Trouble Tied Up by Maxine Marsh


Trouble Tied Up by Maxine Marsh
Publisher: Evernight Publishing
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Short story (78 pages)
Other: BDSM, M/F, Toys, Spanking
Rating: 3 stars
Reviewed by Fern

One night, in a small town in Texas, Clayton and DJ meet and have a one-night stand. He’s a serious dominant at heart who’s lost his perfect submissive and DJ is responsive to his ways but is trying to stay out of trouble after getting paroled from prison.

In the end they believe what’s done is done—they go their separate ways. The next day it turns out that DJ is starting a new job at a horse rehabilitation ranch—and Clayton’s her boss.

Clayton liked his work and his routine and was perfectly happy with nothing and no one upsetting either of them. One night he notices a stranger at the local bar and after he gives DJ a lift to the local motel he can’t resist when she invites him inside. He knows she might be trouble – but for once he’s willing to risk his routine and carefully ordered life. The next morning Clayton discovers DJ is actually his newly hired ranch-hand and Clayton knew they were both in for far more trouble than he’d initially realized.

This is a steamy-hot story with a deliciously spicy hint of kink to it. There’s quite an age-gap between Clayton and DJ, but neither of them find that a problem, particularly considering they have sex within minutes of meeting each other. I liked how there was a number of layers to DJ in particular and while there was some plot to the story, to me it was clearly all about the kinky sex and growing relationship between Clayton and DJ. Much of the first half of the story is based on DJ and Clayton solidifying their relationship – so I feel that readers looking for a well-fleshed out plot might find this aspect of the story a little disappointing until close to the end of the story.

While the heat and growing intimacy between Clayton and DJ can’t be denied, I’m not entirely sure this story will appeal to everyone. Clayton has a talent for treating, taming and corralling wild and damaged horses and he views his sexual appetites into BDSM in a very similar manner. It felt like – in Claytons mind at least – taming and “breaking” a filly was truly on par with enticing DJ as his new lover and introducing her to the aspects of BDSM that he craved. The similarities between Clayton treating the abused horses and his wooing and taming of DJ walked a very fine to my mind and I felt very slightly uncomfortable sometimes while reading this story. I generally think of myself as being fairly broad minded when reading so I’m not sure if this just didn’t fully appeal to me personally or if perhaps the comparisons might not hit the right note with other readers either. I ended up deciding it was one of those polarizing things – I think some readers will be like me and find it didn’t hit the mark, but others will absolutely love this and be deeply affected – so it will certainly be a matter of taste, I think.

A spicy and definitely unique BDSM read this was a good book with strong and complicated characters. Clayton and DJs antics won’t be to everyone’s tastes, but the heat and chemistry between them was undeniable to me and although uncomfortable in places I enjoyed this different and interesting read.

City of Endless Night by Emma Holly


City of Endless Night by Emma Holly
Publisher: Self-Published
Genre: Paranormal, Contemporary
Length: Full Length (184 pgs)
Other: BDSM, M/F, M/F/M, M/M, F/M/M, Ménage, Masturbation, Anal Play, Voyeurism
Rating: 4.5 stars
Reviewed by Xeranthemum

When your boyfriend is a real live angel other men can’t compete. Amateur magician Georgie swears this is true . . . until she and Connor leave everything they know to save the genie world. That’s where she discovers angels don’t have a monopoly on sex appeal. Sultan Iksander would rather lose his smoke than fall for Georgie, no matter how smart and brave she is. The human race are rivals to genie kind—and angels are just traitors! Rescuing his people is what’s important, not getting tangled up in love triangles. Only Connor believes in their chances for happiness. This angel knows love is worth fighting for, whatever form it takes.

Fans of erotic romance and of Emma Holly are in for a royal treat. This novel follows the adventures of His Majesty, Iksander, Sultan of the Djinn, Georgie and Connor. My wait is over. This is the story that ties up almost all of the threads created in the first book in the Tales of the Djinn series and I enjoyed every exciting moment.

There is so much to choose from that I’m not sure what to talk about first. There’s the stolen magic, the realization that something big and dangerous is threatening Luna’s people and it has Georgie in its sights, there is are explorations with gruesome discoveries and more than one courageous escape attempt that kept me on the edge of my seat. When Ms. Holly focuses on creating an environment of suspense, and drama with nail-biting heart thumping action, it’s practically impossible to put down.

