunshine. When he sauntered into the Flying Bison Grill, pulling his worn cowboy hat lower on his forehead, Hank looked way too good in those Wranglers. Of all the times for Richard, Sara’s unpredictable ex-husband, to show up. Soon she was desperate to get out of town. Hank was willing to help her – for a price.

First Impressions

This book really did have a unique, one-of-a-kind story line that I personally have never come across before. Our two leads are sort of past their prime at over 40 years of age, with Hank even starting to go bald. Poor handsome man. However, that doesn’t stop them from embarking on a wild and crazy sex road trip together. Let this be a lesson to ya, multiple orgasms might not be entirely out of reach, even if you’re starting to sport a few grey hairs. These two also enjoy a bit of light kink, with spanking and sex toys on every leg of their journey. Maybe they’re eligible for a senior discount?

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Follow Your Dreams

What I really enjoyed about this book was that it shows you don’t have to give up on your dreams; they are always within reach. Sara has always been envious of the truckers who come through her one horse town on their way to far-off and exciting places. She’s had the urge to hit the open road herself, and it just takes one slightly kinky cowboy to agree to show her the ropes before that dream becomes a reality.

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Hank also helps Sara realize that she is still desirable. After surviving a battle with breast cancer and an abusive ex, Sara is wary to start anything new and put her desires out there. Her jagged scar on her breast makes her think no man will ever find her sexually attractive. Hank, on the other hand, only sees her beauty. Throw in her waitress uniform and a sexy pair of f*ck me heels, and the two are inseparable.

Sex and Exes

There were two elements of this novel that I think could have been carried out differently. Firstly, there was a lot of sexy kink in this novel. Which is great! You get on with your bad self, Sara!! However, I felt like there was almost too much of a focus on Sara’s sexual awakening, especially in the second half of the novel, which sort of detracted from the fact that she is now out in the world discovering new places. So much of the story seemed to take place in the cab of Hank’s semi, rather than drawing in the landscape of the majestic South West.

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The second element I wish would have come together differently was the story surrounding Sara’s ex-husband, Richard. He has come back to town to harass and stalk her, as well as threaten her with something far worse. Richard is also the third point of view in the novel, and it seems the entire thing is leading towards one final confrontation between Sara, Richard and Hank. But it never comes! Kind of disappointing that he just sort of wanders off.

*A copy of this book was provided for an honest review*

Series: Stand-alone

Should you read it? I think the story could have been taken one step further beyond sex, but the underlying theme is still an important one. It might be difficult to move on from one’s past, but you can still find love no matter your age. And someone to teach you new things!

Smut Level: We need to practice road safety here people. If she’s sitting on his lap steering the big rig, and he’s distracting her by moving her skirt up higher, stroking her thighs and nibbling her ear lobe, then who the hell is controlling the gas pedals?! Do trucks even have those?! Keep your hands on the wheel woman!!

Get it on Amazon: Click Here. $0.99 Kindle Price. Self-Published. 154 Pages.

 

Captivated by You by Sylvia Day

It’s been a while since I read the last book in this series. Honestly, I probably should have taken a moment to do a refresher of the previous novels because, as it turns out, I forgot a LOT of details.

What’s it About? 

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Gideon calls me his angel, but he’s the miracle in my life. My gorgeous, wounded warrior, so determined to slay my demons while refusing to face his own. The vows we’d exchanged should have bound us tighter than blood and flesh. Instead they opened old wounds, exposed pain and insecurities, and lured bitter enemies out of the shadows. I felt him slipping from my grasp, my greatest fears becoming my reality, my love tested in ways I wasn’t sure I was strong enough to bear. At the brightest time in our lives, the darkness of his past encroached and threatened everything we’d worked so hard for. We faced a terrible choice: the familiar safety of the lives we’d had before each other or the fight for a future that suddenly seemed an impossible and hopeless dream…

First Impressions

There is a lot of build-up in this book, but not necessarily in a good way. There are a lot of different forces coming together to try and rip Eva and Gideon apart. The problem is that nothing is really resolved at the end of this book. It’s not like everything builds towards one dramatic and exciting climax. Instead, it all just leads you to having to read the next book to find out what happens. Although you are left wondering what will happen next in Eva and Gideon’s story (which is normally a good thing) I couldn’t help but feel disappointed that nothing really changes from the start of the book to the end. There may be drama and arguments in between, but when you get down to it, they are basically in the same position as they were before.

