Category Archives: Sex

Review- An Introduction To Pleasure by Jess Michaels

Title:  An Introduction To Pleasure

An Introduction to Pleasure

Genre:  Historical Erotic Romance

Author: Jess Michaels

Publisher: Samhain, 2012

Source: Kindle Purchase

Rating: 4

Sexy Rating: 5+

Description from

An innocent lady’s education could be a gentleman’s wicked seduction.

Mistress Matchmaker, Book 1

Lysandra Keates is running out of options. Her father is dead, her mother is ill, and her efforts to find respectable employment have ended in failure. With her small savings bleeding away, she swallows her pride—and her terror—and turns to Vivien Manning, an infamous courtesan, to match her with a wealthy protector.

For years, Viscount Andrew Callis has lived a monastic existence at his country estate, hardening his body against the snobbish, lazy young man he once was, hardening his heart against grief over the deaths of his wife and infant son. When Vivien asks him to spend one month training a young woman in the ways of a mistress, his mind resists…but his body responds with an ache he thought long dead.

As Andrew begins his gentle tutelage, he finds himself falling under the spell of Lysandra’s innocent charms. And as they give in to the powerful hunger, the last thing Andrew ever expected, or wanted, forms between them. An emotional connection that could carry them well past the training period—if only Andrew can open his heart to the possibility of love.

Warning: Includes training in all kinds of sexual positions and delights, as well as an emotional romance. May produce swooning.


I left that warning label on the description because it gave me a giggle and it turned out to be oh, so true.  My reviews will tell you the sexy/sensuality rating on the books I review but this one was off my chart.  It is an erotic romance so of course there will be an abundance of sex.  That there was an emotional component was truly welcome.  The writing was well done and the characters were well developed with a desperate heroine and a damaged hero.  I love a book where I learn something new or my previous knowledge is enhanced.  A-Hem….this book is a training manual just like the warning implies.  If you like a scorching read then this book is going to wrap you in a sexy hug.  Prepare for the best. There…you are forewarned.


Filed under Book review, Books, Erotic Romance, Historical Romance, Sex

Reblog-Writing Good Sex: Thinking About Steamy Sex Scenes From The Standpoint of a Reader and a Writer

Today I have a terrific post from Tori MacAllister.  Tori is an unpublished writer who will one day set the romance world on it’s ear.  You heard it here first. 

Thank you, Tori, for allowing me to reblog this fabulous post.

Check out Tori’s blog, you won’t be sorry. But first read her post here.


A writer who can pen hot, steamy, and emotional sex scenes – interactions that are a lot more than tab A going into slot B – always win my loyalty.

I know there are people who love sweet romance and don’t need to to see what happens in the bedroom, but for me, those bedroom scenes often say more about a relationship than the dialogue or character descriptions. Sex also strips people down (no pun intended) to their essential self with the result being that it’s often obvious that a couple is in love with one another before they get around to actually revealing that fact in words. As Stacia Kane puts it “… the fact is, the deepest truths of our characters can be found when they are naked, when they are at their most vulnerable both physically and emotionally, when they let their guards down and just interact.” (Kane, p. 125)

A sex scene – a good one – is the epitome of showing and not telling. “I’m so hot for you” is not as strong as “His hand trembled as he touched his thumb to the thudding pulse in her neck, a beat he had to taste under his tongue while he reminded himself, go slow, don’t rush this…” Just like any other writing skill, some writers are better at this than others and no matter how much of a natural you are, understanding the elements of a good sex scene that take it from “okay, they are having sex” to “my book just burst into flames and not from an ereader malfunction” is vital to success.

Why We Need Great Sex Scenes

Stacia Kane’s fantastic primer for writers is infinitely valuable to readers as well. We know that we love a certain author or a certain scene but can’t always put our finger on why. In her book, Be a Sex Writing Strumpet, Kane took a series of blog posts and organized them into densely packed book focused on understanding why sex scenes can be so vital to plot and character development, how to write them well, and exercises to help each writer understand his or her sex writing voice and comfort level. It’s pure gold for $2.99.

