Jennifer Bene-Black Light: Charmed

Today we get a twofer. We get a new Jennifer Bene and a new Black Light, all at once! Yay! We all know that I’m always down for both of those things, so combining them makes me a happy reader! So, let’s talk about Charmed.

This is the story of Logan and Cassandra. She’s a model, he’s the president of a big family company. They met at a Roulette event at Black Light West, and had a beautiful time. Then, they never saw each other again. They tried, but Cassandra is a model in high demand, and she’s working really hard to build her brand, so she takes every job she can. She’s rarely, if ever, in LA right now. She and Logan tried to get together, but they couldn’t make it work, so finally, they just fell out of contact with each other. However, Logan couldn’t get her out of his mind, so when he found out that she was doing a show at Runway West, he arranged to be there. He wanted to meet with her, and try to get her to date him.

Cassandra has thought about him, and then there he was. He asked her on a date and she turned him down. She’s pretty sure that they can’t have any kind of relationship because of her schedule and the fact that he’s tied to LA. If she’s going to be as successful as she wants, she can’t stay tied to LA, and she will have to travel all over the place. That doesn’t work well for a relationship. But, it’s December, and she’s going to be in LA for a few weeks, so maybe they can get at least get together for playdates or coffee, or you know, hot monkey sex.

I loved Cassandra. She just has this awesome free spirit, and is open to the universe and welcoming to what will come. She makes friends easily, and wants to have fun with her life, not just work hard. I mean, she will work hard too, she wants to, and she likes what she does, and she is serious about her craft and her brand. I think that she would definitely be a great person to know and to spend a lot of time with. I think that everyone who does spend time with her thinks that.

I had some problems with Logan. I liked him, but he had some daddy subscriptions issues. He really had some voices in his head that wouldn’t let him go. He doesn’t necessarily treat most people well. One of my favorite scenes with Cassandra is when she goes after Logan for the way that he is treating someone. She goes after him and makes him apologize. I was impressed by that, so much.

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I think that Logan would really benefit from the help of a good therapist.

OK, that’s all I have to say about this one. Go check it out! Happy reading!

 

Maren Smith-Black Light: Brave

While the Black Light books are generally standalones in the world, with a few character who may show up in various books, Brave isn’t quite a standalone. It follows a storyline that started in Roulette Redux, and then went on with Fearless. They are all related, and you don’t *have* to read the others to enjoy Brave, but you will enjoy it a lot more. There is enough of the back story that you will get the basics, but really, you should read the other two. The story in Redux is Shameless, by Maren, if that helps.

Anyway, here’s our story. We have Puppy and Pony. They are the only two left from Ethan’s Menagerie. Piggy and Kitty both managed to escape, and Ethan is in jail. At least for a little while longer. Puppy and Pony are living with Puppy’s mother, and neither are doing all that well. Puppy can’t hold a job, and Pony can’t do anything without Ethan. They go and visit him in jail, and he punishes Pony, even when Puppy screws up. One night, it gets way too much and Puppy just has to escape. She manages to get to Black Light, the exclusive BDSM club where she used to be a member, as part of Ethan’s Menagerie. She manages to walk in and sit down across from a Dom, for about a minute, before she runs far away.

Carlson, who works for Black Light, is surprised when this stranger dressed in things that no one would be seen in a kink club in just sits down at the table next to him. When she runs away, he feels like he needs to follow her because there’s just something about her.

Before we talk about Puppy and Carlson, I just want to say that Pony just makes my heart break. She is so profoundly broken. We don’t get anything from her POV, we’re just seeing her through Puppy’s POV and a little from Carlson’s, and yeah, she’s hurting so badly. Even with as broken as she is, I don’t particularly like her a lot of the time. I don’t know if the things I don’t like are part of her original personality, a reaction to her time spent under Ethan’s “care”, or the fact that she’s been abandoned by him. It could be a combination of all of the above. I don’t know if Maren is going to write a book for her, since the tag for this one is that the story ends with Puppy, so I think we’ll just have to wait and see.

And Ethan. I HATE Ethan. I hate him with the heat of 1000000 white hot suns. This book did nothing to make me like him more. In fact, it did a whole lot to make me like him even less.

