Jay's Random Rambliings.

GUEST BOOK REVIEW - Stephen reviews the "Darkness" series

 

Dear Readers, It's time for our second guest review, this time of a work more similar to the original works on this site, A Light in the Darkness and Devil's Gambit! This newest entry, by guest reviewer Stephen, is about Richard Garcia's "Darkness" series at NIFTY, which so far includes "Darkness Dwindles," "Darkness Calls," and "Darkness Evolves." Enjoy -- Jay G.
***
 
In Richard Garcia's Darkness series, we find what at first appears to be a simple, mundane werewolf tale, however well written and with a singularly detached, flat ironic flavor. The tale centers around Joseph and Daniel Miltzer, two half brothers. They are the sons of a gifted theoretical mathematician and two different mothers. Daniel, the elder brother, has as a mother a wealthy, entitled California socialite. Her love is peripheral, at best motivated by money and connections. Joey’s mother was the heir to a powerful line of witches, and she died tragically when he was young. She was killed, it seems, in part because she had a son, –not a thing to have in that strictly matriarchal family.
 
Joey is special. He is the only male born into the Estrella family in memory. From the outset of the story he comes across as a rather shy, listless, fey little character, far overshadowed by his older, dynamic brother. But it seems that he has suffered from a form of arrested development brought on by demonic possession. It’s been going on for years, and the only reason he’s even alive is because he’s terribly, awfully powerful. And a threat, –to everyone, even the incubus. Well, then one night, Daniel is attacked in the woods...&ct. But that’s not really the issue.
 
What's driving the intrigue is that the Miltzer boys' father was working on a formulaic equation that would define the ending of the diminishing force of Darkness in the universe, and predict it’s cataclysmic rebirth. The equation is cosmically vital, as is Joey. As to defining what the threat involves, –that’s a whole can of worms with this story. The threat is universal, and where do you start with that?
 
The story was last updated on November 20th last year. It’s worth reading, if you like that sort of thing! It's a very cool story, and I hope Richard continues it. He has a unique gift!
 
     --a review by Stephen

I need a few good men, and women (keep your minds out of the gutter, but see p.s.s.)

Dear Readers, I am trying my best to keep writing despite the pressures that come at the end of a long academic project (ie. I am under a lot of pressure to finish my dissertation this summer, but have the 'writing bug' again as Terry calls it - unfortunately a lot of what I'm producing isn't in any state to be released) and I'm tidying up Devil's Gambit manuscript to release on Amazon Kindle this month - and Light II for mid-summer! But I want to keep the site active as well, so I'll be posting the concluding update to the current chapter of Feels Like Falling tonight, around midnight CST.

SO HERE'S WHERE I ASK FOR YOUR HELP, DEAR READERS! Something I want to feature on my new blog is reviews of other folks writing - either significant online projects or published works, or hell even gay or horror/fantasy themed movies - and I'd love to have guest contributors for that. If you read like a mad person, take a few minutes to jot down your thoughts, edit it into a thoughtful review, and I'll edit and post it on my site, crediting you! I think this could be fun and very helpful to our little community: there's so much out there to read, lets help each other find the good shit.

 

Jay G.

P.S. submit entries to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

P.S.S. men (18+) who resemble my characters may also submit nudes to this addess ;)

 

GUEST BOOK REVIEW - Sofia Mercer reviews "Restraint"

Dear Readers, Our little community is a very diverse group and includes men and women who enjoy a bit of steamy M/F romance as well. To that end, I invited my friend and sometime hag, Sofia Mercer, to contribute an occasional book review to introduce is to some of her current reading list. In her first installment, she reviews Restraint by Charlotte Stein! If this floats your boat, check it out! I must say I do appreciate the twunk on the cover!

 

In Restraint, a novella by Charlotte Stein, a young woman, Mallory, goes on vacation with her 2 best friends and a man she is sure hates her. Artie constantly belittles Mallory with his comments and his judgmental stares until, finally, one of his insults pushes her too far. When he restrains her so he can apologize, she discovers that he doesn't hate her at all: Due to the way he was raised, Artie is ashamed of how his body responds to her dirty talking. This discovery leads Mallory to push Artie out of his comfort zone. The plot isn't new: Artie is the beautiful, damaged man healed through his desire for Mallory.

Charlotte Stein knows her audience, women who probably read her books on a Kindle, where they're easily accessible and anonymous. No one needs to know that she is reading erotica or pornography, which society has portrayed as dirty or taboo. Ironically, Ms. Stein plays on this convention, mirroring it in Artie’s own attempts to hide the fact that dirty talk and dirty sex really turn him on.

Artie’s character is written as a nicely balanced blend of sexy and vulnerable, with a hint of dominance. The blend is too perfect to be realistic, but it works in this erotic romance. He is a common fantasy come to life. Mallory’s sense of mischief and her discovery of her sexual power are easy to buy into and will elicit feeling of familiarity in many female readers.

What Charlotte Stein does best in Restraint is tension. By frequently and seamlessly alternating between dialogue, the physical actions and Mallory’s thoughts, Ms. Stein had me spellbound. She describes every movement and every reaction so vividly and seductively, I was awaiting Artie’s reactions and longing for his touch as much as Mallory. Mallory’s dialogue and her thought process is consistent with that of a young woman.

In the matter of only a couple sentences she is able to make her reader respond physically to the scene. Artie’s secret, taboo desires reflect our own, and we feel Mallory’s power taking hold over him. I find myself cheering her on and revel in even her smallest victories. Her sex scenes are beautifully detailed and phrases that can be found in scores of erotica, or pornographic novels, phrases that have been done to death, are brought back to life. The ending, though not unpredictable, is well-timed and sweetly delivered.

The language used is explicit but more naughty than raunchy. There is mild exhibitionism, oral, and extremely mild dominance. Restraint is a seduction, between the characters, and between author and reader.

            -- A Review by This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

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