Tag Archives: Ménage

Review: Beyond Jealousy by Kit Rocha

Title: Beyond Jealousy
Author: Kit Rocha
Series: Beyond #4
Genre: dystopian erotic romance
Publisher: self-published
Format: ebook
Release Date: March 17, 2014

A copy of this book was provided by the authors for an honest review.

Publisher Summary:

She’s been looking for the perfect man. She found two.

When Rachel Riley sacrificed a life in Eden to protect the O’Kanes, she earned her place in the powerful Sector Four gang. But the former crime princess is tired of being everyone’s sweet little sister . It’s time for her to get wild, to embrace her fantasies as only an O’Kane can—with a delicious exiled soldier and the gang’s wickedly sinful tattoo artist.

A saint…

Lorenzo Cruz is a warrior, taught by his commanding officers in Eden that involvement equals distraction. Emotion is a liability, and desire a sin. In Sector Four, he finds decadence, shameless sex—and his own dark urges. No battle strategy prepared him for how Rachel makes his heart race…or the way his rival for her affections sets his blood on fire.

…and a sinner.

Ace Santana has a dirty reputation and a mind to match, especially where his new lovers are concerned. He’s eager to help Cruz embrace his dominant side, and to explore the lines between pleasure and pain with Rachel. But corrupting them quickly becomes an obsession, a need he can’t deny—and a love he never imagined.

Three hearts on the line means a hundred ways their ménage a trois could go wrong. After all, even O’Kanes do forever two-by-two. One of them could be the missing piece that makes them all whole…or a temporary diversion destined for a broken heart.

My Review:

This review may contain spoilers for previous books in the Beyond series. You could try to read Beyond Jealousy as a stand-alone, but you will be missing out on all the back story which makes this romance so special. Do yourself a favor and read them all.

You might think it’s easy to write a review for a book that is so good you wish you could read it for the first time all over again. Well, you’d be wrong. 🙂 But I’ll try to make this sound like something a bit more coherent than OMG READ THIS BOOK NAOW YOU MUST.

BEYOND JEALOUSY is the latest book in Kit Rocha’s incredible Beyond series and it tells the story of an unlikely romance, even for the wide open sexual landscape of Sector Four. After all, the O’Kane men and women have always paired off in couples, whether for a night or a lifetime. But a ménage is something new for the O’Kane gang, and none of the rules, as few as they are, will apply.

Ace and Rachel have been circling each other since we were first introduced to this world in BEYOND SHAME, but the reasons why they kept their distance, in spite of their obvious attraction, haven’t been fully explained until now. When Rachel found solace in Cruz’s arms, Ace was both pleased to see her cared for by someone far better than himself, and desolate at finally losing her. Yet that, too, was only temporary, leading to something nobody could have ever predicted: Ace and Cruz together, hooking up for threesomes with any woman willing to put herself in the middle.

But it’s Rachel they both really want, and it’s Rachel who can bring them together as one, if they’ll only let her. As the ongoing search for the people producing bootleg O’Kane liquor brings new violence closer to Sector Four, the forces which sent Rachel there as a sacrifice to save her family now attempt to use her to start a war between allies. It’s this new danger that will either cement the fragile bond between Rachel and her two men, or split them all apart for good.

After seeing the previous combinations of Ace and Rachel, Rachel and Cruz, and then Ace and Cruz, it seemed equally implausible and inevitable that they eventually would come together in a fully shared MMF menage. In retrospect, however, it made perfect sense. Each brought to the others the support and confidence they need, and any relationship between only two of them would always be missing that critical part of the puzzle. But it took the real threat of loss to make this clear, especially to Ace, who had so little personal self-esteem after years as a sexual plaything of the jaded women in Eden that he couldn’t let himself ever hope that someone would ever want him for himself, for always. But it was just as difficult a journey for Cruz, as he had to confront his repressed desires and everything he’d been taught about how wrong they would be. Seeing them both open up to their love for each other, as well as Rachel, is what made it worth the wait to read their story and it’s why BEYOND JEALOUSY is the best Beyond book of all (so far). 5 stars.

Review: Theirs to Cherish by Shayla Black

Theirs to Cherish (Wicked Lovers, #8)Theirs to Cherish by Shayla Black

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A copy of this book was provided by the publisher for an honest review at Seductive Musings.