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Some Additional Room for Improvement

The author really did an amazing job at describing the inner thoughts and emotions behind the characters. This helps you connect to them, and understand their struggles on a deeper level. However, I felt like the commentary between the characters could have used an added layer of depth. For example, “I f*cking love you”, doesn’t exactly evoke the sense of true passion and feeling which the character was aiming for.

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Another area that could have been improved upon sort of ties back into my main complaint with this book in how nothing really changes from start to finish. There’s a repetition which is also evident in the arguments between Eva and Gideon. They are basically rehashing the same fight over and over again throughout the entire novel. He doesn’t share things with her the minute they happen, and when he does tell her she gets pissed that he didn’t tell her sooner. They argue, she makes as if to leave, and then they engage in some rough make-up sex. That…doesn’t seem like the healthiest of relationships, but to each his own.

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Series: Crossfire, book 4. I’m already listening to book 5.

Should you read it? I mean, if you’ve already read the first three books you pretty much have to. Although, in my opinion, the plot is pretty stagnant, and doesn’t really move forward all that much.

Smut Level: There is nothing quite more romantic than introducing your girlfriend to a sex swing for the first time. Forget chocolates, roses, or mixed tapes, it’s all in the swing.

Get it on Amazon: Click Here. $9.99 Kindle Price. Berkley Publishing. 369 Pages.

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The Snowboat by Capella Van Ryan

The female protagonist in this novel claims that a woman such as myself will never be seen as desirable by men, and if I should ever have the misfortune to marry I’ll ultimately get divorced. There are two main reasons for this: 1) I’m tall, and 2) I’m American. Well okay then.

What’s it About? 

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Nicolette wasn’t always every man’s dream but she knew exactly what she wanted and how to get it. By being in the background, observing what made a woman desirable to all men, Nicolette mastered her appearance and her mannerisms to perfection to the point she became the centre of attention wherever she went.

When a wealthy businessman proposes after days of meeting Nicolette, she is shocked and unsure of what the future holds as they barely know one another. The idea of being more important than money and a man’s work, happy and in love consumes her and she hopes love will blossom. Unfortunately, married life is never easy, and in this case becomes worse than anything ever imagined.

First Impressions

I found it very hard to actually read this book through to the end. Not only was the story line slow, but I found the main character to be very unlikable and selfish. And not just because she said I was undesirable. Nicolette blatantly states that she is perfect, and this is why others don’t like her and treat her poorly. She also claims that she has a sixth sense when it comes to people, and can see the true nature of people through their eyes. I’m sorry, but the fact that she managed to marry not one, but 2 abusive a-holes who she later killed shows that her sixth sense isn’t worth much.

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A Contradiction in Terms

So Nicolette is a pretty terrible human being. I mean, she says that Chinese, Russian and Ukrainian women are all whores for selling themselves to be with Western men. Ummm…it’s called human trafficking, and I have a feeling it isn’t exactly their ideal career choice. Direct quote: “This is when mail order brides who debase themselves by being more than willing to be bought and paid for to some weirdo of a guy they have never met. This is when one can pay thanks to the Russian Ukrainian and the Chinese women, rendering men to think little of all womenkind because of these few whores.” Aside from her awful opinions though, she also makes a lot of contradictory statements that drove me slightly crazy.

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Firstly, she maintains that her first husband will always remain the love of her life, and that whenever she should happen to die they will meet again in Heaven. However, she killed her first husband because he physically abused her. Not exactly husband of the year. Secondly, after marrying for the second time she says that the first three months of this marriage were heavenly, even though her husband repeatedly rapes her and threatens to kill her during that time.

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An Apostle of What? 

