How to write a book review

Have you ever wondered how to write a book review? Is there a right way and a wrong way—or is it simply up to you to splurge your feelings for the book onto the page? Personally, I hate writing book reviews. I’m always short of time and I never think I manage to do a book justice—in terms of time spent reading and rereading, analyzing and then composing my thoughts. A good book review will be able to convey to its reader something of the essence of the book, the intent of the writer, whether they have succeeded or failed in that intent and—ultimately—whether it’s going to be a book the reader will enjoy reading.

And I’ll be the first to put my hand up and admit that I pretty much fail at this. It’s one of the reasons I don’t do too many reviews. Reviewing books is its own genre of writing and professional book reviewers possess a certain skill for it. That’s not to in any way invalidate all of the reader reviews on Amazon and Goodreads. As a writer, there’s nothing I appreciate more than when someone who has read one of my books takes the time to leave their response to it—and I and most other writers have had some wonderful reviews that leave us smiling for days after we receive them.

The flip side of that coin is the not so wonderful reviews that one occasionally stumbles across. Not because they say something bad about the book, or that the reviewer doesn’t like the book. As writers, we’re all fair game for that—no book is universally loved and everyone’s all entitled to their own opinions. No, what I’m referring to here are the sorts of reviews that don’t really tell us much, or anything, about the book. Or which fixate on one small aspect that seems to have completely colored the reading experience for a particular reader.

Man lighting upIf you remember my last column here, I was talking about a reader whose enjoyment of Alchemy xii had been marred by the fact that the characters didn’t practice safe sex. This week, another reviewer has expressed disgust that the main character smokes—a vile, suicidal habit. Fair enough, I understand people’s concerns in life about safe sex and smoking—but this is fiction. You can’t smell fictional cigarette smoke, so how much can it bother you? Would the reviewer have been happier if Harry had been smoking an electronic cigarette? As I’m writing a serial, I could have Harry give up smoking in the episode I’m working on, but I rather fear that by this point I’ve already lost the anti-smoking brigade. However, when it comes to the review I’d rather have known what she thought about the story or whether she found the sex hot…

But at least that reviewer had an opinion! A reader recently gave an anthology I’m in a three star review with the comment, ‘haven’t read much yet.‘ That’s not really a book review, is it? To be fair, I know exactly why this happened. Every time I buy something from Amazon, within a few days I receive an email asking me for a review. And usually, I haven’t read much yet, so I don’t bother. This reviewer was obviously just telling them the truth—but why didn’t he wait until he had read much and was in a position to give a genuine opinion?

Like I said, I’m pretty crap at reviews myself. So how should one go about writing a book review? With a bit of research, I’ve been able to pull together some useful tips.

  • Read the book. This obviously is essential and should go without saying. But I felt the need to say it anyway. Because I sometimes wonder if reviewers have actually read the book from the comments they make.
  • If you know you’re going to review it, take notes as you go along and highlight good and/or bad passages. That way you’ll be able to back up the comments you’re going to make.
  • Keep it honest—one reason why it’s not always a good idea to review books written by your friends or lovers or editors. There’s nothing more awkward than posting an honest review of a really bad book written by your partner.
  • Start by setting the scene. What genre is the book? What’s the basic premise of the story? Who are the protagonists? But don’t go in to too much detail. Don’t be mistaken by thinking a book review is simply a summary of the plot. And that’s all. Those reviews are less helpful than actually reading the book itself.
  • Don’t reveal spoilers. Unless you’re waging a vendetta against the author whose book you’re reviewing. (No, don’t even do it then!)
  • And saying ‘SPOILER ALERT’ won’t work. That makes everyone read it to find out what’s going to happen. And then they’re annoyed with themselves and even more annoyed with you.
  • But do say ‘SPOILER ALERT’ if you simply want to tempt more people to read your review. And you don’t care that they’ll hate you for it.
  • Discuss the things that worked for you—the plot, the writing, the characters, the humor… Are the settings well drawn? The people realistic? Is it believable? Does the narrative flow? Does a clear theme emerge over the course of the story? Does the hero make your panties wet/give you a hard on? Give reasons as to why you thought particular elements were strong. Site examples to support your opinions. Do your own life experiences give you any special insight into what the writer is talking about?
  • Mention any problem areas you identified. Were there holes in the plot? Did the characters behave inconsistently? Did you stumble across poor grammar or typos? Do you take issue with any particular scenes? For example, this is from a real one-star review of one my books: The book is mainly sex scenes. And who has anal sex for the first time in public on a hood of a car?!? Ridiculous!
    Monkies

    Okay – it’s not a sports car but I think they’re having anal!

    So, this reviewer could have gone into a little more detail. I’d like to know, is ‘mainly sex scenes’ a bad thing? In erotica? And what’s the problem with the anal sex on the hood of the car? Would it be better if it had been vaginal? Or is it that anal sex for the first time should be in a more appropriate setting? The car was a famous German sports car but perhaps another model would have made it more acceptable. We writers need detail, so we know where we’re going wrong!

  • Try to make your criticisms helpful to other readers. Not like this one: “bla bla bla off list.” It accompanied one star for an anthology—but what does it even mean?
  • Avoid making any criticisms into a personal attack on the writer—remember, they will probably have poured their heart into the work, not to mention many hours of work. And be aware of how relevant your criticisms will be to other readers—the fact that you hate cigarette smoking doesn’t make it a bad book.
  • Don’t be afraid to venture an opinion on the work, even if it’s not the same as the opinion of most other reviewers. It will make your review more interesting reading—but make sure you can justify your view.
  • Finish your review with a recommendation to read or not, or an indication of who might enjoy the book.
  • Review your review! Do you think it will be helpful to someone trying to decide whether to read the book or not?

