Cherry Pie by Madison Faye

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“I kept bidding in the ensuing online silent auction, until for a million dollars, she, and her innocence, were mine.”

*Cues Def Leppard Warrant* Friends, I know, I know. Look, I just wanted something smutty, fun, and quick, and Cherry Pie for sure delivered on all fronts. I did enjoy the sex scenes, I just sadly didn’t love the plot, and I especially didn’t love the ending, but If you are looking for something fast and sexy, I still recommend this.

This is a story all about a girl named Kendall who has found herself in dire need of money, to pay for her upcoming freshman year of college, and she is presented with the option of selling her virginity online, during a silent auction for an underground sex club in LA. Her face will not be pictured, but her body will be on display, which means her new cherry tattoo is also able to be viewed.

Marshall lives a very luxurious life, that he has built for himself from the ground up, while also being the only parent in his daughter’s life. He appears to be on the straight and narrow path, but he indulges in the underground sex club, where he stumbles upon the silent auction and decides that he has to bid on this anonymous woman’s virginity.

This is a taboo, age-gap romance, involving a forty-two-year-old man and an eighteen-year-old girl… and she just happens to be his daughter’s best friend. See, I was really invested with this premise, but once I found out that guy had known the girl since she was five, because they were neighbors, that’s when I started getting really uninvested. I am never here for grooming-feeling stories, and every time that aspect of their relationship was brought up, I just hated it.

But the sex itself, even if highly unrealistic of someone’s first time, was really enjoyable. Sometimes, Marshall would continue to use the adjective “little” and it was bothersome, but besides that, I did enjoy all the sex scenes in this book very much. It was the plot, more specially the portion with the daughter/best friend, that was really unbelievable, which is really saying something when this is a 200-page story about a girl selling her virginity online.

I think this book really would have benefited from just having steamy sex, but the author tried to have a concrete story so desperately, and it really didn’t fit this book. Also, it got into instalove territory, which was also upsetting. I wish that sometimes authors could just give us some amazing sex scenes and stories, without having to make everything about everlasting love.

But again, I think you kind of know what you’re getting into when buying a book like this, and it totally served its purpose and I am happy I picked it up. Also, I would totally be down trying more from this author in the future. But please let me know if you have read and enjoyed anything else by them!

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Content and Trigger Warnings for abandonment and use of language like “little girl” and things that like that, that could totally make the reader (myself very much included) uncomfortable.

I read this for #smutathon, which is being hosted by Lainey and Riley! ❤

Buddy read with Paloma! ❤


Arranged by R.K. Lilley

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“He hated me on principle, and he fascinated me in spite of myself.”

If you’ve been reading my reviews for a few years, you’d know that I am utter and complete R.K. Lilley trash. Not only is my favorite sex scene of all-time in Bad Things, but R.K. Lilley proves again and again that she truly is out here writing all the sexiest of scenes in the romance genre. And even though I didn’t love Arranged completely, the sex scenes in this were so fucking hot that I feel like I need a glass of water just writing this review. Seriously, if you’re looking for steam, look no further, and I still think that this was such an enthralling enemies to lovers, age gap, standalone romance that was a treat to read.

Noura – A very young up-and-coming model, who just sold her virginity and promise of marriage to a man she doesn’t know, but for a whole lot of money.

Calder/Banks – The soon-to-be groom, regardless of how he feels about the situation his family has placed him in.

I mean, with a promise like this, you all know what you’re getting into and you know it’s going to be messy in the best way possible. Noura is so sweet and kind, but is pushed to her limits trying to further her career while also playing the part of the perfect wife to a husband who lets her know constantly that he doesn’t want to be in this marriage. Yet, their sexual tension and compatibility are off the charts with each other, so it puts them in a very unique situation that both of them are afraid to approach.

