Read full review HERE
I am disgusted with this book - I'm literally rage-reading it at this point. My boyfriend called me a masochist because I refuse to DNF. I do not review books I DNF because I personally don't feel like I can give an honest review of the entire work that way. I want to be very thorough with a review of a book like this.
I have read chapters 7 through 13. There is too much crap to list - it would make this update even longer than it is going to be (which is probably still pretty long.) Here's the lowdown:
Post chapter 6 make-out session, Lilliana has doubts about stopping him from going further. Tucker takes her out to lunch, trying to work his way into getting both into her pants and his hands on her land. He also has flashes of guilt, but represses it by telling himself he is right and everyone else is stupid/wrong - including his own parents. Lilliana ends up confronting him about his intentions of getting her land, they fight, and don't speak for a week.
I was very proud of Lilliana for standing up for herself and confronting him. She has some great quotes:
"You're just like all the rest of those vultures after my land. ...I know what you want from me: 112 acres and my panties in your trophy case. I'm not stupid, Tucker McGrath. ...My land is not for sale and neither am I!" p. 71
"Good, honest people don't make enemies, Tucker, and someone who has a lot of enemies usually has them for a reason. I, for one, am not going to end up like the rest of the people you've stepped on to get what you want." p. 72
If only she could keep this resolve.
Tucker shows up at Lilliana's house and talks her into taking a drive with him to an animal rescue interested in leasing land for their horses. (Lilliana revealed that she was thinking of donating some of her acreage to an animal rescue in the previous chapter - an idea that, of course, enraged Tucker.) On the way there, Lilliana manages to anger Tucker to the point of jamming on his brakes and skidding the car onto the shoulder - scaring the hell out of her - and getting out of the car to throw a hissy fit. Being the good manipulated woman that she is, Lilliana gets out and apologizes to him in hopes of calming him down. Instead, he grabs her and forces her into an unwanted kiss, refusing to release her when she struggles and tries to shove him away.
The last time I read about a kiss like this, it was in Nenia Campbell's Fearscape, and it was portrayed there as horrifying. (Nenia, I promise reviews are on their way!) A forced kiss is a form of sexual assault, especially when the perpetrator refuses to let the other person go. Ms. Campbell got it right. It is terrifying and a violation of a person's body. Here, it was portrayed as, you guessed it, hot. Once Lilliana stops fighting, she relaxes into the kiss and realizes she enjoys it. Ah, yes, isn't that similar to the line most perpetrators of sexual assault use? "Relax, baby, just enjoy it."
So, ladies, the next time some guy grabs you and plants an unwanted, possessive kiss on you, just relax! It'll feel good! You won't feel violated in the least!
Just kidding! THIS is the correct response:
Now at the animal rescue, Tucker and Lilliana decide to go for a horseback ride - and he decides it should be on the same horse. I would think of this as cute if she were a novice rider and needed help getting used to handling such a powerful animal, but she has grown up on a farm and has plenty of experience with horses - she doesn't need his guidance. I found this controlling and insulting - she doesn't even get to hold the reins - he does. She just sits on the horse doing nothing but be molested by his humpy crotch. Again, she thinks this is arousing.
While on their ride - off where no one can see them - Lilliana playfully teases him by rubbing her butt on his crotch. He becomes enraged, thinking that she's mocking him and GRABS HER BY THE THROAT!
...He reached over her arm and chest effectively pinning it down and wrapped his long fingers around her throat, forcing her head back onto his chest so he could see her face.
"Don't mock me, Lilly," he snarled into her ear, caressing her neck gently with his fingertips.
"Tucker," she whimpered, clearly alarmed by his forceful gesture. Her hands came up and tried to loosen his grip, but the precarious and vulnerable position Tucker had her in left her helpless. p. 89
By the way, his other hand is squeezing her breast painfully - and they're still on horseback.
At this point, my reaction is:
Seriously, say whatever you have to until he lets you go, then do one of these:
Knock his ass off the back of the horse and gallop that beast to safety!
Lilliana's response? SHE GETS AROUSED!
