Well, happy Valentine’s Day to me, it appears I’ve found myself a debut author I want to hold onto! If I’m reading things right over on Goodreads, Thea de Salle is in fact, giving us her very first book with the kick off to her NOLA Nights series, The King of Bourbon Street. I knew practically nothing about this book when it arrived in the mail other than the fact that it is obviously set in New Orleans. Well, I love New Orleans – that’s it, that’s what sold me on giving the title and author a try. If only everything in life could work out that easily! Ok so, de Salle sets up a very interesting and intriguing cast of characters in this first book. Both our hero, Sol DuMont and our heroine, Arianna Barrington, come from large families with varying ranges of disfunction. Both are wealthy and really have the world at their feet but remarkably, both are rather grounded…okay, well Sol is questionable there but he’s still a good guy. de Salle sets the stage beautifully for more books and I’m insanely excited to see what she does next, but I’ll get to that in a minute, first let’s talk Arianna and Sol.
Adrianna “Rain” Barrington is the youngest child and only daughter of the uber wealthy Barrington family. I’m talking Money, not just money. Her dad is useless and her mother is a fucking shrew so Rain and her brothers have learned how to manage her tantrums and upsets. Her big brothers are constantly looking out for her because they know the damage Rain’s mother can inflict and I’m thinking maybe not just emotionally. Rain is not your typical socialite, she’s young and beautiful of course but she has goals well outside the normal spoiled rich girl variety. Rain wants to be a social worker and she wants to open a facility that can help women and children in need. Rain is also different from her socialite friends because she looks a bit different. Now, do not go by the cover, Rain looks nothing like the young model on the cover – she describes herself as not apple or pear shaped but potato shaped and our hero refers to her as wasp waisted…I’d never heard that phrase but now that I have, I get it. She’s short and pudgy but more importantly, she is a bright ball of light with a quirky sense of humor and some slight OCD tendencies. She’s smart and strong and often underestimated. I loved her from the first moment we met her in the story.
Sol DuMont is the older, recently divorced, somewhat fucked up mid-sized hotelier based in New Orleans. His father’s rather recent death sent him into a spiral of debauchery that bottomed out with a divorce from his wife. Sol’s ex-wife is Maddy and if Sol has money and Rain has Money, Maddy has MONEY and she isn’t afraid to use it to get her way. Make no mistake, she’s not a bad guy at all, she and Sol ended amicably and are still great friends, in fact they are far better friends than they were ever spouses. So that’s a great thing. Maddy introduced Sol to a life of BDSM and he was her sub – you don’t see any of that on the page but it is alluded to on more than one occasion. In Rain, Sol finds his perfect match which ends up being a sub to his Dom…a side he wasn’t sure he had until the little ball of sunshine exploded on his hotel. Now, the weight thing with Rain, it’s not treated as a fetish but it’s not ignored either – he appreciates her body and honestly, I caught myself singing little Ed Sheeran “I’m in love with the shape of you…” as I read along. It is very clear that Rain is the literal and figurative soft place to land that Sol needs so desperately. He found her, he licked her and by god, he’s keeping her and her warm, soft light.
Ok, so the sex. This book is fucking dirty. I mean deliciously dirty with all of the filthy words and actions you love in erotic romance. The sex runs the gamut and is more than plentiful. The cool thing about all of that sex, the thing that really flipped my switch was how each time it was something different. I didn’t read the same sex scene over and over – Thea de Salle is very original and imaginative when it comes to pulling off her sex scenes, I was thoroughly entertained in a rather voyeuristic way most times. Well done Thea de Salle, well fucking done indeed. I mean exceptionally filthy things are said and much like Rain, I was shocked by how much I enjoyed it…okay, that’s a lie, I wasn’t scandalized or shocked at all, I love filthy shit like that! Rain, however was indeed surprised by her reactions. There’s a whole lot of sloppy, wet foreplay and fucking that goes on. And Carmela, the anal…I know you’ll enjoy the anal Carmela! That’s a fact, jack. Even I enjoyed the anal!
So the gist is, Rain and one of her brother’s are taking a break from their shrew of a Mom. Of course she has forbidden them this journey but Vaughn, Rain’s brother sees that Rain needs to get away. They flee to NOLA for some R&R and meet Sol. Sol is immediately smitten with the open honesty of Rain and sets off to get in her pants. He is more than shocked when he quickly realizes he wants more than just in her pants, he want in her heart…something poor sad Sol thought he’d never find. Along the way we meet his best friend, Cylan and man I hope he gets some happiness soon. I like that guy. We also get to meet Sol’s brothers and they are each as unique as Sol so of course I’m looking forward to their books as well. The conflict is completely believable and the path to resolution is paced out beautifully. I honestly just enjoyed everything about this book from start to finish. Yes, there were some word choices that, well, if I were writing it I probably wouldn’t have used but you know what, de Salle made them work so hats off to her for that.
The next book in this series is The Queen of Dauphine Street – it’s due out May 15th and is Maddy’s book. I told you she’s a good ex-wife! The King of Bourbon Street is hot and sexy and kinky and sweet all rolled up in a very entertaining story of unconditional love and familial support. Don’t go by the cover, I’m not sure that chick is “wasp wasted” or potato shaped, maybe fingerling potatoes and Sol’s hair is longer but the passionate part is correct so there’s that, at least! Bring on some more Thea de Salle!
Smooches,Tags: BDSM, erotic romance, NOLA Nights series, Thea De Salle