But your crotchety uncle and that nun who taught you in the second grade definitely don’t feel sex should be in books, which begs the question, do we really need sex scenes? Hell, yes! I think I’m going to let Stacia Kane answer:

If you can find another way to illuminate the most private acts of your characters, to demonstrate their connection, their trust, the depth of their feelings…, their desire for each other, the moment their relationship deepens and changes beyond anything they’ve been through before, while also strengthening the story, increasing tension, and adding complications, and also—let’s be honest here—giving the reader what they’ve been waiting for, and you can do all of that in one scene, then no, you don’t need the sex scene. (Kane, p. 6)

That’s a lot of points in favor of the sex scene. Note she didn’t say titillation? One of the major criticisms of romance novels (and clearly plenty of books outside the genre have sex scenes but they are expected in romance) has always been the “pornographic” nature of the sex. This criticism has always seemed like total bull to me; I’ve never seen a crime or horror writer criticized for too gory a murder. Instead the critic just grimly mentions the level of violence to the reader, as if it’s a point in their favor about their writing style and that they don’t shy away from reality. But romance writers – and let’s face it, it’s because they are usually women writing for mainly other women – get the “mommy porn” thing because god forbid we should show anyone what two people engaged in a mutually satisfying, sexually healthy relationship looks like. Those soccer moms might get ideas or *gasp* expectations.

Some key points Kane touches upon for writers (and which are visible to readers) are vital for emotionally tying us to the characters. Her warning to make everyone wait (for example, the suggestion to write an amazing kissing scene that’s clearly headed you-know-where and interrupt it) builds anticipation. For writers blocked about writing sex scenes, she has the brilliant idea of writing a dialogue between your characters where they talk about their feelings – and then you turn it into a sex scene where they are showing all those emotions through their actions.

Because that’s the point, isn’t it? That our characters show their true selves via their actions (and okay, sometimes their words, when they are actually coherent having sex) and that everything – from first glance to foreplay to actual sex to the aftermath – is built around revealing their soul and their emotion for one another. Let’s take a look at my top love scenes that fit this bill.

Memorable Sex Scenes: The Mrrrrooowwww Worth Reading and Re-reading

If you’re a romance reader, there are memorable sex scenes that are so hot you can’t help but think of them as I’m writing about this topic. Naturally, the writers showcased are women who also happen to be incredibly talented at strong characterization and airtight plotting, but since I’ve seen those qualities in other writers who are terrible at writing sex scenes, I consider these ladies to be the total package. Here are my favorites and why, in no particular order.

Author: Jeaniene Frostone-foot-in-the-grave-lg
Book: This Side of the Grave (Night Huntress series #5)
Genre: Paranormal/Urban Fantasy
Couple: Cat & Bones
Why: I adore this series (Jeaniene Frost seems incapable of writing anything that’s not absolutely stellar) and I’m sure people familiar with it are surprised that I didn’t list the famous/infamous chapter from the second book in the series, One Foot in the Grave. I absolutely agree that half-vampire Cat Crawfield and her vampire lover/husband/former professional whore Bones is an unbearably hot combination, but that truly astonishing sex scene is brought about the presence of Bones’ former lover Annette and his need to prove to her that she’s truly the love of his heart after she lays down a challenge to him to make her blush the next morning (and she does).

this side of the GraveBut the sex scene in This Side of the Grave is one between two people who have weathered ups and downs in their relationship and are secure as a result, and it gets listed here because of one very specific reason. It’s not just the unbelieveably inventive combination of candle wax and fangs, but the fact that Cat consciously lets down her final barrier in her relationship with Bones – the fear of how devastated he would be if she lost him. That realization makes this sex scene one in which she demonstrates how she’s decided to hold nothing back by consciously constructing a night of total pleasure for him. It’s so hot and moving that I find myself alternately fanning my face and choking up whenever I reread it.

Author: Stephanie LaurensARoguesProposal
Book: A Rogue’s Proposal (Cynster series #4)
Genre: Historical Romance
Couple: Demon & Flick
Why: I am the first to admit that Stephanie Laurens drives me insane with her tendency for purple prose. But the earlier Cynster books, while peppered with the occasional “flotsam” reference (ocean debris = not sexy, Stephanie!), possess fewer of these references with the sex scenes  stronger as a result, none more so than Flick’s deflowering scene. It happens on a dresser in an inn. Harry, aka Demon, is the most sensual beast of all the Cynsters and – as frustrating as his inability to express his love for her is – the one place he can show her how he feels is when they are intimate with each other. It’s not surprising she feels smug looking at his ass in the mirror as he makes love to her. Who wouldn’t?

