Zane (Part 1) – Liv Bennett

zane

starstar

Author: Liv Bennett
Series: Pleasure Extraordinaire #1

Pages: 254

eroticacontemporary$$$escortmenagedarkfreefirst_persongreat_coverbad_sexweak

The new CEO and the owner of Hawkins Media Group, Zane Hawkins is officially dating to marry. After two years of on-again-off-again romance with the actress Penelope Davis, Zane is now ready to settle down.

Multiple sources confirm that it’s the recent death of his father causing him to re-think his bachelor lifestyle and consider starting a family of his own.

Who will be the lucky bride to tie down California’s most eligible bachelor? A wildly famous Hollywood actress? An activist and visionary lawyer? A humble and media-shy nurse?

If the persisting rumors are true, there’s a secret list of the most suitable candidates drawn up singlehandedly by Zane’s very capable assistant, Julie Connor. Even so, Zane has never been one to follow rules and directions.

Whoever is going to be the lucky winner, she deserves special kudos, as the road to Zane’s heart is known to go through several hoops and hurdles.

When I was a kid, I saw my grandma put some lentils to her dessert yogurt. Back then, I thought that was the weirdest mix I was going to witness in my life. I guess I had to read this book to find a mix that could unseat my grandma’s special yogurt on my list. This book is short, but it has enough room to create a madness that was only lacking several dragons and one or two starships…

We have the immense honour and pleassure to meet Zane (his words, not mine), a rich guy whose lifestyle can be described with just one simple word: womanizer. But her assistant, Julie, convinces him to look for a wife. In order to easy that search, she comes with a list of possible candidates. Zane must date those girls until he finds the love of his life…

This book was free on Amazon when I got it (so I didn’t look beyond the price tag) and I only learnt it was a spin-off after reading it. I don’t think it is mandatory to read the books of Lindsay to understand the books of Zane, but I guess you could develop some sympathy for the characters that could make the reading of this one somehow bearable. That was harsh. The book is not so bad. It has a pretty good idea full of fun possibilities, but everything is butchered with forgettable characters and ridiculous situations. It doesn’t help that the book doesn’t know what identity to adopt. Sometimes is Erotica, others is Contemporary Romance, it flirts with Comedy and even Dark Romance makes a cameo. It would have been much better if the author picked one and forgot the others.

Zane as a characters is a mess. And I don’t mean cute mess you want to cuddle. No. He is a horribly written characters that drinks from the worst fountains of the Romance genre. I think the author attempts to make him cocky and confident, but the result is a vain and self-centered character who considers himself above most mortals just because he has more money and better looks… And no one tells him the opposite… Because he is Zane, eveything he does is a good thing worthy of the warmest round of applause: sex with barely legal girls, sex in front of his own brother, sex with unwilling women, unprotected sex without consent… For some strange reason, that was meant to make him look like a sexy bad boy, but the result is way grosser than that. Pure gold the moment he refuses to hug a woman, because he didn’t want her to fall in love with him… Keep dreaming man…

And then we have Julie. Yes, the assistant. If by reading the blurb you didn’t know the good assistant had a crush on her boss, I guess you haven’t read enough Romance (like two or three books). So… why is she so eager to hook Zane up with a random woman? Well, she explains it all, but let me tell you it doesn’t make much sense. Is it really your plan to make your boss discard all women so you can be the only choice? Have a bit of pride! And self-esteem! And good taste! Because there are thousands of better guys out there. And worst… Julie describes the perfect woman for Zane. What means she tries to describe herself… Someone should tell her we are currently living the 21st century.

Is there something else good beyond the idea? Not really. But it is short, easy to read and such a chaotic display of characters that the reading will be fast and mostly harmless. There is a second part. I know I will read it sooner or later. Maybe there will be some cleaning in Zane’s aisle…

paragraph1

2019 – Book Gallery

Advertisements

Rough and Ready – Cathleen Ross

rr

star

Author: Cathleen Ross
Series: Outlaw Warriors #2
Release day:  April 15th 2019
Pages: 400

eroticacontemporarybdsmsoldiersbodyguardarcgreat_coverbad_sexlovecliche

Before special ops soldier Hugo Boudreaux can move on, he has one last thing to do–fulfill a wartime debt to the friend who saved his life. He must infiltrate a vicious Louisiana MC club to stop their next illegal weapons shipment and send the president to jail. What he didn’t plan on was ending up an unwilling bodyguard to the man’s daughter–innocent and attractive nurse Alice Kaintuck.

