A Captive in the Dark

Turn off the lights and light a candle… okay maybe not because this wasn’t exactly a romantic story, I’m talking dark erotica for virgins here, but you’ll have to read it to see. A Captive in the Dark, the sun sort of hurts my eyes, up late

“Not getting what you wanted was always the first lesson”
― Captive in the Dark

In truth I don’t know what I wanted when it came to this story, being a fan of the genre is one thing, being a first-time reader of C.J. Roberts is quite another. With that being said does this story give you what you want or what you need… it gets the job well done.

I never really get to talk about originally when it comes to these tales, I mean the story of course is but it’s always the same formula which is standard when it comes to porn for women. That’s maybe the first thing though, this isn’t really porn, at least hardcore, I was on again and off again with this story, not that it’s bad by any means, just time constraints. So while living life, in this story how long does it take to make someone fall in love, I’ve always been one for love at first sight and so it was with pretty Olivia “Livvie”.

How about from Caleb’s standpoint, I must admit I relate to him, not I’m not a criminal as it has been suggested but I wonder what it was that drove him to Livvie a.k.a Kitten other than her being the most beautiful thing he has ever seen; as a friend of mine would comment “men”. The reader is kept in the dark as much as the would-be victim which I find impressive, you learn the back stories but I feel like Winston Smith still wanting to know why these two. Loyalty loneliness, love, this story has it all, and even when I was reaching the end I figured my Kindle must be broken because I was thinking no way would she end the story like she did here; awesome cliffhanger.

I usually save this for the end of reviews but I have to say I’ll certainly buy the next one of these books, just because I have to know what comes next. I’m not afraid of the dark only to be fair this isn’t darker than some of the stories we hear on the news just fiction and less sex than I’m used to honestly.

“She was a woman, how difficult could it be to pacify her”
― C.J. Roberts

“He felt powerful, and nothing was more important than power”
― Captive in the Dark

Every woman likes a bad boy but being a guy again I can to a degree understand where Caleb is coming from, I guess it’s good most men don’t adopt the same overall strategy, it’s how some people talk about “Christian Grey” of Fifty Shades, he was hurt and in turn hurts others. Livvie on the other hand “Act like a whore and get treated like one…” except she wasn’t that, another telltale sign of the genre, good girl that just has to be naughty and then it goes on.

Stop me if you’ve heard this one, good girl gets captured by the bad guy and has one possible outcome but then we have a twist, in the usual plot. While it’s not unusual for the bad guy to be pushed into his role the fact remains Caleb actually wants to be there is new, at least for a little while, loyalty vs love, honor amongst thieves or doing the “right” thing. It also can’t be ignored that every woman seems to have a dark side, I take plenty of flak for being a guy and for liking books like this but *cough* Fight Shades *cough* millions of copies *cough* so somebody is misjudging women but not C.J. Roberts really.

As for other characters, again anyone could relate to Rafiq though most might not go to such lengths I’m guessing but I root for him despite those lengths he’s going using Caleb and Livvie. There are also two clichés the first being parental problems, shows how men think all women have daddy issues which Livvie does, but her mom was more her problem. There is also the idea that all men are criminals of that sort, I mean given Livvie’s situation I don’t doubt it but from Caleb right into the arms of somebody with the same idea, come on.

I like Caleb and Livvie without a doubt, and while I was reading an excerpt I just couldn’t wait to see how they apparently found such a deep connection with each other. If anything they are both damaged and despite Caleb’s protests I think Livvie is going to be the one that saves him, but that’s how the genre goes.

“Only women were capable of being so fucking sexy you wanted to lick them clean when they considered themselves dirty”
― Captive in the Dark

“she lived in a man’s world, and she reacted accordingly” – Captive in the Dark

Been awhile since I have given anything four stars and truly meant it, am I really that hard to please, if anything I only have one real beef with this story. As for who would enjoy this story, well that’s an easy answer as well, there is so much to like, so here are spoilers.

Again I like how you can’t hate Rafiq and Caleb, Livvie is a means to an end, does it suck that they are using her, from her standpoint of course but they use the means afford them to have revenge. I thoroughly enjoy the BDSM aspects of the story, if Livvie is to be a survivor she has to be a submissive and Caleb, taking away his criminal aspirations doesn’t hide the fact that he enjoys such things. My absolute favorite part is the realization of Olivia, the fact that she holds sway with Caleb and if a virgin is what he needs then that is the last thing she ought to be if she wants to avoid her fate.

With all of this, my biggest problem with the book is the lack of sex, she and Caleb have sex once in the entire book, preserving her virginity of course so a great scene but other than that if you’re expecting a sexual romp, you probably won’t like it. Which is perfect for a guy trying to swear off any stimulation not that the whole book isn’t lust driven, there is more than enough, will they won’t they for the ladies. Isn’t this the whole point of the book, to be as open with the characters but still as Livvie was kept in that dark room, the reader is kept in the dark as well.

Bravo C.J. Roberts but I would have liked it if Caleb and Livvie just got it over with but always leave them wanting more; it is a book like this that makes me rethink my own writing. So four stars and another fan, can you ask for more, sure but for now I’ll be in the dark reading something else.

