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review 2018-04-08 21:42
Until I Fade: A Kol Anderson Anthology
Until I Fade: A Kol Anderson Anthology - Kol Anderson

It dawned on me about halfway through this that I had read another book by this author that did not go well AT ALL.  Happy to say this was much better overall.  But man was this everything the warnings indicate and more.  This was utterly disturbing but I found myself unable to put this down.

 

There are 4 stories in this anthology as follows:

 

Don't be Afraid of the Dark - 3 Stars

 

This one has some pretty sadistic torture with a vampire plot.  For much of the story I was left scratching my head how the story would merge but I loved when it did. I did think the story overall ended way too quickly and I wanted another turning and vampire bonding to close this one out.

 

Slave - 2 Stars 

 

Phew...this was was sadistic and full of some pretty awful torture.  Again, it ended abruptly.  

 

Sin - 4 Stars

 

This one is easily the most disturbing of the 4.  Good lord this poor kid was self destructive and so abused.  Note that this one includes rape, incest and some pretty heavy drug use. But overall I felt this one was the best of the 4 and had the most character development and craziest ending.

 

Fugue - 2.5 Stars 

 

This was was just weird and yet written in a way that leaves you wondering what was real and what was not.  Not a lot of torture in this one but more possible alien abduction.

 

Overall, these are written better than the book I had previously read by this author and overall I was pulled in and unable to set this down.  Note that while this is full of non-con sexual situations there is no detailed sex in these stories.  Overall everything is implied and handled without getting into the specific acts themselves which helped me a lot.

 

Overall a 3 Star read for the book, with stories ranging from 2-4 Stars.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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review 2018-03-18 15:00
Saving Sebastian
Saving Sebastian - Luna David

“You don’t have to prove yourself worthy of me. You are worthy of me, just as I’m worthy of you."

 

 

For me this was not simply about the acts of a BDSM relationship but was the complete development of a true D/s relationship and one that was done so with such depth, attention and patience.  The character development, including their doubts, hesitancy and questions revolving around their worth to their partner was beautifully captured.

 

While I have read several BDSM books, I have not always been comfortable reading about these types of relationships.  Perhaps it has been more about the acts before, or what I feel can be overly aggressive Dominates and quite weak submissives.  And that is awful to say and certainly is not meant in any way as demeaning but it was just not always something I understood.  There have been a few books however that explain better the power that the submissive holds…that they ultimately hold all the power with one simple word.  And out of all the books I have read involving BDSM, it is this one that I feel has captured the true nature of these relationships best.

 

This is not a quick read.  This is not a read in which involves only the acts, as the majority of the book is not about scenes but about the interactions, the trust building, and the dynamics and ultimate ability to know your partner, their needs and their desires. 

 

I also honestly never before got the level of worshipping that a Dom can have toward their sub.  But this aspect made all the difference for me.  Gideon, while Dominate, is so enthralled by His Boy, so utterly devoted to him, that it was seeing his sheer love expressed in a look, in a gesture or in his thoughts and actions that made me all the more captivated by him.  And it was these moments which made their dynamic stronger for me as partners.

 

“You keep getting on your knees for me.” He sighed and glanced back down at the box. “It feels wrong.”

“Why? Because you’re convinced that as my sub you should always be below me?”

Sebastian shrugged. “Yeah. I mean, I’m serving you, not the other way around.”

“You don’t think I do the same for you?”

 Sebastian tilted his head in confusion and shook his head. “You should never serve me.”

Gideon chuckled at that and said, “Of course I should. We’re serving each other. We just do it in different ways. You’re offering your service to me as my submissive. But I’m also offering my service to you as your Dominant. We’re equals in this, Sebastian.”

“You really believe that?”

“Fuck yes! I absolutely do. I can do nothing with you, to you, unless you have given your express permission. That power is in your hands. You know this.”

Sebastian nodded. “Yeah. I mean, I guess. I just never thought of it that way. That doesn’t seem right.”

“I’m giving you what you need, just as you are doing for me. If that isn’t service, I don’t know what is.”