237 readers found this review article helpful!

 

Best Women’s Erotica 2015

Best Women's Erotica 2015 cover

Best Women’s Erotica 2015, edited by the legendary Violet Blue, is out now – and I couldn’t be more thrilled to be able to say that I have a story in it (and it’s my second Best Women’s Erotica running!) But actually, even more thrilling is the extraordinary line-up of other writers that Violet has brought together in this incandescent anthology, a fair number of whom I’m privileged enough to count as friends or acquaintances.

Here’s the line-up:

Valerie Alexander

Tamsin Flowers

Annabeth Leong

Malin James

Rachel Woe

Gwendolyn Kansen

Beatrix Ellroy

Lana Fox

Giselle Renarde

Sue Lenèe Cix

Rachel Kramer Bussel

Alison Tyler

Lydia Hill

JT Louder

Dany Bauter

Evey Brett

Laila Blake

Ariel Graham

 

Phew! And if those names aren’t enough to whet your appetite, here’s a tiny taster from my own featured story, Roxanne. Violet’s submission call included a request for stories that involved Internet and technology – as well, of course, as explicit sex. I thought for a little while and then decided to update a classic with the introduction of text messages – and, voila, a modern take on Cyrano de Bergerac hit the page!

Girl coupleExcerpt from Roxanne

Roxanne pushed through the door and backed me up against the wall. Her face was flushed and she was close enough for me to smell alcohol on her breath. I wondered how large my nose looked at such close range.

“You wrote every single word of it, didn’t you?” she said.

I nodded.

“And you meant it?” Her tone softened.

I nodded again. I couldn’t have articulated at that moment if my life depended on it.

Her kiss was a savage surprise. Her mouth crushed against mine, slamming my head back against the wall, giving me two reasons for seeing stars. No one had ever kissed me like this before—tongue thrusting into my mouth, pushing against mine, slipping past it to explore. I felt heat rising from the furnace between my legs and I kissed her back in a way I’d never kissed anyone before. Our noses clashed and she drew back, laughing.

“What about Christian?” I asked.

“It was so obvious it wasn’t him,” she said. “I could tell someone was putting words in his mouth and I could see him texting in his lap.”

“Where is he now?”

“I left him paying the bill. He was very red in the face and trying to disguise a huge hard on with his serviette.”

Her hand strayed to the zipper of my hoody and started slowly drawing it down.

“I took his phone. I had to see who it was.”

“I thought you had feelings for him.”

She pushed my hoody back over my shoulders as we staggered through to the living room.

“They evaporated as soon as he went off script.”

She yanked up my T-shirt and pulled it roughly over my head.

“As soon as I realized it was you, there was only one think I could think of.”

I knew what it was. There are certain very specific uses for a big nose that you probably only appreciate when you’ve gone out with someone thus blessed.

I directed her back onto the settee and knelt on the floor in front of her. She leaned forward and sucked one of my breasts into her mouth. My nipple pebbled at the touch of her tongue and I almost cried with relief. I pushed her dress up her thighs until it ruched around her hips while her fingers worked to make my other nipple as hard.

“You know why I’m here.” Her lips moved against the dark, puckered skin of my areola. I wished she’d keep talking. But then I wished more that she’d carry on doing what she was doing with her tongue.

I hooked my fingers into the top of her black lace panties and drew them down. These were the panties she’d put on for her date with Christian. Now I was taking them off. They glided down her long, slim legs but she had to let go of my breasts as I tangled with them over the heels of her stilettos.

“Here, let me,” she said.

She leaned forward to undo the shoe buckles at the side of her ankles and I took advantage of her position to slide a hand into the top her dress. Her chest was tightly encased in smooth satin, the sort of sexy slip of a bra that would never grace my own lingerie draw. I pushed one cup aside and yanked her breast free of it. She gasped and even though her shoes and panties were free, she remained where she was to let me play for a minute.

“Now,” she said, leaning back on the couch and spreading her legs apart.

The smell of her musk caught at the back of my throat as I leaned in. If being a physicist didn’t prevent me from believing in God, I would have thought I’d died and gone to heaven.

Best sex on the net – Elust 66

Elust 66 Header image
Photo courtesy of CurvaceousDee

Welcome to Elust #66 -

The only place where the smartest and hottest sex bloggers are featured under one roof every month. Whether you’re looking for sex journalism, erotic writing, relationship advice or kinky discussions it’ll be here at Elust. Want to be included in Elust #67? Start with the rules, come back February 1st to submit something and subscribe to the RSS feed for updates!

For our UK readers, we would like to make a special request that you take a moment and fill out this petition to repeal the new censorship laws.

~ This Month’s Top Three Posts ~

Small Breasts

Watching Her Cum

An Ode to Blow Jobs

 

~ Featured Post (Molly’s Picks) ~

Of Skeletons and Secrets
Would you be bored?

 

~ Readers Choice from Sexbytes ~

*You really should consider adding your popular posts here too*
Lust Fish

All blogs that have a submission in this edition must re-post this digest from tip-to-toe on their blogs within 7 days. Re-posting the photo is optional and the use of the “read more…” tag is allowable after this point. Thank you, and enjoy!