So after sexually abusing and raping her for years, with the help of both his mother and gardener, Nicolette finally decides to kill them all after overhearing their plot to end her life. Believe it or not, she’s actually successful in ending all of their lives. She then discovers that her husband was involved in a human trafficking operation, and uncovers detailed notes on all of his contacts from the providers of the women to the clients who bought them.

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Rather than doing something with all of this evidence, she decides to keep it hidden. You see, Nicolette seems to be oblivious to this little thing called killing in self defense, and instead is under the impression that all of this contact info would be beneficial were she ever to be arrested for murdering her husband. The fact that she managed to stop one shipment of women from falling into the hands of her husband makes her see herself as an “apostle” to these women.

What in the actual f*ck is she smoking? She could have saved countless women and put an end to the entire operation, but instead she chose to be selfish and do absolutely nothing. Does she really think that because one shipment of women wasn’t sent to her husband that their keepers are going to let them go? No! They’ll just be sold off to somebody else.

*UPDATE: The author has mentioned that in future books Nicolette undergoes a bit of a transformation, and actually goes on to save some of these women. Happy to hear it!*

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*A copy of this book was provided for an honest review*

Series: First of 10+

Should you read it? I can understand reading about a flawed character. After all, we are all flawed. Nobody’s perfect, in spite of what Nicolette claims. But I find it hard to read about a character with absolutely no redeeming qualities.

Smut Level: Too nasty for my tastes. At one point Nicolette’s husband rapes her with his foot. Direct quote: “Nicolas demands I sit on his foot. Yes the idea which popped into my head as to what he wanted me to do with it came to pass, he fucked me with it.”

Get it on Amazon: Click Here. $4.67 Kindle Price. Austin Macauley Publishers Ltd. 519 Pages.

His New Submissive Boxed Set by Elanna Reese

Nope, nope, nope! Sorry, but I just can’t get into this kind of BDSM. Sure, I might be able to wrap my head around the whole d/s relationship in the bedroom, but once you take it outside into the real world it’s a whole different issue.

What’s it About? his new submissive

Jack finally accepts that finding a submissive who will meet his needs isn’t likely to happen. Until he meets Nekane. It starts normally enough with building sand castles and drinks in a bar, but ends with Jack bringing Nekane to the edge of the chasm that holds her darkest fears. Can Jack keep her safely tethered as she follows along the dangerous path of their desires? Can he meet her depraved needs while she is suffering for his pleasure?

First Impressions

Depraved needs and suffering for pleasure just aren’t topics I want to read about after a long and tiring day. I’m not saying I need ponies and wildflowers either, but my goodness, a relationship with a little respect would be nice. The relationship represented between Jack and Nekane seemed so demeaning I simply couldn’t sympathize with it. He shared her with others, she talks about feeling used, humiliated, fearful, and she’d cry during some of their scenes which would only urge him on even more. Nekane obviously has some issues from her past, which aren’t revealed to us in any of the 6 novellas comprising this boxed set. At one point she even questions Jack why she lets people she loves humiliate her. Yikes! Rather than take advantage of her obviously fragile mental state, maybe he should have put her in touch with a really good therapist.

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Master or Dickwad? 

So, they have an unconventional relationship to say the least. But then when they introduce the whole Master/slave terminology I really had trouble finishing the boxed set. I couldn’t help but think of it as a really demented version of I Dream of Jeannie. Yes Master, no Master. Then when he presents her with his collar to wear, as well as a leash, their relationship transforms from master/slave to owner/dog.

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He’s a dominant, she’s a submissive. Not too shocking. But they take this d/s interaction to a whole new level of degradation. He talks about how once she fully submits to him as his slave he will take away her decision-making power, to the point where she can’t drink, go to the bathroom, or even move without his say so. How is this sexy?!? Why doesn’t he just get himself a blow-up doll that he can literally manipulate at his pleasure, without having to worry about it providing any real human emotion? I have a feeling even cavemen treated their women with more respect than this guy.

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*A copy of this book was provided for an honest review*

Series: His New Submissive, books 1-6.

Should you read it? There are a crap ton of grammar issues, plus a man on a power trip who treats his woman like a dog. I guess some people are into that kind of thing?