Callie Ward has been in love with Mitchell Thorpe ever since she found his BDSM club to be the perfect hiding place from the people who killed her family and framed her for their murders. Even though his feelings match hers, Thorpe is convinced that their age difference is too great to overcome, and has removed his protection so that another Dom – Sean Kirkpatrick – can claim her instead. The new Dom is closer to Callie’s age than Thorpe, and seems to be the perfect balm for Callie’s bruised heart. But when he starts to get too close to the reasons why she ended up there in the first place, the only thing Callie can do is go on the run again. And when the two Doms who love her follow in pursuit, the battle for her heart might have to take a back seat to just keeping them all alive.

We first met Mitchell Thorpe, Master of Club Dominion, back in BELONG TO ME, book 5 of Shayla Black’s Wicked Lovers series. As the series has progressed, we’ve seen Callie and Thorpe make it obvious to everyone who sees them that they love each other, yet Thorpe continues to pull back while Callie does everything she can to force his hand. It’s only when Thorpe is witness to Callie and Sean’s most intense scene ever that he realizes how foolish he’s been to push her away for so long. It’s that same scene that convinces Callie it’s finally time to move on, as her years on the run have taught her to leave before anyone she cares about could be endangered by her presence. But this time is different, because now she has the love of two men who would rather die themselves than let her leave without them.

Callie and Thorpe’s story has been a long time coming in Shayla Black’s Wicked Lovers series, and it was just as satisfying as I had anticipated, even with the added complication of another Dom in the mix. It wasn’t until the previous book – OURS TO LOVE – that we got a hint that their romance might not be limited to just the two of them. That book featured a M/F/M menage with two brothers and their secretary who becomes their shared submissive, so it wasn’t too much of a surprise (especially with the title!) that THEIRS TO CHERISH would play out along the same lines. I’m a big fan of well-written menage romances, and this book did not disappoint in that regard. Neither Thorpe nor Sean go after Callie with the intent of sharing her, but as we learn why Thorpe could never commit to Callie (or any other submissive) and why Sean was at Club Dominion in the first place, we see how a menage relationship makes the most sense for everyone.

One of the things I enjoy most about this series is how the suspense not only propels the overall plot but also the actual romance itself. So many romantic suspense novels get so caught up in the parts where the lovers are in danger that they forget the part where we are supposed to be seeing them fall in love, but that is never a problem with Shayla Black. Every scene in THEIRS TO CHERISH was there to get us to their shared Happily Ever After, and that’s what made it such a wonderful romantic read.

With THEIRS TO CHERISH, Shayla Black has delivered yet another a smart and sexy romantic suspense story in the Wicked Lovers series that lives up to all the books that came before it. It will be great to see where this successful long-running series will take us next.


Overall: 4 stars
Sensuality level: 4 (BDSM, menage)

View all my reviews

Review: A Certain Latitude by Janet Mullany

A Certain LatitudeTitle: A Certain Latitude
Author: Janet Mullany
Genre: historical erotic romance
Publisher: self-published
Format: ebook and print
Release Date: November 23, 2013

A copy of this book was purchased by me for my own personal enjoyment during a time when it was free on Amazon.

Publisher Summary:

1800—Allan Pendale, lawyer and the youngest son of the Earl of Frensham, is bound by ship for the West Indies, to impart the news to his estranged father that his mother has died. But he also has another mission—to find out the truth of his origins.

Miss Clarissa Onslowe is also on board, traveling to take up the role of governess to the daughter of the wealthy planter Mr. Lemarchand. There is nothing to keep her in England. An indiscretion five years before led to her reputation being ruined; her abolitionist family has disowned her and no gentleman would marry her now. But now she seeks redemption with her family by revealing the truth about the miserable lives of the slaves who work on the sugar plantations.

Clarissa’s previous encounter with love has left her aroused and restless, and Allan is a man for whom lust is a daily pastime; thrown together belowdecks during the long sea voyage, they embark on a sensual odyssey where no desire is left untested. But if they thought their exploration and ecstasy could not be bettered, then there are more pleasures to be taken and boundaries to be broken at their island destination—where “March” Lemarchand, sugar king and master of seduction, awaits them both…

This is a substantially revised version of Forbidden Shores (2007) published under the name of Jane Lockwood.

