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Freed (Club Sin, #4) by Stacey Kennedy

Freed (Club Sin, #4)

by Stacey Kennedy

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Not my first foray into romance or erotica but this is my first full reading of a genre book about BDSM. I tried reading [b:50 Shades of Gray|24969891|50 Shades of Gray|Paul McMullan|https://d2arxad8u2l0g7.cloudfront.net/books/1431928191s/24969891.jpg|44634738] but urgh, it was so terribly written I just couldn’t slough past the first chapter.

I can’t honestly say Freed was much better. The writing was basic…good enough not to be distracting yet lacking in a voice that was compelling. Not that I expected much of the voice in this category, so that point ends up with an average rating.

The characterization was pretty basic as well. Also as expected, so also average on that rating point. However, the narrative that dealt with the characterization was so terribly repetitive I skimmed much of it.

Now, in romance, the formula is that whenever the characters are apart, they pine for each other. Fair enough. But the pining of these two could be categorize as:

Guy: Desperately wants this woman who is clearly the woman of his dreams (oh, and every time he thinks of her, “his cock twitched in his pants.” Well, I was glad to hear he wasn’t going around dangling free all the time, so was grateful to learn that it was always in his pants. Always. Every time. Repetitive, see? And that’s only one example).

Gal: Still grieving for her dead husband but doesn’t know it. These bits at least have some flashbacks (very poorly handled by italicizing…italicizing!!! Like readers won’t otherwise know it’s a flashback!!!) so at least it provides new info. But the rest is summed up as: she wants something but are her feelings betraying her dead husband? Why oh why does she feel so torn?

And, since this is a steamy (erotic) romance revolving around BDSM, I am obliged to provide an analysis of the sex scenes. Pretty good, actually. Nicely drawn, lots of details without getting cheesy with the euphemisms.

So, the rating. For general reading, it would have to be 2 stars. But when you pick up this kind of book, you’re not looking for general reading, you’re looking for hot spicy sexiness. And maybe some true love on the side. So the rating in this category for this book would be:

4 stars

If you like BDSM romance with a compelling plot, check out [b:Beloved: A Sensual Noir Thriller|31159964|Beloved A Sensual Noir Thriller|Laine Cunningham|https://d2arxad8u2l0g7.cloudfront.net/books/1469650329s/31159964.jpg|23316671]. ( )
  Laine-Cunningham | Oct 4, 2016 |
Freed (Club Sin #4) by Stacey Kennedy, is the 4th book in the Club Sin series that I've read, it’s a touching story of emotionally letting go of the love of your live and moving on, allowing new love to stand next to a lost love.

Mary is an older women whom we've meet in earlier books, she’s a good friend of Dmitri, and assists with the new member physicals. Since the death of her husband Charles, she has been removed from the lifestyle, filling the void in her life with work, and assistance to friends and family, always putting others ahead of any needs or dreams she may have.

Mary meets Elliot, a business associate of Dmitri’s, by chance when she shows up for dinner one evening at Dmitri’s & Presley’s. The chemistry and connection between the two is instantly combustible, causing Mary to have thoughts she hasn't had in years. Elliot, an older divorced gentleman, see’s Mary as the perfect submissive, a person he wants to get to know better, and play with.

I found Mary’s character a bit hard to like, I’m sure the emotional baggage, and lost love for her husband Charles, was very real, and nothing too unusual. But I was annoyed (as was Elliot later in the story), that Mary’s head was always in the past, when she was with Elliot, not necessarily comparing the two men, but remembering events with Charles, and funneling the emotions into her time with Elliot. I found the authors jumping from past to now, or now to past distracting as the story progressed. Mary was very hard on herself, and felt that any enjoyment she might have with Elliot was diminishing the memory of Charles.

I liked Elliot, he was patient, dominant, spoke his mind, and didn't hide the fact that he wanted Mary. As the story progresses, Elliot figures out Mary is reliving the past through their encounters, and though a suggestion points Mary towards help.

This book is about Elliot and Mary, with very few cameos (except Dmitri) from any of the past Club Sin members, a few references to Mary’s children, and Elliot’s sister and ex-wife work themselves into the story, but in a very superficial fashion. There are a few short sex scenes, most not really detailed, but they convey the characters feelings and emotions, and are supportive to the story line, building on the growing connection between Elliot and Mary

I found this book to be short ( I haven’t been able to find an actual page count), it just seemed like it was over before it should have been. I only got the rushed feeling of the story in the last 15% of the story, Mary’s daughter tells her it's ok to move forward with her life, and then in a widow’s support group Mary see’s the truth, and heads back to Elliot, with all of her guilt, and living in the past neatly put where it belongs.

I think that Elliot and Mary deserved a longer more detailed story; there were so many places in the story that could have been expanded. I think as characters they had so much more to show. Maybe the author felt no one would want to read a longer story about an older couple, I don’t know. For me this is one of the weaker books in the series, because of the books length, lack of story development, the jumping between time periods, and the rapid attraction between the H/h that speedily moves to an HEA.

I was given this book via NetGalley on behalf of Random House Publishing Group - Loveswept, Loveswept, for an honest review. The expected publication date is Nov 4 2014

For me this was a 2.75 star read which I’ll round to 3 stars, just because Elliot had some very loving words about not wanting to "take" Charles's place in Mary's life

( )
  kerbytejas | Mar 25, 2016 |
Recieved ARC from Random House Publishing Group - Loveswept through NetGalley

I think everyone following this series was curious about Mary and her involvement with the BDSM lifestyle. It's great to know that Stacey Kennedy is in tune with her readers. A story filled with sorrow and sadness but redeeming itself with hope and the realization that you can get a second chance to love again. It's a great life lesson for all those who have lost someone they love dearly, that life goes on and there is no shame in it if you happen to find someone who you can love as much and maybe even more.
Though a short and quick read, this novel gave a deep insight into a truly committed D/s relationship.

And with the excerpt from Tamed as a bonus, you've got me waiting on the edge of my seat for that one to come out ( )
  Ash_P | Mar 8, 2016 |
I've read a number of 'erotica' books lately that have just fallen flat. 'Freed', is a wonderful example of what an erotic novel should be. Two mature adults (it was wonderful to see an erotic romance include the over 50's) who both come to this relationship with baggage. Elliott hurts so much for Mary and tries his best to help her move one without crowding her or making her forget her past. My only complaint, and it is a small one, is that I would have like more in depth scenes with their friends and families to get to know them better. I will definitely be looking for more by Stacey Kennedy.

*** I received a copy of this book from netgalley in exchange for an honest review. ( )
  jkgrage | Nov 23, 2014 |
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