THE FLIRTATION (The Submissive #10) by Tara Sue Me- Review, Guest Post & Giveaway
The Submissive #10
by Tara Sue Me
Release Date: August 8, 2017
Genre: adult, contemporary, erotic, BDSM, romance
ABOUT THE BOOK: Release Date August 8, 2017
Lynne has not wanted for anything since she began working as Nathaniel and Abby’s nanny–until the night they invite her to a group BDSM meeting. The abrupt breakup she had with her last Dom made her turn her back on the lifestyle, but now she’s ready to dive back in. When she starts chatting on online BDSM message boards, she’s shocked to discover Simon, her former Dom, is a frequent poster–and even more shocked at herself when she creates a secret identity and strikes up a conversation.
After messaging with a mysterious submissive online, Simon forms an immediate connection. Lynne and Simon’s D/s relationship grows in intensity, but can their relationship survive after the truth is exposed, and Lynne’s identity is laid bare?
REVIEW: THE FLIRTATION is the tenth installment in Tara Sue Me’s contemporary, adult THE SUBMISSIVE erotic, BDSM romance series. This is Dominant and sadist Simon Neal, and masochist, nanny and college student Lynne Ryder’s story line. THE FLIRTATION can be read as a stand alone without any difficulty. Any important information from the previous story lines is revealed where necessary. Several characters from previous installments, including Nathaniel and Abby West, cross over for cohesion and familiarity.
NOTE: If you have issues with S & M (Sadism and Masochism) including whipping, flogging, spanking and punishment, this story line may not be for you.
Told from dual third person points of view (Simon and Lynne) THE FLIRTATION is a second chance romance story line that focuses on the rekindling relationship between Dominant and sadist Simon Neal, and the woman he claims as his own-masochist, and nanny Lynne Ryder. Months earlier Lynne Ryder was the submissive to Simon Neal but when Simon abruptly cut off their relationship Lynne found her life spiraling out of control including the loss of her job, a broken heart, and leaving the lifestyle she was growing to love. Working for Nathaniel and Abby West as their live-in nanny Lynne took stock of her life and with the decision to return to school to become a primary school teacher, our heroine found herself living in the West’s Manhattan penthouse, preparing for a future at Columbia University. But curiosity got the best of Lynne Ryder, as she began an internet search of the man who broke her heart-Simon Neal-masochist and Manhattan Dominant-and the man with whom Lynne had fallen in love. What ensues is an online relationship of lies between Lynne and Simon-a relationship that will fall apart when Simon discovers the truth about the woman he believes is someone else.
THE FLIRTATION is a story of second chances but Simon and Lynne will fall victim to an act of vengeance, jealousy and betrayal. Not only will Simon and Lynne be targeted but so will Simon’s New York BDSM club-a club that prides itself in privacy and anonymity. With so many unresolved issues between them Lynne’s lies add fire to an already volatile situation.
The relationship between Simon and Lynne is one of second chances but Lynne’s lies and online fake persona push Simon when the truth is revealed. The numerous $ex scenes are intimate; the S & M scenes are erotic and intense but may not be suitable for all readers.
There are a large number of secondary and supporting characters including Nathaniel and Abby (The Submissive Series), Dominants Cole Johnson and Luke DeVaan, as well as submissive Anna Beth.
THE FLIRTATION is a sexually graphic story line. The premise is interesting but the secondary conflict, the threats against our story line couple, seemed unnecessary and overdone. In my opinion it was a futile attempt to bring suspense into an otherwise predictable story line. The characters are colorful and energetic; the romance is erotic and intense. I received an ARC copy for review and the story line ended at 70%. The remaining 30% was a bonus novella-THE CLAIMING-originally released in September 2016.
Copy supplied by the publisher through Netgalley
Reviewed by Sandy
When I finished writing THE TRAINING, I had no plans to write anything else with Nathaniel and Abby. Their story had been told. After all, not only did I leave them happily engaged, but the Epilogue gave a sneak peek into their life after children.
But as soon as THE TRAINING was published,I started to hear from readers about how they wanted to see the wedding and the honeymoon. There wasn’t enough story to write an entire novel, so I decided to do a novella, THE CHALET.
And I still got requests for more.