Okay, this paragraph is going to have a spoiler in it, so read at your own risk! As always, I list my content and trigger warnings at the end of this review, but I feel like I need to talk about one of those triggers in a section all of its own; cheating. There is off page cheating that comes out at the very end of this story, and if you’ve read other reviews for this title on Goodreads, then you will know that a lot of people in the romance community are very upset about it, and that’s valid. For me, the cheating wasn’t unbearable because it was off page and because the other character doesn’t easily forgive the adultery. Also, I read and review a lot of new adult romance differently than other kinds of literature, since I’m really reading it to just escape and suspend my disbelief. Like, this is a story about a girl selling her virginity and marrying a guy she doesn’t know; I think cheating is a little believable in a story like this? But, again, everyone’s feelings are valid, but these are just my feelings on the controversy surrounding this book.

Overall, I really enjoyed this, and I will continue to read everything that R.K. Lilley writes. I truly hope whatever she does write next will be set in Vegas like so many of her other books, but she set up so many characters in this NYC world to eventually have their own books written about them. But if you’re looking for something a little over the top, but with some of the best written sex scenes 2019 has to offer, then I completely recommend you pick this one up.

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Content and Trigger Warnings: underage drinking, a lot of very triggering talk of eating disorders and restricted eating that were personally very triggering to me, talk of statutory rape of a side character, a lot of very controlling “alpha male” behavior that I know will be too much for many readers, talk of past loss of a loved one, mention of past cancer of a loved one, assault, cheating, and violence.

Buddy read with Paloma! ❤

Enthralled (The Enslaved Duet #1) by Giana Darling

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“…A parting of night as if Hades himself was breaching the veil from the underworld.”

Friends, first off, this is a very dark and very taboo story. There are so many content and trigger warnings for abuse, sexual assault, and more, that I wrote at the bottom of this review, so please use caution and make sure you are in the right headspace if this looks like something you’d want to pick up. But if you liked The Debt series back in the day, you’ll probably like this dark and twisted tale, too.

Cosima – On her eighteenth birthday she decides to sell herself to pay off her father’s debt. The arrangement is supposed to be only for five years, and then she is free to go or start up a new contract with the man who she is going to make a deal with.

Alexander – A British royal, who is about to become Cosima’s master, and who has calculated this deal (and his secret plan) for a while, because of something in his past that he is hiding.

“Sometimes we are in the wrong place at the wrong time. Sometimes we are born to bad people and live a bad life. There doesn’t always have to be a reason for misfortune, Cosima.”

Again, this is a dark BDSM romance that will probably have many of you screaming “Stockholm Syndrome” at me, and that’s valid. But I’m going to be honest with you, I was in Hawaii, with sunburnt feet (damn you water-shoes from Hell) and I just wanted to read something that was going to be sexy, out of my comfort zone, and that I could finish in a day, and this completely checked that list.

I really did enjoy this one, and I thought the consensual sex was very sexy, even if this did have a lot of very triggering content along the way. Obviously, there is a huge power imbalance, and Alexander does so many questionable things throughout the entire novel, but I never wanted to stop reading this one. And I cannot wait to see what Giana Darling does next, and where she will take this duology when Enamoured releases. Because the end of this book? Holy shit, what even?

Overall, this is one of those books you read and review based off enjoyment and maybe not the literary merit, if that makes any sense. I feel like I always read and review my erotic romances differently than other books, and this is very much the case for Enthralled! But if you’re looking for an extreme sub/Dom dynamic, with an age gap romance, and also with major enemies to lovers vibes, then I think you should give this a try. Just, please make sure you are in the mood for something extremely dark, and you’re able to suspend your disbelief.

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Content and Trigger Warnings: human trafficking, slavery, talk of eating disorders, talk of loss of a loved one, loss of a child, forced body modifications (piercings), abuse, sexual assault, a lot of abuse, and torture. This is a very dark book, so please use caution and make sure you are in the right headspace.

The King of Bourbon Street (NOLA Nights, #1) by Thea de Salle

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“I want her, she wants me. I’m willing to see where it goes even if it’s only two weeks of fun.”

The King of Bourbon Street was nothing short of a treat to read. It had me smiling, it had me laughing, and it had me happy from first to last page. Plus, this book was so damn sexy! And it had so much good representation that I’ll talk about lower in my review! But if you’re looking for a steamy romance read, that’s different than so much out there, I completely recommend picking this one up!

