Tag Archives: Delphine Dryden

Sunday Reflections: Upcoming Books, Fun Stuff and Great Deals You Might Have Missed, December 15, 2013

15 Dec

Upcoming Books and Recent Releases

It’s well known that I feel Stephanie Laurens’ Cynster series is one of the best Regency romance series out there, so I’m pleased to see that Avon Publishing is cleverly releasing the first three books of it (and they are AWESOME) as a e-bundle for people wanting to try it. Available as of December 17th, Cynsters: The Beginning includes Devil’s Bride, A Rake’s Vow and Scandal’s Bride and will cost only $13.59, a massive discount from the $7.99 for each book which is the standard retail price.

Angela Knight announced the prequel to her successful Magverse series, Wicked Games, will be released as of April 1, 2014. Containing not only the story that started this fantastic reinterpretation of Arthurian tales (think sexy vampires as knights and plenty of magic), it also bundles several previously released e-tales which have been revised and expanded for this anthology.

Vivian Arend’s next novel in her Thompson & Son series, Baby, Be Mine, will be published on February 25, 2014. This book combines a friends to lovers trope along with a surprise baby and amnesia when Gage Jenick takes advantage of long-time friend and hottie Katy Thompson kicking her boyfriend to the curb, even if his work is going to make him incommunicado for a couple of months. What he didn’t anticipate was that his girlfriend would have no memory of him or their incredible night together after she is involved in a car crash. While Katy wonders why Gage returns acting so territorial around her, she’s way more interested in how on earth she could be pregnant? In Arend’s hands, this is bound to be pure gold, so pre-order now!

Arend is going to win the busy bee award in February, considering that earlier in the month she also has the next installment of her Adrenaline Search & Rescue series, High Seduction coming out on February 4th. Armchair adrenaline junkies will definitely want to pre-order this puppy, a sexy chopper pilot looking for someone else to take control in the bedroom and the old flame paramedic who is more than happy to give her exactly what she needs.

Contests and Giveaways

Hustle over to Goodreads today for a chance to enter the historical romance anthology At the Duke’s Wedding, featuring stories by such powerhouse authors as Caroline Linden, Katharine Ashe, Miranda Neville and Maya Rodale. Enter by December 15th for a chance at these stories in print form for the first time!

Vampire Book Club, a blog whose reviews can always be counted on to inform, is offering a fabulous Urban Fantasy giveaway, with books by Adrian Phoenix, Jess Haines, Christina Henry and Eileen Rendahl to populate your bookshelves. Get over there before December 19th to enter for your chance to win!

With a mid-week deadline, another giveaway worth entering is for the first book of Emma Barron‘s Tropical Nights series, Exposed, which ends on December 18th. When a reporter is assigned the interview of a reclusive CEO, she thinks it’s a run-of-the-mill assignment not realizing her boss has led the company to believe that it’s a write up for a major economics journal and not the gossip magazine she works for. But both this sexy businessman and determined reporter have had their heart burned before, so as they realize that this interview is revealing their desire for one another as well as the facts, the question remains if they can get past their trepidation to find something real together.

Contemporary author Leah Braemel is participating in the Mistletoe Madness Blog Hop, offering a $10 Amazon or B&N card as a present to a lucky visitor who participated in her Rafflecopter giveaway by December 19th. For an even bigger prize (and a bit of guide through the Mistletoe Madness Blog Hop) head to P. J. Schnyder‘s blog and look at her giveaway which garners you entries via tweeting and commenting at the various participants blogs. In addition to Braemel and Schnyder (two excellent authors) they’re joined by such wonderful authors as Laura Kaye (of Hard As It Gets fame), Christine d’Abo, Christi Barth, Cat Johnson, and Dana Marie Bell among others. Enter before December 20th to see if Santa is going to give you something electronic under your tree via a $200 gift card to Best Buy if you manage to win this one!

Speaking of the Cynster saga (see the Upcoming Books and New Releases entry above), Goodreads is having a giveaway of one of the spin-off books from that Regency saga, Where the Heart Leads, the first in The Casebook of Barnaby Adair series. Currently the only entry in that series, Laurens recently announced she’ll be adding several books to it and I’m elated, as Barnaby, the aristocrat with a penchant for investigation via London’s burgeoning police force is a favorite of mine! This book is the one where he falls for the cerebral yet beautiful Lady Penelope Ashford, and it’s a doozy with some of my favorite characters making appearances. Enter before December 20th for your chance to win!