 

Erotic Fiction

Unbroken by Oleander Plume
A Meal And A Show
Fucking Snow
Getting Off Is So Much Fun
Wicked Wednesday – Merry Christmas
Advent Calendar 24

Erotic Non-Fiction

Christmas Drinks At The Y
Nothing But Mouth
The things he does
The First Submission
Canadian Mist, Eggnog, Ginger Ale and You.
A Peachy Night
Skeletons In My Closet
Humiliation of an ex-Nazi submissive 28
a most pleasant fuck
Sex on Meth
Unwrapped

Sex News, Opinion, Interviews, Politics & Humor

Stat
Masturbation Fantasy’s Unintended Consequence
All Health Care Costs Are Not Created Equal
Keep Private Lives Private
The Myth of Magnum

Thoughts & Advice on Kink & Fetish

My Subby Not-Quite-Year
He’s Got The Look
On femininity and rebellion
What Fifty Shades Doesn’t Tell You
Humiliation: hotness and hard-limits
Beginner’s Guide to Electro Sex – Essentials

Poetry

Because of the Way He Held Me
Cricket – A Lusty Limerick

Writing About Writing

7 Signs You’re An Erotica Writer
Why Do I Do What I Do

Blogging

Best & Worst of 2014 & New Years Resolutions

Events

Munches, The Club and Beyond (Part 1)

Thoughts and Advice on Sex and Relationships

He brought me bacon.
Menstruation. Does it weird you out?

 

ELust Site Badge

Alchemy xii – February: available for pre-order

Alchemy xii – February  is now available for pre-order!

February cover-page 1400

 

Alchemy xii – February is the second of the 12 monthly instalments telling the story of Olivia Roux’s submissive training by Harry Lomax at exclusive BDSM club Alchemy.

In their second month together, Harry and Olivia are starting to settle into their respective roles. For Harry, this comes as easily as breathing—he is, after all, Chicago’s reigning Prince of Kink! But for Olivia, submitting is certainly no walk in the park. She hates the idea of calling Harry “Sir”, but as he’s the only one who can give her what she craves most, she’s going have to learn to toe the line.

A rash promise to Raf lands Olivia in trouble, while Harry is left doubting the wisdom of one of his decisions. And as Olivia questions whether she can continue in the program, she finds herself in more hot water as Harry raises the temperature to boiling point!

If you’re new to the Alchemy xii series, why not download the free prequel episode, Alchemy xii – New Year’s Eve to set the scene?

Pre-order now from:

Amazon US

Amazon UK

Barnes & Noble

iTunes

Smashwords

ICYMI: Must I Use a Condom?

Must I use a condom? This is my most recent post for One Handed Writers, but in case you don’t follow that site, I’m posting it here as well, as I think it’s an important and interesting debate. However, my apologies if you’ve already read it.

Must I use a condom? Of course, we all know the answer to that, don’t we? I’m not even going to go there, it’s such a no brainer. But that’s in real life. When it comes to fiction, it’s a whole other ball game (yes, pun intended!) As an erotica writer, this is a question that vexes me more often than it should. Possibly with every fuck I write! Possibly not…

6743516_sA couple of weeks back I had an interesting exchange with a reader who was reviewing one of my stories. She commented that the fact the protagonists hadn’t used protection hadn’t quite ruined the story for her. But it nearly had. And she commented again on another piece of my work in which the couple in question had had ‘skin on skin’ sex. It was definitely her view that protection should always be written in to a story, particularly when two strangers indulged in sex—and she told me that pretty much all the readers she interacted with on Goodreads felt the same way.

Now, I’m not wholly against including protection in my stories—indeed, many of them do feature couples who use condoms—but I think that most writers would prefer not to have include them in every sex scene. It can interrupt the rhythm of the story, not to mention the flow of the passion, and in a longer work, it can become incredibly repetitive. The constant ripping open of the condom wrapper can certainly spoil the mood!

9781783751853_FCSo when should a writer include protection and when can they get away with bareback sex? This is very much up to the writer, in my view. What works for me, may or may not be the right thing for you. But as a general rule, if the piece I’m writing is grounded in reality and if I want my portrayal of sex to be wholly realistic, then I consider the question of what protection my protagonists might use and how they’ll go about negotiating it. In my erotic romance The Christmas Tattoo, my falling in love couple use a condom every time they have sex. If, however, the scene or story I’m writing is pure sexual fantasy, then I let my characters get down and dirty without pausing to ask each other important questions about contraception and disease. In my new club-based BDSM series, Alchemy xii, condoms are pretty thin on the ground—it’s very much a fantasy setting. That’s my shout, as the writer—but, like I say, every writer will handle it differently.

Now, however, I have to ask, why do some readers find it so important? I write fiction. I’m not writing sex scenes to educate or to set an example of the ‘right’ way to have sex. The purpose of my writing is to entertain and turn on my readers, or to move them, or to intrigue them… If you’re reading my books as ‘how to’ manuals, please, go on Amazon and find a non-fiction sex manual—there are hundreds of them and they’ll tell you all the whys and wherefores you might want to know. Don’t come to my door looking for sex education.

Alchemy xii - New Year's EveI, on the other hand, would like to credit my readers with understanding that what they are hopefully enjoying is a work of fiction. After all, when we read a fictional scene that involves getting into a car and driving, we don’t expect to be told about the seat belts, the hand brake, the indicators, the lights, checking the rear mirror and all the other mundane details of safe driving. It’s pretty much taken as a given and generally these things are only alluded to if they are going to have some bearing on the scene, such as a road accident coming up. If you want to learn to drive, you find a non-fiction how-to-drive book (or have a driving lesson!) So why do some readers think that fictional portrayals of sex must be exemplary of how we all should behave in real life? It’s a story, not a how-to manual! Do people who read serial killer thrillers go out and butcher their neighbors? Not in my street!

Furthermore, in erotic and other works of fiction, we don’t expect to read about the characters using the bathroom, when our heroine has her period, if the hero has an itchy rash or feels the urge to break wind. It’s the convention to gloss over these less than glamorous every-day bodily occurrences. And for me, safe sex considerations in a fantasy setting are added to that list.

