Loveswept — Random House Publishing Group (page – http://www.randomhouse.com/book/236825/bared-by-stacey-kennedy)
Pub Date Feb 10 2014
Ebook Formats 256 pages
E-Galley provided by publisher via Net Galley for review. No remuneration was exchanged and all opinions presented herein are my own except when otherwise noted.
At Las Vegas’s exclusive Club Sin, Aidan Knight is the Master, unleashing the erotic yearnings of his submissive lovers. But his dominant façade conceals a devastating loss—something he instantly recognizes in his personally trained submissive Cora Adams. Sworn to unearth her secrets, Aidan uses his seductive skills to ignite her wildest desires until Cora yields to the pleasure she can find only with him.
Cora came to the BDSM club to act out her sub-and-dom fantasies without ever revealing the heartbreak that haunts her. But Aidan’s masterful touch is bringing her closer to the edge . . . and deeper into a world of control and surrender. He refuses to allow her to submit to any other man—nor does she want to. It’s a dangerous game they’re playing. For as they give in to passion, they must lay bare their souls for a love that could heal—and free—them both.
Bared is an erotic romance intended for mature audiences. www.staceykennedy.com/bared/
This story delves unrelentingly into the emotional, painful journey of the male and female love interests. I think Stacey Kennedy does a great job working her way into her characters’ heads and sharing their thoughts. I did find her discussion of the dominant guys being naturally dominant outside the lifestyle interesting. I seem to remember reading that subs are often tired of having to make decisions and as submissives they can actually relax, but I guess Doms, and maybe Dommes thrive on that. But I have also read about subs who are control freaks everywhere else. You probably can’t identify people as submissive or dominant just from their jobs or life outside the dungeon.
The love story is complicated by Aiden’s grief for his late wife or fiancee (I’m not sure). Cora is in love with him and knows he loves her but that he is not willing to give up mourning. You can’t mourn and move on simultaneously; maybe mourning gets you too moving on. There’s a lot of angsting about the relationship on both sides. If only people would communicate! But then again, Cora is worried she’ll lose their connection if she does tell him. She could be right and given the nature of the relationship she could lose him by being honest. And, yikes, at times it seems like Aiden is a dolt for not seeing the obvious.
I found myself thinking, is love really this hard? I don’t recall it being this hard after high school. I’ve been married for 31 years, and I can’t say we haven’t had our moments, (Grrr!) but it hasn’t seemed as hard as romance books make it out to be. What do you think?
Other than some issues that have more to do with the editing than the writing (misuse of words, ex., there’s for theirs, continuity, verb tense confusion, and a little head hopping), I thought the story was pretty good. I was able to confirm the typos and other editing errors with another reader. For an erotic romance centered on a BDSM club there is not a huge amount of sex or “play.” There’s nothing too terribly, terribly kinky (or I am really, really inured). It really is centered on the story and the characters. I did feel the ending was rushed and kind of unrealistic given the circumstances. But, that is almost a given in the genre. The climax and resolution have a tendency to happen quickly, often culminating in the bedroom for one last romp.At Amazon At B&N