Tour’s Books Blog

January 8, 2010

Three Erotic Romance Short Reviews Including A New Release

OK, let’s continue with the erotic romance short reviews.  Honestly, The Lost Symbol by Dan Brown couldn’t get more boring and tedious if it tried, so I have to read it in small sections to prevent a narcoleptic attack.   I’ve been using my windfall of erotic romance and a HUGE stack of new paranormal releases as a distraction.  Hallowed Circle by Linda Robertson,author of Vicious Circle, is calling me.  Loudly!  But first, some more erotic romance – some Si-fi, some shifter, some suspense and well, you get the picture.

  • Title: Planet Mail
  • Author: Kate Pearce
  • Type:  Si-fi erotic romance
  • Genre: Alternate world; crash landing in a king’s bed
  • Sub-genre: Ordinary woman save an entire planet and finds true love
  • My Grade: C (3.0*)
  • Rating: xxx
  • Length and price: Short novel for $10.99, but available for less as ebook, used, an on sale
  • Where Available: Mostly at Ellora’s Cave and occasionally from book stores and used book sites
  • FTC Disclosure: Purchased from publisher

Douglass Fraser is the future of UPS, she flies a delivery ship for United Planetary Parcel Services (UPPS – though occasionally they spell the acronym wrong in the book – one of those eye-rolling moments of bad proofreading).  Something happens to her ship and she ends up crash landing on a planet well off the usual interplanetary shipping routes.  Her rescuer is Marcus Blood Axe, the ‘King’, who had enjoyed some intimate time with a woman in a village the night before.  He’s still feeling the affects of his evening – which he can’t really recall.    Douglass is taken away and three gorgeous men are now there to pleasure her – but no sex.  Only the King can do that.  Still, if you have to be stranded and left waiting for rescue, a male harem isn’t a bad thing.  The men are to keep her ready and aroused for the king.  (Why is that seen as exciting?  It’s damn uncomfortable and it also causes all manner of health issues.)

Marcus takes Douglass as his main concubine.  She learns that there’s a huge problem with the women have successful pregnancies and births.   Marcus is not uninformed about space travel, having descended from space vikings, but his planet rarely gets interstellar visitors.  He and Douglass develop an unusual relationship, well, unusual for his people.  Then something totally unexpected happens – the girl Marcus spent the night with in the distant village claims she carries his child.  Law requires her take her as him main wife.

Up to this point the story was at least somewhat believable for an erotic romance, but the whole series of revelations about the cause of the pregnancy issues and who carries what the King’s child – well let’s just say the stellar equivalent of a delivery truck driver might have some of Douglass’s skills, but give me a break on the whole sudden brilliant insight thing and parcel delivery person as planet savior.  Overall, it was a shallow and mostly entertaining, but the last part of the book sort of diminished my positive feelings.  The characters are rather shallow, and given the short format, you can’t expect much more.  The series of conflicts that drive Douglass and Marcus apart were sound, but frankly, Douglass did everything except walk on water by the end of Planet Mail and that sent it from a good read to an average one.  The sex is very hot, which along with the problems that drive Marcus and Douglass apart forms the good core of the book.  Is it worth $10.99, no, but it’s enough fun if you can get it at half price or less, buy it.  Or just buy the ebook.

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  • Title: Shifter’s Captive
  • Author: Bonnie Dee
  • Type: Paranormal Erotic Romance
  • Genre: Shifter’s and sex magic
  • Sub-genre: Ordinary woman discovers extraordinary powers through sex
  • My Grade: C- (2.8*)
  • Rating: xx
  • Length and price: Short novel, about 50,000 words
  • Where Available: Currently available as an ebook from Samhain $4.95 on sale and $5.50 starting next week.
  • FTC Disclosure: ebook purchased from publisher’s website

I’m a sucker for shifter ménage.  The new release, Shifter’s Captive, was right up my alley.  That usually means I’m heavily biased in favor of the book, but isn’t the case.  Shifter’s Captive opens well enough with waitress Sherrie Stoltz walking home late at night from her waitressing job in Colorado.  She hears someone – and maybe something, following her and just as she’s about to open her door, a rag is shoved in her face and the fumes cause her to pass out.  She wakes in a grimy cabin in the mountains and hears the voices of two men discussing her and she is to help them.  Frightened and confused thinking she’s been abducted by a serial killer.  She hears two male voices, but she’s blindfolded and tied up.  Finally she’s released by John Walker, a man about her own age.  He claims to be a werewolf and demonstrates the reality of it by shifting.  Being in a small cabin in the woods with a wold panics, Sherrie further, but John scents his mate and he also scents her arousal, however unwilling.

