Available for free from Smashwords and Barnes & Noble, this is a great appetizer for later fun!
Friday, October 10, 2014
Sunday, September 14, 2014
These are questions every author, especially those of us in the erotica genre must ask ourselves. And that brings me to "Unconventional Desires: A Diary of Discovery by Victoria Louise Sadler. The story is made up from the diary of a young woman in her early twenties who harbors secret fantasies of BDSM. Her exploration of the "scene" is documented in her journal, and she eventually forms a permanent relationship with a dom who takes her to unprecedented levels of sexual delight.
While that synopsis sounds intriguing, the reason I wonder about the reader "Unconventional Desires" was meant for is because the narrator's diary reads like a shopping list and wanders aimlessly back and forth. The narrator adds unimportant detail to each journal entry, and this plethora of minutiae, instead of creating depth to the character, becomes a literary speed bump that slows the plot and action to a crawl. The first fifty or so pages is like this, peppered with only a few actual nuggets of erotica as well as plot development, the result being that I think many readers would be frustrated and lost before getting to the juicy parts.
Eventually the journal entries of "Unconventional Desires" do turn into something erotic, and can certainly spark the imagination, but the narration is told in an emotionally flat, rather dry manner, with no tension build and little in the way of any plot. The narrator is relating to us what was done to her, and while there are some comments that reflect on her mental state, most of the description is not what I'd call robust.
Satisfied, I desperately needed to remove the vibrator and even though he allowed me to do so, I remained on all fours as he continued to whip me. The pleasure from the whipping had been entirely replaced by the pain and the pain had become unbearable.
I knew that this was for his enjoyment not mine, but despite this I struggled to remain still and desperately wanted to pull away from him. I struggled to find my voice until the next stroke landed harshly, though when I finally found my voice my respectful pleas were ignored. He made it abundantly clear that he was in charge and it would be his choice to stop, not mine.
Another issue that concerns me is the portrayal of BDSM. I'm more of a sensualist than a true BDSM aficionado (it's tough to be true to the lifestyle when you've got four kids ranging in ages from 2 to 19) but those I know who DO live the lifestyle would take umbrage at the fact that the submissive in the story had no choice to stop. And the above passage is just one example of this kind of behavior in the book. Granted, the narrator makes an effort to explain away her attitude, but it's a half-hearted explanation, and if "Unconventional Desires" is more of an attempt to provide guidance to women interested in the BDSM world, then Ms. Sadler has missed one of the more important aspects of the BDSM D/s relationship. The true power rests in the hands of the submissive. She or he can always say no. That's the point.
Admittedly some of the scenes described in "Unconventional Desires" were a turn on, but nothing out of the ordinary happens to the narrator that demonstrates some unusual spark of creativity, and due to the journalistic nature of the narration, any tension buildup in one scene is hopelessly lost before the next happens. In fact, I'm more disappointed in the fact that the author didn't try to write an actual fictitious BDSM tale. Ms. Sadler clearly writes well and her prose is a pleasure to read.
In summary, I give "Unconventional Desires" a five out of ten rating. At the astronomical price of $7.50, which is a ridiculously high price for an e-book, I can't honestly recommend it for those seeking erotica to stimulate the senses. This is not a book you take to bed with a vibrator or warming oil. As a book for those seeking information about the lifestyle it might serve better, though I still hesitate to endorse it, due to the unusual, yet still somewhat consensual relationship the narrator has with her master, Sebastian. In essence, it makes the exact same mistake about BDSM that Fifty Shades of Gray did. BDSM is not about doing what the "Master" wants. It's about both partners getting what they want.
You can purchase "Unconventional Desires: A Diary of Discovery" from Amazon.com
A complimentary copy of the book was provided to Michael Alexander in exchange for an honesty review.
Saturday, August 2, 2014
As a book reviewer specializing in the BDSM erotica genre, it’s rare for me to be asked to read and review a book that is outside my area of expertise. Such is the case for “Twisted” by Lola Smirnova, a fascinating and depressing look into the eastern European sex trade, with a healthy dose of “why drugs are bad for you.”
For years I’ve been an advocate of legalized prostitution, working from the premise that by legalizing the trade, the United States would take the power and money behind prostitution out of the hands of organized crime and put it toward the women actually engaged in the trade. Legalization would allow government to generate revenue from the business, would stabilize the trade for licensing, medical examinations, and verification that the women involved weren’t being intimidated or controlled via drugs or violence. It would create environments where the women are respected and cared for, rather than abused. I’ve always thought that legalized prostitution would decrease the amount of human trafficking and child abuse as crime syndicates were forced to other avenues to generate their revenue. And as terrifying as it sounds, “Twisted” serves as a primer to demonstrate that mafia lords and their crime syndicates will scheme to get their money in any way possible.