Wake Up and Smell the Nuts Everyone

The Catholics think they have some bad publicity but there are still plenty of them running around, not to mention several other “churches” glad I got to read about a fictional one for a change. Wake Up and Smell the Nuts Everyone, it’s pretty crazy.

“It’s only forbidden, but nothing to be ashamed of”
― D.S. Wrights, Wake

For the most part, no, I mean it was a bit slow in going but once it picked up, I was in a way rooting for the villains, not all the way to the end of course but I was somewhat impressed by the sheer villainy. Nothing to be ashamed of story wise though the editing, I’m no editor, not in the slightest, except when I’m noticing these things every few pages… seriously me being a writer, it puts the fear of God into me.

Speaking of God, I always applaud any of author with the guts to go after the religious even if they are a “cult” and we all know these sort of groups, lie somewhere and nobody can escape unscathed. You won’t find any voices of reason in this book, either everyone is crazy or lying to some degree just to maintain, whatever they hold sanity to be. Character development pretty much lies on one concept, how crazy are you and when will you cross the line.

Nobody embodiments that more than our antihero Samael, and the heroine Anna, Samantha, Anna, trying to be Rachel it gets pretty confusing for both characters and reader alike. I guess love is sort of crazy when you look at it and of course, this is one of those stories where somebody has plenty of cash on hand, and while it doesn’t justify the crazy, I’m sure plenty of women will read it. Guys too if they have ever had such and such a dark urge and I will not delve into that rabbit hole, here.

So if you’re ready for crazy and a whole lot of dominant males though I was surprised by mother Rachel which shows women can be just as evil then this is a decent read, I won’t say good, for plenty of reasons but again we will get into that in a bit first the rundown.

Crazy mom, decent grandparents, indoctrination into a cult, predators, molesters, oldest crimes in the oldest traditions, girl falls in love with a boy/man-child and then escapes without him, not her choice. Retaken by the cult, boy/man-child has been warped and still crying out for daddy’s acceptance is going to train the girl and if you’re into this genre you can sort of see where this is going, not rocket science.

Now a part of me actually wants to say I sort of agree with Samael because I know how churches/cults can be that’s why you start with children but the ending in a way negates all that. Him being convinced that Anna betrayed him but he was already grown if he could break through the conditioning long enough to help her escape how could he be so sure it was all her fault. He truly got me in the end though, you don’t see many stories that don’t end with a happily ever after scenario, a change of pace indeed.

In all fairness, with Anna’s background, anyone would be messed up too and the captivity doesn’t help with that so her staying the same throughout is par for the course. I do think her character was somewhat beyond belief but again maybe it was her upbringing that kept her from screaming bloody murder for the most part. The scene between her and Samael was explosive when they finally got her virginity out of the way, though the teasing was awesome as well, to an extent, it grew tedious after a bit but the stories of Samael’s past with Rachel were wow with a bit of sick to go with it.

I think the ending could have been something more if the other characters were flushed out, don’t get me wrong we get back stories to most of them but again beyond belief when Anna can just present an idea and okay it’s been years nobody thought to do this? The Church of the Second Reckoning and everything maybe the author could have flushed Joshua out more, and explained how he kept power, though I have seen infighting in most churches.

In all I give “Wake” three stars, it was dark, it was creepy, not the typical ending and pretty twisted indeed there was plenty to like and if the author would just get some new editing and crank up the sex but maybe that’s just me being a guy. The editing just pulls you out of the story, you’re falling right into and next thing you know you’re ripped out.

I suppose my favorite part is when Anna is alone with the Samael’s other two brothers, I guess I should also mention spoilers but come on, everyone knows when it’s coming. Personally, I could have used a bit more graphical language but just the fact that the hero doesn’t come in and save the day just in the nick of time. Also the ending, there are few books especially a standalone that leave characters still screwed up and just saying, okay this is life so deal with it as so.

Other than the editing, I think Anna’s character, like mother, like daughter, came off a bit too cunning with her manipulations, in a place where people are killing each other left and right, nobody had an inkling to I don’t know get to Joshua? The teasing got a bit annoying after awhile, I’m never sure with erotica but some are a straight sexual smorgasbord and others are, maybe, still waiting, and okay. Also while Sam’s dad was lying to him, why was everybody lying to Anna, okay she’s a kid but the fact that they lied while soothing themselves did nothing for Anna, the characters could be pretty dense if they weren’t psychotic or just plain mad; genius and insanity.

This isn’t something I would have sought out, probably because of the religious jargon but it hits the right note between what we know in the news and completely unbelievable. Three stars, pay the money for the editing I know I will, now if you’ll excuse me I might actually need a nap after this, exciting and my brain hurts.

The Secret Life of “Pet” Book Review

Sugar Baby 101, you never talk about the money, hell Pet never did I’m not going to, this is simply the review of a tale of a submissive young woman and a rich guy here or there. “The Secret Life of Pet”, it’s no secret that it is a decent read.