Am I being irresponsible? Am I encouraging my readers to take unnecessary risks? Am I the unwitting cause of a pandemic of STDs among people who’ve used my characters as role models? I doubt it. I really don’t think my readers are taking it all so literally and using it as guidance for their own lives.

But if you are, stop now! Go and buy some condoms and make sure you use them!

 

 

Review – M by Jacob Louder

I’m absolutely thrilled that my first review for 2015 is of Jacob Louder’s M, the sequel to his brilliant debut First and Go Deeper Press‘ first release of the new year. Now, it’s true to say that while I often promote other writers’ books on Superotica, I don’t often write reviews. The reason for this is not just because I’m lazy (thought that’s certainly true!) but generally because I want to be truthful with my hyperbole. In other words, I’m only prepared to publish a review if I’ve truly fallen in love with a book.

And goddammit, I love this book!

I first became aware of Jacob’s writing when I shared pages with him in Go Deeper’s Dirty Little Numbers flash fiction anthology – and it was immediately evident, despite the brevity of the piece, here was a writer to watch. More recently, I’ve appeared in print with Jacob in Oleander Plume’s Chemical [se]X anthology, and I grow more impressed with Jacob the more of his work I see.

In M, Nico Ericsson, the protagonist of First, is back. This time around he’s a little older and possibly a little wiser. But his life is still a whirl of boys and girls, friends and lovers and hot, hot sex. And it’s the hot, hot sex that, at least in his own mind, really defines who Nico is. He sleeps with his roomate, he flirts with his friends, he works a sexcam and frankly, he can never get enough. But at the same time, he’s devoted to his girlfriend, Miranda, whom he calls M – and there’s literally nothing in the world he wouldn’t do for her. But, you know, this is a coming of age novel and the course of true young love never runs smoothly…

So why do I love this book? Quite simply, because Jacob writes such real and beautiful characters. I feel that I know Nico, and Miranda, and Thad and April. They’re very natural and 100% believable. There’s no exposition and Jacob throws us straight into the story with a super-hot sex scene – and after that, we’re along for the ride. But for all the serious sexy going on in this book, it retains the power to be incredibly moving at the same time. This is Jacob’s real skill. He doesn’t write porn. He writes searing erotica with a beating human heart and you’ll feel for every one of his characters along the way.

Go Deeper Press has always made it their mission to bring us literary erotica and in Jacob Louder they’ve found a writer they can be really proud of.

If you’d like to read an excerpt from M, you’ll find a piece on my Superotica Advent Calendar.

is published on 7th January and available from:

Amazon

Go Deeper Press

Happy New Year from Pillow Talk

My lovely Pillow Talk colleagues, Malin James and Jade Waters, are wishing you a Happy New Year from Pillow Talk in our latest session. Here’s a taster – but just follow the link at the bottom if you want to read the whole thing, including some spicy snippets from our hottest sex scenes of 2014…

Pillow Talk Secrets

 

Tamsin: Hello ladies. How are you both doing today?

Malin: So good! How are you Tamsin? Jade?

Jade: Great! So nice to be here with you both.

2015T: It certainly is good to meet for the first time in 2015 – Happy New Year to you both and to all our readers!

J: Yes, Happy New Year! *Blows party whistles* *Throws confetti*

M: I love the New Year – it always feels good to start fresh. *removes confetti from hair* ;)

T: It is great to have a fresh start. Now, let’s get going on today’s business – our look back over 2014 and our look forward over 2015. I’ve got a few questions to put to you two – starting with what was the most surprising thing writing erotica taught you about yourselves last year?

M: Oh boy.. Well, I think the  biggest thing it taught me was that I’m far more comfortable with myself sexually now than I’ve ever been. I don’t seem to have the hang-ups that plagued me as a younger, non-erotica writing woman.

J: It certainly does have that effect, doesn’t it? Something about writing erotic things adds to one’s erotic nature, I think.

T: I agree. And on a similar note, the more erotica I write the more comfortable I am with the fact that I’m an erotica writer. At first I didn’t want anyone to know – but now I take the opportunity to tell more people and most of them receive it very well.

J: I just love that feeling! I find the reception being positive is true, too.

M: Yes! It’s kind of funny to realize how much apprehension you can have about writing erotica when you first start playing with it. It’s nice to let that go as you develop as a writer.

J: I wrote about that acceptance of myself as an erotica writer back at the end of 2013 – and this year, having been one with it and really truly loving it, I would say the most surprising thing I learned is what a damn work horse I can be. I mean, I know I go at it sometimes, but I’ve had to pull back from working myself to exhaustion a few times. That was a shocker. I’m sure you both can relate to that, too.

T: Absolutely – that was one of my answers – I’ve surprised myself with my sheer doggedness when it comes to getting stuff done!

M: I never would have called myself a workaholic until this past year, but I’ve been surprised, like both of you, by how much it’s actually true. I guess loving your work brings that out!

J: Yes. But one of the things that’s helped is that you both have been around to “talk me down” when I’m taxing myself. I think that’s one of the greatest things we’ve done for one another (besides all the “talking up,” of course).

M: Yeah – that support really has been critical. It’s easy to push too hard, or get too low. Having two partners/friends who can offer that bit of perspective is just invaluable.

T: It is a wonderful thing, and I wouldn’t be without you two! Now, what’s the most interesting or surprising thing you’ve learned about the industry over the course of 2014?

M: For me it was a fairly general realization. I was surprised by how unstable the market has gotten recently, and yet, within that, how many other options writers have. That and how unfailingly supportive other writers are.

T: That was totally going to be my answer – just how fantastic the erotica community is. We might supposedly be competing against each other but every writer I come across is generous with their support.

