Category Archives: 3 Star Reviews

A Flash of Fang by R. E. Butler

I didn’t like this story as much as I did the first.  The plot was not as well developed, and while the attraction of the main characters (witch Elizabeth and her bear-shifting mates Axe and Ash) was as fun to watch unfold as in the first book, the outside stuff that was happening just didn’t come together.  The parts involving Daeton seemed to come out of nowhere and disappeared the same way.  I don’t know if that was supposed to be a lead in for a third book, but it was just strange.  The creepy dreams were just left hanging.  The only good part of the book was the steamy interaction between the were-bears and their witch.  I’m giving the story 3 stars because it just felt rushed.  I think if the author had taken her time and worked a little more to smooth out the plot, it would have worked much, much better.

Welcome to the Fish Tank by Big Kahuna

If you are one of those people who does not require realism in your stories in order to suspend your disbelief and enjoy a good piece of fiction, than this might be the book for you.  This is, after all, a work of erotica and erotica plays by a different set of rules than most any other genre.  Erotica is fantasy based, and though it didn’t work for me, that doesn’t mean it’s not hit-the-nail-on-the-head perfect for someone else.  It was fairly well written, there were only a few minor editing problems, and compared with many indie books out there, you could do a whole lot work the Big Kahuna.  However, here were my problems with the story:

#1) This was a kidnapping story.  Granted, kidnappings are frequent erotic-fodder in the imaginations of many people, and I am one of them.  But I found her reactions to her situation to be jarringly unrealistic.  Not at first, where her responses are exactly as one would expect a woman’s to be when she wakes up in a strange place, under slightly ominous circumstances.  I’m sorry, but having bigger boobs is not compensation for being some stranger’s plaything without your consent.

#2) It’s a little nit-picky point, but I counted at least two and probably three different places in that story where Marina would have died.  Yes, it’s a fantasy, but even fantasies should abide by the laws of physics.  For instance, the human gasp of shock and/or fear.  This sound is not made by a rapid exhale that would cause Marina to blow pretty bubbles.  This is caused by a sudden inhale of air or, in Marina’s case, water, which would result in an instant coughing/vomiting spasm as she tried to get the water out of her lungs.  She never would have survived however long she spent under anesthesia without her mouth being taped shut.  It’s little slips of detail like this that I found too difficult to look beyond even just long enough to enjoy this story for the fish tale that it was.  (Sorry, sorry.  Couldn’t resist.) 3 Stars

A Little Harmless Gift by Melissa Schroeder

To be honest, I wasn’t a fan of the story, but I have a feeling that’s not for anything the author did.  It just was not my thing.

The writing was well-done, nicely edited, not a lot of mistakes like with so many Indie books, but the story just didn’t suck me in.  It also annoyed me a little that the main story was only 36% of this book.  The remaining 64% was filler—advertisements for some of her other books, under the current pen name and others, along with samples of some of her other stories.  Call me old fashioned, but to me this ratio is way off. 3 Stars

The Horse Master of Shanhasson by Joely Sue Burkhart

I found this to be a very strange story. It has a BDSM theme, but the premise for why the High Queen required this treatment was unbelievable to the point of ridiculousness, and the author’s choice for how the BDSM scenes should be executed bordered on the unpalatable. I love a good BDSM story, but this just wasn’t one. Those aspects of the story felt so awkwardly written that, to me, it came across as abusive.

What the author does do right, however, is the romance. If you look at this story from that angle alone, I thought the plot very well done. The horse master was a wonderful character, and the fantasy setting made for a very unique vehicle in which to tell this story. I really liked how he gentled and tamed the High Queen, bringing her down from that abused mindset and fleshing out the affection they had for one another until it budded into the beginnings of real love. Their romance was beautiful and touching and sexy as hell where and when it should be. The insertions of the BDSM scenes, I feel, were unnecessary and ruined what would otherwise have been a unique and enjoyable story. 3 Stars

Dumpsterotica: How Dirty Are You? (An Erotic Comedy) by Allie Beck

I was not so fond of this story, but I have a feeling that this is more my problem than because of anything the author’s done. Technically, this story is very well written. The author knows how to tell a story, knows how to punctuate, and has put obvious effort into making this as polished and professional as anything you’d pick up off a book store shelf. My problem with it revolves around the characters: I just didn’t like them and I don’t see how this book can be billed as a comedy when it wasn’t funny.