I can’t miss talking about Spencer, since he does show up in here a couple of times, and we have a couple of chapters from his POV. He’s never been one of my favorite characters, at all. I understand his feelings and actions in this one, and I think that he may have made it hard for me to not like him a little more than I have in the past.

Now let’s talk about Puppy and Carlson.

Puppy, I have to give her all kinds of kudos for even making the attempt to have any kind of life after Ethan, especially since she was dealing with all kinds of things she was dealing with. I don’t think anyone was ever trying to help her after she left the hospital when she was freed from Ethan. I want to totally blame that on her mother, but that could be because I don’t like her mother, so I really want to blame all the things on her. But, Puppy has a lot of strength and a lot of bravery to even walk out of the house, I think. I mean, she knows that monsters exist in a much more visceral way than most people will ever know. I have to say that I’m really proud of her.

And on to Carlson. I mostly like him. Most of the time. I think that he is really patient with Puppy, and lets her get through things that she wouldn’t have been able to handle before. I think that there are a few times when he doesn’t handle everything as well as he could’ve, but Puppy is really a landmine, and she doesn’t even have the map for all the traps that Ethan planted in her. And Carlson, for as patient as he is, and as Dom-ly as he is, isn’t a mindreader or a psychologist, so it’s not a huge surprise that he stumbles sometimes. I think that even a trained professional would have problems with things too.

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Ha. Ethan can suck it.

OK, that’s all for today. I heartily recommend all of the Black Light books. Happy reading!

Livia Grant-Scandalized

Livia Grant started writing the Black Light world when she wrote Infamous Love, which was Emma, Chase, and Jaxson’s original story. I fell in love with those characters the first time I read the book, and I’ve continued to love them, as well as all the new entries into this world. In Liva’s newest book, Scandalized, we get to catch up with the trio a little bit, as well as get more of Piper and Nolan’s story from the last Roulette book, and meet a new couple, Shane and Nolani. It sounds like it could be a really busy book, but it really isn’t, especially because Chase, Emma, and Jaxson are really secondary characters here.

So, Shane is a big movie star, I mean up for an Oscar kind of big movie star. He’s also a kinky fucker. A really, dirty, obscene, filthy kinky fuck. The kind of kinky where you might have to stop and take a second before you are sure that you aren’t going to have to safeword. Anyway, he’s currently staying at Runway/Black Light West in one of the suites there because his house is getting worked on, and well, hell, he’s a member and he likes to play in the dungeon. So, why the hell not? Then one way, a beautiful woman literally runs into his arms in the hall outside his suite.

Nolani is a housekeeper at the club. She’s worked there for a while and is friends with pretty much everyone there. One day, she’s up in the suites doing the cleaning, and she hears a woman screaming and that it hurts. Now, this *is* a sex club, and the suites and rooms upstairs are open to members to use and to play with, but these screams and such don’t sound quite right. So, Nolani uses her code to get into the room, and finds a fat fuck with a broke dick fucking a woman who is tied down and crying. Nolani just stands there, in shock, while the fat fuck talks to her, and then tries to chase her and grab her. That’s when she literally runs into her huge celebrity crush, Shane Covington. And all the filthy things ensue.

Elsewhere in the world, we have Piper and Nolan. They had a relationship once upon a time, but something happened and it went away. Now, instead of being a sub, Piper has turned herself into Mistress Ice, the Ice Queen, the very powerful Domme. Nolan paid $100K for a chance to play with her at the Celebrity Roulette. Then, she got spooked, and left. Now she’s running and hiding, and not answering his phone calls, but Nolan isn’t going to let that be that. He’s going go after her and get his woman.

There is a lot of really hot, filthy, obscene sex in here. I mean, yeah, all kinds of good and kinky stuff. There’s great phone sex in here too. But more than that, there’s a lot of relationship stuff. We get to watch a new relationship being built as well as an old relationship getting put back together. We get to watch people who are at vastly different places in their lives and how they manage to work with everything. It’s really fun to watch, and sometimes really heartbreaking to watch. There was a part that was incredibly hard to read, and it made me cringe.