Sol DuMont – 37 years old, hotel owner, who is still grieving the loss of his father, and is dealing with a divorce that is very fresh. He and his siblings split up responsibilities between all the different hotels, and Sol lives and works at the New Orleans location, where the community is still dealing with the impact of Hurricane Katrina. Sol is also into BDSM and is pan, bi, or some kind of MGA sexuality. Yet, finding a new romantic partner isn’t something that he plans to look for anytime soon.

“You know that cliché about the best bottoms being the best tops.”

Arianna/Rain Barrington – 24 years old, plus sized, socialite, doing everything in her power to get her way out of a relationship she never wanted to be a part of. Yet, the only way she can think of to break it off is a sex tape. She is also the youngest of many siblings, but one of them, Vaughn, takes her on a much-needed vacation to get away from it all, and their mother. And what better place than a certain hotel in New Orleans?

“Pretty blond men with tattoos were a dime a dozen in New Orleans, but jiggly blond girls spinning in circles and peppering corgi muzzles with kisses? Those were a rare breed.”

And obviously you all know this is a romance book, so these two’s paths inevitably cross. But when they cross it’s like a match to a flint box, because it gets hot as hell. Like, seriously, the sex in this book is very explicit and very abundant! So, if that’s not something you’re into, please use caution or maybe skip this one. Also, trigger and content warnings for drug use, grief, talk of loss of a loved one, talk of past sexual assault (unwanted touching/groping), and abusive parenting.

But if you are looking for a sexy read, this story has so much good in it! First off, Rain and Sol both have such amazing friendships with their siblings. You all know I’m a sucker for a good brother and sister relationship always, because my little brother is my best friend. And Vaughn reminded me so damn much of my brother. I also loved Sol’s friendships not only with his best friend and accountant, Cylin, but with his ex-wife Maddy! Give me all the books about people having healthy friendships with their exes, please! Seriously, I loved this element so much of the book.

I know I touched on this a tiny bit, but Maddy and Sol had a pretty serious BDSM relationship, so now Sol is slowly and sweetly trying to see if that would be something that Rain would also like. And even though Sol fills out the role of Dom so very well, he emphasizes asking for consent. And seriously, fam, in 2018, nothing is sexier in an erotic read than consent! But seriously, some of the things Sol did in this book? That boy can get it. 11/10.

“You could stay for a longer visit if you’d like. Two weeks isn’t enough time to fully appreciate you.”

I also really appreciated two things about Rain that I feel aren’t in too many books that I read. One, is that she had a toxic mother who not only abused their relationship, but was manipulative and controlling. Not everyone comes from perfect parents, and I just loved how realistic this felt, even though they are all millionaires. And I also loved the heavy emphasis on Rain’s tidying up (maybe OCD). I, too, must have things tidy in my house or even while traveling. Seeing Rain have to clean the counters after she applies her make up, or pick up and fold her clothes because she won’t be able to be calm and focus, is something that I really relate to. I just really appreciated that on a personal level. Like, I literally get out of bed and have to make it immediately or my whole day will be ruined and I won’t be able to relax or focus on anything in or outside my home.

Now, I only have two “negative” things to say about this novel. The first being one that might be something a lot of people won’t like, and that’s that this story is rather instalove-y. I do think it will well done, but I will not deny that it is instalove, and I know that’s not everyone’s cup of tea! The second, and most important thing, is the cover of this book. Now, I won’t hold this against the author or the story what-so-ever, but look at the cover of this book. You’d never guess that this book is about a sexy, proud, and happy plus sized girl. Rain’s weight is something that’s constantly brought up and celebrated, but the cover model is legitimately nowhere near plus sized. If this book had a plus sized model (like it should) I would have picked it up earlier!

But those are my only two complaints about this book. I truly think this is a must read for all romance readers out there. It’s so damn heartwarming, too! And Rain and her corgi, Freckles, legit had me laughing out loud in bed. Her inner monologue is honestly perfection and so damn realistic.

“Her very own Prince Charming. Spanky, licky Prince Charming. Why, brain? Why?”