My Review:

Although I am a big fan of Janet Mullany’s work in contemporary erotic romance (Tell Me More, Hidden Paradise) this was my first experience with one of her many historical novels. A Certain Latitude was originally released under a different pen name, and it would have remained unread by me (even at the temporary price of FREE) if she hadn’t reissued it under the one I already knew and trusted. I couldn’t tell you if what she refers to as “substantial revisions” made this a better book than the original, but I can say that A Certain Latitude far exceeded any expectations I might have had going in, and is as good as any other historical erotic romances I’ve read. What made this book so enjoyable for me was what I’ve now come to expect in Janet Mullany’s work, namely a plot that turns a well-worn trope on its head and scenes of intimate passion which envelop not only the titular hero and heroine but also the supporting characters who enter their sphere with intentions both good and evil.

The notion of “civilized” people devolving into depravity while isolated in a more primitive place where the rules of polite society don’t apply is a trope less commonly found than it once was. It dates back to a time when the “old skool” romances were the norm, and often featured ugly racial stereotypes as a lazy shortcut in lieu of actual character development. But while it’s true that the veneer of civilization began to decompose for Allan and Clarissa even before they reached their destination, it’s clear that what remained was there all along, irrespective of what would take place on the island. It needed only the close quarters of the ship to emerge, and the all-too-knowing encouragement of one dissolute and dominant man to be forced into full flower as they move inexorably toward their shared destiny.

I must emphasize most strongly that A Certain Latitude is a true erotic romance in every possible way. The sexual encounters involving each of the featured characters are absolutely essential to the plot, as well as those which occurred well before any of them had arrived on the island. The scenes we experience as the story unfolds are explicit and unforgettable, with pairings that may shock those unused to such graphic detail. It’s rare to find such unflinching scenes in historicals that are written so well and in such loving detail, although they do exist in the works of Kate Pearce, Robin Schone, Sharon Page, and Maire Claremont. Thanks to A Certain Latitude, Janet Mullany is now a member of that elite list for me, and I’ll be seeking out all her other historicals for another chance to experience that special reading joy. 5 stars

Review: The Delicious Torment by Alison Tyler

Title: The Delicious Torment
Author: Alison Tyler
Series: A Story of Submission #2
Genre: erotica
Publisher: Cleis Press
Format: ebook and print
Release Date: January 14, 2014

A copy of this book was provided by the author for an honest review.

Publisher Summary:

The second in a series of novels by bondage connoisseur Alison Tyler features heroine Samantha progressing with her predilections and exploring the deepest recesses of her master’s dungeon and her heart. The Delicious Torment is a Story of O meets 9 1/2 Weeks coming-of-age tale fueled by lust, longing, and based on the author’s personal diaries. The Delicious Torment takes readers to Sunset Strip, way up in the sky in a penthouse apartment overlooking Los Angeles with a love affair ensconced in an S&M relationship filled with corsets, crops, and plenty of kink. In the introduction Tyler notes, “This is a novel with me at the center. That is, my heroine is based on me. I’ve sketched her with broad strokes, but at our core we are the same. She’s gotten herself entwined with an older man — nothing new there. But now she has to learn how to maneuver a 24/7 relationship.”

My Review:

Before I tell you how much I enjoyed reading The Delicious Torment I need to insist that you must first read Dark Secret Love, the previous book in this series. You could try to read The Delicious Torment as a stand-alone, but your experience would not be half as rewarding.

In Dark Secret Love, Alison Tyler introduced us to Samantha, a fictional character who is more like her than not. We saw Sam grow from a teenager exploring her power over men (and vice versa) to an adult woman discovering her sexual persona through a series of increasingly meaningful relationships. But after the man she nearly married had all but broken her with his withholding behavior and emotional abuse, Samantha was able to begin healing through her submission to Jack, a man more dominant and dangerous than she’d ever known before.

