I don't want to be lectured on lifestyle choices. I don't want to read a manifesto of why kink is OKAY. And that's what I usually feel like I'm getting in an erotic novel. It's all 'he broke out a cat o'nine tails and lashed her until she bled. It's okay though because she willingly submitted, and actually she's very turned on by the sight of her own blood.' Gag me!
Not so with Traditional Love. There's actually a story involved in the midst of the erotic themes! Yay! I won't give away what it's about, because you know, it's something my temperamental self would never be down with in the real world, but that's not really important, because this is fiction, and we all like the escapism.
What is important is, despite my not being personally on board with the presented theme, I wasn't wrinkling my nose at what was going on in the book. It's not presented as a lecture on alternative lifestyles. Alta takes the time to explain the premise of this particular lifestyle choice, without nagging the faint of heart to suck it up and accept it. The story is believable, and the characters are fleshed out. Usually when I've read erotica in the past, I'm frustrated because it feels like the author is trying to get right to the smut and not painting a picture of who the participants are and why they're choosing this path.
I like Neely. I really like Caine. I like the cast of characters Alta has assembled here. I'm up at 2 in the morning, yawning and bleary-eyed because I had to finish this story. Did I mention I like Caine? Hot damn. I like Caine. The dirty is hawt. I'm invested in the couple, and I was sad to see the story end. *sigh* The ultimate pitfall of being a fast reader. So hard to slow down and savor.
Bottom line, this is a spicy, engaging work of erotica, written by an author who remembered that we need to root for our dirty duo. Probably shouldn't use the word 'root'. That's dirty in Australia. Now, after you google 'root', go order up a copy of Traditional Love because it is a very worthwhile read.
Traditional Love is available for download at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, All Romance, and Omnilit.
To learn more about Alta Hensley, please visit her blog at http://altahensley.blogspot.com/