Author: Lisa KleypasThe devil in Winter
Book: Devil in Winter (Wallflowers series #3)
Genre: Historical Romance
Couple: Sebastian & Evie
Why: Another deflowering scene that’s a favorite and honestly one that probably didn’t stop the clock in terms of how long it took. Sexy Viscount Sebastian needs a fortune and heiress Evie is happy to give him hers in trade for letting her escape her abusive relatives but they both agree the marriage has to be legal. Not a problem for Sebastian who’s seemingly bedded all of London’s females over age 17. Exhausted from their trek to Gretna Green and quickie marriage, Evie awakes from a very sexy dream to Sebastian kissing his way all over her naked body. What makes this so unbelievably sexy? The fact that he talks to her – playful, sexy, Sebastian talk that is the essence of his charming, roguish self – until you’re a puddle listening to him bring her to ecstasy  That he has an orgasm so mind-blowing and long that he feels that he might have been the virgin? Icing on the cake.

Author: Jennifer AshleyThe Madness of Lord Ian MacKensie
Book: The Madness of Lord Ian Mackenzie (Highland Pleasures #1)
Genre: Historical Romance
Couple: Ian & Beth
Why: If you have to ask, you haven’t read this book yet! Lord Ian Mackenzie is one of the more memorable and unique heroes I’ve ever read. Landing on the autism spectrum in the 19th century meant you were thought mad no matter how brilliant you are, and it’s not like the era was renowned for the tender care of people with psychological differences. When Lord Ian meets the young and beautiful widow Beth, brought up in poverty and the recent heir to a fortune, he immediately wants her while his honest candor and devastating sexuality proves more than she can resist. While I like all their sex scenes, the one that stands out is the one where Beth visits him at his brother’s art studio in Paris to apologize for being nosy (she really didn’t need to). Ian worried he would never see her again and talks her into baring herself to him. Feeling her freedom, she takes off her clothes and dances a little around the studio in happiness with a sheer scarf, which Ian uses to reel her in and proceeds to bring her to orgasm, while never removing a stitch of his clothing. That in itself is damn erotic, but it’s his utter focus on her pleasure, the sensual enjoyment he takes of every little detail of helping her reach ecstasy, that makes this scene one of my favorites.

Author: Laura Kayehearts in darkness
Book: Hearts in Darkness
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Couple: Makenna & Caden
Why: Laura Kaye can throw down the hot emotional sex scenes with veterans in the business and always land at the top of the pack. In this book, our two protagonists are trapped in an elevator together, in the dark, and they didn’t get a good look at each other when they got in. Getting to know one another when it’s hot and stuffy in an enclosed space doesn’t sound awesome, but it is when the two people in question have a lot to reveal and the dark makes for perfect cover. That they get hot and heavy in the elevator (and then take it to her apartment) has been done before, but not like this. The unbridled sensuality and emotion inherent in Makenna, in the pitch black, feeling the piercings and scars on Caden face and connecting them with what he’s revealed to her makes your heart beat faster.

Author: Shelly LaurenstonThe Mane Event
Book: The Mane Event (Pride #1)
Genre: Contemporary Paranormal Romance
Couple: Dez & Mace
Why: I adore Laurenston’s ability to bring her brand of earthy humor to this incredibly sexy paranormal series. Mace Llewellyn has left his elite military unit (one made up of shifters like himself) and has gone into the security business with his best friend. They’ve based themselves in New York, not just because Mace’s pride is located there, but because this lion has been head over heels in love with the husky-voiced, half-Irish, half-Puerto Rican (extremely busty) Desiree MacDermott since they began high school. He knows that she’s the one for him, and class issues and the pesky fact that he’s a shifter (and she has no idea about their existence) isn’t going to get in the way. This book makes the short list based on one particularly AMAZING scene – and let me tell you, there are plenty of sexy love scenes in this series! – where Dez handcuffs Mace to her bed and has her wicked way with him. The neighbors calling the police is a given since lions are extremely noisy while being tortured with sexual ecstasy. It’s off the hotness meter not just because of what Dez feels comfortable doing with herself in front of Mace but because he wants to prove himself to her so much that he lets her take control.