Alice wants a normal life with a nice guy. But her rough-edged bodyguard is the sexiest man she’s ever met. Suddenly she can’t stop thinking about just how hot he makes her. Before she knows it, she’s tumbling into his muscular arms…though she’ll be damned if she’ll fall in love with a man as dangerous as her father. Only Hugo doesn’t make love, he consumes her and turns her life upside down with his carnal, erotic sex. Dreams of nice guys vanish when her enemy becomes her obsession…

I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

When I requested an ARC of this book I had no idea it was the second one in the saga Outlaw Warriors. I hate reading a saga out of order, so I was about to give it back (even though I think it is not possible), but I changed my mind an embraced the weird philosophy of a saga of stand-alones so common in the Romance genre. Yes, this second book can be read without feeling you are missing something. It is also true that this one hasn’t made me the least curious about the first book.

In this book we follow Hugo, a soldier who has just come back from war and wants to pay his friend Troy the favour he owes. He needs to go undercover into a rival biker gang in order to stop the delivery of some weapons to fight Troy’s gang. In the bar of their foes Hugo meets Alice, the innocent daughter of the leader of the gang he has to infiltrate. She becomes the perfect ticket to join the group and his first mission is to protect her…

I was honestly very hopeful for this book after reading the blurb. It looked like it had all the ingredients for a fun story and the perfect drama to rock the relationship. Add to that the undercover mission and the rivalry amongst bikers and the action should be served to keep the reader engaged. Sadly, none of it happens. The story has a weak first step with Hugo’s and Troy’s plan to infiltrate the other gang. They didn’t expect Alice to be at the bar, but without her there wouldn’t have been any chance of getting Glass’ attention. They were lucky. Very lucky. It’s a bit weird, but I could accept that as their lucky day and move on. But after that, the main mission is almost forgotten and the bodyguard job is practically uneventful. What should have been a huge part of the book is put aside and resolved lazily.

It is my fault for expecting more about the story in a book that falls into the Erotica genre. I knew that the romance wasn’t a priority, but I needed some kind of getting to know each other before dropping all their clothes. Zero flirting. Zero banter. Zero chemistry. The main focus is sex and more sex. I could be OK with that, but the sex scenes are just plain horrible. Hugo likes to feed his dominant side and Alice is willing to indulge him (so far, so good). The issue is in the “game” they like to play, where she has to pretend to be taken by force. I know it is just theater, but I found pretty sick that Hugo’s sexual fantasy is raping a woman… It totally made me lose interest about the intimate scenes pretty quickly and made the whole thing unbearable.

The main characters are also a mess. We are sold that Alice is a strong and independent woman, but as soon as a hunky soldier enters her door the whole world becomes about him. I aso dislike very deeply her constant “Momma” and “Daddy”. She sounds like a little kid whining about something she is denied. It was really unnerving. But the top on the worst list is for Hugo. What kind of unbalanced person carries a bag full of weapons everywhere? I think the overall goal for this character behaviour was to grant him a dark aura, but the pieces do not match together and I would try very, very hard to avoid a person like him in real life. He is not OK and I’m sorry for Alice.

When you have an overly unbelievable romance, it is way harder to shallow the classic ending in the Romance novels (you know the one). Yes, I know I have voiced many times my unhappiness about that cliché; but in cases like this one it is even more painful. I do understand the need for feeding the readers a HEA ending and I can go along with that. My problem lies in the blunt supposition that a fast wedding is the same as happiness. Sometimes I would like to read a Romance book where the HEA is something different… Surprise me a little bit, you know?

I don’t want to end this review (rant?) without saying at least one positive thing about the book. The cover is very pretty. It catches the eye easily and it willl make many readers curious about the story behind. That’s me saying the guy is hot.

paragraph1

2019 – Book Gallery

Defective – Mel Teshco

defective

starstarstar

Author: Mel Teshco
Series: The Virgin Hunt Games #1
Release day:  March 18th 2019
Pages: 274

eroticascififuturisticaliensarcfrenzygreat_coverclicheloveweak

Melody Simmons desperately needs to fill her bank accounts with credits that could help her family climb out of near poverty. And in the Virgin Hunt Games, that means enticing as many hunters as possible to bed her. The downside? Billions of viewers from all parts of the galaxy would be watching her fall from virtue with avid interest.