Smirnova’s story, which is no doubt based upon true life experiences, follows a young Ukrainian girl named Julia, whose family is struck with poverty after the fall of the Soviet Union. Her two older sisters leave home and become sex workers, glossing over the more distasteful aspects of their occupation, planting the seeds of both curiosity and greed in young Julia. She eventually finds the lure of easy money too beguiling and begins her journey into the darker aspects of drug abuse, drunken stupors, and the horrid and loveless life of a sex-for-sale prostitute. She is subjected to all manner of abuses, from “debts” incurred to an “agent” supposedly responsible for finding her a club to work at, to the cramped and barely livable spaces the girls are given, to the non-stop drinking and drug use ideology that keep the girls compliant.
This is not a book of erotica in any sense of the word. In fact, the few “sex” scenes described are mostly so disgusting and horrid that few would find them appealing, an attitude echoed by Julia through the tale. And yet her story becomes compelling, like a Dickensian tale where only more pain and suffering is brought down upon the main character’s head, a sort of morality play where the reader shouts at the unfortunate soul and says “good Lord! How can you be that stupid?” Reading the tale of Julia creates an imperative need to find out how it ends. Is there a happy ending? Thank God there is.
The writing itself is well done, surprising for someone for whom English is probably a second language. Written in first person mode, in present tense, the author does a good job in establishing characters, setting, and the connection between the reader and the story. More journal than formative plot, “Twisted” encapsulates the reader and literally drags them along through the drug and booze soaked life of a girl for whom circumstances and bad choices have created something that can only be described as a nightmare.
If nothing else, “Twisted” serves as a warning to other young woman who might be tempted by the flush of “easy” money presented by soliciting themselves. Throughout the story Julia is constantly forced into actions she neither desires, nor wants; is frequently subjected to almost lethal (if not stupid) levels of intoxicants, and allows others to use her in practically every manner. If there were a “how not to do this” manual, this would be it.
I suppose the saddest aspect of Julia’s life is that sex itself is relegated into something mundane or even disgusting. As an erotica author myself, I was almost offended at the demeaning way the act of sex is treated in “Twisted,” yet I know that the reality is exactly as Ms. Smirnova has described. It is a conceit amongst men that prostitutes “enjoy it,” that they are nothing more than walking sex dolls, constantly horny, always willing to “put out,” and that the money is only to abate the unattractive traits or desires of their clients. Julia’s experience exposes that conceit and reminds us that the act of sex, even between two strangers, is not just a physical exertion with a hedonistic ending, but an emotional one as well. For Julia, each client damaged her psyche just a little more and she turned to drugs and booze to cope. Hopefully "Twisted" will cause every male who frequents "houses of ill repute" to treat these women with a modicum of respect.
In summary, "Twisted" is an amazing book that is well written and provocative, but despite it's appetizing cover and the teaser, can not be considered erotica in any sense of the word. I give "Twisted" a strong 8 out of 10, even though I generally rank for the eroticism of a story. This book is still a worthwhile read.
Twisted is available in e-book format from Amazon.com, as well as Barnes & Nobel and can be purchased in hardback as well from the publisher.
You can also visit the author's website and blog.
This book was provided free to the reviewer in return for an honest review
Wednesday, June 18, 2014
Her latest story is called Hide & Seek, is only sixteen pages in length and can be literally read in about twenty minutes. It's priced at 99 cents, which is a relief since Felicity's publisher seems to normally think they can foist short to medium length stories off on the unsuspecting public as novels, with similar prices. (Note to Wildheart Books: 50k words makes a novel.) Even then Hide & Seek, due to its length, is only barely worth the coin.
That said, Hide & Seek itself showcases author Felicity Brandon's quality descriptive writing. She is articulate, understands timing and tension, and uses actions to reveal deeper motives within her characters. Hide & Seek, for all intents and purposes, is a short story designed to titillate the senses. For what it is, I have to say that it has been written well. It's arousing, intriguing, and delightfully playful, perfect for a little out loud reading while having your favorite subbie strapped down to something while a feather and your purple wand alternatively dance across their skin. It's short enough that you can read it one session, and just fun enough that it can certainly prime the pump for whatever you and the previously mentioned subbie might get up to.
But there are some negatives. Hide & Seek is nothing but porn without plot. It's a journal entry, written in first person (I did this) and then again in present tense (I write this), a narrative and tense mode I find absurdly simplistic unless combined with complicated plots or in-depth characters (and I don't mean the capacity to take a twelve inch long dildo when I mean depth.) The characters in Hide & Seek have no name and little to no description. Everything is about the action and emotion of the main character, the submissive girl who likes to start off her sexual games by hiding from her lover like a recalcitrant child. Even here I was disappointed. Of all the fun games we played as children, an adult version sounds like something I'd like to try. Unfortunately Hide & Seek quickly becomes a spanking game and has little to do with hiding or seeking.
