Thursday, January 9, 2014

Control by Charlotte Stein

The Basics:
Control by Charlotte Stein
Sourcebooks Casablanca
Published Jan 7, 2014

I received this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.


When Madison Morris decides to hire an assistant to help run her naughty bookshop, she gets a lot more than she bargained for. Two very different men are vying for the position...and a whole lot more.

Andy excites her into grasping control, while Gabriel shows her how freeing it can be to just let go. Soon the lines are blurring and Madison is no longer sure who's leading and who's following. In the midst of kinky threesomes and power plays, can she’ll have to finally decide what--and who--she really wants.

What worked for me:

Right off the bat, the bookstore had my heart. I want to own a 'dirty bookstore' called Wicked Words. I imagine in the current economy this wouldn't really be that feasible as far as new businesses go, but who cares! A bookstore that specializes in romance and erotica sounds like an amazing place to work, to me.

Okay, moving beyond my lust for Madison's workplace, this book is straightforward erotica. It starts off in the middle of a sexual encounter and does not let up. There's variety here - lots of sex or sexual moments that are not typical currently in mainstream erotica. Though obviously the control theme is a hot topic, this book explores both male and female dominance.

Though I hadn't previously considered myself interested in reading a female dominant story, Stein adeptly coaxed me into seeing Gabe's submission and desire to be pushed into his various sexual fantasies as extremely hot. I wasn't 'into' all of the scenes, but I did appreciate being exposed to them, and having my horizons broadened.

I also love the cheeky meta nature of having erotic novels inspire Madison's behaviour - some tongue-in-cheek encouragement?

What didn't work for me:

Though the first impression Gabe makes isn't overly favourable, by the end of the story, it's easy to see why Madison is so attracted to him. Unfortunately, Andy never quite did it for me. There was something too smarmy and smug about him to push any of my buttons. I kept picturing him as a sort of unattractive, lout of a fellow, and I'm sure that didn't help. His brand of control was so derogatory that it put me off, though it was in keeping with the book's presentation of control.

Bottom line:

I strongly recommend this to fans of erotica. I thought it was wonderfully inventive within a nearly exhausted sub-genre. I'd love to read more by this author -  Charlotte Stein is definitely on my list now!

4.5 stars
For fans of erotica, BDSM, humiliation, male submissives.

No comments:

Post a Comment