I am officially saying goodbye to Kensington’s Aphrodisia line. I have switched my subscription to Brava, already received my first books and DAMN, I’m so happy. But I couldn’t leave Aphrodisia without giving you a taste of what I read. Of course, you may want to light my hair on fire and put it out with a hammer after offering this up for your palette.
My last book from Aphrodisia was Give Me More by P.J. Mellor. Note that I didn’t choose this book… Aphrodisia had a super-fucktastic mix up and I didn’t select the last four books that were sent to me. Of the four books, the first was an anthology which was resold without being cracked due to one author being on my AVOID AT ALL COSTS list, the second was okay but I hated the previous book in the series and the third was such a waste of paper that I though of putting it through the shredder. Which brings me to the fourth:
Give Me More is three stories loosely connected by a white scarf that has the seductive qualities of Mata Hari on steroids. However, the scarf was simply a device to connect these stories, and none of them are really worthy of standing on their own.
“Wild Thing” is the story of Maggie Hamilton, a woman who has a job (don’t ask me what it is) and desperately needs a vacation. She’s also hard up for some good sex, but has apparently never used a vibrator and I’m convinced that she doesn’t really know what to do with one. She embarks on a singles cruise to find a great guy – ’cause all the great guys hang out on singles cruises. Insert snafu here: Maggie ends up on a honeymoon cruise in a ridiculous jungle-theme room. Do you think Maggie noticed that she was the only person not paired up while boarding the ship? Nope. Enter hot (single) cruise director Drew Connor. Sexin’ ensues. Drew and Maggie realize that they’re good for each other and Drew promises to meet up with her after cruise season is over with HEA promise. *Sigh*
In “Hold Me, Thrill Me” Ryan Holmes is stuck on a tropical island with no funds after her boyfriend runs off with everything and strands her there. Ryan is obviously an orphan, with no friends and no one on God’s green Earth to give a crap that she isn’t where she’s supposed to be. Ryan is working at a seaside bar/restaurant to make enough cash to hitch a ride back to the US of A, and upon her return she plans to kill her now-ex-boyfriend. Jean, a gorgeous Frenchie, is working at same bar/restaurant and is on the prowl for an American wife to get a green card. Jean romances Ryan, pretends he doesn’t speak a lot of English, sexin’ ensues, small misunderstandings happen and then BANG, they’re back in the States (Houston, specifically) and on their way to HEA.
Finally, Emily Mitchell forces her boyfriend Scott to take her on vacation in “Light My Fire”. Scott, being the cheap-ass bastard that he is, takes Emily from Houston to a ski resort in the summer (note: I’ve been to Colorado ski resorts in the summer… STILL EXORBITANTLY EXPENSIVE). He also takes his computer, cell phone, BlackBerry and then leaves after the first day on vacay due to “work”. Scott is repellent and only a true masochist would be with him. Emily… WANTS TO MARRY HIM. He also totally ignores the fact that Jason, another hotel guest, is puttin’ the moves on Emily. Emily realizes that Jason makes her feel sexy, alive and has a personality, unlike Scott. Sexin’ ensues. Emily and Jason are on their way to an HEA too… but I forget what happened.
Mellor’s characters are generic romancelandia hotness. All of the women are incredibly sexy (but don’t think they are) and all of the men are gorgeous, posess six-pack abs and giant dicks. I couldn’t distinguish one from the other (but for the fact that I knew Jean was French). The dialogue in all three stories was ho-hum and there were times when it was clear that a scene was intended to be slapstick funny, but all I got were crickets chirping. The best example of this is in the first story: Maggie and Drew are gettin’ it on in an elevator and are trying to hide from the camera. Drew falls over, exposes his junk to the camera… and… nothing. This coupled with the fact that Drew wasn’t fired on the spot should give you an inkling as to how little the stories are based in reality. All of the stories also take place in vacation spots, but rather than showing us anything about these places or giving us great atmosphere, we’re told that one is on a boat, one is on an island and one is in the mountains. Each story is wrapped up so quickly that it made my head spin.
While all three stories seem innocuous and the writing is relatively inoffensive compared to some of the other things I’ve read, there are three things about this book that drove me out of my fucking mind:
1. The female lead is drunk the first time she has sex with the male lead IN ALL THREE STORIES!
2. Food/soap/SOMETHING THAT SHOULDN’T BE is inserted into every female’s vagina at some point during sex.
3. Each of these females has this weird slut/virgin thing going on. Mind you, none of them are virgins, but they act like sex might be a foreign concept. The idea of a vibrator was almost revolting to Maggie… until she uses it, of course. Ryan came across as a one-man woman… ’til she and Jean had sex that seemed to come straight out of the pr0n section of Blockbuster. And Emily needed some serious convincing that sex with Jason was a great idea, even though Scott was a total fuckwad and she was massively hard up.
Because of this (especially because of point #1), this gets an F. Sayonara, Aphrodisia.
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