I can’t wait for more Black Light and to see both these couples as side characters in other people’s books.

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I wondered what Nalani was hiding, because I knew it had to be something. And wow, was it something.

I wondered if Piper and Nalani were connected, and they were. Which makes me sad.

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

Golden Angel-Defended

The 13th book in the Black Light world is a new one for the world. We’ve brushed up against the DD/lg kink a couple of times in the Roulette books, but never a full-on Daddy book, until now, with Defended.

Here’s our story. Melody, a sweet, loving person, has been arrested because when the cops busted into the party that she was at, someone took advantage of the fact that her purse was laying around, unsupervised, and dropped some drugs into it before the cops got there. When she handed her purse over to be searched, the cops find the drugs and arrest her. Now, she’s in court, waiting to see if she’s going to end up going to jail. Luckily for Melody, Kawan Park exists.

And why is this lucky for her? Well, Kawan is a high-powered lawyer, and he’s pretty much demolishing the cop who arrested her. In fact, he demolishes the man so much that the judge drops the charges and our plucky heroine gets to go free. So, yay for Kawan!

Kawan is a new lawyer working at the firm that represents Black Light. Because of that, he gets to be a member, which is great for him, because he’s a Daddy Dom. We know this law firm because 2 of the partners, Connor and Alexander, have shown up in their own Roulette stories. In fact, Jennifer Bene wrote Alexander and Sienna’s story in the first Roulette, Wet. Fantastic story. Anyway, I digress. Kawan has just moved to DC to join their firm because he had to get away from where he was living. He had a terrible break up with a nasty woman who he thought would be his little girl forever, but Krissy just wasn’t all that nice.

So, on his first trip to Black Light, he looks up and who do you think he sees? That’s right, he sees Melody. Melody’s roommate Peggy (booooooo hisssssss) has a boyfriend named Elliot. Elliot is a Domly type, and he has brought Peggy to the club to play, and Melody came with them. It’s a celebration for Melody not going to jail. When Melody notices Kawan, she drops to the floor, trying to hide. Which causes Peggy to laugh, Elliot to get mad (at Peggy), and Kawan to get protective.

I really like Melody. She really is just a sweet person with a truly lovely soul. She just wants to make everyone happy around her. I would really love to be around her, because she just seems like she would be a joy. She’s also wicked smart. She’s a PhD in science, trying to do something about diabetes and mental health in reference to gut microbes. So, she looks at a lot of smears under microscopes. But the reason that she went into this particular field is because of her mother. So, see, sweet and loving and wanting to make everyone happy.

Kawan is a good man. He really is honorable and just a decent guy. He really wants to have a little girl that he can love and take care of and spoil senseless. And spank, but that’s kind of a given, considering he’s a Daddy. I think that he also has a little bit of a hero complex going on. Not a big one, just a little bit.

Then there is Peggy. I pretty much hate, despise, and loathe Peggy. I didn’t like her from the very first word that the woman utters. Melody spends way too much time managing her and tiptoeing around her. Peggy needs to grow the fuck up.

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I love how Melody lays the smackdown on Peggy. It was totally awesome, and I cheered for her.

OK, that’s all for today! Go check out the entire Black Light world! Happy reading!

Anthology-Black Light: Celebrity Roulette

It’s Valentine’s Day again, which means it’s the start of the 3rd season of Black Light, and as usual, we are starting it off with a Roulette anthology. This one is a little different though. Instead of being at Black Light East, we’re in LA, and instead of random drawings to match Doms and subs, we have a celebrity auction. A number of celebrities, both dominant and submissive types, put their name into the ring, and members got to bid for them. Once they get to the event and all the celebs find out who has purchased them for the night, then the subs roll for the activity. The rules of Celebrity Roulette say that they have to do the rolled activity for at least 30 minutes, and they are welcome to roll for something else after that. If they finish the night, they get a free month, if someone calls Red, everything is done. And oh yeah, no staff gets involved this year, or else. So, without further ado, let’s spin the wheel and find out where we end up, shall we?