Now, I know there is a fetish for that kind of thing, and I'm not, in any way, saying it is wrong for people to be into it. HOWEVER, this usually is not an act perpetrated out of rage when used in a sexual manner - and it is something both parties know is going to happen. It's also something that both parties have discussed beforehand, and something you ease into. NONE of that is applicable here. THIS is a scene similar to those in any of the numerous films or texts featuring domestic violence. The woman pisses off the man, he retaliates by gripping her throat and choking her. (And DON'T tell me he wasn't choking her! A hand on the throat gripped tightly enough to force her head back is applying a pressure to her trachea, making it hard for her to breathe.)
Ladies, according to this book, if a man grabs you by the throat and sexually assaults your breasts, it's okay as long as he's hot.
He wanted nothing else but to fill her mouth with his cock and to fuck the mockery right out of it and make her surrender completely to him. p. 89
My reaction to this statement:
Tucker finally releases her throat and breast. At first she fights him but he tells her to stop resisting, so she does.
Lilliana should have jumped ship at that point and she damned well knew it, but no one had ever taken control of her the way Tucker just had and it felt good; too good. p. 91
Because, you know, a man choking you out of anger should arouse you sexually, not make you flee in terror.
God, yes, she wanted to be Tucker's pet, the consequences be damned to hell and her own fears and everyone else's warnings be damned for all time. She was in control of her own destiny. p. 91
No, you're putting Tucker in charge of your destiny! And, yes, it is always smart not to heed the warnings of people who have known the man for years and to ignore your own gut instincts.
Tucker tries to explain himself - not apologizing, mind you, it's HER fault he handled her so roughly!
"i'm strict and often times unyielding, but rarely harsh. But you ... you make me feel like an untamed, wild creature - feral, rabid and unpredictable."
"You don't ever have to explain your actions to me, Tucker." p. 92
Damn right, there's no explanation for those actions! You should run like hell! Oh, ... you mean he has every right to handle you roughly with no explanation necessary.
He tells her he's into dominance/submission and bondage - which turns her on even more, because, you know, allowing a man who would choke you, to tie you up and have you at his mercy is a good idea.
"...I'm going to make my rules very simple: I command. You obey. Always. Am I clear?"
Oh boy ... here we go....
Tucker also calls vagina's "bobos." All I can think of when I see/hear the term bobo is this:
Mr. Burns loves Bobo the bear.
Lilliana googles bondage and discipline on her lunch hour - the author doesn't describe what Lilliana finds, just that it's "kinky and a bit old-fashioned." Possibly because the author knows very little about the lifestyle, except what she has seen in porn.
Not only is the vagina referred to as a "bobo," it is now also referred to as a "juice box."
Yeah, a vagina is exactly what I think of when someone mentions a juice box. Gross.
Of course, her privates have to be cleanly-shaven to be considered sexy. Heaven forbid she have a little hair down there! And, this trash is written for a female audience, correct? Why the focus on what her lady bits look like?
Tucker has asked her to spend the weekend with him, so she packs an overnight bag. He comes over to pick her up, and they end up in her bedroom - him spanking her, then pleasing her orally until she squirts. She begins drooling over the idea of giving him fellatio, because, all women drool at the thought of a penis in their mouths. She begins to do so, he grabs her head and tries to force her to deep-throat him (because you obviously cannot please a man orally unless you practically ingest his wang), she gags and feels terrible that she can't do what he wants her to (Most women can't do that, and it shouldn't be expected of them!).
Tucker: "No worries, pet. That sort of skill comes with a lot of practice and I intend to give you plenty of it until you get it right." (Because you can't possibly please me unless you choke on my dick.)
Tucker's kindness and patience with her urged her forward. p. 121
KINDNESS?! PATIENCE?! The man is thrusting his penis into your throat and basically telling you that you're not good enough if you can't deep-throat him! THAT IS NOT KINDNESS OR PATIENCE! He's also going to insist on a lot more blow jobs until she gets it right - because there is only one right way to give fellatio - the porn star way. Seriously, are women really turned on by the idea of deep-throating a penis? Maybe I'm in the minority in not wanting a penis shoved down my throat, but I don't think so.