Smut Level: It was hard to picture some of their scenes, not that I really wanted to picture them in clear detail, but I couldn’t always tell how she was tied up. There’s one scene where she has to walk with a spreader between her legs, and I couldn’t help but think of her waddling like a penguin.

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Get it on Amazon: Click Here. $4.99 Kindle Price. LBD Books. 117 Pages.

The Billionaire Claims the Reporter by Elanna Reese

First of all, this short novella might just have one of the best names ever for a lead male character. Demetri Awerbuch. Awerbuch! I can’t help but say it with a heavily pronounced and over-the-top German accent.

What’s it About? reporter

Gabbie is tasked with writing an expose about the high and mighty visiting BDSM clubs. She sets her target on one Demetri Awerbuch, a man who buys and sells multi-billion dollar businesses without a blink of the eye. But what happens when Demetri decides he wants Gabbie for his own? The young reporter is pushed and pounded by the demanding businessman. He teachers her about obedience, control, and punishing consequences. Gabbie drips from the pleasure Demetri decides to give her. He brings her to the edge again and again. Playing her body like it’s just another one of his toys.

First Impressions

First and foremost, there were a lot of glaring grammar issues throughout this novella. There were missing words, the use of hear instead of here, references to his and her were mixed up, and a plethora of other blunders which honestly made for a very distracting read. As for the storyline, the premise was interesting at first. Gabbie is researching the BDSM lifestyle, bumps into Demetri at a party, they exchange numbers, meet up for an interview, and I was intrigued to see what would happen next. But that’s when things got a little weird.

Say What Now? 

Infiltrating the darkest depths of a BDSM club can be challenging, but Gabbie has the best possible billionaire resource to answer all of her questions. There’s just one problem, he’ll only agree to the interview if he can play with her. That…sounds a lot like extortion. Well, if not extortion, then whatever the hell it is certainly isn’t professional activity for a reporter to engage in.

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Something else which frustrated me about this novella, aside from the grammar issues, was that there seemed to be a scene missing from the time she gives Demetri her number at the party to when they meet for the interview. Everything seems to be going fine, but then he expresses how upset he is with her, disappointed even, and that she has to be punished. Turns out she was supposed to wear particular clothing to this interview, which she did, but she wasn’t supposed to wear panties, which she did. We were never told though that this extra conversation had happened, as it was heavily implied they hadn’t had any further communication from the time they met at the party until the interview. Definitely not the case!

Not Comfortable With This

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Most of you know that I’m not a huge fan of BDSM in general. I never understood the whole pain versus pleasure argument, and I sure as shit will never refer to a man as “Master”. That’s just not gonna happen. But I’ll give a new BDSM book a try every now and again. However, this novella incorporated an element that I really didn’t care for: fear. And it wasn’t a fear of her feelings for this man. No, it was an apparent fear of the man himself. At one point in the story when Gabbie is being tied down to his bed, she thinks about how he might hurt her, and nobody even knows where she is. I’m sorry, but if you’re starting to worry that others don’t know where you are as a man is restraining you, that’s when you need to get the hell out of there.

There’s a lot of dirty/filthy talk in this one extended bedroom scene, and Demetri seems exceedingly rough with Gabbie, to the point where she feels used when all is said and done. That’s…not okay. Not that I’m a BDSM expert or anything, far from it, but a recurring theme in most BDSM novels is that the power is actually all in the hands of the submissive by being able to stop the scene at anytime with their safe word. There are no safe words in this book, and it seemed like Demetri’s goal was to take away as much of Gabbie’s power as possible, and simply use her body for his own pleasure. Not my cup of tea.

*A copy of this book was provided for an honest review*

Series: The Billionaire Claims series, book 1.

Should you read it? It only takes about 20 minutes to read, but this was a whole other level of BDSM that I’m personally not very comfortable with. Proceed with caution.

Smut Level: Excessive.

Get it on Amazon: Click Here. $2.99 Kindle Price. LBD Books, 34 Pages.