Author: Kele MoonDefying-the-Odds_coverin
Book: Defying the Odds (Battered Hearts #1)
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Couple: Melody & Clay
Why: If you haven’t jumped on the Kele Moon bandwagon, I honestly don’t know what you are waiting for. This astonishingly good writer won my heart with her unlikely tale of a working class victim of domestic abuse slaving long hours as a diner waitress who finds love with a UFC fighter. I knew absolutely nothing about this kind of fighting but Kele Moon’s plotting and characterization moved her into my “must-buy the pre-order” category and she’s never let me down. Clay Powers is a disciplined athlete with a tough beginning but good friends and the way he sees through Melody Dylan’s stress and exhaustion to the beautiful woman underneath will have you sniffling. That Melody discovers she is a highly sensual being at Clay’s hands is wonderful, and the make-up sex which occurs when she travels to Las Vegas to cheer on Clay in his big bout will have you never looking at a picture window over Sin City the same way again. Yowza.

The Future of Sex Scenes in Romance

While many people are crediting the Fifty Shades phenomena or the decline of civilization, the fact remains that romance novels, unless of a specific genre (like inspirational or Amish) are becoming more explicit in their sensuality levels. What RT Book Reviews lists as a “Scorcher” now would very likely have been erotica over a decade ago and there are classic romances that were considered hair curling in their time that I flip the page back with a “that’s it?” comment, thinking I’ve missed something.

My hope is twofold. One, that the trend toward explicit sex between characters means that readers and writers are more comfortable with sex as a natural expression between people. Clearly we see more sex on television and in movies, but a lot of it is objectification, not a loving expression between individuals, so romance fits a vital need to remind us of what sex can be. Second, I believe that there are a lot of truly great authors (see my shortlist above) and publishers who want women to demand their due both as consumers of the romance genre (hell, we deserve hot sex scenes between those fictional people we’ve fallen for!) and as healthy sexual beings in the bedroom. In the end, writers who write hot, emotional sex scenes have not only demonstrated their facility as people who have mastered a craft, but as pioneers showing us all what really love can look like in its most elemental form. And I would like to say to all of them – Thank You.

What favorite sex scenes of yours fits the criteria here? I’d love to hear about them. Happy Reading! 🙂


Kane, Stacia (2010-07-19). Be A Sex-Writing Strumpet. Kindle Edition.

torimacallister | June 1, 2013 at 10:00 am |


Filed under Authors, Book review, Books, Contemporary Romance, Erotic Romance, Historical Romance, Romance, Sex

Deet’s Life- Avoiding the Unavoidable- 50 shades and friends

Have I been studiously avoiding mention of those hot NY Times bestsellers? You betcha!  As most know who follow this blog I’m not opposed to sex in my novels.  Nope.  Actually I think it makes reading more fun.  But I truly like my sexy books well written and everything I hear about those top bestsellers says they are poorly written so why should I bother?  I know, not fair to judge without reading.  That is not going to happen.  So-o-o-o, here is a run down on top selling sexy indie books by  As you will see I have actually read and reviewed two of these books.  I think they were both free on Kindle when I read them;  ON THE ISLAND  and  PLAYING FOR KEEPS. (plug in the title in the search box on the left to see what I thought of these two)

Warning: The rating system by Indie Reader is 0-5 whips, and 0-5 penises (I actually think the symbols are hilarious)

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Review- The Winston Brothers by Lori Foster

Title: The Winston Brothers

Genre: Three Contemporary Romance novellas

Author: Lori Foster

Publisher: Jove/Penguin, 2001

Source: purchase

Rating: 3.5

Sexy Rating: 5

Description: There are four Winton brothers, Cole, Chase, Zane and Mark.  Cole raised the other three after their parents died and he owns a bar where the brothers work.  He and Chase are partners in the bar, Zane is starting a computer business and Mark is finishing college to become a teacher.  They are all HOT! And in this book there are three stories of romance and the brothers.  Cole, Chase and Mark meet their forever loves.