When we return to Sam’s world at the start of The Delicious Torment, she’s moved into Jack’s penthouse apartment and committed herself to him in a 24/7 power exchange. Jack continues to push her limits further out, and she responds to his demands with her complete and unwavering submission. Well, mostly. When it’s Jack who commands her, Sam can’t help but comply. But it’s another matter when Jack uses his assistant Alex as his “designated Dom” during the times when he can’t be there himself. Her brain knows that Alex is only doing what Jack has directed, yet she senses that the two men have a connection far more complicated than what they’ve presented to to the world. As Jack leads her deeper into submission, Samantha wonders if what they have can transcend Master and slave as long as Alex remains in the picture.

As much as I adored Dark Secret Love, The Delicious Torment was an even better read for me. I was so pleased to be back in the thick of Sam’s life as she continued her path of self-discovery as the slave of the first man strong enough to earn her complete submission. Jack is easily one of the most terrifying and desirable Dominants I’ve ever read, and The Delicious Torment ultimately becomes his story as much as it is Samantha’s. If it seems like he’s continuing to test her capacity for submission, it’s because his need for her exceeds hers for him, even if that’s not always what he wants to reveal. And now with his long-time assistant Alex in the mix, Jack is forced to face his deepest secret, leaving us to wonder how it will all work out in the end.

What makes both of these books so compelling is how authentic they feel as the events in Samantha’s life play out. The characters and their actions may be fabricated, but there is a thread of realism that makes me feel like I’m reading Alison Tyler’s secret diary instead of a work of fiction. There’s no fairytale romance here – just fascinating portrayals of people who could be anyone you might meet in real life, if only you could ever be that fortunate.

The Delicious Torment provides the essential next step in Samantha’s journey and is just as riveting as the book which preceded it. I can’t wait to read the next book. 5 stars

Review: Bind And Keep Me by Cari Silverwood

Bind and Keep Me (Pierced Hearts, #2)Bind and Keep Me by Cari Silverwood

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

A copy of this book was purchased by me for my own enjoyment. The complete review is available at Night Owl Reviews.

This book took me to a place I’ve never gone before with Cari Silverwood, and kept me off balance all the way to the ending I could not have predicted. We see how Jodie and Klaus have found the relationship that works for them, although its nature must be kept secret from all but their closest friends. But when Klaus is forced to pick the least worst choice in an effort to save both Jodie and himself from what could send them both to prison, he vaults past any notion of dubious consent well into what no one could deny is non-consensual activity. This is not a capture fantasy. This is real life with real consequences. Can the undeniable love between Jodie and Klaus survive what they have both become?

Make no mistake: Bind And Keep Me is not for everyone, not by a long shot. But if you like reading beautifully written dark erotica with romantic elements, then this book might be for you. I loved it as much as the first one, and couldn’t put it down until I was done. And the ending went off into such a perfect alternative to my guess that I’m just as mad to read the next book as I was to read this after completing the first one. You can’t ask for more than that.

View all my reviews

Review: Make Me Yours Evermore by Cari Silverwood

Make Me Yours Evermore (Pierced Hearts, #3)Make Me Yours Evermore by Cari Silverwood

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A copy of this book was purchased by me for my own enjoyment. The complete version of this review appears at Night Owl Reviews.

I had a lot more difficulty reading Make Me Yours Evermore than I did with the previous two books in the Pierced Hearts series. I think part of it was not having Klaus there as the reliable center for what took place, even as it went far beyond anything what he had done. Chris is Klaus’s friend and acolyte in all things BDSM, but that didn’t mean I trusted him to do the right thing as I had with Klaus. And Andreas may have fancied himself as Kat’s savior, but that didn’t mean he wasn’t right there with Chris in taking away all of her options that didn’t fit in with the plan. Yet even as I kept putting the book down and picking it up again, I also kept telling myself that Cari Silverwood knew what she was doing and that everything would work out as best as it could under the provided circumstances. My trust in her was rewarded with an ending that convinced me Kat’s future with Chris and Andreas would be a good one, as well as a palpable sense of relief that it hadn’t all gone horribly wrong.

View all my reviews

Review: An Indecent Proposition by Stephanie Julian

An Indecent PropositionAn Indecent Proposition by Stephanie Julian

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A copy of this book was provided by the publisher for an honest review at Seductive Musings.

