by Violet Summers, contemporary (2008)
Liquid Silver Books, $5.95, ISBN 978-1-59578-462-9
While her brothers run wild being the male Paris Hilton types when it comes to wine and women, Meredith Worthington is a proper lady whose behavior can't be faulted. However, she has over the years grown to resent her brothers for being so self-satisfied and having lots of fun when she can't. The entire family have issues and they are completely dysfunctional, by the way, so I suppose I can't blame poor Meredith for feeling this way.
When this story opens, she decides to try to become a better person by letting her hair down. Hopefully, this will lead to her letting go of her resentment and other various negative feelings so that she can finally patch up her relationship with at least one of her brothers. When it comes to having a good reason to take it up the behind, this is one of the better ones so all I can say is good for Meredith, yay.
The Velvet Club is one of those ubiquitous clubs in erotic romances where everyone knows about the various naughty antics that happen behind those doors. The club is where Meri meets Tony Renatto, a stud who apparently channels all his frustrations when it comes to managing a construction business into powering the torpedo between his legs. Alas, nothing much happens before Meri's brother shows up and drags her out of the club. You see, he can play with whores all he likes but heaven forbids his sister to act like one.
Cut to five years later, when Meri once again encounters Tony. This time around, they both happen to stumble upon a cozy scene of two of Tony's construction workers having sex on the work place. Since she's supervising the construction project on her brother's behalf, Tony has plenty of opportunities to show Meri who the real boss is around the place.
Meredith's Awakening sells a fantasy that will be politically incorrect today. Indeed, Tony is a sexual harassment case waiting to happen in this story, although his antics are made palatable by how protective he is of Meri. In other words, Tony may be an alpha stud in the bedroom, but while he clearly doesn't see Meri as his equal in and outside the bedroom, he isn't cruel to Meri. He just wants to care of the woman he loves - and yes, he does tell her he loves her in a pretty manner here, if I may say so. If you enjoy following a sexual fantasy where a woman has plenty of fun letting the man dominate her tenderly yet surely, this one is selling exactly that kind of fantasy. And I have to say, Ms Summers does a good job selling me that here, since I find this a very erotic read. It's like reading an early category romance by Elizabeth Lowell, only this time the hero doesn't act like a total asshole. While I would normally find Meri weak, here her personality is appropriate for the fantasy Ms Summers is selling. The contradiction between Meri's cold and controlled personality and the way she lets herself go wild under Tony's ministrations makes the fantasy twice as erotic.
As a story, this one is pretty campy as the Worthingtons are a bunch of dysfunctional freaks straight out of a soap opera or a Jackie Collins novel. But as a sexual fantasy, this one works beautifully in every way that matters.
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