Overall, I just really loved this. From the body rep, to the sexuality rep, to the sex positivity, to the friendships, to the sibling relationships, to the New Orleans setting, to the sexiness; this book was easy to love! And I read the first chapter of The Queen of Dauphine Street, and it starts out with a w/w sex scene and I was so here for it. Give me all the pan and bi rep, please! Especially with BDSM and sex positivity being at the forefront! Like, it’s going to take all my willpower to not ignore my TBR and pick it up next!

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This is the July pick for the Book Hangover Book Club that Julie and Chelsea host! ❤

I’m also reading this for #smutathon, which is being hosted by Lainey and Riley! ❤

And this is a buddy read with Lilly at Lair of Books! ❤

Cocktales (The Cocky Collective Anthology) edited by Penny Reid

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This anthology was inspired by a gross human being making poor choices, and I loved reading and supporting this! Also, you only have until August 26th (a day before my birthday) to buy this collection of stories from so many amazing and beloved authors! Don’t miss out, loves! All net profits will be donated to the authors already impacted by creative-obstruction (10%), and Romance Writers of America (RWA) (90%) as a general donation intended for their Advocacy Fund.

This is a collection of 39 short, but very steamy, reads. I only had read a handful of the authors that were a part of this, but now I have so many new authors on my TBR! Also, please know that this is for sure a collection of sexy stories, many with explicit scenes!

I have two negative things to say! First, there is way too much heterosexuality in this. There is only one confirmed queer relationship, and it’s m/m. With this many stories? Come on. And how great would a w/w story been in an anthology called Cocktales? What a missed opportunity. I’m not familiar enough with all these authors to know all their ethnicities, but I am aware that it’s probably mostly white authors, and that’s not okay either. Next, I’ll say that many of these are short stories from the authors’ already established worlds and series. Therefore, some of these just felt pointless, short, and I was completely unable to connect with them. So, know that going in, because it was for sure a problem I had with a lot of these.

But I did enjoy so many of these stories, too! A few of my favorites were from Jana Aston, Karpov Kinrade, Lex Martin, Liv Morris, Kylie Scott, and Leia Stone! But my ultimate favorite was Until the Cock Crows by Sierra Simone! I need the full-length version of this now. Please. This was perfection.

But, like I do with all anthologies, I’ll break down all my thoughts and feelings about all the stories in this collection!

DYLAN ALLEN Cocked and Loaded ★★
This one is about a woman in her thirties wanting to get back at a boy who was rude to her when she was twelve, so she comes up with a revenge plot to leave him wanting more of her via Tinder. I just didn’t think this was too believable, especially holding a grudge that long over something so dumb. Also, their screen names were totally something that no human in their early thirties would ever use, hence the title of this short. Yet, I did like the sex scene a lot.

JANA ASTON Double Cocked ★★★★★

“It’s a slippery slope back there, ladies. Admitting you enjoy their finger in your ass quickly escalates to their cocks prodding for entry.”

You all, I loved this one. It stars a strong (some would say unlikeable) woman who knows what she wants, and she isn’t afraid to tell her sexual partners or anyone else. And what she wants is a polyamorous relationship. This was dirty, this was hot, and this was everything I wanted from this collection. But there are a couple of jokes made in bad taste, but the sex in this was honestly some of the hottest word combinations I’ve ever read. And the ending was high key perfect. I’d give this six stars if I could.

This was a cute story about an unexpected blind date unexpectedly turning into a good date, especially since the main character was never expecting to see said blind date again. This was fine, but it just didn’t feel like anything special to me.

SAWYER BENNETT A Wicked, Cocky Plan: A Prequel to Wicked Force ★★★
First off, this is set in Vegas, so it immediately got brownie points with me. But this is a story about a famous singer who is being stalked, and after a close call with her life, she goes to a person from her past who has always kept her safe (and owns a security firm), even if they didn’t leave each other on the best of terms twelve years ago. And a fake relationship begins! But, sadly, this entire story is just a teaser for the start of the full story that will come out in 2019! But, I am super excited for more.