When the two heroes and heroine finally come to the realization that they have sexual feelings for each other, and get past the tentative exploration that seduces them with all the possibilities of a ménage à trois, Ms. Holly lets her imagination fly. I like how Iksander, Connor and Georgie took turns being unsure, cautious yet excited to explore how each of them tastes, feels and what each of them enjoys. I liked seeing their reactions while experimenting with things they had never done before. No holds barred. Erotic romance readers will find what they look for within the pages of City of Endless Night.

A heads up about Connor’s role for readers who might not be comfortable with angels having carnal relations, Connor’s not shy. Ms. Holly mixed things up with classic beliefs and there were quite a few times I cringed but mostly I kind of forgot what Connor was because the story, action and plot twists were incredible page turners. By keeping in mind this is fiction and utilizing willing suspension of disbelief, I enjoyed a really awesome read. The imaginative idea of split energies, both good and evil, and how light defeats dark, is incredibly appealing.

The last ditch effort to escape and return home was quite the thrill ride. The author painted the scene in vivid detail – the tunnel with the scales was a cool concept. What they discover inside was a colossal surprise and pretty weird. But, hey, this is the world of the Djinn – anything is possible.

When I said earlier that almost all the threads are tied up, that’s because there is the matter of Phillip. He’s still out there, somewhere and I hope he’s okay. Only Ms. Holly knows for sure and I look forward to finding out that the reason he can’t be found because he’s in the middle of his own HEA. One can only hope.

City of Endless Night is simply amazing. The HEA and wrap up was everything I could wish. All my favorite people were gathered together to celebrate and it made me feel good that Cade, Arcadius and Elyse are still living their happy ever after too. I guess a reader could read this book out of sequence but understanding how everyone came to be split in the first place would be much clearer if they started with The Guardian.Tales of the Djinn is a great series and if erotic readers haven’t discovered it yet, they’re missing out.

One Night in Havana by Kathleen Rowland


One Night in Havana by Kathleen Rowland
Publisher: Tirgearr Publishing
Genre: Suspense/Mystery, Action/Adventure, Contemporary
Length: Short Story (84 pages)
Other: M/F, BDSM (Biting)
Rating: 3 Stars
Reviewed by Astilbe

A desperate competition and sizzling attraction leads to dangerous desire.

New York Marine biologist Veronica “Roni” Keane is attending the Havana Bay Conference in Cuba. Tomorrow only one grant will be awarded which will provide the winner with professional recognition, resources for a project, and living expenses for two years. She hopes to continue her deceased father’s work, but smooth operator, Carlos Montoya, has won many grants in the past.

Carlos, a freelancer for the Havana Port Authority, works to help protect Havana’s reputation as a bastion of safety. As international travelers flock to the island, attracted by its 1950’s time-warp and colonial architecture, the drug business is running rampant, particularly on Roni’s cruise ship. Something’s not right, and when her scuba tanks are tampered with, Carlos brings in the military police to investigate. For her safety, he keeps her close, but he craves her body.

Their attraction leads to a fun night with a bit of kink. But Roni finds herself in more trouble than she bargained for when the criminals blame her for alerting the military police and come looking for her. Can Roni trust Carlos to protect her? Will she stay in Havana if Carlos wins the coveted grant, or kiss her lover goodbye?

Sometimes danger can be the most powerful aphrodisiac of them all.

Ms. Rowland’s descriptions of the scenery were so vivid that they made me feel like I’d been to Cuba even though I’ve never actually been to that country in real life. The beaches sounded gorgeous at any time of the day or night. I also enjoyed the descriptions she gave of what Cuban culture is like. It wasn’t something I knew much about at all, so I was glad that she spent so much time showing how Cuba is different from other parts of the world.

The chemistry between Roni and Carlos never felt right to me. The plot didn’t spend very much time developing these characters, so it was hard for me to figure out what their personalities were like and why they were so attracted to each other. Having more details about who these people were would have made it a lot easier to root for them to end up together.