Lilliana calls his semen a "precious gift."
Lilliana and Tucker actually go out on a real date where they take swing dance lessons and have a blast, then go back for dinner at his place. While he cooks they rip off 9 1/2 Weeks with him blindfolding her and feeding her foods - the catch is she has to guess what kind of food she's eating, in order to be granted an orgasm. They end up having sex on the kitchen island while waiting for the food to cook.
Annoying Tucker Behavior of the Chapter:
He had asked her to spend the weekend with him, then makes her feel stupid for assuming that meant spending the night with him. He acts like that wasn't what he wanted at all, then gets offended when she tries to leave - thinking she has overstepped her bounds.
What was she supposed to think? Most people assume spending the weekend together means spending the night together. Don't be ashamed, Lilliana - well, not of your assumption anyway. He's being a jerk, as usual.
He also just has this aloof attitude - acting like he's superior to her because he makes more money. He thinks her dental hygienist salary meager (it's not, it's a livable wage), and wonders to himself how she could possibly have gotten him a gift.
Lilliana does a sexy dance for him - his reaction is less than attractive, in my opinion.
He bounced up and down on the bed like a sex-depraved lunatic at a strip club, clapping his hands as Lilliana continued to shimmy her ass... p. 139
She finds it alluring, but I would have found it juvenile. Contain yourself, man! You remind me of Tommy Jarvis (Friday the 13th: Part 4) seeing a naked woman for the first time. (He sees her from his bedroom window, the woman is unaware.)
This smile with A LOT more bouncing around and weird noises.
Lilliana wakes up after a round of sex, and explores his house while he's still asleep. He wakes up and finds her. Lots of inane discussion ensues - we learn that Tucker would rather blow his money on objects he'll never make use of, than donate money to charity. He scoffs at the idea.
"Charity? ...Since when did you become a humanitarian?"
"I'm not. I just can't figure out why you need all this."
"No one needs a house this big, silly girl."
What is so wrong with giving money to charity? Is it so laughable to give to the less fortunate? I guess it is, when you're a greedy douche living all alone in a mansion. Can't part with a dime, though!
He shows her the time-out room, where he keeps all of his kinky sex equipment. They bone in the sex swing, and he ejaculates on her chest and stomach - because that's sexy.
I've never understood the appeal of this move. I, for one, would feel so degraded, like I'm nothing but a tissue for his ejaculate. It's disgusting, and the idea makes me want to puke.
The next morning, they have breakfast and go to her house where she gives him a tour of her property. She confronts him about the fact that he still wants the acreage, which he doesn't deny. She gets angry. Instead of commenting on that in any way, he decides he's going to try and dominate a woman who is seething on the inside.
"To hell with lunch. All I want is to fuck that sassy mouth of yours and see you on your knees again." p. 157
She ignores him, he spins her around and forces her onto her knees, and unzips his pants, waving his hard penis in her face. He tells her to "Do it" but she refuses. He gets angry.
"Do you want to be punished? Is this your way of trying to elicit a response of that kind out of me?"
"You don't own me, Tucker McGrath, and I haven't signed anything yet stating that you can do whatever the hell you want to me...."
"I once told you that I will not be topped and I meant it. I'm not playing games with you. Either you provide me with what I need and submit to me, or I'll find someone who will." p. 157
I love how Lilliana reacts to this! She gets up and opens her door, gesturing for him to leave.
"Then find someone else." p. 158
He leaves, but she can't stop herself from kissing him one more time.
We all know this strength won't last for long. But it's nice when it occurs.
54% to go.
So for the last three chapters there has been a lot of Tucker trying to seduce Lilliana - getting a little bit, then getting shut down. She's fighting an inner battle with being both sexually attracted to him and thinking he's an egocentric, devious jerk off.
He'll try to hypnotize her with his crotch, like so:
(I apologize to Jensen Ackles for using a gif of his crotch as an example of this douche bag.)