Alien Damon Banscott despises everything about the Virgin Hunt Games. Except the fact he can now legally destroy his enemy in the games. He is in this only for revenge. Then Damon sees one of the beautiful hunted and, for a moment, his heart stops beating. He’ll fight to the death before allowing another hunter to touch and deflower Melody.

But while the hunters get more credits by pleasing their captive mate sexually, the hunted women received more by finding their pleasure with any of the hunters who weren’t their assigned mate.

The hunt is on…

I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

You won’t find me reading Erotica too often, but when I saw the cover of this book and read the interesting blurb; I knew I had to request an ARC in NetGalley. I was lucky enough to be chosen as a reviewer. So, first of all, thanks for the chance given.

In this book we follow Melody, a woman from Earth who needs money desperately. She has never been with a man intimately, so being picked as one of the virgins for the game wasn’t so far-fetched. Her suitor is not other than Damon, a soldier from an alien planet who is only taking part on the game to get his revenge against another of the participants. Is that particular setting the best place for starting a relationship? It seems, it could be…

It’s pretty obvious from almost the beginning that the author has translated the Hunger Games into an adult version in space where sex and violence are the main course. Which is nice if you take it as it is. Do not commit my mistake of overthinking the Game, because there are a bunch of holes that could be hard to fill. That wasn’t the best metaphor in the context of the book… What I want to say is that there are several rules or character behaviours that don’t make much sense. First of all: why virgins? It looks like a hard constraint for such little reward. Second: pretty unbalanaced for the participants. If you are male, your boost credit reward comes from catching their chosen hunted and just have their way sexually. Females must hide from their chosen hunter and seduce another one, which seems much harder (the hunters are not paper pushers…). And lastly: if most of them are taking part for the money, why don’t strategize to maximize the income through bouts of sex? Reading the book I thought most of them were a bunch of idiots who weren’t listening when the rules were stated. As I said, it’s better if you don’t think too much about the game and just read the book. That would enhance your enjoyment of the book.

When I read the blurb, my impression was that every participant was a willing one. But pretty soon the reader discovers that most of the women have been blackmailed into taking part. That adds a very uncomformatble feeling while reading. What I thought was going to be consent uninhibited sex was at risk of becoming plane and simple raping. That would have ruined the book without any hope of recovery. Thankfully, such kind of actions are not present. Sometimes they are hinted, but never narrated. And yet, the sex scenes are not enjoyable. There are several of them, but they lack spice (even though that would mean much more credits…) and I soon lost my interest in them. Luckily, there is also a heavy presence of action scenes that make up for the uneventful sexual encounters and grant the book a perfect pace.

I don’t have much to say about the characters. They fill their roles, but nothing else. I like Melody much more than Damon. He is sometimes too “macho male“. His annoying protective instincts and the way he avoids adult conversations overpowering Melody through sex don’t make him a good character on my book. It doesn’t help that we don’t get to know many of his qualities. The only one that is mentioned over and over again is the size of his manhood. Actually, that is probably the only thing that is described about the hunters. It’s not that I can’t handle the dirty talk… it’s more like, so what? They barely use it… By the way, the epilogue is pretty unbelievable (too fast!!) and make this couple much more likely to fail miserably. It’s the classic ending of a Romance book and I wasn’t expecting it in an Erotica book…

So, in few words: nice book to kill time. Fast pace and easy to read. Ideal for lazy days. If you ask more of it, you will de disappointed.

paragraph1

2019 – Book Gallery

More the Merrier – Jayne Rylon

moremerrier

starstarstar

Author: Jayne Rylon
Series: Powertools #7
Pages: 99

eroticamenagemmhot

Everyone’s favorite five-man, one-woman construction crew is back in action. This time they’re celebrating the holidays together, Powertools style.

Though they’re each on the hunt for the perfect presents for their loved ones, they soon realize that the gifts they give each other day in and day out are the most valuable sort. Spending time together and sharing their passions—not only for sexy menages in every variation—has helped them thrive despite life’s ups and downs.