My favorite scenes were the ones that focused on why Roni’s scuba equipment was tampered with and how the authorities reacted to that. Not only were they fast-paced and exciting, they placed the main characters in so much peril that I couldn’t wait to find out how they might escape. I actually read the whole story in one siting because I couldn’t bear to put it down until I knew how everything would turn out.

If you’re in the mood for an erotic mystery, One Night in Havana is a good place to start.

Claiming Ruby by Scarlett Sanderson


Claiming Ruby by Scarlett Sanderson
Publisher: Self-Published
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Short Story (118 pages)
Other: BDSM, M/F, Spanking, Voyeurism, Toys, Multiple Partners (M/F/M/M), Menage, M/F/M/M, Fetish (Wax play)
Rating: 3 stars
Reviewed by Fern

Ruby has a secret. Beneath her prissy exterior lies a submissive in desperate need of a Master. After her past disastrous attempt at exploring her fantasies, she buried her cravings deep and told herself she’d be fine without giving in to them. Then she meets Joshua. He’s everything she’s ever fantasized about—and everything she’s feared.

Joshua didn’t start out wealthy—he’s an ex-marine who made his fortune after seeing his fair share of war. His wealth and lavish lifestyle are nothing next to his driving need to claim Ruby for his own. He’d give up everything to collar her for a lifetime, and he’ll have to use every sinful dominant trick he knows to make her let him in.

Ruby wasn’t really a part of the BDSM lifestyle. Her co-worker and good friend, Jamie, had a part-time gig as an on-stage submissive. Ruby often went along to the privately held parties Jamie worked at, helping Jamie before and after the sessions with her costuming and make up. Only there, in the background of these private parties could Ruby safely fantasize, to imagine what it would be like if she were the perfect submissive, up on that stage being treated like a much-loved toy by her Master. During one performance Ruby notices a handsome stranger, and she’s put off balance when she realizes he’s just as interested in her. Could this man fulfill her every fantasy?

This is a steamy and well written story, definitely not for the faint of heart. It absolutely has some strongly worded language and if you blush easily I’d recommend you read this in private – not on a public commute to work or where you’ll get curious glances. I loved the pacing of the story – I felt the introductions to Ruby and Joshua in particular were excellently written and drew me right in almost immediately. As a reader I felt initially that I connected quickly to Ruby and found her to be a relatable character I could sympathize with. She had plenty of desires but after being burned in the past she squashed them all firmly. After the story swapped to Joshua’s perspective I also found him a lovely character I really wanted to know more about. As the story progressed there are some strong secondary characters that are also introduced and (I hope!) main characters of the two upcoming books in the series.

I found there to be plenty of sex, and while kinky and extremely detailed I also definitely found there to be an emotional connection between Ruby and Joshua. It’s a very fine line, but while I liked the emotional connection between them I didn’t really feel like there was a romantic link between them, and for me this was the main thing I found lacking in the story. I had no doubt that Ruby and Joshua lusted for each other, that they were sexually attracted and fitted together well. Their needs and desires were very well suited. But I didn’t really feel that the spark of romance was there between them and annoyingly (for me) I felt this was in large part due to Ruby – who simply would not let go of her previous bad experience and trust Joshua.

Why Ruby couldn’t see how she was constantly being set up – even after Joshua had proven himself and assured her multiple times – really annoyed me and squashed a bit of my enjoyment of the story. Mis-trusting your partner once, or in trying circumstances even twice, I can understand. But Ruby doubted Joshua over and over and it just got to the point where it really dragged the story down for me. A BDSM relationship in particular needs to be built on trust – if she constantly questioned his loyalty, how can I believe she’d trust him to do kinky things to her? I really wanted to shake Ruby near the end of the story, which was sad because there’s so many other excellent things that I genuinely enjoy here. The sex scenes were delicious, I was very intrigued by Joshua’s friends and hope they get their own stories and much of the BDSM club scenes were really interesting.

With a couple of major exceptions this is a good story and strongly written. I will certainly be keeping an eye out for the next two in the series.