AN INDECENT PROPOSITION starts out as the story of how a young woman at the end of her financial rope agrees to sex with a stranger for an outrageous amount of money. Julianne’s father left both her and her mother in a deep financial hole on his permanent way out of town after her mother’s bout with breast cancer. Five hundred thousand dollars is too much for Julianne to turn down, even if it means a night of sex with a stranger. What she didn’t count on was losing her heart to not just one, but two men who were worth so much more to her than the cash she desperately needed.

Keegan and Erik have been inseparable since they met in college and soon after formed their own wildly profitable bio-metrics company, but not in the way most people thought. They prefer to share a woman sexually, and had done so successfully until Erik was nearly killed in a lab explosion. The years of reconstructive surgeries and painful rehabilitation have done little to restore Erik’s confidence in his appearance, and his withdrawal from the world weighs heavily on Keegan. But when Erik spots Julianne working as a catering server at their company event, he knew he had to have her. And Keegan will do everything he can to make sure that happens, even if it means walking away from both of them for good.

AN INDECENT PROPOSITION was originally published as a five part e-serial, and that was how I originally read it, waiting impatiently for weeks between releases. The passionate romance and scorching sex scenes kept me reading, even as the individual cliffhangers made me crazy wanting to know what happened next. But I wondered if the read would be just as satisfying when glued together as one complete story.

The good news is that yes, AN INDECENT PROPOSITION does work well without the forced reading delay between each of its five segments. Some serials have a real issue with maintaining continuity, one that isn’t obvious until repackaged as a full length book, but this never happened here. The sections flow naturally into each other, even though the originally defined separations are still used (i.e. five sections labeled as “Chapter One”), and the transitions hold up with the closer proximity.

Best of all, the relationship between Erik, Julianne and Keegan still packs the emotional punch that kept me reading for months. It never veers into overkill, even with the compressed timeline and often problematic “insta-lust” trope transforming a bizarre business transaction into a 3 way affair that may or may not become a lasting 3 way relationship. I’m glad I had the opportunity to read AN INDECENT PROPOSITION in both incarnations, and I’m looking forward to a follow-up book featuring Erik’s sister Katrina.

Overall: 4 stars
Sensuality level: 4 (MFM menage, light BDSM, voyeur play, semi-public sex)

View all my reviews

Review: Control by Charlotte Stein

ControlControl by Charlotte Stein

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

A copy of this book was provided by the publisher for an honest review at Seductive Musings.

I originally read CONTROL a few years ago back when I was first starting to venture into erotic romance and I’m still convinced it’s one of the best examples of the genre. In it, Charlotte Stein shows that a person’s sexual desires can’t be contained in neat and tidy boxes and that losing control is sometimes the only way to regain it for good.

Madison needs someone to help out at her bookstore, but she can’t hire just anyone. It has to be someone who is not only comfortable being around erotic books all day long, but is also good at taking direction. Certainly Andy isn’t the best choice, as he would prefer to tell Madison what to do, even as she feels like she ought to be able to say no. It’s only when Madison interviews the quiet and unassuming Gabriel that she finds the ideal assistant and the perfect subject for her own need to take control. The more Madison pries her way into Gabriel’s closed-off world, the more she realizes that her superficial life isn’t any better than his. But with Andy as the wild card, it’s not certain whether any of them will figure out what they want, or who they want to be with in the end.

It’s hard for me to describe why I love this book so unreservedly. Perhaps it’s the way that Charlotte Stein can so perfectly get into someone’s psyche and describe the confusion caused by unconventional sexual desire. Her writing is so understated at times that the sex almost sounds more clinical than conventionally romantic, yet all the emotions are fully present and accounted for. We see how Gabriel has locked himself down as a reaction to a chaotic childhood spent with hoarder parents, and how this has been reflected in his sexuality. It’s his control that Madison both envies and wants to break, not even knowing why until she realizes her love for him. Even Andy, who acts as the bull in this particular china shop, knows that what Madison and Gabriel share is something special. It’s that knowledge Madison needs when Gabriel reaches his breaking point, and she has to take responsibility for putting him back together again.

CONTROL is both a wildly erotic and heart-breaking love story, and I can’t recommend it highly enough. It’s also why I’ll always read everything Charlotte Stein writes.

Overall: 5
Sensuality level: 4 (menage, humiliation play, light BDSM)

View all my reviews

Review: The Sinners Club by Kate Pearce

The Sinners Club (The Sinners Club, #1)The Sinners Club by Kate Pearce

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A copy of this book was provided by the publisher for an honest review at Romancing Rakes for the Love of Romance.