I would have preferred meeting our main character out and about in a mall, fearfully looking over her shoulder, wondering if or when he will find her. She darts into a clothing store, looking around, only to jump in shock as his hand closes down upon her arm. She is found, and the punishment is a new toy for her to endure, a plug, nipple clamps, or a vibrator perhaps, and he takes a single article of clothing, leaving her something terribly slutty in exchange. Then back out into the mall with a five minute head start. Now THAT'S a game of Hide & Seek. End it with the spanking and sex and I'm hooked.
I definitely think it's time for Felicity to get serious about her writing. She's obviously a talented wordsmith who can craft a simple tale, but now I want to read something erotically charged with her unique turn of phrase and capacity at description, with a viable plot that isn't merely a description of a fun evening at home. I need adventure, excitement... and purpose would be nice too. For 99 cents I guess Hide & Seek is worth it, but be prepared for the quick dip in the pool this is. Felicity is ready (and needs) to play more serious games than Hide & Seek. Seven out of ten on this one.
You can get your copy of Felicity Brandon's Hide & Seek at Amazon.com.
Tuesday, April 8, 2014
As expected for a male written BDSM lesbian story, the focus was centered more on the action than the emotion. After reading female written lesbian stories the best analogy I can give is that these stories are like oral sex. A man can perform cunnilingus on a woman and she'll enjoy the experience because it is intense and rough and direct. Or a woman can perform cunnilingus on a woman and she'll enjoy the experience because it is intense, delicate, and all encompassing. Point being both experiences are enjoyable, but very different, and for entirely opposite reasons.
In a nut shell Hailey's Capture is about a BDSM dominatrix who enjoys luring teenage girls to her home, then sexually tormenting them. Weston's story doesn't really have a plot beyond what the dominatrix does to her fresh victim, but it doesn't need to. I myself write plenty of stories that I condemn with the phrase "porn without plot." That's not the point of these kinds of tales. Besides, the reality is that Weston has an inventive mind and while the circumstances of his story are common and found elsewhere, the devil is in the details and his are exquisite.
The best scene in the entire story is where Hailey is bound upright into the Dominatrix's fucking machine, then stuffed with an anal electrode, along with electric clamps on her nipples and a suction cup on her clit. And as poor little Hailey endures the non-stop pounding of the six inch long synthetic cock, the dominatrix leaves. Perfect.
The end of the story is a setup for a part two or a sequel. It doesn't matter which actually because part one is a self-contained tale all by itself. This is the mark of an author who understands the concept of episodic writing, an understanding that is quite rare on the BDSM Library. Even better, the story is relatively well written, in first person, and I didn't see any major errors to distract the readers. That's always nice.
I'm hoping Mr. Weston writes a part two or a sequel to this fun, little tale. Why? Because I want to see how long Hailey spends on that machine! I give this tale 9 out of 10.
Read "Hailey's Capture" by Bryan Weston.
Friday, September 6, 2013
Stephanie's marriage is in shambles and past events have left her emotionally and physically stressed. Unsure of her husband's love, Stephanie enrolls them both, without his knowledge, in a BDSM reality television game show, hoping that the shock, sex, and intensity of the competition will bring Mark back to her. But the risks she undertakes are high, perhaps too high. Check out the free sample!
Get Michael Alexander's latest novel! Now available from Amazon.com!
Monday, July 15, 2013
|Noosed Beauty - HangNaked|
I just finished the incredibly short story "You Do the Crime, You Pay the Time" by A.P. Damien over at the BDSM Library. Normally I wouldn't write a review for a story like this, but since the library's rating system is still down, I find myself even more motivated to leave feedback for authors.
The first thing I want to note about the story is that it is not in a standard format. It's more of a dialog and thought recording between the girl and her executioner. The author, A.P. Damien actually does a decent job in separating the thoughts and dialog between the two characters, using a combination of symbols, italics, and font color. That said, it almost feels more like a script lacking set descriptions. Very strange.
But despite the fact that there are no narrative descriptions, the author does a good job in using his characters to set the stage. And it's not obvious either. There's no "Oh look! A noose that's made of soft rope attached to a boom arm that swings, underneath a small platform." The descriptions are sufficient to provide a basic outline and the action of the story takes the reader along without need for anything more specific. I like authors who can allow a reader's imagination to handle so much without making it a strain.
The characters themselves are simple, yet intriguing. No one is named, except for absent Master Damien (the author himself?) who has ordered the events of the evening. But while neither character has a name, their attitudes define them quite well, and since the author grants us private access into their thought processes, it opens up a relationship that feels deeper than the mere dialog would have provided.
The plot is simple. Slave girl has messed up and is sent, unknowingly, to her execution. Master Damien has requested death by hanging, as well as having his "former" slave girl screwed in the rear. The executioner is a gentle man, which is a sweet irony, and he pleasures her to orgasm before finally allowing the noose to cut of her air.
The story is ridiculously short, but it is sweet, and despite the funky format, has a lot going for it. I'm going to give it a very strong 7 out of 10, and admit this almost made an 8.
To read "You do the Crime, You do the Time" by A.P. Damien, click here.