Illicit by Opal Carew
February 26, 2013
St. Martin’s Griffin
Reviewed by Helyce
From Goodreads: What began as a steamy weekend fling is about to change their lives forever.
When Lindsay receives a mysterious invitation to live out her most illicit fantasies, she thinks it’s her best friend playing a joke. Little does she know, the invitation is from someone else. Someone who knows her deepest desires…and intends to fulfill them.
Erik is a man of many secrets, and he intends to keep it that way. When he invites Lindsay to his mansion, he thinks it’s just for a steamy weekend fling. But from their first night together, there’s an inexplicably deep connection that shakes him to his core. And with Lindsay in his arms, he feels both thrilled and unnerved. As Lindsay brings his fantasies to life, he’s unwilling to let her go. But can he tell her how he knows her deepest desires, and will she stay with him if she learns the truth?
Since I’m going to approach this review a little differently than my norm, I chose to just use the Goodreads blurb rather than re-summarize.
I probably should not have accepted this arc to review. It’s very clear in the blurb that this is a story involving menage and I have been quite honest in my reviews here that books with that theme don’t always work for me. But I have to admit that I was very intrigued by the blurb. I mean, strictly from a “fantasy” stand point, who would not want to spend a weekend being worshiped, body and soul, by three gorgeous men who were at your beck and call. This fantasy appealed to me in many ways as I thought about what I actually had to do on the weekend, from cleaning toilets to doing laundry, grocery shopping and hauling kids to soccer games, etc. You moms out there know where I’m coming from. C’mon, you can admit it. *wink*
There were parts of this story that worked for me. I really liked the four main characters. Lindsay has recently ended a long term relationship after coming home to find her boyfriend in bed with two women. As if her self confidence wasn’t already shattered after that, her step-mother than tells her that she probably wasn’t adventurous enough in bed and that’s why her X had to go elsewhere. Eric, Travis and Connor are our men in this story and we find out early on that they are all bi-sexual, Travis and Connor having been in a committed relationship of sorts for a few years before meeting Eric and bringing him on as a third. We also learn in bits and pieces that they’ve had a girlfriend (yes 3 guys and 1 girl) before, but that it didn’t work for whatever reason and when push came to shove they always chose each other, letting the female leave. And because it was always difficult and hurtful, for Eric especially, they haven’t had that type of a relationship again, nor do they plan to.
Contrary to my feelings on menage, I was perfectly alright with this set up; probably because of the m/m action which is hot, I ain’t gonna lie. I also liked that not every scene involving sex was with all three guys and that while Lindsay fully immersed herself in the fantasy weekend for what it was, it was clear that she had the biggest connection with Eric. It appealed to me that the author was able to create a relationship between the two, within the foursome. Fantastical yes, but in my opinion, it was well done.
Unfortunately, there were parts that didn’t work for me and the biggest item is a major spoiler so I will include a hidden summary below in just a bit. But let’s talk realistically for a second-yes, this is erotica and the main storyline involves fantasy, but if I can’t imagine or picture a position the author has put the characters in, in my head, I’m sorry but I call bullshit. Fantasy or not, I need basic stuff to be realistic. For example-in a scene where Lindsay is ‘watching’ Travis and Connor together, one or the other is giving a blowjob and she is astounded at their ability to deep throat. The impression the author gives us is that this is something Lindsay has not been able to do-yet a few pages later she’s got Connor’s dick in one hand while she blows Travis-
As she licked and nibbled his cock-head, she reached out and stroked over Connor’s boxers. He tugged his cock out and she wrapped her hand around his thick shaft and stroked up and down. Then she dove down on Travis, his big cock filling her throat.
It’s a miracle!
Now, let’s talk actual sex. You expect some double penetration in a menage, and there is some of that. But it’s Lindsay’s magical vajay-jay that had me shaking my head:
Connor stepped forward and his cock-head nudged her opening. He was only semi-rigid but he pushed inside her. Then Travis, also with a partially revived erection, stepped in close, too. To her surprise, he nudged his cock-head against her already full opening, and slid inside next to Connor.