J: Yes. It’s a tight-knit group – probably the most lovable and delightful group of all the writer groups I’ve worked with. Considering how much flak the genre can get, it’s wonderful to have that support.

T: If we don’t help each other, who will?

J: Right!

T: Now, turning to what we’ve all been writing, tell me each of you, what was your hottest sex scene of the year?

Read more at Pillow Talk

Alchemy xii – January

Happy New Year – it’s January 1 and Alchemy xii – January is now available to buy from all good stockists! In my post yesterday, I explained what Alchemy xii is and how the episodes will be published over the coming 12 months. So today’s post is all about the new episode!

Alchemy xii - January cover

Here’s the blurb for Alchemy xii – January:

At five past midnight on New Year’s Day, Olivia Roux formally signed up to Harry Lomax’s Alchemy xii submissives’ training program—and in so doing earned herself her first punishment. Harry had demanded her answer by midnight. But was that small infringement by accident or on purpose? Now, as Harry gives Olivia her first taste of what to expect from Alchemy xii, Olivia discovers a whole new world of forbidden pleasures.

As she’s initiated into the program, Harry gives her a diary.

“It’s for you to write down exactly what happens at Alchemy. And, more importantly, your feelings about what you’re going through. Things that were good and things that upset you or scared you or that you didn’t like. No one else will read it but you…” said Harry.

Olivia is fascinated by Alchemy and all that occurs there—and she’s as fascinated by Harry as he is by her. He may be her Dom, but it’s not only his domination of her body that draws her to him. However, she also quickly learns that actions have reactions and her behavior may have unseen consequences.

How will she cope as Harry steps up his demands for her submission? After all, Olivia has been captain of her own life and her own body for as long as she can remember. One thing is certain, submission isn’t going to come easily to a woman as high-powered as she is.

Excerpt

Droit de seigneur.

Roll those words around in your mouth. Let them take form slowly and slip across your tongue. Imagine them spoken in the dreamiest of English accents. That’s what he said to me as I knelt on the floor in front of him, when I’d just asked him to whip me.

“Of course I’m going to whip you—you’ve earned a punishment,” he said, “but first, I’m going to exercise my droit de seigneur.”

His right to fuck me senseless whenever he wants. I’d never heard anything so sexy in my entire life…

 

I know the words I should actually have written at the top of this page were Dear Diary. Fuck that! This isn’t that sort of diary. And nobody but me will ever read it, so I’ll start however I damn well like!

This will be one year. One year in my life which, if I make it through to the end, could change things dramatically. Change me. I’ve opened a door onto a new world. I know already there’s no going back. I’m excited and I’m scared. I’m as horny as fuck whenever I think about what’s happened.

But at three minutes past midnight on January 1st, this is how it all began.

Droit de seigneur.

The speaker was Harry Lomax. The situation? I’d just agreed to submit to training. (See what I did there? Submit.) I don’t know much yet about being a submissive but what I do know is that I definitely want more of what Harry Lomax doles out. So there I was, kneeling, naked, in front of him on the floor of his apartment on the seventy-second story of the Alchemy Tower. He’d demanded my decision by midnight. I’d given it to him at a minute past.

Punishment was due. First, though, he wanted his droit de seigneur.

I studied the bulge in the front of Harry’s jeans. I grew wet looking at it. He peeled off his black shirt. The sight of his dark nipples, pierced by silver bars which held them erect from his chest, was enough to make me dizzy. Diary, I want this man more than I’ve ever wanted anybody—he’s so damn hot, I could weep.

A sheen of sweat glistened on his forehead and I could tell by the rasp of his breath, he was just as turned on as me.

“Lie down,” he said, pointing toward the bed. His voice cracked as he said ‘down’. He turned away from me.

I stood up and walked over to the bed on shaky legs. I didn’t know if he wanted me to lie on my front or my back, so I lay on my back, placing my hands up behind my head. As I did this, Harry crossed to a chest of drawers against the opposite wall. He opened the top one and started rifling through it. I raised my head to watch. He pulled out an assortment of leather cuffs and harnesses, dropping them on the top of the chest. After a minute, he selected several from his pile and swept the rest back into the drawer. He came over to sit on the edge of the bed.

Without saying a word and keeping me on my back, he bent one of my legs up so my heel pressed against my buttock. He took a double leather cuff and strapped one section around my thigh. The second part of the cuff went around my ankle, holding my leg in a bent position. I could hardly lie still as I felt his fingers on my flesh. I had a sudden urge to reach out for him, just to pull him on top of me.

“Harry…”

“Safeword.”

“Palindrome.”

“You won’t need it. I’m only going to fuck you.” Only? Jesus, what that did to me! “But some people panic when they’re restrained for the first time.”

“Not the first time,” I said.

“Good,” he said, walking round to the other side of the bed.

I could see his erection pushing at the front of his pants. I couldn’t wait to see his cock revealed. He caught hold of my other ankle and strapped it to my thigh in a similar fashion. I tested the restraints by trying to move my legs but I couldn’t.

Harry laughed.

“Like it?”

He stood at the end of the bed. I realized he was staring right down between my open legs. My face suffused with color but inside me a dull ache of longing made itself felt.

“Like it?” I threw his words back at him.

“You know, Olivia, I can gag that pretty mouth of yours.”

“But then you couldn’t kiss it.”

“Plenty of time for both, darling.”

He came up one side of the bed and sat down close enough to me so he could lean forward to capture my mouth. He owned me with his kiss, which seemed to last forever. My legs strained against the leather cuffs as my hips rose and fell with need. My wrists pushed against his hands as he held me flat against the mattress, but my mouth yielded to his and my breasts burned with the need to be touched. All I could think about was the moment on my first evening with Harry when he’d strapped me to the silver bed post before marking my back so thoroughly. I’d thought he was showing me what it had felt like for the little sub in Master Blasters. But it dawned on me now, he’d been showing me what it would be like if I surrendered myself to him.