Then Lilliana is like:
Let's go chapter by chapter, shall we?
We learn more about Lilliana's past. She was once married to a rich playboy, but divorced him, didn't take any money, and has done just fine for herself. Good for her! She shows that she has self-respect and can make it on her own without her ex-husband's help.
THEN she goes on to fantasize about Tucker and all of his dickishness, admitting she would like him to take control of her.
After this we are treated to a wonderful display of her clumsiness
- because every heroine of every erotic novel is a klutz. She decides to rip up his business card and throw it in the sink. I was hoping she would then set it on fire, but no such luck.
The chapter then changes to Tucker's point of view, and we get to read his lovely misogynistic thoughts and then a graphic masturbation scene.
She walks out of the dental office where she works to find him sitting on her car, shit-eating grin on his face. He tries to talk her into having dinner with him, she says no, then this happens:
She moved towards her car door and dug out her keys, but Tucker promptly grabbed them from her hands. p. 32
Yes, he takes her keys, preventing her from leaving, and won't give them back until she promises to follow him to his office. Because giving her pretty much no other option is a great way to get your way. I personally would have gone back inside and called a cab, but she decides to follow him because, well, he's sexy.
At his office she meets a redhead named Ariel, which Lilliana laughs about due to the obvious reference to The Little Mermaid, and Ariel follows up with, "I know. Cliche, right?" (Yes, yes it is, and your admittance to your own lack of creativity isn't cute and self-aware, it's bashing the reader over the head with a joke that we understood without needing an explanation.)
While at the office, Lilliana tells Tucker off when he gets too fresh with her, and he tells her she needs a spanking. He gets ticked off when she has a two-second conversation with so-far-unnecessary-Ariel, because she keeps him waiting.
When she offers him a snarky retort, he gets angry and offers this lovely gem of dialogue:
"That mouth of yours is going to get you in trouble every time. I won't ever disrespect you and I expect the same courtesy in return."
What now?! You disrespect her all the time! Or do you think telling her she needs to be "spanked and fucked" is a sign of respect? Ass.
He gets close to her, runs his fingers over her face, and she loses composure, panting like a bitch-in-heat.
DAMMIT!! NO!! *smacks Lilliana with rolled up newspaper* STOP IT! FIND YOUR SELF-RESPECT! FIND IT!
Begins while they are still in the office. She has regained her composure, shuts Tucker down when he tries to kiss her, and reads a file he just-so-happens to keep on his desk top that is all about him. Of course, why wouldn't an egomaniac keep such a thing on his computer?
He tells her their dinner reservations are in twenty minutes, she says she never agreed to dinner, and he cockily tells her it's her choice whether she meets him for dinner or not. She opts for the latter, and that pisses him off. How dare she stand HIM up?! (Dude, it's not standing you up if she never promised to meet you.) So, what does he do? Shows up at her house, forces his way in, and demands that she make him a tasty dessert since she made him eat alone!
Lilliana: "Look, I'm not sure what you think is going to happen here, but you really need to leave."
Tucker: "And I will, after you've prepared something sweet for me. I hope you can cook, Ms. Norris. I'm in the mood for something sweet." *takes off jacket, loosens tie, makes it clear he's not going anywhere.* p. 46
This would be when I would have told the prick to get the hell out before I call the damn cops, but, to my dismay, she relents and starts to head to her bedroom to change. He commands her not to, and, again, she relents, walks into the kitchen and begins preparations for apple crisp.
Takes place almost entirely in Lilliana's kitchen. They talk while she prepares the apples. She admits she had braces as an adult, to which he replies:
"A mouth full of metal? Real sexy. Tell me, though, how does one go about giving head with braces on?" p. 48
What was that you said about respect, back in chapter 4, Tucker? Because I don't think either this comment nor forcing your way into a woman's house and demanding she bake for you count as acts of respect.
Lilliana will back me up on this! Isn't that right, Lilliana? Lilliana?