Trading Tridents by C.M. Taylor


Trading Tridents by C.M. Taylor
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Short story (32 pages)
Other: BDSM, M/M
Rating: 3.5 stars
Reviewed by Fern

DecemberCon 2017. John Perlan, aka YouTuber “SmileyNibor,” has come to the con for one reason and one reason only: to see his idol, actor Derek Kitow. And since Derek has announced he’ll be dressed as the original Aquaman, Perlan decides to come as the Aquaman reboot. It helps that he already has the beard and the bod to make a convincing Momoaman.

But when Derek Kitow makes his entrance, he recognizes Perlan from his tiny YouTube channel and wants him onstage! Has Kitow been following him online? Could SmileyNibor’s hero also be a fan? And what exactly does Kitow have in mind by inviting Perlan to meet him after the panel?

Although he won’t admit it to his two best friends, there’s really only one reason John is attending DecemberCon – and that’s for the chance to meet Derek Kitow, tv star. When Derek invites John up on stage with him, John is positive his life will never be the same again.

I found this to be a fun short story written in the first-person perspective. John is an average guy with a massive crush, but unlike most of us average people he not only gets to meet the object of his affections, but actually get to know the man behind the public persona too. While in a couple of places I needed as a reader to suspend disbelief (like would a tv star really watch, know and recognize a small-time YouTuber with only a thousand fans?) overall the fun tone of the story helped me roll with it and just enjoy the plot for what it was. And boy was I glad I kept reading – because there’s a few kinks and twists in the storyline that had me giggling and raising my eyebrows.

This is not your average fan-meets-their-crush sort of tale. At least, it’s not like any other story I have read. There’s a bit of light, tastefully written kink that I loved (but which admittedly completely took both me and John’s character by surprise) and a strong Happy For Now ending that left me feeling satisfied.

Except for occurring in December there isn’t really much of a Christmassy feel about the story, but to be honest I didn’t mind that at all. Derek and John’s characters – as well as John’s two friends as secondary characters – filled the story just fine without any crammed-in Christmas-ness. Their antics was plenty to keep me interested and eagerly turning the pages.

A quickly read short story with some laughs and some sizzling sex, this was a great read that I really enjoyed.

No One Until Her by Lynn Burke


No One Until Her by Lynn Burke
Publisher: Evernight Publishing
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Short Story (48 pgs)
Other: M/F, BDSM, Spanking, Toys, M/F/M interaction, Multiple Partners
Rating: 3.5 stars
Reviewed by Nymphaea

Kaden Quinn has life by the balls and enjoys his side job as a Dom in a downtown Boston BDSM club. What he doesn’t want—or need—is a pseudo-sub trying to shred the veil that protects his painful past.

When untamed Livi Risso’s insatiable need to get to the bottom of a story leads her to an exclusive kink club, her curiosity ignites upon meeting a restrained Dom who refuses to touch her.

Kaden feigns disinterest while scening, but that doesn’t stop Livi from experiencing intimacy like she’s never imagined. When one misstep leaves Kaden shaken, will Livi be the one to break down his wall against love?

This book is seriously hot. Kaden isn’t a perfect hero. He’s got issues and I admired him for how he’d gotten through them. Livi is a good match for him. Their chemistry is off the charts and fun to read about.

There were a few typos and a couple of extra quotation marks, which was bothersome, but didn’t stop my enjoyment of the story. I liked that Kaden was flawed and trying to overcome his issues. That endeared him to me. I wish there would’ve been a few more flaws to Livi, though. She’s a tough as nails reporter, but she seemed almost too perfect. Still, I liked the story.

If you’re looking for a story involving a pain sub, then this might be the one you’re wanting. It’s hot, sweet, and will singe the screen.

A Different Kind of Therapy by Charlotte Howard


A Different Kind of Therapy by Charlotte Howard
Publisher: Evernight Publishing
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Short Story (48 pgs)
Other: M/F, BDSM, Spanking, Bondage, Toys
Rating: 3 stars
Reviewed by Nymphaea

Psychology student Hayley has always been intrigued by sexual fetishes, so when the chance to be mentored by renowned sexual therapist, Adrian De Silva comes up, she jumps at the chance. It soon becomes apparent that the kind of therapy Adrian offers is far from mainstream, and Hayley is introduced to the world of domination therapy. As her training begins, Hayley finds herself falling for her boss and dreaming of being his submissive. Then she meets her new client, and it is Hayley who must be the dominant one.

