by Jeffe Kennedy
Adult Erotica / Light BDSM
Expected Publication Date - Feb 25, 2013
Published by Carina Press
*ARC obtained via Net Galley in exchange for an honest review*
Synopsis via Goodreads:
Althea Grant's Charleston gallery might be suffering from the bad economy, and her artistic aspirations have gone nowhere, but she's doing just fine, thank you. When bad-boy sculptor Steel rides up on his motorcycle looking to rent studio space, his infusion of cash is more than welcome. But his art is raw, visceral, sexual—and completely inappropriate for her pastel world of watercolor landscapes.
Steel, fascinated by Althea's rare albino coloring, sees in her the key to his next piece: a metal satyr designed for bondage games. Moving into her gallery basement is the first step; seducing the cool Southern belle into modeling for him is the second.
As Steel peels away her careful manners and tasteful outfits, Althea begins to realize her life isn't just fine at all—it's as pale and washed-out as the watercolor paintings she's failing to sell. Can she transform her life and accept her most secret desires?
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Jeffe took the crooked road to writing, stopping off at neurobiology, religious studies and environmental consulting before her creative writing began appearing in places like Redbook, Puerto del Sol, Wyoming Wildlife, Under the Sun and Aeon. An erotic novella, Petals and Thorns, came out under her pen name of Jennifer Paris in 2010, heralding yet another branch of her path, into erotica and romantic fantasy fiction. Since then, an erotic short, Feeding the Vampire, and another erotic novella, Sapphire, have hit the shelves. Her contemporary fantasy novel, Rogue’s Pawn, will be published in July, 2012. Jeffe lives in Santa Fe, with two Maine coon cats, a border collie, plentiful free-range lizards and frequently serves as a guinea pig for an acupuncturist-in-training.
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I enjoyed this quick, hot read. It was a journey of finding and accepting one’s self and true personality.
The characters seemed more like real people rather than our fantasy/dream/billionaire characters we've grown to love & fantasize about. Okay - yea so Steel is totally my hot biker fantasy but not my billionaire CEO fantasy type. LoL
You have Althea - owner of her own art gallery that's doing quite poorly, family who obviously has money but raised her to be a "proper young lady" who follows all of society's rules. She never steps out of line. She holds herself as a completely poised, elegant woman who appears smooth as glass on the outside. She's obviously has no idea who she really is deep down - she's who she was raised to be. Due to her complexion & hair color (albino), she always wears pastel colored clothes and light colored makeup. Enter Steel - hot, rough around the edges biker, sexy, tattoos, nipple ring, and did I mention he is a completely brilliant artist. And a total Dom.
The way that Steel owns his life choices and is completely comfortable with himself is very appealing. He obviously had a not-so-great life when he was younger but with help from social workers, etc., he puts his emotions out there through his art. He's able to slowly guide Althea into realizing HER true nature & feelings. He helps her understand that it's perfectly acceptable to NOT be who everyone expects you to be. Live the way you want to live. Think the way you want to think. Throw "Society's rules" to the wind I guess I should say. He opens her eyes to primal, sexual urges in human nature. Althea has a hard time accepting it because it goes against everything that she's ever been told was proper.
Overall, great hot read of self-exploration & acceptance. I really enjoyed it. It only took a few hours to read but I didn't really feel like it was too short. This story is focused on Althea's self-exploration so it doesn't delve into the other character's reasons for why they are who they are. You only get a few glimpses but it works. You're constantly drawn back to Althea.
Overall Rating: 4 Stars
Cover Rating: 4.5 Stars - It really is beautiful
Characters: 5 Stars
Plot: 4 Stars
Climax: 4 Stars - Loved the charity ball
Ending: 4 Stars - I'm very happy with the ending