Book 1, Undone
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I vow. I crave. I give in.
I used to be a nice, normal girl. I had dreams. Good, happy dreams of a white picket fence, 2.5 kids, and a fairytale love that lasts forever. Nobody ever warned me that sometimes, the prince dies three weeks before the wedding.
Like any addict, I swear this time is the last….
Now, I go through my days, a shadow of my former self. I pretend I’m okay, and the people in my life pretend to believe me. But, sometimes, when I can no longer stand the craving, I roam an underground sex club looking for my next hit. It’s dirty and wrong, but I can’t stop, and my only line of defense between them and me, are the rules I’ve designed to keep me safe. Men always abide by my rules. Until I meet him.
And, like any addict, I’m wrong.
I don’t question the instincts that tell me to run. One look at him, standing there, power radiating off him in waves, tells me all I need to know. He will make me crave those happy dreams I’ve left behind. And that is not an option.
**SPECIAL PREORDER PRICING**
Dawson plays the emotional scale with aplomb
The first I have read by Jennifer Dawson and I’m seriously wondering just how I missed her! Her writing is tight and polished: each word leads you neatly to the next without stutter or babble, and the characters are alive on the page, sharing their own issues, worries and dreams.
Layla is a businesswoman whose life was rocked by tragedy. In her moments of ‘what if’ she bemoans all she has lost, and as we all do, wants to feel that way again: connected, wanted, safe and protected. Her journey to find a new footing in the life she has now, and to somehow deal with her own guilt over John’s death. Grasping at straws, she has returned to what was familiar in her life with him, the sex themed club they frequented. Several random encounters with men, Layla is in control, keeping her lines drawn and walls up. Until Michael.
Michael is so much more than the ‘typical’ dom: while he sees the desire and need for the control that comes with submission in Layla, he’s not going to push her into the ‘call me Master’ role as is so common in many romances that play with BDSM of late. Instead, there is a true interest in Layla as a person: he wants to share her burdens, lighten her heart and help her to find her footing in the world again.
A slow-growing D/s relationship story, the build and development is realistic and carefully plotted: you can see the development of the trust, confidence and caring that must be present in these relationships, and the realization that their connection will be so much more than scratching an itch. The continual tension of the lust, desire and hope for ‘something more’ between Michael and Layla is a delicious appetizer: while not laden with pure sex or heat, the moments that do exist impact all the more for the emotional connection between them and the reader’s empathy with the characters.
Secondary characters make appearances that tweak interest for more, but the true focus is on the relationship that unfolds before our eyes, feeling real and wholly emotional, daring us to invest in this story and series. Dawson plays the emotional scale with aplomb, bringing the characters’ humanity to light, allowing readers to experience the story as if present in real time.
I received an eArc copy of the title from the author’s PA for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.