As always, since this is an anthology, and there are 9 stories, plus the beginning and end bumpers, you are just going to get my basic impressions and feelings about each story, otherwise I’d be writing for the next 3 days, and I’d like to sleep sometime. Probably.

Guarded by Renee Rose

Scarlett A is a rock star. She’s also a sub. Once upon a time, she had a bodyguard named Lincoln, but a year ago, he ended fired. In that time, he’s learned a whole lot of new tricks, and he’s just waiting to show Scarlett. There is a lot of connection there between them, but of course, they have history. I think that Lincoln makes a great Dom for so many reasons, but one of them is that he really pays attention to Scarlett, and he has for a while. He might not say a lot, but it’s obvious how he feels about her from the very start.

Hooked by Jennifer Bene

By day a principal ballerina, by night a sub, Vanessa is the one who Wyatt really wants to win. He’s obsessed with her, but in a good way. There’s the typical Jennifer heat, but it’s not your typical Jennifer story. It’s sweet and light. It’s just so beautiful. There’s something about the way that these two connect and interact. They fit each other’s weird edges, and it’s perfect. Plus? I’m totally never going to be able to look at the ballet the same way again, because who knew toe shoes and tutus were sexy AF? The barre was just inspired.

Switched by Livia Grant

This is a first for Black Light. We have a Domme, Mistress Ice. Then there’s Nolan, the Dom who wants her, so he buys her and will submit to her for a night. I don’t know that there are a lot of Doms out there who would submit like that, even for 3 hours. Of course, I don’t know that many in person, so who knows. It was a really interesting dynamic to watch. I’ve read other Domme/sub books, and I’m pretty sure that this one was slightly unhealthy. But, Livia is mean. She’s a meanie meanie head. I need more. I need to know what the past holds.

Determined by Maren Smith

This is one that I really hope that Maren expands, because it really seems like there could be more to the story. So Maren, if you’re reading, take mercy on me and let me out of my suffering sometime in the nearish future, please and thank you? Out of a book full of some seriously hot scenes, I think that the scene between Claire and Adam is really the totally hottest one in the book. It’s just wow. I’m surprised my Kindle didn’t melt down. I figured it would’ve. I love the power struggle that goes on between Claire and Adam, which just makes the whole thing even hotter.

Pressure by Measha Stone

Michele thought about signing up for Celebrity Roulette. She had everything ready to go, but then stopped. Of course, she has that well-meaning friend who decided to submit her application for her and just not tell her. That’s how Michele ends up with Egan for the night. I felt sorry for Michele because she has such a hard time letting go and she has to try to stop her brain from thinking and worrying about if she’s doing the right thing. I can totally get that. I have the same problem, but no Egan to help me.

Savor by Maggie Ryan

Carnegie ends up with Ronan, a celebrity chef. I love her name, BTW, it’s just an awesome story behind it. They have a really sensual scene in here, and one that is really different to anything else we’ve ever seen in any of the Black Light stories. In fact, I think it’s the first scene like it I’ve seen in any BDSM book. It was hot but in a more lowkey kind of way. And fan paintbrushes? I will never look at them the same way again.

Cherished by Sue Lyndon

Once upon a time, Serena met Trenton right after she dumped her boyfriend. He held her during the countdown for NYE and kissed her on her forehead. Now she gets to bid on him. Sue gets a first for the Black Light books too. I’m not saying what it is, because I don’t want to spoil it. But it’s a great scene, and Serena really gets into it. I wonder how much she’s role-playing and how much she’s actually into the scene. Either way, I think it works perfectly. And I saw Trenton as Jason Statham the whole time in my head.

Jazzed by Lesley Clark

I think that this is Lesley’s first Black Light story, but I hope it won’t be her last. And it’s another one that I would love to see expanded out. Jazz is a rock star and Michael is a psychiatrist. Together, they are going to go back to school. The picture that she would’ve presented while she was sitting at a school desk was ridiculously sexy. Their whole story was really connected and really lovely.

Control by Dani Rene

Kaelin’s father, who seems like a super-prick, just sayin’, is Jed’s agent, so Jed feels that she’s off limits. She’s pretty sure that he hates her. But, when they get together, it’s definitely a match in S&M heaven. I love the chemistry that they have together. Of course, they have years of history behind them so it’s no wonder they have such a connection and such chemistry. They are another one that I would like to have more of.

