Monday, February 24, 2014

Stately Pleasures by Lucy Felthouse

The Basics:
Stately Pleasures by Lucy Felthouse
XCite Books
Published December 9, 2013
Source: Direct from author in exchange for an honest review.

Why I picked up this book:

I wondered how the premise would work, and curiosity gets me every time.


Three's a magic number in this steamy love triangle set in a British stately home. 

Alice Brown has just landed her dream job. Property manager at Davenport Manor, a British stately home. It’s only a nine-month contract to cover maternity leave, but it’s the boost up the career ladder she so desperately needs. 

Unfortunately, things don’t get off to the best start, when Alice finds her boss, Jeremy Davenport, in a compromising position. Far from being embarrassed by what’s happened, Jeremy turns things around on Alice and makes her out to be the one in the wrong. So when he and his best friend and head of security, Ethan Hayes, throw an ultimatum at her, she’s so stunned and confused that she goes along with their indecent proposal. 

When the dust settles and Alice has time to think about things, she realises that perhaps it isn’t such a bad thing. There are worse things she could be doing to advance her career, after all. 

My thoughts:

This was definitely Erotica with a capital E. 

So, there's a lot of sex, some of it menage and some not. I liked that it was encapsulated within this idea of erotic challenges. I think this is an idea that could be pushed more than it was in the story, but it worked for me as a device to pin together the different erotic scenes. The sex starts out only okay, feeling like I'd read it before, but it definitely amped up to sizzling hot (for me) by the end of the book.

The weakest component of Stately Pleasures is definitely the story in that there's very little of it. The way that Alice is snookered into Jeremy and Ethan's plan is was a little off for me - it didn't really ring true as something that would draw her in. Certainly it conveyed her eagerness and willingness to participate, but I feel like it could have been a bit stronger. In fact, if the job element had been used to create some kind of story tension, and then the erotic element had been a voluntary after hours thing, I think the book would have been stronger overall for me. That said, as erotica, it's effective as is. And I did really like the challenges idea.

I liked that Alice had enough spunk in her to question some of what Jeremy was asking/offering in the initial sit-down about it. I loved that Ethan and Jeremy were well defined from each other in terms of personality. I got a good sense of them as separate individuals - equally desirable and sexy. I liked that they had a sweetness and an eagerness to them that differentiated them from the very controlled, world-weary alpha male that the genre leans on. 

Bottom line:

Stately Pleasures delivers on its promises and is a very sexy read. It doesn't push to create a deeper connection with the reader, but it's certainly not a deal-breaker for me. In the end, I did want to spend more time with this menage. A holiday novella or a sequel featuring them on vacation or working through a new checklist would not be unappreciated. 

I recommend this one to anyone looking for good, straightforward erotica.

4 stars
For fans of erotica, spanking, menage sex.

1 comment:

  1. The erotica novellas that I have read over the years definitely have little plot. They are generally a collection of hot scenes.