This is the story of two people who have little respect for one another and can’t communicate. Marcia is a wife with a very unhealthy (in more ways than one) obsession with her electric toothbrush. She hasn’t achieved an orgasm with her husband in the four years they’ve been together. So, instead of seeing a therapist to figure out why, she cuts him off from sex almost entirely (once a month, if he’s lucky) and masturbates every day. I find her attitude to be so selfish, it’s appalling. Joe, on the other hand, isn’t much better. Frustrated and desperate, he begins arranging ‘date nights’ for the express purpose of getting his wife plastered on enough champagne to finally get her into bed. Why anyone would want to stay married to someone who withholds their physical affection, is beyond my understanding. I’d have advised Marcia to see a professional about her hangups and Joe to see a divorce lawyer. He deserves better than a woman who thinks nothing of holding her husband sexually hostage while she gets her rocks off on a daily basis.  Where in any of this is there supposed to be humor?  It’s possible it was while they were in a restaurant dumpster, having sex while wallowing around in the cast off food, getting it on their faces and in their mouths, but I was so disgusted at that point maybe I just didn’t notice.  I won’t be reading the second in the series.  3 Stars

Double Teamed on a Blind Date by Debbie Brownstone

This was not as good as another I read by this author, Bent Over in an Alleyway etc… Brenda goes on a blind date, only to wind up having a threesome with one of her date’s roommates.  There was nothing technically wrong with this short story.  The writing is tight, it’s well edited, but the characters struck me as very two-dimensional and the situation was unappealing.  The sex felt very mechanical and not as descriptive as in Ms. Brownstone’s other books.  That may be more my issue than the author’s, though, which is why I’m giving this three stars.  For erotica, I just didn’t find it arousing.  And for crying out loud, Ms. Brownstone, would you please, please, please pick some better titles for your stories?

Rough Sex Stories: 20 Explicit Stories of Rough Sex by Jill Andrews

I truly do wish I could say I liked these stories, but I can’t. I am trying very hard to be fair, but as I was reading all I could think was that ‘Jill Andrews’ might actually be a man. Ultimately, this makes absolutely no difference whatsoever in how well someone writes, except that the stories that turn some men on can be very different from what turns women on, and rarely do the two merge to titillate both genders within the same erotic work.

These stories had a James Bond/Letters to Hustler or Penthouse feel to them. If you enjoy that kind of thing, then you might really enjoy this book. I was not at all aroused by these stories. To me, they were extremely unpleasant. It wasn’t just the crudity, or the over-the-top rapist-type aggression, or the near-comic thesaurusal descriptions of the intimate aspects of both the men and women parts. It wasn’t that it was very poorly edited (use of incorrect words is frequent and author doesn’t seem to understand how punctuation, speech and paragraph formation should all work together, which is very distracting). It wasn’t even the roughness of the ‘money shots,’ I guess you’d call them. This is, after all, a book about rough sex. By golly, there ought to be some roughness in here somewhere. My problem with the stories were the level of hatred that the men had towards the women and, frankly, vise versa. In at least half these stories, the women gave back as good as they got, but this goes beyond hair-pulling, light slapping, spanking and/or BDSM rough-housing. Within these pages you will find anal to oral transfers, Bukkake, and no affection whatsoever passing between the partners involved.  I gave this 3 stars because, while the content was awful, the actual writing itself didn’t deserve worse than that.

