WARNING: This post and the links from it contain adult content. If you are under 18 years of age or if such content offends you, please EXIT now.
I won this book in a giveaway at TBQ's Book Palace and let me say, I wasn't sure I'd like it. This book is erotica, and I don't generally read erotica much except for a few authors. This book had be wondering why I don't read erotica and it was definitely an eye-opener!
The Siren by Tiffany Reisz
This is a BDSM erotica and is book 1 of 4.Notorious Nora Sutherlin is famous for her delicious works of erotica, each one more popular with readers than the last. But her latest manuscript is different—more serious, more personal—and she's sure it'll be her breakout book…if it ever sees the light of day.Zachary Easton holds Nora's fate in his well-manicured hands. The demanding British editor agrees to handle the book on one condition: he wants complete control. Nora must rewrite the entire novel to his exacting standards—in six weeks—or it's no deal.Nora's grueling writing sessions with Zach are draining…and shockingly arousing. And a dangerous former lover has her wondering which is more torturous—staying away from him…or returning to his bed?Nora thought she knew everything about being pushed to your limits. But in a world where passion is pain, nothing is ever that simple.
Age: 18 years and up
Review: 5 stars
This book. Where to start?
First, let's talk about Nora. Nora is... [almost] everything I want to be. She's strong, confident, and she doesn't take crap from people. She doesn't really care what people think of her unless they're important to her, and she has a huge heart. She also is very conflicted. The man she truly and deeply loves is someone she can't go back to, and another man she loves is married, and another man she loves is off-limits... Oy vey, I feel bad for poor Nora. Except she still manages to enjoy life and love. She's a Dominatrix at The 8th Circle and is what is called a "Switch," which means she can play both Domme and sub. Because of this, I glimpsed many sides to her, and that made me like her even more. No one likes a perfect character—and Nora is definitely not a perfect person. I could sympathize with Nora most of the time and that's what really made me like her.
Wesley lives with Nora and is a virgin. Now, this is a strange concept because Nora is an erotica writer and Domme extraordinaire—and yet the man she's living with is a 19-year-old virgin. Nora wants him, but he's off-limits because he is vanilla and she is...well, not.
Zach is Nora's very reluctant (at first) editor, and he becomes her lover for a short period of time. The fact that he's married and his wife kicked him out is what makes this so complex. Zach moved from England to the U.S. because he and his wife were drifting and she didn't stop him from moving—though he wanted her to.
And then there's Søren. He's the most complex character here (to me anyway). He's a Catholic priest who is a Dominant and Nora's ex-Dom. She's the only one that Søren's ever had sex with while being a priest and he is very into his faith. Now, this I had some troubles with because Søren is a priest. And by having sex, he is violating his vows. I had to come to terms with this before I could continue with the book. Knowing that Søren wanted to give up the priesthood for Nora did help make it better, but in the end I had to realize that there are actually people out there like him. What also helped was the explanations in the book and realizing that this is how he is. After all, he is choosing to follow his nature in a healthy way. He is doing it with people who are consensual and want this. He isn't raping anyone or beating unwilling people. He follows the code: Hurt, but do not harm. You can hurt physically, but not harm a person emotionally or internally. And there are always safe words. So what he's doing is immoral, because of his priesthood, but a better choice than most.
This book opened my eyes—big time. I come from a very strict and religious family and this book had me questioning myself, my values, and my faith. But in the end, I came to a realization: this is not wrong. BDSM is not wrong. It's just a lifestyle. Once I realized this, my whole point of view on the world tipped.
A book that can make you think and make you less ignorant is always a good book, in my opinion. This is that book for me.
This book is hardcore and very dark in some places, so it's definitely not for some people. I recommend this for people who are curious about the BDSM lifestyle and know a little about it or love this type of books. As a point of reference, I'll say this: If you've read Fifty Shades of Grey, this is much better. And darker.
Read Talk Supe's review as well as Book Savvy Babe's review, they're both good!