Why I Could Never Date Christian Grey

Kinky sexual proclivities and excessive emotional baggage aside, there are actually a few other reasons why I could never bring myself to date the brooding billionaire should the opportunity arise. Because, you know, that opportunity is just about to present itself. Below are my top 5 reasons which appeared in the book Fifty Shades of Grey, but were definitely ameliorated in the recent film.

1. Lack of Wardrobe Color

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My God, have you ever seen a more boring closet? Not including the half-naked man of course. Dull gray everywhere. I mean, you would think that even this guy would like a little splash of red here and there, but no siree. All we have are slightly varied shades of monotonous gray. Even the man’s ties are boring! I’m sorry, but any guy who doesn’t have at least one humorous holiday tie in his collection isn’t worth my time. As far as I’m concerned Anastasia Steele, you can have him tie you up all day long with that sad, colorless excuse of an accessory. I won’t fight you for him.

2. The Dude Has Pencils with His Name on Them

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What is this, second grade?! When was the last time you had a pencil with your name on it? As if that wasn’t bad enough, he actually gives them out to people! If he’s trying to show off he’s doing a very bad job of it. Sorry, but I’m not impressed with your thin little pencil Mr. Grey. You’re gonna have to do better than that! With all the money he has, he should at least be able to print his name on a freakin’ pen.

3. He Feels Up His Dates in Front of His Parents

Boy didn’t your momma teach you any manners? Don’t make me slap you upside the head, because I will! Sure, he stroked her thigh under the table and out of sight from prying eyes, but talk about inappropriate. It’s called self control, and the only place he should lose it with his girlfriend in his parent’s house is in a discreet upstairs bathroom or hall closet. Any location on the first floor is strictly off limits. This is “Introducing the Chica to Your Parents” lesson 101.

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4. He Has a Playroom

Any man who refers to his secret and locked sex room as a “playroom” cannot be taken seriously. If I were making out with a guy, and he stopped mid-fondling to say, “I want to take you to my playroom”, I’d laugh in his face before rearranging my skirt and getting the hell out of there. Sure, the expectation when you hear “playroom” is supposed to be this:

red roomBut all I see is this:

playroomDoesn’t really get me in the mood.

5. The Glider

Sorry, but there ain’t no way in hell you’re getting me in one of these.

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And that, Mr. Grey, is why we can never be. Don’t worry, I’m sure you’ll find someone else.

Everdene by Melanie Hoskin

The next time you’re stuck in a boring staff meeting at work I want you to look at the person sitting to your left, then the person to your right. According to this book both of those people, and their grandmothers, are probably into BDSM. On second thought, that could probably make the rest of your work day extremely awkward. Ok abort mission, abort!

What’s it About?

Everdene Cover FinalBased on Thomas Hardy’s original love story, Far From the Madding Crowd, Everdene re-tells this classic romance with erotic undertones of domination and submission. Catherine Everdene is an independent, stubborn career woman who likes attention and being in control. With the nickname ‘Icy Bitch’, she has a penchant for using her flirtatious sparkle to win over a boardroom. While heading up a company department in London, she meets stoical Dillon Oak and seduces his mind into complete domination. Her love-triangle starts in New York when she catches the attentions of the obsessive William Boldwood, the CEO of one of the DeChartine companies, and the real trouble starts when the charming alpha-male lawyer, Troy Selgent, sets his sights on winning her. Who will eventually win her heart? More to the point, who will survive to win her heart?

First Impressions

Confession: not only have I never read Far From the Madding Crowd, but I’d actually never heard of it before reading this book. I know, I’m a terrible person, let’s move on (side note, the movie comes out May 1st). Because I’ve never read the original, I can’t really say how this one compares as far as the characters’ personalities, but I have a feeling I would’ve had a much deeper appreciation for this book if I’d been more familiar with the original. That being said, I absolutely love the concept of taking a classic romance and spicing it up with a modern twist. Or a spanking, whichever.

There’s a Time and Place for Everything

At first, I was so unbelievably excited when we were introduced to Catherine Everdene. I mean, we have a female dominant! How often does that happen? Ms. Everdene is a pariah in the business world, and I couldn’t wait to read about such a strong female lead character. Sadly, she makes some stupid ass decisions when it comes to men.

