Sunday, March 01, 2009

Sapphistocated's 1st Review

SapphistocatedRainbow Reviews had this to say about the F/F collection:



"Double Decker" by Alessia Brio ~ Rating: 4.5 ~ This story was definitely one of the gems of the anthology. Tess enters a karaoke singing competition with her sights set on far more than just winning the contest; she wants Kayla, the woman who runs it, too.

The author succeeds beautifully in capturing the heat and sensuality of Tess' performances, bringing to life both the rush of performance and the twisting fear of stage fright.

There does seem to be some confusion as, early on in the story, it seems like Tess does not know Kayla very well, as Tess and her friend discuss whether or not Kayla wears a wedding ring, but then at the end of the story, it's implied that Kayla and Tess have had many "frank discussions" about sex and have a long-term friendship.

Despite that, it's easy to become invested in Tess' happiness. Nothing comes easily to her, even with all her determination, but the romance is sweet, and the sex is very steamy.

"I Know What I Want" by Jolie Du Pre ~ Rating: 3 ~ Allie is a model in search of more opportunities for both work and love. When she meets Vivian, a wealthy and powerful older woman, she thinks that she's found the love she's been looking for, but nothing turns out quite like Allie thought it would.

I will say right off the bat that this story was simply not to my taste. I believe it would get a higher rating from a reader who prefers a less emotional, less descriptive style to romance/erotica stories. The bondage Vivian placed Allie (and presumably her previous lovers) into was, to me, an unfortunate choice of metaphor for Vivian's distant and controlling nature. It felt like yet another case in which the kinky character is the "bad guy."

That said, even without this story being to my taste, the writing was clear and strong. The development of the main character, Allie, from a clingy, uncertain young woman to a confident and decisive adult was well done. As she experiences more of life, she obviously learns more about what she wants for herself, and that progression was enjoyable to read.

"Better With Age" by Beth Wylde ~ Rating: 3.5 ~ When Olivia runs into her first love after twenty years apart, it turns her world upside down.

This story's concept ~ rekindling an old flame ~ is one of my personal weaknesses. I love it. As Olivia and Aleesha discuss the old hurts that had kept them apart in the past, I was immediately drawn into their struggle, hoping they would find their way back together.

There was just one thing that kept this story from getting a higher rating: the resolution came too easily. While the author does an excellent job of showing the reader how much these two women want to be together, the path to their happiness seemed entirely clear of roadblocks. Everything happened too easily, too conveniently, and that was very disappointing.

"Drawn" by Yeva Wiest ~ Rating: 4.5 ~ Yuri manga artist Sydney is attracted to her latest artistic creation, Kisha Karnes. She's also attracted to Beth, her editor's assistant. When she meets the editor's daughter, though, Sydney is surprised to find herself attracted to Alice, too.

The elements of magical realism in this story are definitely one of its strengths, as Sydney interacts with ~ and finds her romantic interests sabotaged by ~ Kisha, the main character from her latest manga proposal, 'Head Girl.'

Kisha is Sydney's physical ideal, slim and built. Beth suits that ideal, as well. Alice, on the other hand, is a big woman with large breasts and plump thighs, not Sydney's type at all. Sydney doesn't understand why she's so drawn to Alice, and the author does an excellent job of exposing Sydney's insecurities and drawing the reader into the struggle as Sydney tries to deal with her conflicting desires for Kisha, Beth, and Alice.

Review by Fox

Available now in ebook & print from Phaze Books

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