Lilliana: *giggles nervously and continues to peel apples*
Tucker: *grins at her lecherously and sidles up to her, thinking to himself how she needs to be dominated and he's just the man for the job.*
Tucker then takes it upon himself to tell her that she's cutting the apples wrong - and begins to instruct her on how to do it properly.
Lilliana's reaction: *grinds butt into his crotch*
Me: "You're hopeless, Lilliana."
Tucker: "See, it needs to be perfect, like you." p. 50
Lilliana: "He says the sweetest things! It's been so long since I've felt a man's touch! I'd nearly forgotten how good it feels! OOOOHHH!"
Me: "That's not sweet talk, that's bullshit, honey. It would be sweet if he actually mean't it, but he doesn't - and if you knew the things he really thought about you, you'd know he definitely doesn't think you're perfect. A perfect ejaculate container, maybe - but not perfect as a woman. Also, a man's touch is great and all, but don't give it up to a man as undeserving as Tucker! Seriously, there are other solutions!"
See? Anya knows what's up!
...he inched his mouth down her spine and slipped her shorts down to her ankles, exposing her bare ass.
..."Tucker," Lilliana said uneasily as she began to turn around.
Tucker gripped her hips firmly, holding her in place so that she couldn't resist him or move.
"Hush, Ms. Norris," he snarled as he bit into her ass cheek. Lilliana squealed and he licked and nibbled her other cheek in response. p. 51
Yes, I would have farted in his face. Serves him right, biting at my ass! That's what happens when you don't ask for permission, asswhipe.
Lilliana gets uncomfortable and asks him to stop. She tells him she doesn't want to have sex with him, because she fears she might regret it - he gets pissed. He then proceeds to manipulate her feelings for the rest of the chapter, acting hurt when she voices her suspicions that he's only trying to get in her pants to get his hands on her land - even though that is EXACTLY what he's doing, HOW DARE SHE BE SUSPICIOUS!! He talks her into kissing him, then throws her down on the kitchen table, stripping her of her shirt. She has to ask him more than once to stop before he does.
We do learn three good things about Tucker in this chapter set: he's a hard worker and
has built his wealth on his own, he helps his parents out financially, and he's never cheated on a wife. He also seems to feel a little bad for being a devious little turd in regards to the manipulation he's subjecting Lilliana to, but not much.
Lilliana got off some good zingers at his expense, but she's wavering a lot more now. She should be saying this to him:
Instead she's floundering like an imbecile. Self-respect, motherfucker, do you still have it?!
As for Tucker, this is all I want to do to him:
Only 84% to go....
Yes, this is a "romance" based on the possession of real estate.
What I like so far:
Lilliana - the main character. She is feisty and not willing to let sleaze bag, Tucker, get the better of her - at least, not so far. She has some great ways of telling him off, and I love it.
"It just so happens that I admire all of your teeth, but it's your ass I want off my property." p. 17
(She's his dental hygienist.)
"How dare you presume to know my needs. You have no idea what makes me tick. I'm no little girl, Mr. McGrath. I'm a lady and a grown woman with desires you'll never comprehend. It's very obvious to me that from your attitude, I doubt you know what any woman needs." p. 19
"You can't even begin to fathom the amount of fucks I do not give about what you want. You know the way out." p. 20
I LOVE IT! I hope she doesn't drop the ball and become another simpering idiot like the infamous Anastasia Steele.
What I dislike:
TUCKER MCGRATH! Everything about this man makes me want to punch him in the face. Seriously. Here are some lovely gems to give you insight into this wonderful man.
Tucker wanted nothing more than a good look at her ass. He could deal with a boring personality, in fact, he had on many occasions, but having an unattractive ass was a deal-breaker for him. p.10
Well, it's good he has his priorities in order. He sure seems like a winner!
Tucker and attempted to strike up a polite conversation with him. By her body language, it was obvious to Tucker that she was interested in him, though she seemed a little juvenile for his tastes. p. 10 (Bold emphasis is mine.)
Aside from the obvious grammatical errors, (and who? Is the dental assistant he's trying to talk to male or female because we have some serious pronoun mixing going on here.) we are reading about a man who just spent a paragraph wondering what Lilliana's ass looked like, saying the dental assistant is too juvenile for him. I think this man's perception of maturity is just a tad bit skewed.