Firstly, she loves to tease. On the surface that doesn’t seem like a major problem, but her antics in the office place are borderline sexual harassment. For example, when she learns that CEO Bill Boldwood is a submissive, she sends him an anonymous, yet highly suggestive Christmas card insinuating that she would like to lead him around on a leash. This sparks his obsessive fixation to serve as her submissive, and although he’s pretty psychotic in his pursuit, you can’t help but feel sorry for the poor guy. I just wanted to give him a hug! His chastity cage probably would’ve gotten in the way though.

boldwoodHindsight is a Bitch

Alright, so I wasn’t thrilled with how she handled the whole Boldwood situation, but her relationship with Troy Selgent was just unforgivable. Upon first meeting him he gropes her ass, and for some inexplicable reason she still goes on a date with him. Throughout their next few dates she senses that she can’t trust him, so what does she do? She has sex with him.

catsWhat the…? Why in the hell would you…? Ok, breathe, calm down, there ya go. If you thought this guy was bad news, why in the ever-loving world of funnel cakes would you sleep with him? What ensues is the most ridiculous power struggle ever, as both Catherine and Troy are dominant alphas in the bedroom. In my mind, they’re both hypocrites for trying to change the inherent nature of the other.

Her attempt to dominate Troy backfires terribly, and he basically rapes her instead. They call it quits for a bit, but then after a few weeks she tries yet again to dominate him. Ugh, I need to go eat something deep-fried and covered in sugar to calm my nerves. Hang on, I’ll be right back.

An Interesting Conclusion

All of these erotic encounters and poor life decisions come together for a very intense and suspenseful ending. As a matter of fact, it was almost too suspenseful for my taste, which I know sounds weird, but it made me pretty anxious. At one point you kind of question what else could possibly go wrong in these people’s lives.

Throughout it all, Dillon has constantly remained by Catherine’s side for support, and their relationship was by far my favorite to read. They definitely have some sexy scenes together, specifically when they’re trapped in an elevator. You just gotta love elevator scenes. Surprisingly enough though, they don’t actually have sex until practically the end of the book, which I think was a clever way to hold true to the classic romantic undertone of the original novel. Or so I’m guessing.

far*A copy of this book was provided for an honest review*

Series: Classic Cliterature Series, book 1. Gotta love the title.

Should you read it? This book definitely isn’t for everyone. If you’re not a fan of BDSM then I would probably hold off. On the other hand, if you enjoyed the original classic romance, and don’t shy away from a good spanking or two then this might be right up your alley.

Smut Level: What do you think? We’ve got a chastity cage for chrissakes! We also have a woman in her 80s who’s into the d/s lifestyle, which makes you realize that BDSM is like getting a tattoo. It’s cool when you’re young, but what’s it gonna look like when you’re old and wrinkly? Ugh, bad mental image. Abort, abort!

Get it on Amazon: Click Here. $3.99 Kindle Price. Macde Publishing Ltd. 337 Pages.

Fifty Shades of Grey: the Movie

Yeah, we all knew this was coming. Sure, I mainly write book reviews, but watching and critiquing this movie was pretty much a necessity. You really can’t be too surprised.

The Synopsis

If you don’t know what this movie is about by now, then I simply can’t help you. Moving on.

fiftyFirst Impression

Meh, it was okay. Was it unwatchable? No. Was it an emotionally charged film? Not even close. To be honest, I actually thought it was kind of boring, and I think there are 2 logical explanations for why it seemed slow to me: 1) I’d already read the books, so I knew where it was headed, and 2) Just like the book, there is no real plot! Both factors played an important role in the overall meh-ness of the film. However, considering that I initially expected it to be laughably horrible, I suppose the fact that it was just a bit dull is technically a step up.

The Best and the Worst of it

Alright, let’s switch to something positive. The soundtrack was amazing. Ellie Goulding’s “Love Me Like You Do” in particular was fantabulous. Although the individual songs were great, at times the score, or background music, was annoying. For example, whenever our two lovers stared awkwardly into each other’s eyes (so basically every other minute) this unbelievably cheesy melody played. It almost reminded me of a bad daytime soap opera.

