Anthology-Christmas at the Club

Merry Kinkmas! Today we have an anthology written by 17 authors that take place in several different worlds, and involve 17 different kink clubs. We have established groupings, new couples, Doms and Dommes, Littles and subbies, and good, clean, kinky, dirty fun. Christmas at the Club includes stories from Alta Hensley, Jennifer Bene, Samantha Cole, Pepper North, and Linzi Basset. As with any anthology that is this long, and it is long, I’m only going to mention a few. If you want to see what I thought about all the stories, you can check out my GR review.

Jennifer Bene A Not So Silent Night

This one includes the Infamous trio of Emma, Chase, and Jaxon. Chase doms Emma, and Jax doms them both. They weren’t the first MMf trio I read, but they are still my favorite. the Infamous trio is the basis of the entire Black Light series. Generally, they are written by Livia Grant, but Jennifer wrote this one, mostly because Livia has another story in here. Anyway, I was really glad to see these guys because they are always so hot. On top of being hot, we also get the real life issues of trying to be parents, trying to spend time with in laws, and trying to be the kinky fuckers that you are. I really loved the juxtaposition.

Livia Grant A Kinky Crossover

This is Livia’s story. It takes place in her Punishment Pit world, which appears to be in the same world as Black Light, as Jax has called Lukas to ask if they can come to Lukas’ Christmas party. Because of that phone call, we get to see another little bit of the trio, as well as getting to see Lukas and Tiffany. I love Tiffany’s spunk and the fact that she hasn’t lost that in the year of being married to Lukas. She also has some of my favorite lines in the entire anthology, including her answer to why she’s being punished. She tells the person asking that she’s pretty sure that the reason that she’s getting punished this time is because she married Lukas. Her entire thought stream about her clit at this point is fucking hilarious too.

Alta Hensley Villains and Champagne

This takes place in Alta’s Top Shelf series. Harley is my absolute favorite of all the Domes in that world. In fact, I need to go reread his book sometime in the very near future. I was just so happy to see him again. In this one, there’s going to be a party at the club. Harley just wants to go home to see his sub, Marlowe. Except Marlowe has just walked into the club. She really wants to go to the party. I love all the machinations that go into this story.

Maren Smith Keeping Kaylee

This takes place in Maren’s Castle world. Kaylee is the primary female character in the story, but it really involves all the Ladies of the Castle. They all have plans, because they all feel some kind of way right now. But Kaylee is the driving force. I have to admit that I really felt for Kaylee. It’s easy to end up feeling like you are the last priority on everyone’s list. It’s a really hurtful, sad, and lonely place. I don’t blame her for her plan to get Marshall to pay more attention to her.

Golden Angel A Sassy Christmas

This one takes place in Golden’s Stronghold world. We get to see Adam and Angel struggling to keep their kinky marriage kinky or even sexy after being parents for a year. Now, if you have been a mother, you totally get Angel in this story. I’m not dissing Adam, because parents are going to get him too, and he is doing the best he can, and he does pretty good. But for me, it’s all about Angel and how she feels. I remember feeling that same way when my now very adult son was a baby. I didn’t understand why I wasn’t ready to jump back into sex at 6 weeks, and I hated being touched for a long while. I nursed a very clingy baby, for a year. I almost never had any time when people weren’t touching me, so I totally felt Angel in this one.

There are a lot of other really good stories in here. The nice thing about an anthology is that there is a little something for everyone. Some of the stories are pretty short, but some of them are longer. If you want something that you can read in a few minutes before bed, you can find one with no problem.

OK, that’s all for this one. Go check it out! Happy reading.

Claire Thompson-Castaways

You remember how I said that I would be featuring more Claire Thompson? Well, here you go. Castaways isn’t out for Kindle yet, but it is in paperback and the Kindle version is on pre-order and it will show up on your Kindle 2/3. This is different from the other stuff I’ve blogged about from Claire, because this one is vanilla-ish. Yes, she does write vanilla. I qualify it with the -ish because there is some fairly mild power exchange stuff going on, but that could just be because of the nature of the relationship between the guys.

So, here’s the story. Sam is an up and coming artist from NYC. He’s been working really hard to get ready for a big show, and his last one was wildly successful. His friend, Tim, who is also the gallery owner has given him a ticket for a Caribbean cruise. Sam has been spending a lot of time looking at the ocean and taking pictures so that he can remember the light.

Donovan is two years out of law school. He’s an associate at a high powered law firm. His father is a lawyer who helped him get this place, and he’s always pushed Donovan to do better, be better, yadda, yadda, yadda. He’s getting ready for his first big case, but he’s decided that he needs a vacation before his big case because he’s fighting burnout. One night, he bumps into Sam on deck as Sam is looking at the sea.

