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review 2016-03-08 17:12
Going Home by Kris Ripper
Going Home (The Home Series Book 1) - Kris Ripper

This freebie surprised the hell out of me.



Firstly, because for a Love Landscape's freebie it was exceptionally well written, the plot complex and with 208 pages, it was a relatviely long read. But more importantly, it threw me right in the middle of a scenario that I tend to avoid in my books.



The right to own sex slaves has just been made illegal. The government is taking the slaves to a reeducation camp where we can learn to be a part of everyday society. But what they don’t understand is that I’ve been with Master for 7 years and there’s nowhere else I’d rather be than kneeling at his feet, with his collar around my neck and being used in any way he needs. I’m his.



I'm no fan of sexual slavery stories. I don't enjoy dub-con/non-con, falling in love with your abuser is not a trope for me - not in erotica and sure as heck not in romance. Stockholm syndrome is NOT my idea of a romantic relationship. With all that said, nobody was more surprised than me when this little one not only landed on my Kindle, but that I read it front to back. And was interested and invested the whole time. But Rory was a fascinating character. On the one hand slavery was all he's ever known. He was born into it, became his Master's property and was prepared to stay with him for the rest of his life. He thought he loved him, he was okay with how his life was going, he enjoyed the D/s relationship in the bedroom, and was alright with how the rest of his lofe was supposed to pan out. Or so he thought. But when sexual slavery was abolished, when he was taken to another location and contact to his Master isn't an option anymore, Rory's world is crumbling. Everything he thought was right, suddenly isn't anymore. Black isn't black, white isn't white and grey never looked so chaotic. He's changing, the world is changing - even his feelings are changing. It's terrifying, but through all of it there is one thought that prevails: He needs to get back to Geo. 


This story sure as hell isn't a psychology handbook. It's also completely different from what I expected. And I liked it. For once, it wasn't a twist on Stockholm syndrom. There was a difference between consensual D/s relationships and the master7slave conext Rory and Geo were used to. It was very fascination to see this struggle, this journey, the psychological and physiological ramifications of their complex, shared history.


Was it preachy? MAybe? A little? There were some side characters that - while layered and interesting and sometimes a pain in the ass - loved taking the roles of angels and devils. Sometimes that was frustrating, but all in all not too bad. The story is wordy, though. More so than I usually like in the "preaching and lecturing" department. But all in all, I enjoyed this one, and I liked how much it managed to surprise me again and again. Definitely recommended.



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review 2015-11-28 00:00
Un/Common Ground
Un/Common Ground - Arielle Pierce

This was so hard to read...

Jamal is a young man, a guest student in the US, having his first taste of freedom. Because he is a Muslim, gay, and is already afraid of going back home East, where he will either conform and marry a girl, or come out and not only loose his family, but probably also his life.

But for as long as he's in the US, he really likes to at least pretend to be free for a second. And when he meets Matt, really meets him, it all gets intense very fast. It tender, tentative and heart-breaking. Especially because it gets you thinking about all the repercussions the opression of the LGBTQ community all over the world really has. The problem of safe sex and testing is one of them, and one that a lot of people (me included) sometimes completely forget about. We focus on the violence, the mortal danger, the torture. What we tend to forget is the everyday life and what that kind of oppression really means. It doesn't matter how educated you are, how far away from home you are, how different your current freedom is from the rest of your life - it always stays with you. And you will always see repercussions for your acrtions everywhere. And I loved how the author managed to show it without saying it.

I enjoyed this story very much. Matt might not have been my most favorite person in the world. I found his empathy and understanding to be lacking. A lot. Seriously, how selfish and ignorant can you be? Never heard of persecution because of one's sexuality? Never heard about gay witch hunts or honor killings? Maaaaan. Really. But on the other hand - and it's hard for me to swallow - I can understand that his experiences with oppression are really non-existent. So who am I to judge so harshly? But I couldn't help but be annoyed with him.

Jamal was the gem of this story for me. His POV, his thoughts, his fears really stayed with me and made me think about him and people in similar situation for quite some time. Really good.

The writing wasn't as smooth as I'd have liked, but it wasn't bad. I did love the set-up and how it all turned out. The ending was perfect, and fit the tentative and unsure tone of the story perfectly. A HEA would have been ridicolous under the circumstances and if you're honest, then I'm not sure if there even was a possible soution for Jamal's drama. But I'd still love to read more about these two.

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review 2015-10-21 00:00
Carte Blanche
Carte Blanche - Nash Summers

4 stars for 50 pages warming my heart

Jude, suffering from social anxiety and OCD, is severely limited in his everyday life. Cleaning with bleach is his life line, not having unnecessary contact with the world outside his apartment his crutch. Enter Devin, the new guy next door dead set on getting to know recluse Jude.

There is so much sweetness and heart-warming happening in this story, it broke my heart and put it back together in only 50 pages. Was the road a little too easy? Maybe. And in a way Devin's motives were not really clear. I mean, yes, he liked Jude. But in order to develop deep feelings for a guy you can't even have a regular conversation with, you might need a little more? Maybe? But I guess, that's where the magic of the story actually lies. I loved it despite my little niggles - so who cares? 4 stars and definitely a recommendation for all romantics out there.

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review 2015-10-09 00:00
Punch-Drunk Love
Punch-Drunk Love - Nico Jaye

Dear Author,
Umm, our entire kickboxing team just walked in on us. I think we’re OUT now.


This one surprised me a little bit. I mostly read it for my Around-the-country-challenge, but the blurb wasn't bad. After finishing it I can truly say - this wasn't what I expected. In a very good way. It was funny, sweet and actually pretty wholesome for such a short story. And hot. Really hot. I enjoyed the hell out of this one! 

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review 2014-07-13 16:32
Mating Balance (Love’s Landscapes) by Gina A. Rogers and Kyle Adams (4 Stars)

Troy was a shifter who was on the verge of suicide after spending years unsuccessfully searching for his mate. The beginning of the story, is told by a very depressing Troy, explaining the downfall of his family. Seth was an extremely jubilant person who enjoys every moment life has to offer. His narration focused on the beauty of the world. Troy and Seth formed an interesting pair. I enjoyed watching the two of them together as they slowly moved their relationship forward, and Seth was able to make Troy smile.


Link to free download once available at http://www.mmromancegroup.com.


Source: kindleromancereviews.com/2014/07/13/mating-balance-loves-landscapes-by-gina-a-rogers-and-kyle-adams-4-stars
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