Sadly, the acting performances of both lead characters, Jamie Dornan (humina yumina) and Dakota Johnson, were so emotionally flat that they kind of ruined it for me. My God, have these people ever heard of inflection?! They sounded like robots for about 85% of the film! There was one scene where Christian said something like, “I’m going to f*ck you now”, but his delivery of the line was so uninspired I thought, “Oh, and would you like a side of fries with that?” Even their movements seemed forced. Their intense pacing during arguments appeared like a poorly choreographed high school play. Where’s the energy?! Sure, when he did the whole over-the-shoulder shirt removal move to show off his abs I was more than tempted to fan myself, but I need more than a pretty body I can eat off of to be impressed. Well…maybe. shirtless I think there was a legitimate reason why Mr. Dornan didn’t wow me in this role, and to be fair it was kind of out of his control. You see, he’s from Northern Ireland, and normally speaks with an extremely heavy Irish accent. I actually wasn’t aware of this before I saw the movie, but the minute he spoke his first line I said to myself, “He’s hiding an accent”, and I must say he did a very poor job of it. He was so focused on sounding American that I think it heavily jamiecontributed to his robotic-sounding voice. This was especially true during his argument scenes with Anastasia. It was almost like he didn’t want to scream too loud for fear that his true accent would come out. That being said, this accent hiding isn’t something which a lot of people tend to notice, so you might not even care, but it bothers me something fierce. I actually wish they had just made the executive decision to have Christian Grey be Irish in the movie so that Mr. Dornan could have spoken in his natural voice. He also prefers to have a beard in real life, which I must say makes him look even more edible. Let the man keep his scruff! He’s asking you nicely.

Sexual Activities

Let’s get down to the nitty-gritty of it, shall we? I have one question for all of the people out there who complained that the movie wasn’t as sexy as the book. What the hell more do you want?!?! Cheese and monkey soup I’m no blushing wall-flower when it comes to sex scenes in movies, but you see the hair of his nether regions for crying out loud! Not to mention the spanking, the hair pulling, the ice cubes, the hip movements! Oh God, the hip movements. Yes, the elevator scene was slightly disappointing, but there’s panting, whipping, and some very creative camera work when his head is in-between her thighs. If you want something sexier than that I think you’re looking for the porno section behind that red curtain over there. The sad thing is, that joke isn’t even relevant anymore since video stores are now obsolete. Eh, you get what I was trying to do. elevatorAnd now I have a message for all of the men out there who are complaining that their significant other wants them to watch this movie. Listen up. Maybe you should give in on this one. So she wants to see a movie with you that contains graphic sex scenes, spanking, and exploring new ways of sexual pleasure. What exactly is the problem here? Your chance of getting lucky has probably increased 63% from the trailer alone. It’s not like she’s asking you to watch “The Notebook” so you can get in touch with your inner feminine side and paint each other’s toenails. No, no, this one is primarily about sex. Enjoy it while you can!

The Two Best Scenes

In my opinion, there were only two scenes in this movie which stood out in a positive way. The first was when Anastasia and Christian were negotiating the terms of the sex contract. It was surprisingly funny, and in a good way! I think this scene actually showed off Dakota Johnson’s main strength, which was having a background in comedy. I know it sounds strange, but I wish they had actually included more comedy into the film. The premise of the movie is ridiculous enough as it is, might as well play it up for all it’s worth. She would make some funny, snarky comments about different outlandish situations (ahem, sex contract!), which somewhat helped to alleviate the complete and total awkwardness that was her character.

beltThe second standout scene is the complete opposite of the first. It’s the very last scene of the movie, where Christian punishes Anastasia by whipping her with his belt six times. The juxtaposition of the resounding lash of the belt with her quiet, tearful counting throughout the punishment was notably gripping. It was also the only moment in the film where we saw any kind of real emotion from the characters: her overwhelming embarrassment, and his immediate regret. In my opinion, this brief glimpse of true feeling from the actors demonstrates that there might actually be some potential for the second film. Considering that book 2 was my favorite of the trilogy, I am quite intrigued to see what they come up with next.