Oh, God she had two cocks inside her. Both in her vagina. She couldn’t believe it. And they were growing.
“This is a tight squeeze, but …fuck!…it feels good.” Connor pushed forward and his steadily growing cock filled her deeper, too. But the growing cocks stretched her tightly.
Possible? Yea, I guess so-I mean women do have babies-but pleasurable? Guess I’d have to ask someone who’d actually experienced it. Oh, did I mention that her legs were tied to a stool with said stool still partially between her legs when this occurred? Go on, picture that one.
There was one more thing that came up near the end to, I assume, explain Eric’s issues with commitment, but it felt like an afterthought and was just there with no elaboration. In fact I would have probably forgotten about it if I had highlighted it and wrote “WTF? Now?” in the margin.
Sadly this is one of those books I really struggled with. Not in a hardship kind of way, because, in spite of the passages I mention above and my reaction to them, the heart of the story had such possibilities. I maintain that the “fantasy” side of it did work for me. I may not have agreed with the conflict introduced, but its resolution was partly satisfying and we get as realistic an HEA as one can expect from such a relationship. The fact that there was some pretty smexy m/m loving included didn’t hurt either. That was an unexpected treat as it’s not alluded to in the blurb.
Under the Covers – 3/5
My Overstuffed Bookshelf – DNF
Mara Gillott says
This made me laugh. :) When I read a sex scene, I really read it like 6 times and if it doesn’t make sense, to the point that my husband has been known to walk in on my trying to physically put myself in the positions the authors described to even see if it’s do-able. So many times the answer is a big fat “No”, and for that reason, I wish some authors would stick to more basic moves and just expand the emotion in then scene than spend time thinking up new and elaborate moves or explain something they read in Cosmo.
LOL! In erotica, I’m okay with the fact that some descriptions are “less than normal”-but if I’m cringing and thinking about how much the act might hurt, well it doesn’t work for me at all.
Kudos for you for trying out the positions-that’s commitment!
Ninya Tippett says
You know… I’ve always wondered about those amazing contortions some of these characters get into in some of these books but I have never had thought to try them out myself.. kudos to you for your very thorough research.. LOL. When I write some scenes myself, I kind of actually play it out in my head and make sure the character doesn’t end up with a third hand at a totally different place or that the actions are actually able to be executed by people who are not genetically mutated to perform some incredible pose.. and I’m not a big fan of “putting the heads together”. apparently, it’s popular.. even in M/M stories, double entry backdoor is rampant.. ouch, is all I can think of.
I’m not a menage fan. Also not a big fan of “let’s stick multiple huge things up inside of me.”
Ninya Tippett says
That’s right. This is not a storage room, ladies and gentlemen.. =)
KT Grant says
When a big cock fills one’s throat, how does one breathe? How big is the cock described?
I think the words, huge, thick, long, etc. were all used to describe the cocks on all three men. Definitely bigger than average. I didn’t even think of the breathing aspect…geesh!
Amy J says
So glad I am not the only one who had problems with this read. I tried so hard to finish it, but I just couldn’t. What is bad is I usually love this author! :(
I didn’t have trouble reading it or finishing. I did a lot of eye rolling and re-reading passages to make sure my eyes weren’t playing tricks. Ultimately it was the item in the “spoiler” that ruined this for me.
Ugh. SO not for me. No no no
I know girlie! Yup…you’d have thrown the book against the wall!
Ninya Tippett says
I enjoy Opal Carew’s books. I think they accomplish what they set out for which is to make your cheeks blaze, your temperature go up, your heart rate speed up and your imagination run hot and wild.. Sometimes though there is so much happening and so many people involved that I blink and shake my head and wonder if I’m reading things correctly. I think it’s in Six where she goes out and has sex with everyone. Crazy… but hot… but probably not very realistic.. Still fun though and I’ll still pick up the next book. =)