Tour’s Books Blog

August 27, 2010

New Concepts Publishing – 3 Books; Erotica – Shapeshifter to Futuristic

New Concepts Press has several very reliable authors in their stable, the two I read most are Madelaine Montague and Kaitlyn O’Connor and this lot was no different.  NCP does not release books on any particular schedule, so it’s not a site I check on any regular schedule.

So here we go, with the Good, the Bad, and the Really Icky.

  • Title: Dragon’s Blood
  • Author:  Madelaine Montague
  • Type:  Paranormal erotic romance; ménage or polyandry
  • Genre: Dragons living hidden among Native Americans
  • Sub-genre:  FBI recruit finds herself pregnant and confused about a bear attack
  • My Grade: C+  (3.4*)
  • Rating:  NC-17 to X
  • Length and price:  Full novel about 80,000 words ebook for $5.99
  • Where Available:  book available at New Concepts Publishing book store online
  • FTC Disclosure:  purchased book from publisher’s website

Madelaine Montague tends to follow a formula in her ménage/polyandrous stories and this one has many of her trademark plot elements, but she added enough twists to make this work, but left too many loose ends and undeveloped characters to really kick it up to her usual level.

Marlee Madison is in the last stage of field qualification to get her dream job of FBI field agent.  It’s a exercise in remote park on a reservation that is rapidly becoming a nightmare.  Her radio isn’t working, night is falling fast and she’s God knows where and can’t find or contact any of the teams.  She scrambles up a cliff toward a cave and startles a bear.  Bears being bears, it ends in her being mauled badly.  She remembers very little after that except pain and then something happened – she has a vague memory of lust and sex, but damned if she’s sharing that with the FBI psychs.  Six weeks later, undergoing yet another physical by the government doctors, warning bells go off.   The doc is telling her she’s pregnant and acting very strangely about it.  She hasn’t had sex in months and there’s all these damn blood tests.  Keeping her cool, she gets out, goes home and goes on the run.  She can’t fully remember what really happened that night, but she’s worried the child she’s carrying might be an ‘alien’ baby.

Brothers Eli and John find a dying human female.  Though they attack and kill the bear mauling her, she’s just too badly injured.  But something drives Eli to try and save her using the healing properties of their dragon saliva.  The two brothers do what they when they themselves are injured, they lick her wounds.   Amazingly, it seems to be working.  But something else is happening too.  The brothers are going into mating heat attracted by the pheromones of a female in heat.  The fight the urges but as Marlee heals quickly, the urge to breed is too much and they fight for the right to breed her egg.

They set her away from their den where the FBI can find her.  She has no memory of the events beyond being mauled.  The FBI finds her shredded clothes covered in blood,  the dead bear with her DNA on its teeth and claws, and reason for her having no wounds.  Bits come back to her – then she’s told she’s pregnant by FBI doctor in such a way that leaves her frightened by exactly what the agency wants from her.  She runs and eventually circles back to where the whole thing happened, wondering if she was taken by aliens.  There she learns the story of a female dragon who assumed the form on a beautiful blond maiden and sought a mate among the Native Americans in exchange for her protection of their territory.  Jealous women lead the invading Spaniards to her lair and she dies protecting her young.  Little does Marlee know those young are still alive and the very handsome group of men holding her at their house.  Along the way, she ends up getting involved with a third brother, Gabriel.

The trouble starts and the brothers take her to their remote house to keep her safe.  The story is fairly interesting, but lacked the kind of details that would make it work.  I found the characters lacked life and verve and there was too much repetition.  I got really tired of hearing that damn dragon legend and the same old bickering among the brothers.  The dialogue is flat and lacks the kind of wit I’m used to in her books.  A very ‘Meh’ kind of read.

Was Dragon Blood worth $5.99?  Barely.  It was better than some books out there, but not up to the best she’s written.

*********************************************************************

  • Title: The Gladiator’s
  • Author:  Kaitlyn O’Connor
  • Type:  Paranormal futuristic erotic romance; ménage or polyandry
  • Genre: Second book in the Hirachi series after The Spawning
  • Sub-genre:  Scientist working on alien technology gets too curious and ends up on a space slave ship; Hirachi gladiators help save her
  • My Grade: C+  (3.4*)
  • Rating:   X to XX
  • Length and price:  Full novel about 80,000 words ebook for $5.99
  • Where Available:  book available at New Concepts Publishing book store online
  • FTC Disclosure:  purchased book from publisher’s website

This is one of two books by Kaitlyn O’Connor I bought in this round.  I liked The Spawning, so I give this a try.  Here, as in The Spawning, the Hirachi are being held against their will, but here they are enslaved and forced to fight for their owners as a kind of entertainment similar to Roman gladiators.  They’re held by virtue of collars that will explode should they try to escape – a tried and true plot device used in many books and movies.

Loren Hess is a science geek who went to work for the government on a top secret project reverse engineering alien technology.  After a few years she realizes not one item she’s been given has any sign of damage, something you would expect from a crash sight.   When she starts asking questions, she’s told to be at a certain place at a certain – and ends up abducted to sold as a slave on a space station.  Bought by an ugly alien, she a another American end up in cages where the gladiators can see them and lust for them.  They are the prizes they will fight for.  Three Hirachi warriors become very attracted to her.  With an implant she finds they can communicate – and this part gets really annoying with the broken language.  Damn it gets old.