 

While this book is long, it is not without reason.  Every scene in some way has a point, shows the true character of our main MCs and therefore nothing ever seemed pointless.  Even the scene with Boone and Connell had value and was so damn perfect at capturing the nurturing aspect of Gideon.    

 

 

 

The rope scenes for me were so intricate in their descriptions that I longed to have the imagery from Khaleo’s camera…not only in scene but in aftercare as well.  The images of the marks and indentions left in the skin, just beautiful crafted.

 

“Look at the lines on your body caused by the ropes. They’re beautiful. You’re beautiful."

 

Luna David, I have to say, not only impressed me with her in depth exploration into BDSM but into the health conditions that our sweet Sebastian lives with.  I felt this part of the story to be well researched and thoughtful.  While I am not a physician, it all felt quite accurate and ultimately personal. 

 

 

The story telling aspect of this also worked well for me.  While much of the story is a back and forth POV, there are several key scenes which are told from both POV and it was those that became the most touching of the story.  The New Year’s Eve scene being the most heartbreaking of them all.  I also enjoyed that while at times, it seemed certain scenes were skipped, we later got these told in memories, which I loved.  I am not sure this book would have worked had only one POV been described.  This was a couple and therefore their thoughts, actions and love for the other were of utmost importance in making this successful.

 

Now, I did not read the first 2 books in this series…honestly after hearing the praises surrounding this book and in seeing the cover, there was just no way I could wait.  And while a standalone, part of me does wish I had read the others first.  I was a little confused during the first hospital scene, feeling as though I walked into a family dinner not knowing who was there or what their relationships entailed.  I also feel like I may have gotten some inkling into what Sebastian looked like, having perhaps gotten other's perspectives on this man in previous books.  So again, while it really didn’t matter as this couple goes, it kinda mattered to me.  I will go back and read the others if for no other reason than to see sweet Braden’s story.  He was such a loving spirit and friend and I need more of him.

 

I do hope we eventually get Killian’s story.  He popped on page only briefly but there is no doubt a story behind this intriguing man.  And while I am no longer a big reader of M/F, I would read Finn and Zoe’s story.  How this doctor came to embrace this lifestyle to be what he needed for the woman he loves. I am on board.

 

There are so many aspects of this story that I have failed to even acknowledge, from their backgrounds, to their families, to the tattoos and Sebastian's love of art, and pets, every aspect was so beautifully and amazingly crafted.  I guess I will just have to reread this at some point and expand on those elements as well.  Until then, I cannot recommend this journey enough.

 

 

Spoilerish Bonus Quote…read at own risk…but it is absolutely beautiful.

 

Gideon leaned down and kissed his head, over and over, everywhere he could reach, paying particular attention to the raised, bumpy edges of his scar. His boy’s sobs were wracking his whole body at that point and Gideon’s heart was breaking.

“You’re so good, baby. So strong. Let it out. I’m so fucking proud of you. So proud. You’re the bravest man I know.”

Gideon touched and stroked Sebastian’s face, his head, his shoulders, and his neck, telling him how beautiful he was, how he’d never been more attracted to anyone in his life, how proud he was to be with him, and finally how lucky he knew he was that Sebastian had chosen him.

 

***

Even better the second time around. ❤️❤️❤️

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text 2018-03-15 19:38
Reading progress update: I've read 53%.
Saving Sebastian - Luna David

“Look, I don’t know what’s going on with you. But from what I could see through the window, that wasn’t you. That’s not the older brother I’ve looked up to all my life. You crushed that boy. God, the love he had for you.” He shook his head again. “Every time your name was mentioned his face would light up. If you didn’t see it, you were blind, brother.”

 

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text 2018-03-01 23:54
February Recap
UNSUB: A Novel - Meg Gardiner
Things We Know by Heart - Jessi Kirby
Rhapsodic - Laura Thalassa
Waking Gods - Sylvain Neuvel
Good Me Bad Me - Ali Land
White Bodies: An Addictive Psychological Thriller - Jane Robins
Bonfire - Krysten Ritter
Mists of the Serengeti - Leylah Attar
Twelve: The Naturals E-novella (Naturals, The) - Jennifer Lynn Barnes

A sorta slow reading month for me...but I've had a lot going on, and I'm going on Vacation in 6 days.  After I get back from vacation I'm only working 5 more days and I'm having surgery on my foot.  That means at least 8 weeks off work and lots of down time...so, translation...lots of reading time.