And of course, as always, we have the bumpers about planning the event and the conclusion of the event, written by Livia and Jennifer. We get a little look at Emma, Chase, and Jaxon, which is always nice. I love them so much. We also get to see Madison volunteer to be the MC. And if you haven’t read a Valley Girl MCing at a bondage club auction, you are like totally missing something. I have a feeling that we will be seeing more of Madison in the future.

OK, that’s all I have to say on this one. The nice thing about short stories is that you can work them in whenever you have time, so go check it out. Happy reading!

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Maren Smith-Black Light: Fearless

There are a lot of reasons why I love the Black Light universe. I mean, hot and sexy adult quality time, great storylines, and a whole lot of authors who are writing in a shared world. Maren Smith is the latest author to give us a full-length novel in the BL world, with Fearless. This book is the 10th novel in the Black Light ‘verse, in about 18 months or so.

Fearless comes out of this year’s Roulette Redux. Kitty, the heroine of this story, wasn’t the main character in Maren’s story, but she was a good friend of Hadlee. The way that this one goes is that it picks up on that Valentine’s Day night, after Ethan and his Menagerie were ejected from Black Light.

Kitty and Hadlee, who was once called Piggy-girl, were both “owned” by Ethan. He’s one of those faux “doms” who think that they are gods. Basically, he was really charismatic, got the subs hooked on him, then he started fucking with their minds to turn them into his perfect little pets. Hadlee managed to escape some time ago, and decided to sign up for Roulette. She drew Noah’s name from the draw. Noah is an Aussie who is a champion whip master. He found that Gareth was into her and she was into Gareth, and well, go read the story.

Meanwhile, Ethan managed to get himself kicked out of the club because he was being Captain Douchebag, along with Kitty-girl, Pony-girl, and Puppy-girl. Kitty, being friends with Hadlee, knew that she was about to end up paying for the fact that Hadlee escaped. And she did. He beat the fucking shit out of her and then raped her. Then he left her outside, stark ass naked, after being beat the fuck up, in the middle of February outside of DC. After Kitty managed to drag herself inside, she decided that she was going to be like Hadlee, and escape. It took her a lot of work in her head to manage it, mostly to pysch herself up to it, but she ran. She ran to a phone booth and managed to call Hadlee and beg for help. Hadlee and Gareth came, picked her up, and took her into their home.

After a few weeks in which Ethan ruins Kitty’s life even more than he already had, Gareth decides that he needs to do whatever he can to help Kitty and to get her away from Ethan. So, he calls up his bud Noah, down in Australia, and asks if he can send this poor abused and traumatized woman his way. Noah says of course. He’ll see Ethan coming from miles away, so Kitty’ll be perfectly safe.

When Kitty finally gets to Australia, after like 27 hours of flying, Aus tries to kill her for the first time, but luckily, Noah is there to save her. Then he takes her out to his ranch, which is isolated and far from neighbors, and Kitty just assumes that he’s Australia’s version of Ethan wanting something from her.

After Maren’s story in Redux, I didn’t think that I could dislike Ethan any more than I already did, and we didn’t know much about him at that point. But then, Maren decided we needed to know more. And guess what? I found out that I really could hate him more. Maren created a completely unlikable and easily hatable character. I mean, I wanted to go kick him in the nuts so hard that he could wear them as earmuffs.

I felt so sorry for Kitty. She really broke my heart. I mean, Ethan did a helluva job on her, and it is hard to break out of that kind of gaslighting and brainfuckery. I mean, Ethan had rules and if she didn’t follow them, his punishment was harsh, and his rewards were few. When you know that you are going to get punished so harshly for any kind of fuckup, you work really, really hard to make the person in charge happy. And that’s exactly what Kitty did. You internalize those rules and even when you get to a safe place, you have a hard time getting away from them, because they were the only way you knew how to stay safe, so you are going to keep going back to those rules. There’s something I’ve heard over the years. That’s that it’s perfectly sane to be insane in an insane situation. And again, that’s so hard to deal with when you are out of the situation.