If the first thing that comes to mind is a cartoon and not Hentai then you might as well turn around now. As for everyone else if I have to sum up Isabella Starling’s “Pet” in one word it would have to be awkward, not that it wasn’t sexy, hot, it turned me on but as Madonna put it “like a virgin” so yeah awkward.

Not that original either, “Marco’s Redemption” and “Otherwise Alone” come to mind but like any other writer in this genre, Isabella puts her own spin on it. Think of it as sugar daddy 101 except they never discuss money, and with a name like Sapphire… relax she was a waitress one time and never a stripper, I actually have a cousin named after a jewel. I don’t know whether to compare this to a fairy tale or as I said before, for any guys reading, again this genre is either porn with more talking or Hentai without pictures and for me yeah this seemed animated.

“You’re excited but you don’t really know what the hell you’re doing. And some way, one way or another, it’s over too fast.” Yuri Orlov

I’m sure there are plenty of Sapphire’s out there minus the dark past… hopefully but it just seemed way too easy; there’s another comparison “Fifty Shades of Grey” young woman steps in for a roommate and ends up with powerful men. Men would want to live King’s life and I do mean life… what guy doesn’t want to have money and then have a girl that wants him but money not being the issue, to be honest, it never was between Sapphire and King. It was more their past that is the meat of the story other than them beginning together for the most part although I’m sort of okay with the fact that they glossed over some of that otherwise this would have been even more cringing inducing, and it will be a bit.

I looked up to see in this was Isabella’s first story, seems she built up a following and I haven’t read any more of her stories but this one was not a home run for me. There are pretty big moments but this is a decent story that transformed near the end into, just well, always leave them wanting more but this… always leave them wanting to know what they read and the reason why.

Okay, stop me if you’ve heard this one, poor girl down on her luck, rich guy, sex, bad history, more sex, another bad boy rich guy, climax, happy ending. I suppose these stories are made to make women feel more feminine and since I don’t know any other guys that read these, for me personally yeah I wanted Sapphire/Pet but daddy, protector, doctor; I said most men would want to be King in a way but I’m not most men…
“To call it a dungeon would be an insult. The women I played with came willingly, in more ways than one. It wasn’t a room out of a lame BDSM movie. The equipment was hidden in plain sight, and the room could look as innocent to an observer as it did dirty to someone who knew their shit.’ Isabella Starling, Pet: A Dark Menage Romance

This isn’t a spoiler if not happening this moment somewhere, Sapphire meets King who then names her Pet, his Pet and they begin a sugar baby relationship with elements of BDSM mixed in. We also have Angel/Maria who is the former pet and I will admit she was somewhat a surprise along with the Stranger/Felix that sort of just made me go hmm. Every other character will make you want to punch them in the face for various reasons and then the whole let’s tie this up in a neat little bow, so awfully fast.

As far as the cringe factor, Pet’s past… King, of course, wasn’t what was best but considering everything that happened to her he was pretty much a saint. The finale while a twist does make you think Isabella sort of ran out of ideas or maybe I’m just dense because I didn’t see it coming. For me though the absolute worst was something that happened in the playroom, see these stories let you know where your line is and let’s just say I would never do something like that to any woman, I’ve seen it done but it scares the crap out of me and I’m sure every woman clinched.

This book didn’t make any outlandish promises but even the erotic book club I’m in was disappointed, I can’t stress this enough though, it’s a decent read as long as you don’t have a history with these titles. It should make it easier for men to get, though most won’t pick it up, guys it’s this, disregard females acquire currency.

This ends up being a love story because don’t they always end up that way and I’m glad that a choice was made, albeit an accident, manipulation, and some luck but something had to give. With that being said I’ll give it three stars out of five and not just two, I didn’t hate this book but it didn’t exactly make me think anything other than I’m an old man who wouldn’t mind a sugar baby hanging on to me.

“Accidents ambush the unsuspecting, often violently, just like love.”
― Andrew Davidson, The Gargoyle (2008)

The sex scenes were pretty nice in the beginning but I guess I’m not a fan of the “devil’s three-way” at least not with women that are mine; I leaned more towards King getting back at people for hurting Pet. I also liked those easy relationship moments between King and Pet, and Felix and Pet/Sapphire, the innocence of her seduction, from calling one Master to F to baby it was what really brought out the characters. There are plenty of good quotes that I can’t use (Amazon *sigh*) but the dirty talk is pretty sweet, even if the story is just a decent holding place.

Three stars as Felix and King were rushed near the end… King’s final act just came out of nowhere for me, oh angry guy then, “Father Figure” in a George Michael sort of way to, everything is going to be okay. A woman… barely she’s eighteen, falling in love at first sight, as much as I want to believe it, everyone seems so susceptible to it, maybe that’s just me being a cynic and while this is decent fiction. If this was the first attempt it would be awesome but considering the litany of work, I suppose this was a shout out to Isabella’s fans.

The only reason I picked this one up was to stay in the know and now I know I might not go looking specifically for this author’s books unless I see a free one at some point. There is so much you can do to a pretty Pet but don’t be like King if you see this title, Isabella Starling’s “Pet”, please don’t walk out.