K.F. BREENE Magical Cock and Bull ★★★
You know, I’m always looking for a new Adult Fantasy Romance, so I think I’m going to check this author out. This was a steamy and magical read about a vampire and a shifter who happen to have their paths cross, and then they choose to cross them one more time.

RUTH CLAMPETT Don’t Get Cocky ★★★

“And who does he think he is, having his lawyers send cease and desist demands to existing users of the title when we haven’t even made a cartoon yet?”

I didn’t love this story, but holy moly did Ruth Clampett go in! Like, the parallels in this story had me grinning from ear to ear. And even though this wasn’t my favorite in the collection, I’m giving her all the props and respect for this tale she created.

L.H. COSWAY Illusionist Seeks Neanderthal
This just reads like a black sheep on the collection. Nothing romantic or sexy happens. Just borderline cheating and gross comments about girls and math, kids and videogames, and the use of the slur g*psie. No sexy times, just uncomfortable banter. And maybe I would have enjoyed more if I knew these two characters from the author’s previous works, but I didn’t.

AMY DAWS Cock and Balls ★★★★★
You all, this one just worked for me. I loved the couple and how she was a doctor and he was football player. I loved the Scottish setting. I loved the eloping. And I know fireplace, big, fluffy, furry rug sex is a little cliché, but I loved it too. I’m for sure going to check out this author’s other works!

This was so short, and honestly just felt like another tease to buy more from the author. But the super short snippet wasn’t enough to make me want to.

BB EASTON Cocky BB: Two Boys, One Prom ★★★★
Okay, this really intrigued me for a few reasons. One, the author writes about her real life. Two, the story was super addicting. And three, this has a super sexy scene that left me wanting more. Some of the elements were on the problematic side (lots of TW for abuse, drug use, and eating disorders), but I was so invested with the story and it was completely able to captivate me.

JAYMIN EVE The Cockier the Dragon, the Harder they Fall ★★
I really liked the introduction to this world, and dragon-shifters sound freaking amazing, but I felt like I couldn’t connect just because I was so unfamiliar with the world.

EMMA HART Tricky Bond
I just… didn’t love this one. I feel like to enjoy this one, you’d really have to be familiar with the author’s other works and worlds. But, I just didn’t care about this couple on a bird hunt. And the ending left so much to be desired.

STACI HART Cockamamie ★★★★
You know what? I loved this one. It was short, and left you wanting more, and totally felt like it was created specially for this anthology. Also, all the props for coming up with as many cock references as this author did. I’m so impressed. And I can’t wait to read more about the mis-sent email!

JESSICA HAWKINS Cocky Couture ★★★★
This was super well written and super sexy. I loved this, and I loved the dynamic of a relationship between a photographer and a secret model. Love, love, loved. This would have gotten five stars, but the photographer got a little too toxic when he didn’t want to photograph her (from the front) in a thong, but was okay with her wearing nude, sheer, things that made her look naked. Like, what? But, I still loved this.

JULIE JOHNSON Culinary Cock-Up ★★★★

“Looking at you, Shmordon Shmamsey—and no one makes a peep about it. Meanwhile, we females are expected to coddle and comfort our way to the top, soothing our staff into basic competence instead of scolding them for lacking it entirely.”

Okay, I never thought I needed an enemies to lovers romance from after culinary school, but here we are. I loved the premise of this, and I want so much more. Also, this brought up some great gender double standards in the kitchen and out of it, and I was so here for it.

KARPOV KINRADE Crimson Cocktail ★★★★★

“And so, our adventures begin. Oh, the libraries I will see. The books I will read. The lives I will live. And all with this man beside me.”

Um, I fell so completely in love with this. Librarian, Las Vegas, and… Vampires? Holy moly, this was perfect. And this is one of the main reasons I love anthologies. I can’t wait to read more from this world.

Again, I didn’t know these characters or care about these characters. I don’t care about whose in charge of the will. And I surley don’t want to read about a girl being insecure about her body and stretchmarks, while her husband convinces her they make her more beautiful. This one really didn’t work for me.