I really like Noah, a lot. He gets handed a terribly damaged woman and subbie. He could have just jumped in and tried to Dom her immediately or he could’ve completely ignored that part of her, but he spent time trying to think about what was best for Kitty and how he could help her. He didn’t just jump to immediately trying to stick his dick in her.

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OK, is Noah making new kitty stuff for Kitty not the sweetest thing ever? I love that he helps her recapture that part of herself. I also love that he fucking punches Ethan. I hope the cops do terrible things to Ethan.

OK, go check out this one and all the Black Light stories. Happy reading!

Measha Stone-Suspicion

So, the Black Light books are one of those series where several different authors get together and write stories in the same world. In this case, the books all have to have something to do with Black Light BDSM club. Until now, they’ve all been focused in the DC club, but with the LA club opening up (Livia Grant’s Complicated Love) and some of our former couples living out there, I expect that we will see some stories that are based out there.

On top of having related standalone books, there are also two anthologies, the Valentine Roulette books. Those books are novellas that all take place within the same three hours on the same night. Subs and Doms spin  the roulette wheel. Doms spin to see what sub they’ll be matched with, and subs spin to see what activities they’ll be doing. We’ve seen some stories come out of the couples from the Valentine’s Roulette books, but generally we’ve gotten to see them a little bit before their book starts. With Sophie and Scott, we don’t. However, in the last Roulette book, there is a moment when a sub faints and a Dom rushes to her aid. That’s Sophie and Scott. And that’s where Measha and her Suspicion come in.

Scott and Sophia are cops and partners. She transferred out of her old district and is working in a new one, so their partnership is still pretty new, even though it is pretty successful to this point. On Valentine’s night, she walks into Black Light. She’s been a member for a while but hasn’t ever been. She signed up for the Roulette event though. She’s a complete newbie, but she thinks this may be a good way to get some experience. Then, the unthinkable happens. She sees Scott. All of a sudden, the streams have crossed and her private life and work life are starting to collide, and she just can’t be having with that. Between that and the fact that she hasn’t eaten all day because she was afraid of an upset stomach, she has a crash and faints. Luckily, Scott is Johnny-on-the-spot and is able to help her and takes her home and puts her to bed.

Scott realizes one thing during this. Sophia is a sub, and he wants her. However, Sophia isn’t quite as sure. She’s very nervous about everything, from the fact that she’s never played at all, to the fact that they are partners and if everything goes pear-shaped, things would turn really ugly.

I really loved this one. I  mean, I like most books that I read, otherwise I wouldn’t read them, but this one really got to me and wormed its way into my heart. There’s something about Sophie that I can really relate to. I feel like she could be me. It let me really get into the story and feel very affected by everything that happened. I think the Sophia and Scott work well together, especially when they both pull their heads out of their asses. One thing I really like that Measha did was that she showed Doms aren’t perfect and they make dumbass mistakes just like the rest of the world. I know I’ve said it before, but Doms often get a pass just because they are the Doms and make the rules. But I’ve seen Doms making mistakes and having to deal with it in several books lately, and I’m loving it. Yes, the Domly ones have to be the ones in control and in charge and confident, but as Dani says in the book, an apologetic Dom is a sexy Dom. If I had a Dom, I would want one who let me know they weren’t perfect and when they screwed up, they apologized and did what was necessary to make it right. So yay for Measha!

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OMG, I wanted to fucking strangle Scott. He didn’t give Sophia a chance to explain, he just assumed he knew what was going on, and when she tried, he just shut it down and shut her out. I can’t even imagine how she felt about that because she had serious trust issues and for him to do that to her? I’m glad Gray smacked him around and even happier that Sophie blocked him for a while. Let him feel like shit. Of course, that doesn’t mean that she didn’t feel like shit too, but he’s the one who earned it.

That doesn’t absolve Sophie of things, though. She should’ve told him what was going on before it got to the point it did.

OK, that’s all I have to say about this. You should totally go check out all the Black Light books. They are all totally worth it. It will be easier to find them if you look for Black Light or Black Collar Press. There are a lot of authors in the series. Happy reading!