New York Times Best-Selling author Donna Grant is having a Twelve Days of Christmas giveaway on her Facebook page where she is posting lovely daily prizes for commenters (like $50 bookseller gift cards!), so head over there and start contributing! I imagine they’ll just keep getting better and better the closer to Christmas we get. 🙂

It’s tough not to giggle at some of Harlequin’s titles and the Intrigue novels are usually the most chuckle-worthy. That does not stop this imprint from periodically hitting a home run, and I have to confess to putting Secret Agent Secretary , the second book in Melissa Cutler‘s ICE: Black Ops Defenders series, on my to-read list. When a desk jockey is catapulted into the arms of a handsome agent, they need to work together to foil a nefarious plan. Luckily for all of us, it’s also being offered in a Goodreads giveaway for people who enter prior to the end of December.

The erotic romance author group collectively known as the Smutketeers (R. G. Alexander, Eden Bradley, Rachel Grace, Eve Berlin and Robin L. Rotham) on their blog of the same name have begun their Twelve Days of Christmas giveaway with not only daily prizes and fabulous highlights of recent books you’ll want under your tree, but a cumulative prize of a $300 gift card for a dedicated reader who posts a comment on each day of the celebration. That’s a lot of books….

Fun Stuff

‘Tis the season for finding gifts for all the readers in your family, and game enthusiasts might want to take a gander at all the book-related board games out there geared toward readers. Flavorwire has a terrific list of 10 board games for book nerds (why are we always nerds?) including ones based on Pride & Prejudice and Beowulf, or you can get a classic like Bookopoly, geared toward middle school kids but great for readers of all ages.

I usually don’t post stuff about YA romance (probably because I think about it all the time in my day job as a young adult librarian) but I had to share the wonderful post by author Diana Peterfreund on the RITA awards and their perhaps misguided treatment of YA romance. Peterfreund has numerous successful books under the belt, many of which should be award-winners in multiple categories, but this thoughtful analysis of the Romance Writers’ Association and YA is worth a read and re-read.

Great Deals

The full-length erotic novel (gracious, that sounds dirty!) Sexual Persuasion by Maryn Sinclair is currently free on Amazon. When a woman is rescued from an uncomfortable encounter with an ex, she can’t deny the heat between her handsome rescuer and herself. But when that gorgeous man is revealed to be an attorney with one client (the local mob head), and she hears the rumors that this same man who is clearly interested in getting her in bed also was the lover of his male mob boss, she’s confused. Will his past come between them or can she be persuaded?

Erotic historical author Kate Pearce currently has the prequel to her Sinners Club series also available for free, The First Sinners. The series features men who belong to a private gentlemen’s club filled with men who have either sketchy pasts or specific predilictions – and the need to keep both quiet. In this novella, an Earl investigating possible treason deploys all his wiles at a house party in the hope of uncovering valuable evidence. What he is surprised to uncover is one innocent young miss determined to find a man who can teach her carnal pleasure (and his lordship knows exactly who can fulfill that role).

Following in today’s erotic historical romance bargains trend is Samantha Kane‘s Regency menage novel, The Courage to Love, the first of her Brothers in Arms series which is also available for free on Amazon as of right now. A dress shop owner is still recovering from a vicious rape but feels safe when surrounded by two men who served with her late husband on the Peninsula – two men she’s been in love with for quite some time. Shocked they feel the same toward her (and have a relationship with one another), her past nevertheless intrudes on them moving forward.

The holidays always come with bargains if you know where to look, and the A Naughty Little Christmas (Cowboys, Cops and Kilts) Bundle, featuring a smorgasbord of authors across genres (cowboy, romantic suspense, small town contemporary, paranormal, Highlander, etc.) is the ultimate bargain at $.99 for eight novellas. With authors like Paige Tyler, Ann Bruce and Dawn Halliday in this grouping, I’ve already got it sitting in my Kindle app to warm my holiday nights!

If you haven’t had a chance to run and buy The Theory of Attraction by erotic romance author Delphine Dryden, go run to Amazon and grab it while it’s free. With a slightly autistic scientist who happens to be a serious Dom (and definitely high on the hottie) scale and the next door neighbor who decides to help him get a promotion by being his girlfriend who can read departmental situations, this sexy nerd romance is simultaneously erotic and sweet. It would be worth paying full price for, but free? You don’t need a genius IQ to figure out that’s a bargain.