 

 

 

 

(Audiobook) UNSUB by Meg Gardiner

Finish Date:  02/04

☆5☆ STARS - GRADE=A+

 

(Audiobook) Things We Know By Heart by Jessi Kirby

Finish Date:  02/07

☆4☆ STARS - GRADE=B+

 

(Kindle eBook) Rhapsodic by Laura Thalassa

Finish Date:  02/10

☆4.3☆ STARS - GRADE=A-

 

(Reread on Audio) Waking Gods by Sylvain Neuvel

Finish Date:  02/10

☆5+☆ STARS - GRADE=A+

 

(Audiobook) Good Me, Bad Me by Ali Land

Finish Date:  02/16

☆2.5☆ STARS - GRADE=D+

 

(Audiobook) White Bodies by Jane Robins

Finish Date:  02/21

☆2.7☆ STARS - GRADE=C-

 

(Audiobook) Bonfire by Krysten Ritter

Finish Date:  02/24

☆3.8☆ STARS - GRADE=B

 

(eBook) Mists of the Serengeti by Leylah Attar

Finish Date:  02/24

☆4.8☆ STARS - GRADE=A

 

(Kindle eBook) Twelve by Jennifer Lynn Barnes

Finish Date:  02/27

☆4.3☆ STARS - GRADE=A-

 

9 Books Total, 6 (1 a reread/listen) Audiobooks,  & 3 eBooks

2,825 Total Pages (including Audios)

 

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review 2018-02-25 15:56
2.7 Out Of 5 STARS for White Bodies by Jane Robins
White Bodies: An Addictive Psychological Thriller - Jane Robins

 

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

~ABOUT THE BOOK~

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

This chilling psychological suspense novel--think Strangers on a Train for the modern age--explores the dark side of love and the unbreakable ties that bind two sisters together. 

 

Felix and Tilda seem like the perfect couple: young and in love, a financier, and a beautiful up-and-coming starlet. But behind their flawless facade, not everything is as it seems. 

 

Callie, Tilda's unassuming twin, has watched her sister visibly shrink under Felix's domineering love. She has looked on silently as Tilda stopped working, nearly stopped eating, and turned into a neat freak, with mugs wrapped in Saran Wrap and suspicious syringes hidden in the bathroom trash. She knows about Felix's uncontrollable rages and has seen the bruises on the white skin of her sister's arms. 

 

Worried about the psychological hold that Felix seems to have over Tilda, Callie joins an Internet support group for victims of abuse and their friends. However, things spiral out of control and she starts to doubt her own judgment when one of her new acquaintances is killed by an abusive man. And then suddenly Felix dies--or was he murdered? 

 

A page-turning work of suspense that announces a stunning new voice in fiction, White Bodies will change the way you think about obsession, love, and the violence we inflict on one another--and ourselves.

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

~MY QUICKIE REVIEW~

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Something about White Bodies just rubbed me the wrong way, maybe it's the narrator's voice/accent that got to me or the strangely weird thing that the MC did with her sister's hair, teeth, and other personal items (it's freakishly weird) or most likely it was both of those.  I just couldn't care about these characters or what befell them.  That twist at the end, was deviously clever, though.  It was the knowledge that there was going to be a serious twist at the end that kept me listening because I really wanted to DNF this.

 

๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏

~MY RATING~

2.7/5 STARS - GRADE=C-

๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏๏

 

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

~BREAKDOWN OF RATINGS~

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Plot~ 2.7/5

Main Characters~ 2.3/5

Secondary Characters~ 2.5/5

The Feels~ 2/5

Pacing~ 2.5/5

Addictiveness~ 2/5

Theme or Tone~ 2/5

Flow (Writing Style)~ 3/5

Backdrop (World Building)~ 3/5

Ending~ 3.2/5 Cliffhanger~ Nope.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Book Cover~ Meh…not overly compelling.

Narration~ done by Camilla Arfwedson…My Grade=C-

Setting~ London, England

Source~ Audiobook (Library)

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