Yes, that's what she needed - a good bit of discipline. p. 10
No, you need a dose of "BACK THE FUCK OFF!" Seriously, you don't even know her name and you're already plotting her punishments?! But, darling Tucker, what if her ass isn't up to your standards? Whatever will you do?!
To his dismay, the femme fatale in desperate need of a spanking was nowhere to be found. p. 11
Hmm...maybe she could sense you're a creeper with a plot to spank her, so she got the hell out of dodge? Or, you know, she she could be working on another patient, otherwise known as doing her job. I know, I know, how dare she work when the almighty Tucker McGrath is in the building?!
...he caught a glimpse of himself in the mirror and was horrified at his own reflection ... It was no wonder the hygienist hadn't shown any interest in him ... p. 11
And that couldn't possibly be because she could sense your eyes all over her or disliked the way you talked to her! *Channels Carly Simon and begins to sing* "You're so vain, you probably think Lill cares about you / you're so vain, you creepy ass douche nozzle ..."
He was annoyed with himself that he couldn't remember if he had his cock in her or not because surely he would've remembered dicking such a lovely specimen. p. 14
Grammatically, I believe this should either read, "he'd had" or "he had had" - otherwise it sounds like he can't remember that he's in the middle of boning her. Also, there should be a comma between "because" and "surely."
I also love that she's nothing but a specimen to him - something to stare at and bone whenever he feels like it. Objectification - I know it's what I most desire in a man!
Tucker was defensive and was quickly becoming irritated with Lilliana's insolence. Twice in one day he had a vision of a woman bent over his knee with red ass cheeks. p. 15
So, if you don't give Tucker his way, you're automatically an insolent child that needs a spanking. My, what a lovely slice of misogyny that is! Methinks it is Tucker who should have been spanked more as a child, maybe then he wouldn't be so stuck on himself and focused on always getting his own way.
Tucker hadn't felt the uneasiness of a beautiful woman in a very long time and he found it enthralling that she could at least recognize his animalistic intentions and power, despite her willfulness and disobedience. p. 16
Disobedience?! There is no reason for her to OBEY you! It's HER property, you have NO LEGAL RIGHT to it! Also, all relationships are off to a healthy start when the woman is slightly frightened of the man. ...And the misogyny continues.
Tucker suddenly wondered what it would feel like to have those full lips wrapped around his shaft and that sharp tongue licking his big balls. He bet her smart-ass mouth would look absolutely divine glistening with his warm cum. p. 18
Well that's ... disgusting imagery. Once again, she's nothing more than an object - a receptacle for his ejaculate. This guy need those "big balls" kicked in.
"...a good hard fuck is exactly what you need, little girl," he answered ferociously. p. 19
Funny, I think you need a good kick in the nuts, dickwad.
...he considered turning his car around, busting in and taking what he wanted. There was no doubt she, too, felt the sexual tension flickering between them, but he'd been wrong before and he didn't want that scene played out again. p. 21
Does this mean he either nearly raped or succeeded in raping someone before, due to his presumption that she wanted him to bang her? That is so comforting. Lilliana, STAY THE HELL AWAY FROM THIS DUDE!!
Lilliana: *pouts and ponders over the card containing his personal phone number*
NOOO!!! STOP WHAT YOU'RE DOING! HE DOES NOT DESERVE YOU!!
There are also plenty of grammatical errors and weird descriptions.
He had skin a warm shade of praline p. 13
What the hell color is this? It's based on a food, and since it is both dough and based on a flesh-like color, I'm assuming it's a tan/light brown. I'm not against comparing color to food, if it's a common food - praline is not.
...those lips - heart-shaped, generously curved and the color of amaranth. p. 14
The dictionary defines this as a shade of purple. Her lips are PURPLE?! Is she asphyxiating?!
I'm only 5% in, and the only thing keeping me interested is Lilliana. Either way, I rarely DNF, so a lot of snark is forecasted for the future.