I have a great fondness for Kate Pearce’s House of Pleasure series, since they were some of the earliest and best books I read back when I was first exploring the erotic romance genre. So when I saw she had a new series with a first book starring Jack Lennox from Simply Scandalous, I knew I had to read it as soon as possible. And if this first book is any indication, the Sinners Club books are going to be just as good.

After a troubled life where he never had any true home to call his own, Jack Lennox has come into a surprising inheritance from his no-good father, complete with royal title and stately manor. But before Jack can legally claim his place as the new Earl of Storr, he needs to find out what’s been going on at Pinchbeck Hall since the last holder of that title was laid to rest. Wary of what might await there, Jack decides to masquerade as his own personal secretary, wagering that such a man would have a better chance of being accepted by those who might not be as welcoming to the new lord of the manor. What Jack discovers is even more than what he’d bargained for, in the form of a supposed brother and sister, the latter of whom claims to be the pregnant widow of the previous earl.

Jack finds himself drawn to both Simon and Mary Picoult despite his better judgment and their genuine threat to his birthright. What follows in The Sinners Club is an passionate story of desperate lives and no-win scenarios, ultimately leading to a series of choices that could result in Jack either gaining his first chance at a real home and settled life, or losing it all for the love of a woman who has already sacrificed more than anyone ever should.

Everything that made Kate Pearce’s House of Pleasure books such an enjoyable read for me is here in The Sinners Club: a carefully plotted story with bold and memorable characters who aren’t afraid to take charge of their own destinies, especially with regard to their wide-ranging sexual proclivities. Jack may be the next Earl of Storr but he’s got more in common with Simon and Mary than the members of his own extended family, and his growing relationship with the alleged siblings is what drives the plot for the majority of the book. As their personal histories of these three characters unfold, we see how a need for security can drive someone to do just about anything to keep it, even if it means denying true love in the process. That shared need is what makes the romance between Jack and Mary so special, as they both face the decision to give up their own security to help each other as the one person whose well-being was worth any price. The Sinners Club is an outstanding start to Kate Pearce’s new series of the same name and I look forward to reading each and every book to follow.

Favorite Quote:
He’d never felt so secure and yet so vulnerable before in his life. What if she didn’t like him after all? After tangling with the Lennox family once, didn’t she deserve better? But then how was he supposed to live without her?

View all my reviews

Audiobook Review: Overheard by Maya Banks

Title: Overheard
Author: Maya Banks
Narrated by Chandra Skyye
Publisher: AudioGO
Length: 2 hrs and 43 mins
Release Date: 8/1/2013

A copy of this audiobook was provided to me by Audiobook Jukebox for an honest review.

Overheard is the second entry in Maya Banks’ Unbroken series, telling the story of a woman who is tired of settling for men that can’t give her what she wants in bed, but gets exactly what she’s missing when one of her male friends overhears her sharing her sexual fantasies with a trusted girlfriend.

Gracie has finally had enough with her latest crappy boyfriend and has kicked him to the curb. She’s lucky to have a set of lifelong friends to lean on while she tries to figure out how to get a good man in her bed. One of those friends is Luke, a man who has always seen Gracie as an attractive woman but never figured he’d get the opportunity to turn their friendship into something more personal. Then he overhears Gracie telling their mutual friend Shelly all the things she wants to do with the right man, and he knows that he’s just the guy to make it all come true. What happens next between Gracie and Luke shows them that sometimes overhearing what wasn’t meant for you can be both the best and worst thing ever.

I’ve found that Maya Banks’ writing usually lends itself well to an audio version, and Overheard is no exception. The story is short and intense, but we are given everything we need to know about what motivates Gracie and Luke, and how their previously platonic friendship was able to morph almost seamlessly into a sexual relationship (at least at first) and how their love growing into something deeper was a natural and realistic progression. Chandra Skyye does a good job of differentiating voices between the various male and female characters. I did find her deliberately Southern-style accent a bit grating at times, but that’s a matter of personal preference.

Overheard is another scorching but sweet tale of sex and love in the Maya Banks tradition and it was an enjoyable listen I won’t soon forget.