Author: K.D. Mclean
Series: Tales of Pandora
Publisher: Monarch Moments
Genre: Adult Romance/BDSM
Rating: 3.5 stars
Source: copy supplied by author for review
Rachel Collins is praying. And not for world peace. Thirty six years old and single, her prayer is self-centered. “Kill me now, Lord,” she pleads during her latest attempt to meet Mr. Right via the internet.
She’s not hoping for a billionaire or even a millionaire, just a guy who can strike a spark to her tinder! Is she asking too much? She’s a great gal! Just ask her parents! She might be a bit naive about some things, but capable enough- she’s a correspondent for a major magazine, after all. So there!
On assignment she meets Michael, 42 years old, also a writer. The attraction is immediate and intense. Rachel, who sees vanilla as only a baking ingredient, enchants him. Michael can whip up some pretty hot delights himself, outside of the kitchen. He introduces a curious Rachel to powerful experiences of sensuality. Her Ladylike sense of propriety engages in a running battle with her now sparked Tinderbox desires.
Michael is an excellent cook and knows how to turn up the heat. Sampling the flavors offered, Rachel experiences humorous hiccups. On a date, Michael ramps up the risqué, resulting in a memorable skirt swirling salsa dance. Rachel’s “What the hell, I ain’t getting any younger” attitude spurs Michael to take her to the exclusive, adults only club Pandora’s. Here, Rachel witnesses even more variations of earthly delights, and begins a lifelong friendship with another guest.
Michael is a realist, convinced that within 90 days, his affair with Rachel will be but another painful memory of loss. He is neither willing nor able to yell ‘Geronimo’ and fall for her. He can’t, and that’s that.
Maybe he should just get a damn dog.
So here’s one of those books that left me stumbling to rate. Seriously, the rating part is my least favorite part of this whole book review thing. Most people think anything in the 3 range is flawed beyond enjoyment and means you shouldn’t read it That’s not what I think, at all. I’m giving this book 3.5 stars but I don’t want you to not read it. Please don’t think 3.5 means it’s bad or not worthy of your time. It’s really not! It’s a very good book and I enjoyed it immensely. It just had a couple of spots that left me scratching my head a bit if you will, mainly in the dialogue department. In all honesty, the story is really awesome, the book starts off a little slow but really comes into its own in the last 65%. Let me break it down a little.
Rachel is a great heroine. She’s funny, smart, strong confident and inquisitive. She’s obviously well adjusted and has no fear. I love that about her. Rachel knows what she wants and has no trouble setting out to get it. She has a couple of voices in her head that she listens to and ignores them as she deems appropriate. Don’t we all weigh our possibilities with our good side vs. our wild side? When Michael throws some crazy shit at her, she calls him on it. When Michael introduces her to things she didn’t even know existed in the sex world, she takes a deep breath and plows forward, sorting out what works for her and what doesn’t along the way. We don’t have any of those angsty misunderstandings because Rachel is a straight shooter. In fact, I kinda’ love Rachel. Rachel might be a bit naive but she’s no shrinking violet.
Michael is broken. He’s a great guy but he’s broken and until Rachel, he never felt the need to fix himself. He knows he’s broken, he just never really had a reason to care. Rachel rocks him to his core. She’s everything he didn’t even know he wanted and it freaks him right the fuck out. He’s far more experienced in the sex department but Rachel is not intimidated. I love the way this book breaks down the intricacies of D/s relationships, not just the logistics of the tools of the trade, but the emotions behind BDSM and how those relationships work for couples. It paints a very realistic picture, I think. You get to see things from several different angles. The Story of Rachel shows us some D/s, BDSM and some tender love making, all of which are written with care.
Ok Scandal, you’ve said nothing but good things about this book. Why did you give it a 3.5? Well, there were times the dialogue got a little confusing for me. Some of the phrasing felt a little stiff (and not in a good way, pun, pun). Also, I can readily admit, some of the asides were above my head. That’s my bad and there’s not much I can do about it! I’m not Canadian and sadly, I’ve never been to Canada so some of the references were so local, they were lost on me. Now, I’d love to have one of my Canadian readers check this book out and tell me what they think. I felt like there were a few inside jokes and I was left on the outside. I’ve never been to London either but I guess I’ve read more London/UK based books, so the lingo and references don’t leave me as confused. Does that make sense? I also found a couple of technical/researchable items that were questionable, for example, there is a reference to “Bill Madoff “, I’ve never heard him referred to as “Bill” before, he’s Bernie so I’m wondering if this was done to avoid using his actual name for liable reasons or if it was a mistake. I know it shouldn’t but little things like that slow my roll and pull my attention away from the story.
Having said all of that, like I said earlier, the last 65%-ish of the book really flows. I think K.D. Mclean found her groove and had at it! I don’t want anyone to think a 3.5 star rating is negative…it’s not, I swear. This is a fun book, full of beautiful growth and relationships. The sex is hot, the burgeoning D/s relationship between Rachel and Michael is so much more than your average D/s relationship. The D/s part really feels like just a part of them, not what makes them a couple. It doesn’t feel like they have to have that aspect just to have sex, I think they have the D/s part for fun…especially now that Michael has come to terms with his past. Oh yes, that poor man has been dealt a shit hand and it’s awesome to watch Rachel sort his shit out. Check it out and let me know what you think. I’m hoping this is just the tip of the story arc iceberg, The Story of Rachel has some really interesting secondary characters that have stories that need to be told.
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