LEX MARTIN Love & Hate at the Stallion Station ★★★★★
You all, I loved this one. I normally don’t like the “cowboy” romance thing, but this was adorable and sexy, respectful and dominant, and just made for a perfect read. This was a cute mix of enemies to lovers, and also friends to lovers, but also a second chance romance sort of too. I don’t know, but I loved it. Also, the sex was 11/10. For sure a favorite of the entire collection.

ALY MARTINEZ Going Down ★★★
Finally, something not straight! I actually thought this was a cute m/m romance! And it was quick and funny, but still really heartfelt and romantic!

KAYTI MCGEE Cocksure Co-Star ★★★★★
This was funny as hell, and sexy as hell. The enemies, to fuck buddies, to lovers, was so great between these two people who were forced to become costars. And their energy and banter together was perfection. I loved this one. And I really, really want to read more about these two!

I’m really not into military romances, and I’m really, really, really not into possessive fathers that use fear tactics to scare their daughter’s dates. Especially when the daughter is even constantly saying that they are only friends, not that that should even matter. This just didn’t work for me and I hate that people keep romanticizing this toxic, gross, behavior from adult men.

LIV MORRIS Getting It Up ★★★★★
You know what? This was the perfect story for this anthology, because it’s only all about a cock. This stars a doctor who specializes in penis, and a baseball player that feels like his member is no longer working, that is, until he meets her. And then she becomes his only hope! It’s a little corny, it’s a bit over the top, and it even has a scene where the woman reads him erotica aloud, but it’s perfect for this anthology and it made me want to read more by this author. Oh, and bonus points for the Hitachi! I loved this. Perfection! Easily one of my favorites in the collection.

RED PHOENIX Her Cocky Russian ★★★★
This was pure erotica, but it totally and completely worked. This starred what I think was a polyamorous relationship, that was Dom, Dom, sub (m/m/w) and it was all kinds of naughty.

DAISY PRESCOTT Confessions of a Cockblocked Wingman ★★★★
I really enjoyed this one! This was a cute story, about a man who is shopping for his wife, with their new son, and he’s getting a lot of attention in the grocery store. But he goes home and is thankful to share his life with his beautiful family. This was just sweet, and pure, and sexy, and I really enjoyed it.

JESSICA PRINCE A Cocky Corruption Engagement ★★
This was cute, but just disjointed. It’s about a girl shopping with her friend for her friend’s wedding, when she gets a big surprise herself. This wasn’t bad, it just wasn’t memorable.

MEGHAN QUINN Fight or Flight
Again, this was a tease for a new series, and nothing happened. It is about two air force cadets, and the authors note at the end said a “big twist” is coming, but, like, I think it’s just going to be a m/m romance. And, the set up wasn’t very good, if I’m being completely honest.

PENNY REID Beard and Hen ★★★
This was cute and sweet, but I love Penny Reid and her writing so much that I was just expecting more. But she really did embrace what this collection is about and took it to that “cock” level in the truest form. This was a fun read, but not my favorite.

CD REISS Cocky Capo ★★★★★
This is easily the most well written in the collection. I honestly forgot I was reading a short story, and felt like I was reading the start of a brand new book. This was sad, sexy, and heartfelt. Really well done, and for sure a star of this anthology

JULIE A. RICHMAN The Color of Love
I just felt very uncomfortable reading this one. The way the boy love-interest’s skin color was described was also not well done. And I feel like a full-length story could turn into something more problematic.

This story just felt like so many of the major pieces were missing. I didn’t dislike it, but it read so hard to follow. I really enjoyed the bonus story though. A lot, a lot. I kind of wish it was the only part included.

KENNEDY RYAN All: A Grip & Bris Story ★★★★★

“I believe in all the things cynics despise. First kisses on Ferris wheels. Soul mates and once-in-a lifetime loves. I believe in fifty years and forever.”

Oh my word, I loved this. I am sad that I haven’t read this series yet (soon, I promise), but Kennedy Ryan can write a sex scene. I loved the characters, I loved the celebration of motherhood, I loved this. And this felt like a full story, too. This was a romantic and sexy treat to read and I loved every page.