I broke off our kiss.

“Harry, I need…”

He put a hand over my mouth.

“You don’t get to ask. I know exactly what you need, Olivia. I’ll decide when you get it. But just as last time was all about you, tonight is mine. Do you understand?”

“Yes.”

His eyes, dark stormy blue, drilled into me.

“Yes, Sir.”

He reached for another leather cuff from the nightstand and strapped it around one of my wrists. He pulled my arm down to my side and, on hearing a sharp metallic snap, I realized he’d attached it to a ring on the side of the thigh restraint. Once more, he walked around the bed to do the same thing to my other hand. I lay immobilized, at his mercy, and I couldn’t imagine a place I would rather have been at that moment.

I watched from where I lay as Harry bent down to unlace his boots. If I hadn’t been so desperate to have him inside me, I could have spent all day watching the man undress. His bare torso rippled as he moved, hard and sinewy. Skinny rather than pumped up, every muscle acutely defined—just the way I like. The silver at his nipples glinted in the light. I longed to let my tongue explore the contrast between hard metal and soft flesh. I wanted to bite him as fiercely as I could, to leave my teeth marks on his shoulder. I wanted to bury my face in his armpit and breathe in the scent of his sweat.

Harry kicked his boots away and peeled off black socks. The rasp of his fly zipper sounded like music to my ears. I sighed, making him look up at me with a delighted smile.

“Close your eyes.”

Harry Lomax, you bastard! I seriously couldn’t believe he would say such a thing. Right at this moment. I needed to see him naked. I blinked. He was still looking at me.

“I mean it, Olivia.”

“Harry, please…”

“You’ve just earned another punishment. And don’t think these punishments are going to be something you’ll enjoy, Olivia. I fully realize a good paddling isn’t a punishment for a pain slut like you.”

I closed my eyes.

“I’m sorry, I’m sorry.” I tacked on, “Sir,” as an afterthought.

Harry laughed again.

“My god, I’m going to have such fun fucking with you, let alone fucking you.”

I opened my eyes.

“You’re a cunt, Harry Lomax.”

“And you’re just my sort of brat,” he said. “But obviously I can understand how desperate you are to see my cock, so I’ll let you off this time. But be warned, Olivia, you will do as I say in future, or you won’t last on the program.”

Finally he took his damned pants off—no shorts—and I saw, for the first time, the magnificent Lomax cock. Big, but not too big. Hard. Beautiful. I have to repeat myself: beautiful. This was the cock Michelangelo was striving for when he sculpted David. More silver glinted in the light. The beaded end of a Prince Albert winked at me, making me catch my breath, intensifying the ache of longing between my legs. The enticing sliver which pierced the head of his cock fascinated me. But Harry didn’t give me time to study it. He lowered himself slowly onto the bed and onto me, and as he came closer, I found I could hardly breathe. His warm body covered mine, hard and angular, as he pushed my thighs apart to give himself room. I felt his beautiful hot cock pressing against my stomach. My hips jerked up as I spread my legs wider.

He looked down into my eyes, brushing my hair back from my forehead with one hand.

“I wanted to do this the moment I laid eyes on you,” he said.

 

Now available from:

Amazon.com

Amazon.co.uk

Barnes & Noble

Smashwords

All Romance Ebooks

Alchemy store

Alchemy xii – It’s Officially Launched!

It’s the last day of 2014 and the first day of Alchemy xii – yes, that’s right, it’s officially launched! We have lift off! I know the first episode, Alchemy xii – New Year’s Eve has been available for some time from several outlets, due to the arcane nature of Amazon’s price-matching strategy, but this is the real launch day. So, if you’re reading this and you haven’t already downloaded the first FREE episode of my epic series – do it now!

Alchemy xii - New Year's Eve

If you don’t know anything about Alchemy xii, let me fill you in. This is my little (actually f**king huge) publishing experiment. Alchemy xii reinvents the novel into a serial format. Actually, reinvents isn’t quite accurate – after all this is exactly how Charles Dickens used to put his work out – in monthly magazine episodes. But now we have the technology that will allow me to deliver a new Alchemy xii novella directly to your in box on the first of every month – if you care to subscribe. Or you can buy individual novella length episodes through all the usual outlets. And to tempt you into the story, the first episode is free.

So what’s it about? It’s the story of a unique couple – Harry and Olivia and their journey through one year of submissive training at Chicago’s premier kink club… Harry isn’t a Doms’ Dom and Olivia has no intention of being anybody’s sub. Harry’s a hedonist, a switch, a sex addict who won’t stop drinking and can’t stop smoking. Olivia has high-powered career and she’s nobody’s bitch! She hasn’t called anybody ‘Sir’ since she was ten. But Harry’s charisma and her own newly discovered masochistic streak collide. Before she knows it, she’s signed up to be a trainee at Alchemy, the club where Harry’s the Prince of Kink! While Harry makes it his business to push all Olivia’s buttons, she’s doing a thorough job of pushing all his without even realizing it!

But it’s different in more than just the story and the delivery method. Alchemy xii has a different visual aesthetic to any erotica currently on the market. How bored are you with black-and-white covers that show shoes, ties and handcuffs? Using an extraordinary set of photos by White Room, the 18 covers required will have a standout and distinctive look.