Will Hayley take to her new role? And how will her personal feelings affect her work? Can Hayley really provide A Different Kind of Therapy?

Hayley and Adrian are an interesting couple. He’s a therapist and she wants to be one. There’s only one problem—he deals with clients who need to be dominated as part of their therapy. He does the regular therapy role, too, but his emphasis is on the sexual side—without having sex. It’s an interesting theme for a book.

I did have a few quibbles. Her reaction to initially being called a Domme wasn’t what I’d expected and made me wonder if she could do the job she’d been hired for. Another thing that bothered me was how quickly she jumped into the situation with Adrian. I get that she’s wanting to help in his line of work, but they moved into the D/s relationship rather fast. While I get that she liked what they were doing, it just seemed…too fast. Like there should’ve been some more build-up. This was her first time having this kind of relationship and she threw herself into it, but it felt odd.

I liked the power exchange and the story is certainly hot. The ending is a tad blunt, but overall this is a sexy read that will certainly singe the screen.

Silver Fox by Julia Talbot


Silver Fox by Julia Talbot
Publisher: Changeling Press
Genre: Contemporary, Paranormal
Length: Short Story (44 pages)
Other: BDSM, M/M, Spanking, Anal Sex
Rating: 4 stars
Reviewed by Fern

Were-cougar Noah is bored out of his mind. He retired young after selling his start-up business, and now he has no idea what to do with himself. As a self-made man, he likes to be in control, but even his favorite pastimes have lost their luster these days.

Were-fox Toland meets Noah at Faster Bobcat, where his cousin works as a bartender. Experienced and dominant, Toland sets out to turn Noah’s world upside down, convince Noah he doesn’t always need to be the one on top. Can Noah be what Toland needs, or will he run from the one thing he can’t seem to turn down?

Noah could hardly believe it, but he was dead bored – even with all the delicious, scantily clad eye-candy surrounding him. Despite the fact there were plenty of men just his type around, Noah couldn’t raise any interest. Until his attention was captivated by Toland. Completely not his type, something about the tanned, silver haired man had Noah completely riveted. Could this be exactly what he needed?

I found this to be a super hot, really lovely short story. I’ve enjoyed some of the previous Faster Bobcat books in this series but strongly believe this can be read as a stand-alone book. Noah and Toland are front-and-centre of the entire book and aside from a mention of previous characters in the epilogue there’s no back-story or feeling that readers need to catch up on anything. I feel this can definitely be read without any previous experience in the series. I love the author’s style of writing and found myself almost immediately drawn in by Noah’s voice and I was eagerly turning the pages to find out what happened next. I loved how Noah was used to being in control and had never really wanted to bottom but how he felt the desire to explore new things with Toland. This was a slightly different outlook on the “reluctant submissive” style of story I’ve read before and it felt fresh, real and interesting to me.

The only very slight criticism I could put forward was that I didn’t get to see much inside Toland’s head. While I enjoyed his character and definitely felt a connection with Toland, the story is told mostly from Noah’s perspective (third person, which I greatly enjoyed) but this had me feeling like while I understood where Noah was coming from Toland was a little bit more of a mystery to me. The sex was deliciously hot and I thoroughly enjoyed how both men clearly felt a connection with each other from the start. This wasn’t just sex for the sake of it – or fucking added in to make the story steamy – this was two sensual, grown men starting a lovely relationship together and the sex deepened the connection and acted out on the attraction they each felt. There were light elements of BDSM in here – nothing that I found too harsh or envelope pushing, but readers should certainly take note if they like less spice in their romance stories.

A delightfully written and sensual M/M with a hint of BDSM spice that I greatly enjoyed. I can’t wait for the next book in the series.

The One That Got Away by Kaliana Cole


The One That Got Away by Kaliana Cole
Publisher: Siren Publishing
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Full length (236 Pages)
Other: BDSM, M/F, Anal Play, Toys
Rating: 4 Stars
Reviewed by Tulip

When Marley Richards finally finds her way into Andy Calhoun’s bed for one unforgettable night, it was everything she’d ever fantasized about, right up until he spoke four little words that shattered her dreams. “It was only sex.” He also gave her more than a broken heart.