KYLIE SCOTT Short Story with Mal and Anne from The Stage Dive Series ★★★★★

“If you didn’t get girl juice all over your hands and at least half your face when you gave head, then frankly, you weren’t doing it right.”

Okay, I know “girl juice” is a gross term, but that quote is true. Also, this was one of the few short stories that take place in a series I’ve always read! I loved seeing Mal and Anne from The Stage Dive series, and this is probably TMI – but I’ve kind of always wanted to have sex in a bookstore. Also, this was just a fucking cute and sexy roleplay scene and I was living for it from start to finish.

SIERRA SIMONE Until the Cock Crows ★★★★★

“For a preacher, he sure fucked like a god.”

I just read a book by this author this year! And I was not expecting a story about a Reverend in this collection, but I was so pleasantly surprised! Also, even though this is a relationship between a man and a woman, he never assumes she’s straight. And they both heavily stress consent and talk about their history and bodies before acting upon any urges; making sure they know what the other one wants. This was a breath of fresh air. I actually loved this. Also, this was hot as fuck. Easily some of the best sex in this collection. And the first talk was A+. This was my favorite of the collection. And I’m really not sure what that says about me, but I was honestly crossing and uncrossing my legs constantly while reading this. Perfection.

TARA SIVEC Chocolate and Cockup ★★
What and the fuck did I just read? Oh my word. Okay, I’m giving this two stars because I’m impressed the authors went there. This is a story about six older people, living in a retirement home together, when they spent their lives together owning a sex toy business. Let your imagination take the wheel. Bye.

KATE STEWART The Golden Sombrero
I would have guessed this was written by a man, honestly. There are some gross gender stereotypes all up in this story. And It didn’t even make sense that the dudes thought that not allowing themselves to have sex would help them with their baseball training. On top of ignoring their wives needs. So, the reader is forced to read about these wives throwing themselves at their husbands for sex. Like, miss me with all this. Please.

LEIA STONE Cocky Alpha ★★★★★

“That smart-mouthed asshole came into my shop every new moon, and it took everything in me not to throw a penis shrinking spell right at his crotch. He was the cockiest alpha male I’d ever met, and that was saying a lot for a witch who ran a supernatural spell shop.”

Witches, werewolves, and vampires, oh my! This was a paranormal romance treat. I loved Dax and Tatiana and this was such a perfect addition to this anthology. I can’t wait to read more from this author and more from this world!

KARLA SORENSEN Tristan & Anna: A Bachelors of the Ridge short story ★★★★
This was such a cute and heartwarming story about two people who are about to start their lives together; both in marriage and parenthood. And the use of the rooster in this was so dang clever. This was a really sweet read that I really enjoyed!

Like, I’ll never be here for a dude getting mad at a male doctor because he’s looking at his wife’s vagina. Especially to deliver a baby. Like, miss me with all that gross thinking and enforcing please. I’m so sad that this was one of the last stories.

APRIL WHITE Code of Conduct ★★
I liked that not only did the main character mention gaming, I am pretty sure this is the only story to have disability rep, because the main character has a prosthetic leg. But I felt like this was a really odd choice to close this anthology off with. It was an alright story, but it really didn’t feel like it fit in the collection, and especially not to wrap up the anthology.

Out of a possible 195 stars (5 stars possible for each of the 39 stories) this collection accumulated 122 stars (~63%). But I very much recommend, just because of #CockyGate!

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The Professional (The Game Maker #1) by Kresley Cole

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“A trusted right-hand man and a treasured daughter?”

I’m not going write up a big, long review for this, but I still want to put some of my thoughts down for you all. But mostly I just want to say: this book was exactly what I needed! It was so hot, so steamy, so sexy, and it was 100% what I was in the mood for.

“Hanging out in a sensual sauna, naked, with an off-limits enforcer who happened to make my mouth water: what could possibly go wrong?”

Like, exactly what I needed. The Professional stars a girl who at the very start is questioning her parentage, because she was adopted. And she soon finds out that she is the daughter of a very powerful man in Russia who is involved with the mafia/mafiya. And she also finds out that he has sent his right-hand man to be a bodyguard to look after her for a while now, without her knowing.