The first book of Powertools was my first story with an orgy. I have always pride myself about being an explorer in a library, so I picked it with an open mind. Seven books later I must admit this is not what I was expecting. Yes, those books are mostly about sex, but the characters have grown up on me quite a lot.

This time we meet the infamous crew while they are preparing for Christmas. After realizing that they haven’t partaken in groupal fun for a long time, the guys decide to get busy while their wifes are shopping. And they keep at it once they come back home… After that encunter, the book focus on the individual couples for a glimpse at their lives and more sex.

And that’s all about it. I do enjoy the sex scenes with these guys, even though sometimes I think there is no room for so many skin in some of the positions the author likes to describe. I especially appreciate the importance of respect everytime they get together. Nothing is done without the explicit consent of everyone involved. That, sadly, is usually a rara avis in the Erotica genre, so kudos for the crew!!

The crazy dynamics with the Powertools crew is what makes these books special. It’s hard to explain. The scenes of all of them together, even though there is a lot of naked time, are also a master piece of human tolerance. They are all such good friends with solid principles. They never judge and let everyone be themselves. Actually, a world with more Powertools would be a better world. Jayne Ryon has spoiled me badly. Now I’m incapable of reading a ménage book if the group doesn’t have the same rulebook as the crew of Powertools.

Even though the book is cramped with sex, there is also time for some cute and emotional moments. My favourite is by far Dave’s tattoo. His accident was a huge surprise on a previous book, because I wasn’t expecting such a crude moment in this saga. Now I’m kind of glad it happened (I’m a monster!!). The description of the tattoo has been heartwarming and that would have never happened without the car accident. The tattoo covering the scars of his leg displays the perfect summarization of what the crew members represent to each other.

No idea if Rylon is going to keep writing Powertools books, but I have already added to my TBR list the spin-off: Hot Rods. It seems they are pretty similar, so I guess I will enjoy them as well.

paragraph1

2018 – Book Gallery

 

One Man’s Trash – Marie Sexton

oneman

starstar

Author: Marie Sexton
Series: The Heretic Doms Club #1

Pages: 343

eroticacontemporarymmescortbdsmmenagedarkbad_sexincestangry

After four tours in Afghanistan, Warren Groves couldn’t settle into civilian life. For the last twelve years, he’s survived by working odd and often illegal jobs for some of Denver’s less fortunate. His personal life is equally unsatisfactory. He can barely remember the last time he had sex, let alone the last time he got to use somebody hard and rough, the way he likes. Fate intervenes when a favor for a friend leads him to a pretty young rentboy named Taylor Reynolds.

Taylor’s spent the last few years on his own, working as a hustler, going home with anybody who’ll give him a warm meal and a place to sleep. He enjoys having a bit of force used against him, and he makes Warren an offer he can’t refuse — all the sex he wants, as rough and dirty as he likes, in exchange for room and board.

At first, Warren thinks he’s struck gold. Taylor’s the perfect roommate — he cooks, he cleans, and he’s dynamite in the sack. But Taylor has some dark demons in his head and some even darker cravings. Falling for somebody as volatile as Taylor is dangerous enough, but when Taylor’s urges turn truly self-destructive, it’ll be up to Warren to decide just how far to let things go.

The book is eveything the blurb promises: rough sex, secrets and dark cravings… I thought I could handle it, but it seems I can’t. I’m not a prude (if I were I wouldn’t touch Romance books), but there are several situations in this book thas have rubbed me the wrong way.

But let’s start from the beginning. We meet Warren, a former soldier that spends his days helping other people in barely legal jobs: bodyguard of escorts (a.k.a. prostitutes), muscle for desperate people and many other things. He is lonely and, if you ask me, a bit tired of his life. Then we meet Taylor (or TJ or BJ…), a much younger guy that ran away from his home and became a rentboy. It’s a sex addict that that never says no… Their fates collided and Taylor ended up living with Warren. Free roof and food in exchange of sex.

At least that is how it started. We barely knew them when they were already tearing up each other clothes. The first encounter was pretty impersonal and I was scared that the whole book would be like that. The author spices it up a little bit adding a BDSM element: soft bondage. Warren likes to tie people up to his bed and Taylor doesn’t mind. As a reader, I don’t mind either. The author doesn’t use this to humillate Taylor. It makes the trust between each other grow considerably.