John finally convinces her to at least see of of the sick children.  The parents are not especially welcoming, but she’s stunned to finds she can enter the child’s mind and she finds a malevolent force there, draining the child of all her life energy.   Back at the cabin, John a Sherrie yield to the growing sexual attraction they share.  Then another were approaches – a panther.  Panthers share territory with the wolves, but they are more solitary, so the illness went undetected longer.  Sherrie is convinces the three of them are supposed to be together.   The two males aren’t at all happy with each other, but panthers are neither monogamous nor do they have issues with various partners of either sex.  In the oft used ‘sex magic’ trope, it takes the three of them to give Sherrie the power to find the one responsible for ‘illness’.  It’s here that the story weakens a lot as the three venture up the mountain to find and destroy whatever or whoever is responsible for the deaths in the shifter communities.

Once again, the book had the bones of something worthwhile that was never more than shallow.  Characters are two dimensional and like all too short books, the sudden knowledge of never before explored powers and how to wield them to save the children was one not believable.  The sex was hot, the villain was kind of creepy, his end fitting, and the relationship between the three lead characters was pretty good, but the plot was too shallow and the whole resolution lacked tension and credibility.  It’s like inserting “and then a miracle happens here’ and POOF!, the solution is there.  A person who 4 days ago was diner waitress suddenly knows exactly how to fix a problem in a world she knew nothing about with powers she knows nothing about and has zero experience with.  Lord, does that annoy me.  Instant enlightenment you never have to work or train for.  Must be nice.  Like grabbinga kitchen knife and turning into Bobby Flay.

Was the book worth $4.95?  Not to me.  It had a load of potential that was not developed.  If you want lots of sex and the story can be superficial, then this would work for you.

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  • Title: To Trust a Wolf
  • Author: Kate Steele
  • Type: Erotic Paranormal Romance
  • Genre:  Shifter
  • Sub-genre: Alpha shifter with human mate
  • My Grade: C (3.0)
  • Rating: x
  • Length and price: Novella/Short novel about 45,000 words
  • Where Available: ebook and print available at Ellora’s Cave for $5.20 for the ebook and $10.99 for print
  • FTC Disclosure: Book purchased from publisher’s website

The first of 2 related werewolf books by Kate Steele – To Trust a Wolf and  To Tempt a Wolf.  Bryn Roydan has had it with men.  First her marriage ends in divorce when she realizes the man she married is a liar and a cheat and now she can’t find a man worth the effort.  Even her trusty vibrator has been letting her down!  Bryn is unloading all this on Clare over lunch, not realizing that none other than Logan Sutherland is busy listening to every word.  And Logan Sutherland makes her as nervous as a cat in a room of rocking chairs.  Bryn and her happily married friend Clare Henderson, run a bookstore in Whispering Springs and Logan has always been a good customer.  He even asked Bryn out and she found a reason to say no.  He knew about the messy divorce and he’s been giving Bryn the space she needs to heal, but his wolf is not happy about it and wants to claim its mate.  Logan mulls over all overheard and decodes it’s time.

One of the best scenes in the book is when Logan comes into the bookshop to pick up a book he ordered and asks Bryn out.  She claims to be a lesbian and Clare is her lover – and with her husband they have threesomes.  I was laughing out loud.  Respite her deep reluctance that with Logan she’ll be way over her head, she finally agrees.  Logan chose not to be a pack alpha, but he’s still an alpha wolf and he’s as domineering and controlling as any alpha and he’s wolf wants its mate!  Bryn escapes to go home, but not before wrings and agreement for dinner the next evening – and claims her with a searing kiss in the parking lot.  Bryn calls him when she gets home and they end up having phone sex.

At the restaurant where they’re dining, Lillian Adair, a female werewolf with whom Logan had a brief association, and her current male  Reece Cofield, come to the table.  Bryn and Lillian exchange bards and the Lillian has an accident with her purse.  While everyone is distracted, she drugs Bryn’s drink.  As Logan is taking Bryn home, he realizes she been poisoned and calls a werewolf doctor to his house.  Bryn is vomiting up all her dinner, but it seems to be helping.  The doctor informs him that the drug with the telltale odor is a new werewolf drug among the younger set and it could have killed Bryn, but she should be alright.  After the near death of its mate, Logan’s wolf is demanding he claim their female.  One thing leads to another while Bryn recuperates at Logan’s house and he tells her he a werewolf and she’s his mate.  Then he does a striptease and shifts.  Bryn’s fear is overtaken by her curiosity and the beauty of the wolf.  Logan shifts back and claims his mate.

At this point the book is about half over, and the story up to here is solid, unfortunately the last half is much weaker, and rather boring.  It’s rare for me to say a book should have been shorter, but To Trust a Wolf would have been much better as a novella with a shortened last half to keep the story pacing tight and interesting.  The confrontation with Lillian could have happened much sooner.  The delat cuased the book to lose a lot of steam and just sort of limp along to the end.  Is it worth the money?  To Trust a Wolf in print is $10.99 or $5.20 as an ebook.  It’s worth a read, but I’d suggest buying used, on sale or as an ebook, but don’t spend more than $5.00 or so, because that’s about what you’ll get out of it.

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