The girl and her bodyguard rush off to Russia after her life has been compromised, and she gets to finally meet her biological father, while also getting to know the man that has been keeping an eye on her. And, like… lots of sexy times ensues. A whole lot of sexy times.

But let me emphasize, the male protagonist is very much the epitome of what adult romance considers an “alpha male”. And this girl is forced to leave the life she has always known and is put into a foreign country and a foreign home and has to adapt. I could write an entire review on the power imbalance between these two love interests. So, please never think I’m ignoring this. I just rate erotic books differently than other books! I know many of the relationships are toxic and problematic and I completely understand that they wouldn’t be the healthiest and/or most ideal of starts for people in real life, but I love steamy reads and I rate them purely off my enjoyment. But I’m never making excuses for any of the content in this book.

Content Warnings: loss of a loved one, death, murder, torture, abandonment, talk of past child abuse, possessiveness, stalking, kidnapping, talk of war, and the most alpha man in all of literature.

Overall, I really needed a book like this after all the romance novels I was reading that weren’t scratching a particular itch I was fiending to read. This book also heavily talks about BDSM lifestyles, needs, wants, clubs, aftercare, everything really, and I loved it. Do I think this book is for everyone? Hell no. Was this book exactly what I needed? Oh my gosh, Yes! And I won’t stop thinking about it anytime soon, I promise. This was an amazing erotic read, and I’m forever thankful for Paloma, her friendship, and her perfect recommendation.

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Professed by Nicola Rendell

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“Dulce pomum quum abest custos. Forbidden fruit is sweetest.”

So, I read this book broken up into three parts for three days. Day one: five stars, I loved it. Day two; three stars, I still enjoyed it. Day three: one star, it was super annoying and read so very fake. Like, this book made me feel a whirlwind of emotions, but I just wish the feelings from day one stayed throughout.

Professed starts out with a secret sex club at Yale University (I promise, no Rory Gilmore jokes.) This book switches points of view between Naomi, a junior at Yale, and Ben, the newest Master at Yale. But hidden behind masks, and entering an underground sex party, ben and Naomi meet and soon realize they want nothing more than to leave this party together.

And leave the party they do. And guys, the first couple sex scenes in this book? They are super hot. Like, I loved them a lot. And when we find out that Ben is the newest professor to teach at Yale, it only amplifies the forbiddenness to make it feel more enticing. I only wish the rest of the book would have kept up. But very quickly this turns into an angst filled, unbelievable, love story about why these two people can’t be together.

“That happens twice a week, three beautiful hours of my life every week, I sit there and listen to the man I am hopelessly, helplessly, stupidly in love with.”

The worst part of the story? The completely unbelievable dean at Yale that had nothing more important to worry about than these two hooking up. Like, I could not. Between him barging into Ben’s home, to him waiting outside just waiting for one of them to step a toe out of line, I just couldn’t handle it. It felt like something out of a cartoon!

And once Ben and Naomi start to be forced to go off campus, and have these romantic rendezvous, I just lost interest. I much preferred the hot, meet up, animalistic urges over the unbelievable angst and love. And once I found out why there was a sharpie on the cover of this book? Lord, help me. Some Sharpies contain xylene, which can be super harmful to your body, especially if it gets into your blood stream. Let’s… not romanticize this, thanks.

But basically, this just got too convoluted for me to enjoy. And I know half of you are probably like, “Melanie, it’s a new adult sexy time book, what were you expecting?” But I promise, the first few chapters were so addicting, it just set the bar way too high. Overall, this ended up just being a big letdown, because the start was so damn strong! But if you’re looking for a quick, sexy, angsty read, this will probably do the trick. Just, don’t let the start skyrocket your expectations like I did.

Content Warnings: student and teacher relationship, medication abuse, underage drinking, detailing of a very bad boating accident (and medical treatment) in the past, abuse, and grey area consent.

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This is the April pick for the Book Hangover Book Club that Julie and Chelsea host! ❤

❤ And you can get this ebook for FREE on Amazon US currently!