A Good BDSM Introduction: The Theory of Attraction by Delphine Dryden

9 Jul

I’m going to be honest here. BDSM isn’t my thing, but I always enjoy well-written erotica, since the point of erotica is writing sexually explicit material that advances the plot, usually one of self-discovery and/or a relationship between two people.

I was elated, therefore, to find upon reading a NetGalley copy of Delphine Dryden‘s new enovella, The Theory of Attraction, that she has touched on all points. This is a sexy, lengthy novella about one woman’s discovery of a type of relationship she had no knowledge of, complete with explicit, caring scenes that advance the relationship between the hero and heroine.

This story is told solely from Camille’s perspective and while anyone who reads this blog knows that I am far from being a fan of the first person, in this case it works. Camille is on a journey of self-discovery since she has no idea that she’s a submissive and through the sex scenes we see with our hero, Ivan, that he grows both in confidence and in his feelings for Camille. The point of view is pitch perfect in this case.

Camille has been a neighbor and friend to Ivan for a couple of years now, but only recently has she noticed that the brusque astrophysicist is actually, well, kind of luscious, particularly when he goes running shirtless in the Texas heat wave they are experiencing. A stickler for a timetable, she sets her clock by Ivan’s routine, but she’s finding their mutual geek friends more and more annoying – she wants to spend time with him one-on-one.

Not that she thinks Ivan notices. Cami doesn’t believe Ivan sees her as a woman, but she’s wrong. Ivan probably would fall on the autism spectrum with his perpetual struggle to read human behavior (shades of The Madness of Lord Ian MacKenzie here). It isn’t that he can’t do it if he sets his mind to it, its that he doesn’t see the point. Knowing that in order to get ahead at the university he needs to demonstrate an ability to mingle and schmooze fundraising opportunities, he asks Cami to give him lessons in how to be social.

As Cami spends time with Ivan she suspects he not only knows that she’s dressing differently to entice him but that he’s actually flirting with her a little. Her suspicions are confirmed when she takes him for a trial run with friends to a movie. He hints that he knows what she’s doing but she doesn’t understand what she might be in for. Confronting him about it has him boldly spell it out for her. Unlike the lack of experience she has assumed he has, he actually is very experienced, but like everything in his life, Ivan has to be in control. Ivan is a dominant.

Cami only has the barest understanding of what this means and the more he explains to her, the more she wants to try it, for a specific reason.

I wanted to see him feeling things. I wanted to see him have feelings so strong he couldn’t hide from them. Couldn’t control his reactions. I wanted to make Ivan Reynolds completely lose his shit. Barring that, I would settle for Ivan making me completely lose my shit, which seemed a lot more likely.

And they both do exactly that. Ivan trains Cami to be the perfect submissive, introducing her to all sorts of toys and restrains, floggings, etc. But rather than be frightened at any of it (he naturally teaches her how to use a safeword before starting their relationship), she is incredibly turned on by his knowledge and his arousal at being in control.

He called it taking, but I felt as though he were giving me these things, these actions, like pieces of himself. Challenging me to receive these odd gifts, because they were all he had to give. His attention, his regard. His respect, which was the strangest thing of all, because I had expected to feel degraded at some point in all this and instead I felt valued beyond measure. Cherished. Strong.

The Lamplighter’s Love by Delphine Dryden (Ellora’s Cave, September 9, 2011)

I could care less about all the BDSM play but Dryden’s uncanny ability to beautifully show the evolution of emotion through sex is fantastic. It’s this ability to tap into emotion that makes this book such an excellent introduction to BDSM stories for someone unfamiliar with the dynamics. A novice reader can learn along with Cami while also understanding the reciprocity of shared emotion that ideally accompanies this relationship. I’m not totally surprised at Dryden’s mastry. I read her Steampunk enovella, The Lamplighter’s Love and was impressed by the world she created but most of all the dynamic of master and teacher portrayed in that work. It seems to be a specialty of hers!

Delphine Dryden also has a terrific website which an example of what a great author website should be – obvious social networking links, a stunningly beautiful design, her books clearly highlighted and easy to find. It’s not a shock then to read in the author credits on the novella that she designs websites in her spare time. I was also pleased to see such a gorgeous cover for the book (I’m so tired of mediocre erotica covers), but then, that’s Carina Press for you. Their covers are always terrific.

So if a friend says they don’t understand the whole BDSM thing or isn’t willing to fork over full price for Fifty Shades of Grey without knowing more, have them try this great value for the money enovella first to see if they like it. At under $4, it’s a bargain for someone wanting to see if this type of romance is for them.

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