So, I have a bit of a thing for BDSM romance. Whenever I come across one somewhere, I just HAVE to read it. Of course, when Crystal offered this one up to guest review, I was all, “PICK ME!” I’ve seen Ms. Payne’s books around on other blogs, but I just hadn’t gotten around to reading them. Now, thanks to supporting characters in this story, I need to go back and read book one.
If there’s one word I could use to describe this book, it’s unbalanced. What I mean is that the beginning was slow and hard to get into, but the second half had me staying up late to finish. The thing I don’t like about unbalanced books is that I have a really hard time rating them. It’s usually not so bad if the second half of a book is the part I liked. That usually makes things pan out in the book’s favor. Still, I cannot ignore the fact that I was a combination of confused and bored at the beginning.
My first problem is that things escalate between Rose and Mark WAY too fast. This is an insta-love story if I’ve ever read one. On the flip side of that, D/s relationships are very intense and require a lot of trust. If insta-love really happens to people, I’m putting my bets on people who have intense relationships like this. On the flip-flip side, I would not be letting some dude I met two days ago tie me up. It worked out fine for Rose, but what if Mark was a total psycho. She had no way of knowing he wasn’t, because she barely knew him! What I’m really trying to say is, Ladies, get your kink on all you want. Just be careful. Get to know someone before you’re alone with them in a room, tied to a bedpost.
My other two problems weren’t that big of a deal. At first, I was a little disconnected to the characters. They felt underdeveloped, but I think Payne fixed that in the second half of the book. I ended up really liking them. I also found Payne’s writing distracting, occasionally. It wasn’t that big of a deal, but sometimes I got pulled out of the story by unnecessary, flowery writing. I think that’s just a matter of taste on my part, though.
The good thing is, I ended up enjoying the story. I got into it enough that I had to stay up a little later than usual to finish it. That’s always a good sign. I ended up really liking Mark and Rose. I especially loved watching Rose develop into a stronger person. I REALLY loved their hot-as-hell sex scenes. Seriously, I probably need to go cool off. When Mark gets all domineering and merciless, I get all “Yes, sir. Me next?”
So, overall, an enjoyable read. I’ll be moving on to book three, Star of Wonder, and then going back to read book one.