Review of ‘Wild rides and other lesbian erotic adventures’ by Sacchi Green.

3.5 Stars. This was a steamy collection of erotic-romance shorts. I must admit I went into reading this collection with lower expectations. I read a full-length book by Green late last year and did not care for it. I’m not sure if that book was just a fluke or what, but these shorts were so much more enjoyable than I anticipated. Green can write short stories really well.

Erotic shorts in themselves are not a favorite of mine. I love good steamy sex scenes but I want them to have meaning. I want to see them used to show the intimacy between the main characters and further their relationship. You can’t always do that in a short story due to time limits, therefore, they can sometimes seem like sex for just the sake of sex. That was not the case with this collection at all. These short stories were well thought out and had a storyline that was worth reading. The steamy scenes were just a pleasant bonus.

Overall this was a really good collection. Like most collections not every story is perfect. There were two short stories that I just flat out didn’t care for, but when you have fourteen to read, there were plenty that I really enjoyed. What I loved was the variety. There were modern day romances, romances that took place during the Vietnam War and even right after the Civil War. There were two paranormal romances (ghosts and vampires), an out-there but still interesting futuristic-sci-fi story, and one of my favorites, a well written historical fantasy that I desperately wanted to see turned into a full-length book. No matter what your tastes are, there is an erotic short for just about any reader.

When it comes to romances, most of the stories would be considered butch-femme or sporty-femme. What I was surprised to see was a romance between two tough androgynous women. I hate sticking labels on people but in lesfic, we almost always read romances between butch/femme or femme/femme, I can’t even remember the last time I read a romance that I would consider butch/butch. The story was about two tough women in prison and it ended up being one of my favorites. I have to give props to Green for going a little outside the common lesfic box.

The type of erotic romances in this book I think will have wide appeal. The sex scenes are good and steamy. There are a little spanking and even light bondage, but I would not consider the stories hardcore BDSM.

If you are looking to spice up your night with a little steam and some really readable and interesting stories, this collection is for you. It was better than I expected and I’m glad I read it.

An ARC was given to me for an honest review.

Review of ‘One way or another’ by A.L. Brooks.

This is book four in the ‘Window Shopping Collection’ series penned by different authors under the common romantic theme of two characters meeting while shopping. In this book, corporate lawyer Sarah Connolly meets primary school teacher Bethany Keane while they are browsing a sex shop. Sarah is a womaniser who keeps her sexual liaisons casual while Bethany is looking for a serious relationship. They are attracted to each other but they couldn’t be more different. Will they find a common ground?

This is a slow burn romance with a surprising side (not described in the blurb) of very light BDSM. Both main characters are very different from each other and the author does a good job in presenting them with all their layers and traits. Eventually the reader discovers the reasons for their actions which aren’t contrived or forced into the story.

The characters’ chemistry is good though, in my opinion, the indecisions in their relationship didn’t act as a build up but rather as a cool down. That’s where my rating of this book drops. However, once the intimate scenes unfold (quite late in the book), they are well done and have an interesting twist. Kudos to the author to raise the issue of safe sex that is normally avoided in lesbian romance or erotica but I’m not sure if it works well every time.

The secondary characters are well rounded and help define the main characters stories better, specially Sarah’s friend Jonathan and Bethany’s mother. The setting of London as the background of the plot is a secondary character in itself and makes the story more realistic and authentic.

Overall, a sweet slow-burn romance with a side of light BDSM. 3.5 stars.

ARC provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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Review of ‘The sex therapist next door’ by Meghan O’Brien.

Diana Kelley is a sex therapist with emotional intimacy issues who needs to find a replacement for her impending hands-on sexual education workshop. She decides to ask Jude Monaco, her younger next door neighbour who secretly has a crush on Diana. As the workshop progresses, both women’s feelings and fears start to unravel. Would it lead to something deeper as Jude craves?

Meghan O’Brien is one of the best lesfic writer of erotica. There’s no doubt that she can write hot, different and wide-raging erotic scenes. ‘The sex therapist next door’ is a prime example of this. The best parts of the book are the erotic ones while the rest is just average; sometimes repetitive, others plain melodramatic.

Sex therapist Diana is a hard to like character, she comes across as self-absorbed, distant and sometimes manipulative person. At 39 years old, she refers herself as a ‘middle age’ woman but sometimes she is very immature. She plays the age-gap card (of 13 years) continuously though most of the time Jude seems the mature one. Jude is more likeable though her transformation into a needy character feels more like a plot device rather than the expected development of her relationship with Diana. Both characters spend a long time in their heads and some of Diana’s arguments for why she shouldn’t get involved with Jude are so repetitive that cause more irritation than empathy. However, there is a good subplot between Ava, Diana’s best friend, and Katrina, Jude’s cousin.

Having said all this, if you are looking for good quality, lesbian erotica and you don’t mind much of the rest of the plot, this books is right for you. 3.5 stars.

ARC provided by Netgalley and the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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Review of ‘Push me pull me’ by Amanda Rhodes.

Mallory Grant is struggling with her life. Her job as a leasing agent for a condo company pays the bills but doesn’t make her happy and her social life is nonexistent. When she meets Corinne Ibori, a gorgeous and confident client who shows more interest in her personally than professionaly, things start to look up for Mallory. If only she could gather the courage to take things to the next level…

Very good erotica novella by debut author Amanda Rhodes. Written in first person from the point of view of Mallory, the reader gets into her headspace learning how she hides her insecurities, negative body image and low self esteem with self-deprecating humour that sometimes comes across as immaturity. The novella is written in three parts starting and ending in the present with a flashback in the middle. Though this book can be considered as erotica with light BDSM scenes, the author takes her time in building the main characters’ relationship and setting the tone. The sex scenes are well written, realistic and highlight the characters’ chemistry. Even though it has a rather abrupt ending, it is worth a read for all f/f erotica fans.

Overall, a very good erotica novella by debut author Amanda Rhodes. 4 stars.

ARC provided by Netgalley and the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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Review of ‘The taste of her. Volume two’ by Jess Lea.

This is a collection of five erotic short stories by Australian author Jess Lea. Some stories are shorter than others but they can be read in one sitting. The themes vary from self gratification to light BDSM but while all the stories have explicit scenes, this book isn’t just plain erotica.

‘A good show’ is a story of age gap, scars and voyeurism. ‘Candy topping’ describes the sensuality of food, power play and BDSM. ‘A different view’ deals with body image and social expectations. ‘Ephemera’ gives us a different perspective on art, and ‘Last stand’ – my favourite – is a tale of duty, loyalty and love. Every single story is well written, steamy and effective.

Overall, a very good collection of short stories recommended for anyone interested in lesbian erotica with a bit of substance. 4.5 stars.

ARC provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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Review of ‘Cuffs and Protests’ by Layla Holiday .

This is the first of Ms. Holiday’s ‘Cops Gone Wild’ series. I appreciate every author’s efforts, specially those who publish independently. Unfortunately, in this case, it shows. There are some editing issues such as typos and subplots that are not properly developed. I assume these are going to be expanded in the next books of the series, so expect cliffhangers in this one.

My other issue is that the book blurb and the cover suggest BDSM content but it’s very mild and might disappoint the fans of this genre, at least in this book of the series.

Overall, 2 stars.

ARC provided by the author in exchange for an honest review.

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