Deflowered by the Demon by Vivi Lemay

I hate the cover art, and the title pretty well tells you exactly what grade of book you’re getting.  B-movies have titles like this, but I happen to be a big fan of demon erotica, so I thought I’d give it a chance.  The writing is better than the cover art would lead you to believe.  Technically, the author worked hard to make this book as flawless as possible (or she has a really good editor), and that alone puts her head and shoulders above most indie authors.  There was a place on page 2 where a sentence was worded so oddly that I wondered if English was Ms Lemay’s first language, but all said, this is a very minor thing and does not detract from the rest of the story.

My overall impressions of the book are that the premise isn’t bad: witch’s apprentice wants to show her mistress that she is ready to learn more powerful spells and seeks to prove this by (dum-da-da-dum–insert dramatic omg-don’t-do-it! music here) summoning a demon.  Now, this goes about as well as one would imagine, and the end result is that our silly apprentice must then offer herself bodily to the demon in exchange for his allowing her to continue living.  As far as plot lines in short stories go, this isn’t a bad one.  The author clearly has some writing skill and if you don’t mind books in which your mighty, powerful demon from the fourth plane comes across using slang and sounding more like Buffy the Vampire Slayer, then this might well be the book for you.  Ms Lemay wrote a demon who, by appearances alone, is 100% believable as a dangerous, evil creature from Hell…right up until he opened his mouth.  Honestly, this might be more my problem than the author’s.

The reason I gave this story 3 stars instead of 4 is because of the constant bouncing back and forth between the demon’s point of view and Laurel’s, the apprentice.  It is amateurish and lazy to constantly switch from one character to the next with each subsequent paragraph you write, and that’s really too bad because if it weren’t for this one major flaw, than this would have been solid 4-star material.  Can Ms Lemay write?  Yes.  Is this book worth reading?  Sure.  Could it have been better?  Hell yes.  If Ms Lemay ever goes back and fixes the POV problem and the way the demon talks, I would gladly pay to download this story and read it again. 3 stars

Seychelles Sunset by Lynne Connolly

I am kind of torn about leaving this review.  On the one hand, the story is technically well-written.  I wasn’t ripped from the mood by glaring errors, misspelled words, missing words, wrong words–all common themes that seem to plague most of the digital stories you find on here (although not so much the Naughty Nooner series, those seem properly edited)–and the author comes across as being a competent and skilled story-teller.  However, it does feel as if there should have been more to this story.  And by that, I mean, it feels like this is part of a larger work.  Like the author ripped the sex scene from another book and published it on its own, which really didn’t work for me in a way I can’t quite put my finger on.  It wasn’t even the sex scene that she ripped, but the phone sex/seduction that preceded it.  The sex scene itself was only a few paragraphs with precious little detail.  In that regard, it fell extremely flat as erotica.  The phone sex aspect, however, was nice.  It was steamy in places and what you would expect to find in a Naughty Nooner.  I wish I could rate this story higher, but because of the disjointed feel of it, I just don’t think it deserves more than 3 stars.  Although I would like to find more books from the author.  Like I said, she can write.  This story was just a miss for me.

Out of Control (Erotic Shorts for the E-Reader) by Delilah Moon

First off, I really liked this story and I wanted to give it five stars. It was well thought out. Nothing felt stilted or incomplete (until the very end of the second story, where the writing felt a little rushed and sloppy). The scenes were HOT, the characters fairly well developed (especially considering the length of the story), and the flow was perfect for each half of the story (although the separate halves did not meld cohesively with one another–they were almost two completely different stories). Apart from this, the majority of my complaints all stem from the technical aspects of the author’s writing. Ms. Moon: Paragraphs should be indented and justified, scenes and chapter breaks need to be separated appropriately (using * * * for scene breaks, and chapter headings and page breaks for individual chapters), editing needs to be done (for instance, you have ‘tough’ written in instead of ‘touch’). You have a wonderful gift for story-telling, but you need to either take a class or pick up a book on how to write to get your formatting up to par. This was five-star story-telling, but your formatting and rough editing dragged it down to three.