Eveything was starting to look peachy: Warren has a lot of different layers that make him very interesting, the sex is fun, the side stories are enjoyable, Warren’s friends are a pleasure to read… And then it happens: Taylor’s breakdown. I wasn’t epecting it. I’m a guy that enjoys a good shock when reading, but this one left me with a very sour aftertaste. I felt that his cravings were more of a childish behaviour than something dark and serious. Even worse than that: the author has to twist Warren’s behaviour to counteract the crazy tantrum of his roommate… I have to be honest: that made me dislike Taylor.

But the worst was yet to come… The explanation of Taylor’s “bad days” made me sick. It’s not only the incest with his brother when he was still a minor. If that wasn’t enough, the brother was abusive. I guess I should have been able to feel some kind of pity towards Taylor, but his way of dealing with it destroyed any chance of that. He claims he loves him. That no one understands him. He talks as if nothing was wrong. And Warren is nice enough to accept the explanation… I just wanted to scream: “Take him to an expert!! The guy need helps, not a slap on the back!!”. But Taylor’s quest of making me puke wasn’t finish… Do you know what this messed-up guy takes for love? Being urinated by someone who is still inside him during sex… That’s plain gross. And the author talks about it several times… I couldn’t handle it. I was losing my mind yelling at Taylor. My dislike became hatred.

I think I could have ignored Taylor if the side stories were better. I mean, they are good, but so depressing. Were are the happy endings? Susan, Riley… The book feels pessimistic and so unfair that the only one with the happy ending is Taylor… Writing this review I have realized I’m angry at him. He has ruined a nice book about Warren. I actually feel weird after reading the book. Why an emotional story has such a disgusting residue in my memory?

I’m not sure if I will read the second book. The main characters will be different, so I guess it’s safe to assume that I won’t find another Taylor. But I’m honestly scared of picking it up…

paragraph1

2018 – Book Gallery

Sexy Beast – Ella J.

sexybeast

starstar

Author: Ella J.
Pages: 183

eroticaescort$$$first_persongreat_coverboomangry

Yeah, I did it.
I signed on to be an “intimate companion.”
Desperate times and desperate measures lead to crazy choices.
Really, though, it’s not that crazy. Someone has to pay my brother’s bills after the wreck, and I’m the only someone left.
My first job: snuggle up to a sexy beast of a billionaire at one of his luxury ski resorts.
I can do that.
Except I’m not so sure he wants me to. The Ice King barely looks at me. He rarely speaks to me, and when he does, he says he doesn’t want me in his bed.
Okay then.
I keep my head held high, my shoulders squared, and my bruised ego under wraps—until I stumble onto secrets.
James Harrington is hiding devastating secrets.
I get too close. I get involved. I take a risk, and I give him more than he paid for.
For a moment, it’s too perfect to be true.
But there’s one more secret—and it’s the one I never saw coming.

This one is going to be hard to review. I need to be direct: I didn’t like the book. But I’m in a mood and I’m afraid this review is going to pay the price. I have just watched the tenth chapter of Star Wars: Rebels season 4 and I need to yell at something. Anything!! Maybe that way I will stop crying…

In this short book we meet Darcy, a woman that has to take care of his brother who needs a lot of money to pay for his treatment. Due to that desperation, she has to accept a job as a high-profile escort. Her first client is James, a richer than rich guy that is about to open a mountain resort for people with lots of money to waste… He is going to throw several parties and needs something pretty to decorate the place…

I kind of like the starting point. Darcy’s sacrifice to make his brother’s life better is admirable. And the fact that James is very distant and cold makes things much more interesting. I thought it was going to be the classic billionarie that thinks everyone loves him just because he is rich. I loved those tense first times they meet each other. Too bad that doesn’t last long…

It’s an Erotica book so I shouldn’t be surprised about the amount of sex in it. But it lacks charisma or chemistry or any kind of spark… It’s just sex and after the first naughty scene the rest are just to print more pages… Nothing interesting in that department. Not for good, or bad. Just plain. In this kind of book, that is actually pretty bad… Sex shouldn’t leave you indifferent in the Erotica genre. At least that’s my opinion.