I’ve been completely bowled over by the reception the first episode has had to date. Alchemy xii - New Year’s Eve has so far scored a clean sweep of 5* reviews on Amazon and Goodreads. Here’s just a few of the wonderful things people have been saying:

Alchemy xii - January cover “Flowers writes hot, explicit sex with soul and sensuality, and builds delightful characters within a high stakes story.”

“Alchemy has it all, including the sexiest, most inventive, most *fun* BDSM club settings I’ve read in ages.”

“Super-Dom Harry Lomax is so vivid and beautiful, so delightfully cruel with his tools of pain/pleasure, that it would be impossible to not fall in love with him. He’s different, too, than your “usual” BDSM erotica Doms: we feel and see his vulnerability, which, to me at least, makes him not only real, but utterly awesome.”

“The story is beautifully written, full of lush scenes of gorgeous domination and submission that left my heart pounding.”

“Someone came out with a serial that speaks my language. An erotic penny dreadful, and seriously people, this one is hot! I’m talking fiery, sultry, torrid, white hot. I finished the last word and wanted to go back and reread, re-experience the whole bit all over again, but I have to catch my breath first. Find some way to unravel my toes.”

Is it naughty of me to include them here, to blow my own trumpet like this? Probably – but I need to convince as many of you as I possibly can to become invested in this story. Alchemy xii has taken over my writing and pretty much my life in the last few months – and it will continue to do so until the finale is released on 1 December 2015! And I’d sure as hell like some company for the ride!

If you’d like to read an excerpt, you’ll find one on Day 24 of the Superotica Advent Calendar.

The first episode is available now, FREE of charge, from:

Alchemy xii store

Amazon US

Amazon UK

Barnes & Noble

Smashwords

All Romance Ebooks

Kobo

 

subscription pack-page0001The Subscription Package is available for $9.99 from the Alchemy xii store .

 

Alchemy xii – January, the next episode, will be published tomorrow and is available to pre-order now:

Amazon.com

Amazon.co.uk

Smashwords

All Romance Ebooks

 

 

Superotica Advent Calendar 24 – Tamsin Flowers

 

Advent Calendar banner

Wow! After 23 amazing contributions by 24 outstanding erotica writers, we’ve finally come to the final day! Before I sign off I just want to thank all the writers involved – I feel honored that you all agreed to jump on board with me – and I also want to thank everyone who’s stopped by to read each day. I hope you’ve reconnected with some of your favorite writers, as well as discovering new ones to investigate further.

Today’s excerpt is one of my own, and given Alchemy xii is about to launch on its year-long odyssey, I’m sure none of you are surprised that this is where my choice hails from. This scene is taken from Alchemy xii – New Year’s Eve, the first episode in Harry and Olivia’ story.

Happy Christmas, everyone!

Tamsin xxx

Woman's naked back

He led her out of the elevator and took her to a room so seemingly benign she might have thought it was a luxury hotel. Harry knew otherwise. Tonight would be anything but benign as far as she was concerned.

His weapons. Her pleasure. His heart rate crept up as he put the keycard in the slot to open the door. He ushered her into the small vestibule. It was weird he should feel nervous at what lay in store. After all, she was the one being unwittingly subjected to a job interview. She would be scrutinized, challenged, her boundaries pushed and reactions assessed. It might be all new to her but for him, well, he did this every day of the week. He liked that she made him feel this way.

“Harry, what is this place?” she said, walking into the room and throwing her coat down on over a chair.

He followed her in and fiddled with the air conditioning. A vast four-poster bed with twisted columns of silver filigree at each corner and pale grey silk drapes dominated the room. In contrast to the ornate bed, the rest of the suite had been decorated with restraint—minimalist grey and silver.

“It’s a club. Like Master Blasters, only a little more expensive to join.”

“What club?”

“Alchemy.”

“Alchemy? I thought that was an urban myth.”

“We like it that way. It’s the reason why there’s no sign above the door and no matchbooks in the bar. The only place you’ll see an Alchemy logo is as a tattoo.”

“So what were you doing at Master Blasters?”

Harry walked over to Olivia, shedding his coat on the way. He kept walking at her until he had her backed up against a wall. Her eyes widened and her breath drew faster, but she held his gaze steadily. Harry felt his own heart rate rise. He caught her wrists and pinned them to the wall above her head.

“In here, you don’t ask me questions,” he said. “In here, I’m your Dom. Do you understand what that means?”

Olivia nodded but Harry saw the pulse at the base of her neck start jumping. He had a desperate urge to lick the translucent skin of her throat but if he did he might not stop till he fucked her. And tonight wasn’t about fucking her.

“Have you ever submitted before?”

This time Olivia shook her head. “No.”

“But because of what you saw in the club, you think you want this?”

“Yes.”

She didn’t hesitate with her answer. She sounded sure. Harry changed his grip so he could hold both her wrists with just one of his hands. He let his other hand drop to her face. He ran a finger down her jawline, then along her lips. She opened her mouth and, with a small sigh, her tongue darted out to lick his finger. Harry pulled it away and gripped her chin.

“I’m going to find out if you really do want it,” he said.

He walked away from her to retrieve his cigarettes from his coat. Lighting one, he dropped into a deep armchair by the window. He pointed to a spot on the floor in front of him. The girl blinked as she tried to work out what he wanted her to do, then she went and stood on the spot.

“Undress for me,” he said.

As soon as she raised her hands up to the front of her basque to undo the top fastening, Harry’s cock sent him a message.

“Wait,” he said, stubbing out his cigarette in an ashtray. “I’ll do it.”

Standing in front of her, he could feel the heat coming off her body and smell the pungency of her arousal beneath her perfume. He took a deep breath, savoring her aroma. He walked around her, examining her close up like a horse trader assessing a new mare.