If you are looking for hot, studley guys and the sexy stories to go with them then this is your book.  The steam just rises from this book.  Of course, their lady loves are adorable, gorgeous, petite and just plain wonderful.  (Those types seem to get all the studley guys.)  Although this wasn’t my genre of choice, the writing is good and even if the H/h’s were over the top in the perfect body departments it was still fun and a bit silly to see them come together.  This is a light, easy to put down, easy to pick up read.


Filed under Book review, Books, Contemporary Romance, Novella, Romance, Sex

Review- Hearts in Darkness (Erotic Romance)

Title:  Hearts in Darkness

Genre: Contemporary Romantic Erotica (novella)

Author: Laura Kaye

Publisher: Wild Rose Press, Aug. 2011

Source: purchase, Kindle $2.25

(paperback available for $9.99)

Rating: 4.5

Sexy Rating: 5++

Description from

Makenna James thinks her day can’t get any worse, until she finds herself stuck in a pitch-black elevator with a complete stranger. Distracted by a phone call and juggling too much stuff, the pin-striped accountant caught only a glimpse of a dragon tattoo on his hand before the lights went out.

Caden Grayson is amused when a redhead literally falls at his feet. His amusement turns to panic when the power fails. Despite his piercings, tats, and vicious scar, he’s terrified of the dark and confined spaces. Now, he’s trapped in his own worst nightmare.

To fight fear, they must both reach out and open up. With no preconceived notions based on looks to hold them back, they discover just how much they have in common. In the warming darkness, attraction grows and sparks fly, but will they feel the same when the lights come back on?


I’m blushing!  But I’m also smiling and if Makenna wants to toss Caden out I will gladly take him, tats, piercings, scars and all.

This is one hot and steamy read.  It is the best erotic romance I have ever read but that’s not saying much since I’ve read about three altogether.  But what I have read prior to this has been more in the “slam, bam, thank you m’am” style of erotica, which is totally unsatisfying to me.  The character development here is really good.  The sexual tension is well done and totally believable and we actually like these two people. The sex is pretty  straight forward and not kinky, so no BDSM or anything like that.  If you are new or fairly new to this genre I highly recommend this novella, even if you are well versed in this genre, this is highly recommended.  Laura Kaye is a terrific writer and I look forward to reading more from her.

For those who like their steamy scenes fading to black or behind closed doors, this one is not for you.

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Sexy Man Tuesday- Romantic Times “Mr. Romance” former winners

RT (Romantic Times) Booklovers Convention 2012 starts tomorrow, April 11, in Chicago.  This is the 29th year of the convention that plays host to readers, authors, booksellers, publishers, editors, etc.  But one event will not be onboard this time, the “Mr. Romance” contest.  Each year for the past several years the attendees have voted on the models and actors and regular guys who have entered the contest and the winner has I believe received a modeling gig for Romance book covers.  I hear the contest was pretty cheesy with the guys having to strut their stuff and even dance on the stage.  Anyway, I thought maybe you would like to see a few of the past winners.  Here they are in chronological order from 2007 to 2011.

Mr Romance 2007-Jason Santiago

Mr Romance 2008- Chris Winters

Mr Romance 2009- Charles Paz (tortured and soulful, oh yum!)

Mr Romance 2010- Jamie Ungaro

Mr Romance 2011- Len

Let’s pick our own “SMT Mr. Romance 2012” from these past winners.

So would you have voted for any of these guys?  You can already guess my pick, but that doesn’t mean I only like one.


Filed under Romance, Sex, sexy, sexy man, Sexy Man Tuesday

Review- P.S.: I’m Innocent by Steve Ruediger

Title:  P.S.: I’m Innocent

Genre: Thriller/Erotic Elements

Author: Steve Ruediger

Publisher: I Universe, 2011

Source: Free from the author for review

Rating: 2—2.5

Sexy Rating: 5

Description from

As a new employee for the Sanibel Island Environmental Conservancy in Florida, Lizzie Grant thinks she has it made. She is helping to preserve wildlife and working on a Florida beach. Life is finally good-but it won’t stay that way for long.