I was dreading a boring reading, but sudenly… BOOOOOOM!!! WOW!! What a twist!! Way to leave me breathless and in shocked. I didn’t expect that punch in the gut and the pain was very welcome. The book was alive again, ladies and gentlemen!!! I was salivating. I love me some drama!! Those hard moments usually end in really good make up situations!! Sadly, my hype was extinguish so fast I dind’t even have time to enjoy it… The author resolves the conflict in such an easy and boring way… One moment seems the Apocalypse and the next, everything is forgotten. The best and worst part of this book happen almost in the same page!!

I didn’t lose my hope, though. It was all so sudden it was obvious the main characters needed to talk about it once their hormones were settle. So, I turn the page waiting for the other shoe to drop when something even more unexpectd happens: THE END!!. Wait, what?? Is that all?? But according to my Kindle there are still more than 50% to read… What the…? Half of this book is just a preview for another one!!! HALF!!! Really??

I know that kind of marketing is pretty common in Romance Books (some authors are very busy wirting…), but more than the 50% is way too much for previews. I don’t like reading previews, so I felt robbed. This book made me so angry for so many reasons in such a short time…

The good part: it’s not the usual story of billionaire meets (buys) girl. The worst part: it ends when it was about to start…

paragraph1

2018 – Book Gallery

The Phoenix Project – Jacquelyn Frank

phoenix

starstar

Author: Jacquelyn Frak
Series: Morphate #1

Pages: 142

eroticaparanormalvampiresshiftersrape_neubad_sex

Held captive, Amara is subjected to bizarre experiments that test the limits of her sanity. But nothing prepares her for being locked away–naked–with a sexy ex-cop… after they’ve been pumped full of drugs that increase their sexual appetites to animalistic intensity…

Yes, I promise that is the blurb of the book. Honest!! That meager paragraph was enough to make me curious. I wanted to know how the author was going to deal with those animalistic instincts for her characters, I mean, that is a loaded gun. You can make a really hot book that makes you thirsty while reading. Or you can have a sex festival that makes you dizzy in all the wrong ways. This book is not one thing, nor the other. It’s a simple: meh!.

The story is about Amara, a woman with no resources who was kidnapped by mad scientists. They perform experiments on her on a daily basis. And she is not the only one. The baddies have a huge on-going operation that is hard to believe is a well kept secret. Nick is a cop that is investigating weird disappearances and he founds himself kidnapped for the same project as Amara. The doctors change their DNA and put them together to see what happens. They become morphates. Kind of a mix between a vampire and a shifter…

Some of those changes are: enhanced senses, strength and stamina, much greater sexual drive, claws, fangs and even penis enlargement… They become ferals in all the possible meanings. Which is the goal of such a change? No idea. The author never explains it. Do they want a supersolider or a sexual slave? The mix doesn’t make any sense… The mad doctor says they are getting closer to the ideal result, but I’m incapable of seeing how can the morphates be profitable. No one wants a lover so rough that could break your bones by accident… Or a soldier whose sexual appetite could make him mindless at any moment. So, no idea what this Pnoenix Project wants to achieve.

90% of the book is just plain sex. Very boring sex if you ask me. It’s too primitive, too rough and aggressive for my taste. There is not an ounce of eroticism in all the sex scenes of the book. And there are plenty… They weren’t bad per se, except for the last one. The author should have ignored the epilogue. In that last chapter, Nick has sex with Amara against her will. Yes. he rapes her. There is not another way to describe that. She didn’t want to have sex because it was period time and didn’t want any kid. Nick, to show that Amara can trust him, forces himself into her and rape her… I couldn’t believe what I was reading… The worst part is that Amara accepts Nick’s motives and forigves him… The epilogue ruins the book.

Even though it lacks story development everywhere, the book has some interesting foundations that could make the next books bearable. I would love to know more about the Dark Cities. It seems that in the future, a wall-loving politician decides to put walls around several cities of the USA to lock criminals from the rest of the country. Those are called the Dark Cities and the morphates are now the ones in charge to keep them in check. Why do I have the feeling is going to be a free buffet for them?

I know I was going to find something simple and blunt, but I guess I wasn’t prepared for such overwhelming lack of sweetness… I still don’t know if I will read the next books of this saga. I must admit I’m still curious…

 

paragraph1

2018 – Book Gallery