That chance meeting doesn’t seem like it would be anything, and it probably woudn’t be, if the ship they were on didn’t catch fire and sink that night. Donovan gets swept overboard by a huge wave and the current catches him and sweeps him away from everyone else. Sam gets knocked down and ends up a little out of it and all the lifeboats leave without him. Luckily he finds one last life raft, but he goes the same way as Donovan and fortuitously picks him up, where they find themselves floating further and further away from everyone else and on to their very own deserted island.

Now, this could be considered a first time gay novel, but I think to classify it that way would be a disservice to the book. There is so much more to it than just one guy finding out that he’s attracted to another guy and trying to deal with it. For one thing, Sam doesn’t identify as gay. He doesn’t identify with any label, really. There is a really beautiful passage where he talks about liking men and women and what attracts him to either. He says that he’s attracted to people, but that he emotionally connects with men. I love that whole section because it shows how much time and thought that Sam has put into who he is. It’s not easy to figure all that stuff out at the best of times and being alive is a continuity and you aren’t going to be the same person today as you are a year from now or you were a year ago, so putting a lot of time and energy into figuring yourself out is totally awesome. I love that Claire gives Sam the space to be that person. You don’t see a lot of characters like that, and I really would like to. Donovan is really interesting. He is really confused about what’s going on and his feelings. Sam is right there with him though.


I know no one wants to think that a disaster like a shipwreck could be good for someone, but I think that I could argue a case that it was almost a good thing for Donovan. He’d never had time to just be or to just connect with anyone, and the month spent on a deserted island with someone like Sam would give him the time to just be and to figure out who he is. Sam is a total superstar throughout the thing, and really sort of guides Donovan through the whole process, but not by taking his hand and leading him, more by just being there. Like I said, totally awesome.

OK, that’s all I have to say about this one today. When it releases on 2/3 go check it out or put it on preorder now. Happy reading!

Claire Thompson-Perfect Cover

Over the next 3 or 4 weeks, I’m going to be putting up a lot of Claire Thompson books. Some will be MF, some will be MM, some will be kinky, others will be vanilla or vanilla-ish. Today we’re starting with Perfect Cover. This one is an MM vanilla-ish book. I’m calling it vanilla-ish because there is some light bondage, but nothing more than that. And now, on to the book.

Ryan has been working in the hospitality field, but was recently let go from his job. So when he hears that an all-inclusive paradise resort in the Caribbean is hiring, he’s all for it. When he’s interviewing for the seasonal position at Club Eros, he finds out that he’s basically being hired because he looks pretty in a speedo. His job is to be a gopher for the patrons of the resort. They all like to look at scantily clad pretty boys, as Club Eros is a resort for gays to come and celebrate and be comfortable with who they are. There’s all kinds of sex, both public and private, in couples and more-somes, vanilla or kinky. Pretty much if you want to have sex, there is at least one guy there who will be more than happy to help you with that. For Ryan, though, it’s a real worry. You see, Ryan is straight, and he’s going to have to stay in the closet and pretend to be gay while he’s there. Ryan figures that he can do that, but he doesn’t figure on the patrons and other employees.

Sean is a full-time employee and lives at the resort in a lovely little bungalow. Most of the time he has it to himself, but during the season, he has to have a roommate. This year, his roommate is Ryan. When Sean first sees Ryan, he falls into immediate lust with him, but he keeps telling himself to not do anything, he’s waiting for his one true love to come along. He’s not into casual hookups and random parties anymore, so he mostly stays to himself. He’s a true romantic. Then, he finds out Ryan’s secret and decides that he’s going to help Ryan. He and Ryan pretend to be a couple, which pretty much keeps everyone off Ryan.

At its heart, I think that this story is really about finding out who you are and being happy with that person. Ryan goes on quite a journey. There are some times when I really didn’t like him all that much. He gets surprised by some of the things that the patrons and other employees do to him, but I was like dude, get over yourself, this is stuff that gays have been dealing with in the real world, so just think. There were a few episodes of what I thought was toxic-ish masculinity, but Ryan really did grow and change, and Sean had everything to do with that. It made Ryan a much better person. Claire writes such thoughtful stories, with a lot of depth and layers, which make you think.


One of the places I didn’t think that Ryan needed to get over himself was when the massage happened or what happened with his boss. Those things pissed me off quite a bit. His boss valued friendship over what he had seen of Ryan and his character. That was so, so, so wrong. And I would hope that the other dude got all kinds of terrible consequences. He needed them. He needed a lot of them.

I also didn’t like Ryan’s dad. His family culture, in general, was highly stressful, but the way that his father pushed him and devalued what Ryan did and what he was choosing to do in his life really annoyed the hell out of me.