Marley was the one that got away, but when Andy discovers the secret she holds, he begs her to let him back into her life. However, Marley has a list of demands for Liberty Spring’s Sheriff, starting with cooked breakfasts, foot rubs, and unreciprocated orgasms. While meeting Marley’s demands, Andy discovers the simple pleasures of laughter, fun, and holding his woman close.

But someone in Liberty Springs doesn’t want Marley and Andy together. A string of incidents place both Marley and the dreams Andy is building around her in mortal danger. Andy must keep Marley safe, continue to win her heart, and find who the culprit is before it’s too late.

Kaliana Cole added another great Liberty Springs novel with The One That Got Away.

This book had everything! It was easy to get pulled into the mystery of this plot. A real romance had been brewing between Andy and Marley for a long time. Just when the future was finally looking bright for the couple it became obvious that someone was still out to get Marley. That’s when Andy had to take charge like the true alpha male he has been all along. Now, let me tell you, Kaliana Cole knows how to write a red hot love scene or two.

This book was right up my alley. It was exceptionally well written and loaded with a fast paced romance, exciting mystery, and some big surprises for everyone in the Liberty Springs world. Andy and Marley had plenty of emotional depth and like the previous couples in this kinky series there were a few BDSM scenes. This book also closed a long running thread about one Liberty Springs troublemaker while at the same time catching my interest with a couple of intriguing characters that I am hopeful will be getting their very own books.

I really enjoyed reading The One That Got Away and look forward to whatever comes next from this author.

Killer At Christmas by Kera Faire


Killer At Christmas by Kera Faire
Publisher: Evernight Publishing
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Short Story (51 pgs)
Other: M/F, BDSM, Spanking
Rating: 3 stars
Reviewed by Fern

A killer and a hooker? An unlikely mix, especially at Christmas.

Rio Buchanan, a government operative, and member of the Dispatchers specializes in seduction. He just never thought his target would be his ex-wife. Andie might be a hooker now, but there’s no way she’s a traitor. There’s only one way to get to the truth—kidnap her to keep her safe.

Andie doesn’t know what to think when Rio disrupts her life again, let alone when she wakes up in a prison cell shackled to him, and not in a fun, kinky way. The secrets of his job already ended their marriage. Will they now end her life too?

Imprisoned on the Death Isle, they have to work together to catch a traitor, and discover if they can forge a new life together.

After breaking his ankle and going through seemingly endless physio to get himself back in form, Rio is eager to get back to work – even if he’s not keen on needing to seduce answers out of a string of women. When he learns his next target will be his not-hardly-forgotten ex-wife, Andie, he has mixed feelings. Unable to forget her or turn his back when she needs him, Rio is going through with job – whether it’s assigned to him or not.

This is a fast paced short story. I struggled a bit to follow it in places and I think that was because this is the fourth book in a series and there isn’t a whole lot of back-story to orient a reader picking up this one first. I found a number of the secondary characters weren’t very well introduced and there was a fair amount of shadowy secrecy around the group Rio worked with and what, exactly, their job entailed. This really lessened my enjoyment of the story (and reiterated to myself, personally, that it’s never a good idea to pick up a book mid way through a series – I hate feeling lost and like I’m missing a bunch of the backstory!) and had me feeling all through it as if I was waiting for a bit of catch-up information to help it all make a bit more sense to me.

I did, however, really enjoy Rio’s character. Equal parts strong-willed bad boy and still-in-love, vulnerable ex-husband, I feel Rio is a hero (or possibly, anti-hero) that will appeal to a wide range of readers. Andie, too, was an interesting character that I found myself sympathizing with. Somehow she managed to be both sweet but also seriously raunchy and kinky – and I have to give kudos to the author for writing Andie in such a way that I found her believable despite the seeming paradoxical nature of her character.

The sex was deliciously hot with a bit of a kinky bite to it. I feel readers used to elements of BDSM in their erotica won’t find anything too drastic or envelope pushing her, but readers used to only a small amount of sizzle in their romances might want to be aware there’s a fair bit of kink to this short story.

An interesting read I thoroughly enjoyed the sex and the characters, but would strongly recommend readers pick up at least some of the earlier books before cracking this one open.