So I thought about it and realized if I continued AND expanded, I not only got the opportunity to explore the relationships of different couples, but also to get glimpses of Nathaniel and Abby. In writing what would become THE ENTICEMENT, I realized that Nathaniel and Abby still had a lot of story left in their journey. After all, life doesn’t end with the Happily-Ever-After. That’s when it begins.
Because, you see, the wedding is never the end of the story, but the gateway into an entirely different one. There is so much that happens AFTER the couple gets together, AFTER the honeymoon, and yes, AFTER the kids are born. And it’s raw and real. It’s sexy and intimate. And it’s terrible and beautiful and so much more intense because OMG, you’re in this deal FOR LIFE.
The risk, of course, is throwing drama into the story for the sake of drama and I’ve never been a fan of that. There needs to be drama, but it has to develop naturally from the character’s growth and (big one here) it has to make sense. Any reader who has been with me since THE SUBMISSIVE will know immediately if I have Nathaniel or Abby act out of character and the story won’t be believable to them.
And that, that heartache and happiness, that joyous triumph, that emotional and physical connection with your soulmate is something worth writing about.
Just like everything else in life, writing a set of characters through several books is a balancing act. Treat it delicately and the story will flow. Throw everything but the kitchen sink at it and you’ll only have a hot mess.
I’m not a plotter and that works well for my writing style. I love not knowing what’s going to happen next in a book. I think I’m able to enjoy it because in romance you’re guaranteed a happily-ever-after. That gives me a certain level of comfort and I hope it does the same for my readers. They can go along with me because they know no matter what I put the the main character through, everything’s going to turn out okay.
The thing I have to remember as an author, though, is I can throw the twists in, but they 1) have to make sense and 2) there needs to be trail of breadcrumbs. I don’t think the reader has to see the breadcrumbs on the first read, but they have to be there. When they go back and reread the second time, that’s when they think, “Ohhh, now I see.”
The other thing that is imperative listening and trusting your author voice, which is more than your story voice, but also the one in your head that talks to you while you write.
If you’re a writer, you know all about That Scene. It’s the one where you stare at your laptop for hours at end. The one you try every trick you know and still only net 500 words, if that many. For me, it’s been up to two weeks of author hell, knowing something was wrong, that ended with me deciding I didn’t care what words I put on paper, I just wanted words.
And when I went back over them, that’s all they were, words. But the scene was finished so I wrapped up the chapter, sent it to my crit partner, and wiped my hands of it. Now as a writer, you need a crit partner who will be brutally honest with you. And that’s what mine was. She confirmed what I knew: the scene was merely there. There was no emotion, no intensity, nothing.
I took a deep breath and went back to the scene, determined to make it work. The first thing I did was start over completely. I didn’t want to use any of the previous words. I wanted a clean start. And so, even though part of me feared I was going to spend another two weeks struggling, I went to work.
I decided to change POV from the hero to the heroine. Just to see how it went. Maybe she’d be chattier while I was writing. I started typing and hours later the scene was finished. What had taken two weeks in the wrong POV was completed in hours in the right one.
Lastly, you can’t talk about writing romance and not talk about sex (well, you can, but you shouldn’t.) Let’s face it, we all know how sex works. And yes, writing it well is a must for erotic romance. However, you could craft the most perfect, mind-blowing, finely crafted sex scene, but if I’m not emotionally engaged with the couple, it’s going to fall flat.
If you were to ask me what makes one erotic romance better than another, it wouldn’t be how well the sex is written, the number of sex scenes, or even how creative the couple was during sex. What makes an erotic romance stand out for me is everything surrounding the sex. That’s what connects me with the characters.
It’s that connection with the characters that makes the physical scenes so intensely satisfying. It’s much easier to write insert part A into part B, but when you do that, it becomes exactly what it sounds like – cardboard. And cardboard may have its place, but erotic romance isn’t one of them.
Good erotic romance, the really good erotic romance, has the power to transcend itself beyond the sex into a work of fiction that literally makes your heart race and your knees turn to jelly.
And isn’t that why we all read romance?
~~Tara Sue Me~~
Tara Sue Me is the New York Times bestselling author of the Submissive series, including The Enticement, The Training, The Dominant, and The Submissive. She lives in the southeastern United States with her family, two dogs, and a cat.
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