Anyway, that’s the first of Claire’s books to show up on my blog over the next few weeks. Stay tuned for more. Go check it out. Happy reading!

Claire Thompson

So, this is a sort of different post. I usually talk about books or series, but today I’m going to talk about an author. As you may have guessed, it’s Claire Thompson.

Claire writes romances flavored with BDSM. She also writes Mf and Mm. I’ve read several of her books, both Mf and Mm. I really like reading her books, obviously, otherwise I wouldn’t be talking about her.

Like most authors, she has a range of BDSM involvements. You get books like The Master and the Secretary, which is pretty light. Then there are other books like The Compound or The Contract, which involve 24/7 full-time D/s situations and relationships, with total power exchanges. These books have lots of physical things happening, but that isn’t necessarily the focus on what Claire writes when she writes these books. I mean, yeah, you’re going to get great descriptions of floggings, canings, Shibari, and breath play, and lots of great sex, but there’s something more to her books, and that’s part of what draws me into her books.

What Claire does so well in her books is talk about submission. Yes, all authors who write BDSM books talk about submission, but Claire writes about it in a different way. I don’t think that I can even describe what’s different about how she does it, versus how another author does it, but it’s different. It’s a very intimate way to write about it. It doesn’t matter if the scene or act is happening in private or in public, it’s all about the intimacy between the Dom and the sub, and how they connect. It’s like we’re peeping in through their windows and watching it. One scene in The Contract really made me feel this. The Domly hero loves Shibari, and he ties his subbie boy in a beautiful tie, in a pool. Then, they do some breath play. It was an incredibly powerful and intimate scene. Yeah, there are a lot of people around and everyone is watching, but none of them are important. It’s just that very intimate connection between the heroes and the trust they have built and the gift of submission that the sub gives to his Dom.

We see what’s going on in the subs’ heads a lot, and it’s less about the Dom saying suffer for me, although that happens, and more about the sub saying, I will suffer for you, and that is my gift to you. You see the sub’s struggle to submit to something that they don’t want to do or something that is difficult, but then you see the grace and beauty when they do, and that it’s a conscious decision to submit.

I don’t know that I’m explaining it as well as I could or even as well as is possible. I just know that it’s different from what I read in other books. Not that other authors are writing about it in a crappy way, it’s just a different way.

OK, that’s all I have to say today. Go check out Claire’s books. She has a lot of them, and at least a good chunk of them are in KU. Tell me what you think about them. Happy reading!

rope boy

Claire Thompson-The Master and the Secretary

Imagine that you find out that your grandmother isn’t who you thought that she was. That’s what happens with Tess in Claire Thompson’s book, The Master and the Secretary.

You don’t want to think about your parents or grandparents having sex. I mean, we all know that it happened at least once or twice, or more, but we really don’t want to think about it.

When Tess’s Nana dies, she goes over to the house to help clean it out and get it ready to sell. When she’s in the attic, she finds a locked strongbox and tries everything she can to get into the box. When she finally finds a key to open the box, she finds out that there are some ledgers in the box, number 1-5. The books are handwritten journals from her grandmother, detailing her submissive journey with her boss, Mr. James Stevenson.

Shocked, Tess closes the first book, worried about invading her Nana’s privacy, but eventually, she can’t fight off the curiosity and starts to read the notebook again, getting a little hot under the… collar. Then she wishes she could talk to someone about it, but knows that her mother and sister would totally freak out about it. But maybe her new boyfriend, Ryan?

Ryan and Tess work together at a law office. Their relationship is pretty new, but she feels like she can tell him about what’s going on. They start reading the journals together, and it helps them figure things out.

OK, so it’s that time. The book is told between two viewpoints, that of Olivia’s journal in the ’60s and the modern day Tess and Ryan. I love the parallel between the two stories since Olivia was the secretary to a lawyer and Tess and Ryan are both lawyers. It creates a really interesting look at the fact that things are a lot different now to then. Not just in the whole BDSM practice bit but also in the sexual harrassment in the workplace thing. Just very interesting. The story is steamy. It’s not a dark story, it’s more of a book about journeys and self-discovery. I liked it.


I felt sorry for poor Olivia. She must’ve felt like she was torn in two, being subbie Olivia at work and Mommy/wife Livvie at home. That must’ve taken some real mental gymnastics to make it work for her in a way that didn’t completely make her brain melt. I think that I would have a hard time doing that. Too bad that there wasn’t a way that she could meld the two of her parts into one relationship.

Ok, that’s all I have to say on this one. Go check this out on Zon and look for other Claire Thompson books. Happy reading!

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