The day of the games the women are paraded out by their owner – but something very unexpected happens, the 12 Hirachi in the group all enter Spawning and literally run off with their selected prizes, overwhelming anyone in their way, including the owner.  Kael, Daakar, and Balen are in spawning fever and all possess Loren.  The aftermath brings two things – the fear festering in the owner might bring deadly reprisal, and the Hirachi fear Loren is pregnant and they must get her to safety.  The escape is planed with Loren’s engineering help and she and the women she befriends make it off with the 12 Hirachi and the few warriors they selected as being honorable enough to know about the escape plan – but Loren and the other women are attacked by the other gladiators with the deliberate planning and encouragement of the owner.  The Hirachi break free and their bid for freedom brings them back to the very ship and slave trader that brought them to the awful space station.

The remainder or the story includes the cultural conflicts between human and other species and the philosophical views of the world.  There are some interesting conflicts that play out, but none in depth.  Still, the story holds up well.  Like too many books of late, regardless of genre, the ending seems rushed and incomplete.

While I found the storyline interesting, the choppy language that was supposedly caused by the language implants became annoying and distracting for me.  It severely limited articulation of much need dialogue.

Was The Gladiator’s worth $5.99.  Well, it’s not as good as his best, but it’s a decent read.  Her formula is getting a bit set and needs some mixing up to freshen the relationships.  As with her Cyborg series, the relationship is poly-amorous rather than true ménage.

**************************************************

  • Title: Deep Penetration
  • Author:  Kaitlyn O’Connor
  • Type:  Futuristic erotic BDSM romance; ménage or polyandry
  • Genre: Sex slavery for breeding
  • Sub-genre:  Dying alien race that somehow fathered early man return to resurrect humans as breeders
  • My Grade: B-  (3.6*) but F (0*) for enjoyment
  • Rating:  XXX – includes mechanical rape and sex as torture
  • Length and price:  Plus novel about 80,000 words ebook for $6.99
  • Where Available:  book available at New Concepts Publishing book store online
  • FTC Disclosure:  purchased book from publisher’s website

OK, so let me start by saying Deep Penetration was very well written, the premise believable, but the BDSM part was not consensual and I found the whole thing very distasteful.

The story is of a human woman ‘resurrected’ from trace DNA by a group of humanoid scientists that have come to a future Earth to collect their ‘children’ needed as breeders to enlarge the gene pool of the ‘parent’ race.  But these superior beings are anything but human in how they deal with those they have successfully resurrected.   Actually, ‘resurrection’ is more a regeneration or regrowth.  That is, unlike a clone, the person that is created through this process has all the memories of the original, they just have a new body.  This has led to a civilization of near immortals that have a deeply skewed view of sentient species, especially their ‘children.’

Anunnaki scientists have come to a future post-apocalypse Earth hunting for viable DNA to ‘resurrect’ sex slaves for their homeworld.  Earth perished in a battle with Anunnaki in an attempt to prevent people from being taken as slaves.  Technologically superior,the practice of ‘resurrection’ among the Anunnaki has lead to a stagnant society and dwindling DNA base.  But they view the ‘children’ they’ve seeded various worlds with as low slave fodder.

Tariqu is the leader of the expedition and of rank among the people while scientist Koryn is in charge of locating and resurrecting DNA samples, which have been few and far between.  More troubling is the fact that those who are resurrected seem defective.  Their memories are incomplete and they can go mad.  Implants will stop that, but their usefulness as breeders is limited.  These children are view as sex slaves, nothing more, and have no status or rights among the Anunnaki.

Emerald is resurrected, but unlike the others, her memories are coming back.  She was a solider – all those being resurrected from this site were.  It makes them even less desirable, but Emerald is a much coveted redhead and she rejects the idea of sex slavery.  This is where I got into trouble.  By attaching a cuff to Emeralds ankle, she is prevented from achieving orgasm.  Now if that not bad enough, they use mechanical torture to rape her for hours, leaving her at the peak of need yet never satisfied.  I found this whole thing stomach churning and despite the fact that the so-called heroes found it equally hard, and did it because she had to be broken or it would be worse at the hands of others smacked of the kind of justification used by every in history from barbarian hordes to the Nazis.  No, I don’t buy the logic.

I will say Ms O’Connor tried to find a balance and did a fair job of making the physiological and psychological torture realistic, if somewhat too creepy and gross, and she let the two ‘heroes’ off the hook for what they did.  I could find no pleasure in this story and the description from NCP really should have carried a rape/torture waning.

While I could admire Ms O’Connor’s plotting and the intensity of of her scenes, I feel the medical issues and permanent psychological scarring were soft pedaled.  I’m not a fan of forgiveness and loving your torturer, though I can see how someone who has been broken might become attached.  NCP did have one thing right, this is not for the faint of heart – or those with weak stomachs.

The ending addresses few complex issues about the whole concept of resurrected dead, not to mention the whole philosophical quagmire of life, death, and soul – and certainly various religious views.  If you believe is spiritual life as something apart from corporeal, certainly resurrection would be an abomination.  Do you bring back a body or are you bringing back a spirit that has the right to pass on in another plane of existence?  Perhaps this is too esoteric for such a book, but it is fundamental to the views toward those who are resurrected by those who are not.

While there were some thought provoking ideas here, I found the Nazi style logic too distasteful for me, so in the end, I found the heroes distasteful to an extent they were unforgivable.  It was a better book than The Gladiators, but I found neither entertainment nor pleasure in it.

Was Deep Penetration worth $6.99?  Not to me.  Redemption came to cheaply for people who had too many times sent others into a kind of slavery that is awful beyond words.  Not a pleasant read by any measure and not something I can recommend.

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