“Do I make the grade?” Her voice sounded husky. It made Harry want to put his mouth on hers to literally taste the words as she spoke.

He ignored the question and came to a standstill behind her. He reached out to dip a finger into the waistline of her skirt, just below the small of her back. Her skin was hot. His touch was rewarded by a small shimmy passing through her bare shoulders. He leaned in to bite one of them, not hard, but enough to make her flinch and momentarily lose her footing. Her skin tasted of salt. Harry had to fight the urge to just push her onto the bed and fuck her.

Not tonight. He undid the button and slid down the zipper of her skirt but the soft fabric still clung tightly around her hips. He slid his hands inside and pushed the skirt down, caressing the round swell of her buttocks as he did. Olivia swayed slightly, breathing heavily as his hands moved across her. The skirt slid away to the floor, leaving Harry standing with his hands on the back of her thighs, at the tops of her stockings. He drank in legs that went on forever encased in sheer black nylon all the way down to her vertiginous heels. Deftly, she stepped out of the pool of crumpled fabric and flicked it away with her foot. Harry wanted to push against her, press his hard cock to her buttocks, reaching his hands around to slip them inside the front of her basque. He wanted to push her up against the wall and take her hard from behind.

He raised his hands to her shoulders and spun her so they were standing face to face. He knew some men would have made her take her shoes off but he didn’t care that she had inches on him. Her long legs were magnificent. All he wanted was to lose himself between them and to have them wrapped around his waist as he fucked her or hooked over his shoulders as he fucked her deeper.

She stood in front of him in her basque and black lace panties so diaphanous he could see right through them. Harry’s erection fought against his pants, so he paused momentarily to enjoy the sensation. Damn! Sometimes it was hard to remember he was working.

“Undo your corset,” he said, stepping back.

Slowly, she undid each hook-and-eye fastening to reveal, an inch at a time, the creamy white expanse of her décolletage. Her breasts were straining to escape, perfect orbs tipped with round dark points that pushed for freedom. As she pulled the basque away to one side, Harry retreated to the chair. The urge to fuck her became overwhelming. But he was determined not to give in to it.

“Harry, are we going to…?”

Harry focused and stood up again.

“Listen, darlin’, if you’re going to give submission a try, there’s one thing we need to get straight. You submit. I command.”

Olivia’s eyes dropped to the floor.

“Give me a safe word.”

“Palindrome.”

“I intend to make you use it.”

“Good.”

Feisty worked for him. He’d never been one for totally subservient subs. It took all the fun out it. And he wasn’t looking for just another sub anyway. He picked up one of her wrists and pulled her across to stand at a corner of the bed. Time to play hardball.

“Put your hands up.”

She did as she was told without question, placing both hands high on the spiraled silver post. Harry went to the cabinet beside the bed to fetch a set of leather cuffs. He returned to where she stood waiting, such a visual feast of pale, creamy skin, black lace, and tumbling hair against the sinuous twists of silver. God, who else could say all in a day’s work to something like this?

“Hands,” he said. She took them off the post and held them out to him.

He buckled the restraints around her wrists, watching her face as he did. Olivia’s lips shone wet. Her cheeks were flushed as she stared wide-eyed at his fingers securing the cuffs. When both were done up, he lifted the short length of chain between them and clipped the links to a small ring high on the bedpost. He put a finger on the tiny blue pulse at her throat. Its rhythm matched the throbbing at the base of his cock—he had to step back and take a breath.

“Do you come easily?”

“It depends who I’m with,” she said, without looking round at him.

“You’re with me.”

“Then we’ll see.”

The urge to kiss her brattish mouth came second only to the urge to mark her pristine skin. Foreplay was over. Harry went to the closet where he knew he’d find what he wanted to use on her. He would start with a paddle to test how far she let him go. He chose a smooth one made of firm black leather, trying it on his hand. Olivia started at the noise. Harry knew this would be the precise moment she wondered if she really wanted to go through with it or not.

“You can use your safeword,” he said, slapping the paddle harder on his palm.

She rested her forehead against the silver post and braced her legs. Just one thing left to do. He stuck the paddle into the back of his waistband to free his hands. Then, very gently, with the softest touch, he slowly slid her panties down her thighs and let them drop to her ankles. Olivia’s shoulders rose and fell as she sucked in a deep breath. Harry took a step back, lining himself up just a little to the left of her—the perfect position for his right hand to reach its target. He retrieved the paddle from his back.

Thwack!

Olivia gave a sharp cry.

“Count,” said Harry.

“One.” Her voice rang out strong and steady. Harry guessed the cry had been from shock rather than pain.

He struck her again, across both buttocks just as he had the first time. This time, although her body jerked, she made no sound at the moment of impact.

“Two.”

Roses blossomed on the soft curves of her bottom, making Harry’s trousers feel tighter than ever. The room was hot, the silence only broken by the rhythmic slap of the paddle, Harry’s step back, Olivia’s count, followed by Harry’s step forward for the next slap. Harry kept the pace steady, very slowly building up the intensity. He wanted to hear his girl gasp or whimper, or suck in her breath tight as her body jerked against the cold metal of the post. But Olivia stayed braced on firm legs, and only the slight catch in her voice as she said each number gave him any clue as to how she was taking the pain. So far, she was taking it fine.

When they reached sixteen, Harry dropped the paddle on the floor and went to her. He laid a palm across one of her buttocks. She winced, but he could see her smile from the side. He slid his finger lower, into the crevice between her legs. She was wet, fabulously wet, sighing at his touch.

“Not yet,” he whispered in her ear. “This is only the beginning.”

 

Alchemy xii - New Year's EveDownload the first episode of Alchemy xii free from:

The Alchemy xii store

Amazon.com

Amazon UK