Monday, August 25, 2014

Slow Satisfaction by Cecilia Tan

The Basics:
Slow Satisfaction by Cecilia Tan
Book Three in the Struck by Lightning trilogy
Erotica, Romance
Published August 26, 2014
Source: Received via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Why I picked up this book:

I was looking for erotica to read, and was curious about how this trilogy ended.


James has finally pushed Karina beyond her limit--not her limit for kinky sex play, but for his extreme secrecy. She has had enough and breaks things off. But James won't give up on Karina and will do whatever it takes to get her back. He's ready to share his deepest, darkest secrets, but is Karina ready to hear them?

James offers Karina not only the truth but a place at his side... onstage. He wants Karina to star in his final musical production and enter his life and his world fully and completely. As the two work together, they rekindle the trust and love they'd lost. But James's world is full of deceit. When he is blackmailed by an unscrupulous music industry executive, James must give in to unreasonable demands or risk exposure of his and Karina's secret sex life. 
My thoughts:

Full disclosure - I read Slow Seduction, book two in this trilogy, and reviewed it, but I haven't read Slow Surrender, the first one. And I think this is a big disadvantage. I really felt like I was missing something - maybe the build up that would make me fall in love with this couple?

Given that, I wasn't very invested in whether or not James and Karina could work out their differences.

Positives?  As a fan of So You Think You Can Dance (and having no dance knowledge otherwise), my inner fangirl squealed at all the dance-related scenes. I enjoyed that all quite thoroughly.

The writing itself is good, but I had trouble connecting with the story. The sex has some real kink to it - spanking, exhibitionism - and it all read as very realistic and authentic. However, one of James' concerns is that he'll want to push Karina too far, and as this becomes a major plot point, I was screaming at the book for him to reveal what *his* hard limit is or at least what it was specifically that he thought would put Karina off. This felt really unresolved to me, and since so much of their relationship revolves around kinky sex, I really needed something conclusive here.

I also felt like there were a lot of rushed revelations in this book - the climactic moment at the end (no, not sexually) involved some pretty huge things (no, still not sexual), and I wanted the characters to really work through the trauma *and* the drama of it a little bit more. I wasn't entirely satisfied with the resolution.

Overall, the book was just okay for me. The sex is well-written and there were some really delicious moments but I think beyond those scenes, the story didn't really hang together for me as much as I would have liked it to. I guess it worked as erotica on a basic level, but I think there was enough plot here that it could have been better erotica - great, explicit (and in this case kinky) sex with a compelling story.

Bottom line:

If you've been reading the Struck by Lightning series since the first book, I think you'll find Slow Satisfaction to be a decent conclusion. As it was, I floundered a little bit with it.

3 stars
For fans of erotica, Struck by Lightning series, Cecilia Tan

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