One night while researching sea turtles on the beach, Lizzie sees illegal aliens being brought ashore by a smuggler. Her accidental observation leads to her being threatened and stalked by the smuggler until he suddenly shows up dead in her apartment, and Lizzie is wanted for his murder. With the help of a semi-retired Mafia don named Joey, Lizzie tries to uncover evidence to clear her name. What she discovers is chilling: the illegal aliens are being used as slave labor on a farm next to her friend’s wildlife refuge. In spite of Joey’s help, Lizzie becomes a prisoner on the slave labor farm, where a forced marriage is planned.

Pursued by the police and men that want to kill her, Lizzie is running out of time. Will Lizzie find the strength and courage to fight her way free and prove her innocence?


First let me give some background as to why I agreed to review this book.  The author Mr Ruediger attended a Barnes and Noble presentation event in the audience where I was also a spectator.  The panel was 5 authors from a writing society of which Mr. Ruediger was a member.  Since it became known during the discussion that he was a self published author, following the meeting I stopped to talk to him.  He asked me to read and review his book, I accepted the offer, promising an honest review.

The author has a background as a newspaper reporter which led me to think this book would be more polished than it was.  The main character, Lizzie, was not likable.  She was silly and stupid. Continually making disastrous mistakes that made her look even more unintelligent.  Almost all the male characters were misogynistic.  The slave-farm portion of the book felt like it’s only reason for going on for several chapters was to either titillate or to act as filler.  There was no romance in this book.  There were plenty of scenes with men ogling naked Lizzie and rape scenes.  There was violence throughout most of the book.

I was disappointed hoping for better writing.  The character development was adequate but I’m afraid not to my taste; the characters were loathsome.  The plotting suffered from stagnation during a portion of the book that involved a slave farm, or perhaps it was just so unappealing to me that I felt it would not end.  I can’t recommend this book.


Filed under Book review, Books, Sex, Thriller

Sexy Man Tuesday- Survivor One World- Eyecandy

I have been a Survivor fan for years.  Each season of the show we would have suvivor night where we would have family over for dinner and to watch the show.  Each season there would be the players we cheered for and those we just could not stand.  It has always been fun to watch.  This season we are treated to some really buff guys; they are our Sexy Men this Tuesday.  Eyecandy extrodinere.

Matt Quinlan


Michael Jefferson and Jay Byars


Tony Robertson

Here is the sexiest man on Survivor.  Show host Jeff Probst.  Gotta love those dimples but my goodness! Where did the beefcake pic come from???? This pic just covers my PG-13 rating, another few pixels and……



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Sexy Man Tuesday- Happy Valentine’s Day

Ah-h-h today is for lovers and sexy men…Hope your day is lover-ly.

Did you know that Caroline Herrera has bottled 212 sexy men? Round of applause for Caroline!

And finally a tribute to one of the most famous couples of the twentieth century. Passion’s own:


Filed under Romance, Sex, sexy, sexy man, Sexy Man Tuesday

Review- Wicked Intentions by Elizabeth Hoyt

Title: Wicked Intentions (Book 1, Maiden Lane Series)

Genre: Historical Romance Restoration Era

Author: Elizabeth Hoyt


Source: Kindle purchase

Rating: 4

Sexy Rating: 5, VERY explicit (erotic)

Description from


Infamous for his wild, sensual needs, Lazarus Huntington, Lord Caire, is searching for a savage killer in St. Giles, London’s most notorious slum. Widowed Temperance Dews knows St. Giles like the back of her hand-she’s spent a lifetime caring for its inhabitants at the foundling home her family established. Now that home is at risk . . .


Caire makes a simple offer-in return for Temperance’s help navigating the perilous alleys of St. Giles, he will introduce her to London’s high society so that she can find a benefactor for the home. But Temperance may not be the innocent she seems, and what begins as cold calculation soon falls prey to a passion that neither can control-one that may well destroy them both.



This was my first Elizabeth Hoyt novel.  I confess I had no preconceived ideas about her writing.  To say I was surprised to find how erotic this book was, is to state it mildly.  I thought it was just a usual Historical Romance.  Now I’m not complaining.  The writing is excellent and the story rather dark, action filled and with mystery, all of which I like.  The sex is a bit kinky.  So if you have qualms then consider that you are forewarned.

This is the first book in the Maiden Lane series and I look forward to reading more.  So far three have been published with the fourth coming in a month or so.


Filed under Book review, Books, Historical Romance, Romance, Sex, sexy