Title: The Pleasures of Winter
Author: Evie Hunter
My Rating: B+
Genre: Erotic Romance
Main Characters: Abbie and Jack
Release Date: November 2012
Links to Purchase:
Sexual Intensity: erotic
The Pleasures of Winter is a steamy erotic story of romantic obsession and explosive sexual chemistry for fans of Fifty Shades of Grey and Bared to You.
When reporter Abbie Marshall needs to escape Honduras, a private jet carrying a Hollywood A-lister is her only way out. She has a ride home with Irish actor Jack Winter - notorious womanizer and all round bad boy. Abbie is shaken to the core by Winter's blazing beauty and provocative mind.
After the plane's nose-dive into the remote rainforest forces them to fight for survival, Abbie catches tantalizing glimpses of the complicated man behind the image. And the more she sees of him, the more he touches some primal part of her that she is determined to suppress. But after a devastating encounter with Winter's shadow side, Abbie's detachment is shattered.
On returning to normal life, Abbie cannot forget what happened, nor ignore the shocking rumours about the star's private life. Her struggle to make sense of her torment leads straight back to Winter, who is just as obsessed by her. But if they are to have a relationship, Abbie knows she must embrace his hidden desires ... and accept her own.
No longer caring about anything but their intoxicating love affair, Abbie is drawn deeper into the dark heart of Winter - and the secret that threatens to destroy everything ...
'Evie Hunter' is actually two Irish authors who discovered a mutual love of erotic fiction when doing a creative writing workshop two years ago. They are delighted the rest of the world has caught up with them. Before writing The Pleasures of Winter, their first full-length novel, they co-wrote a number of BDSM-themed novellas.
Okay, flat out, this book is definitely along the lines of the Fifty Shades phenomena. This is a BDSM relationship where the hero, Jack, is hard into the scene and the heroine, Abbie, is an innocent when it comes to BDSM play. I found the book entertaining, although I will admit to feeling a bit uncomfortable about how close some of the scenes mirrored scenes in other books which I've read. The story line had some real chances to set itself apart, but it just fell a bit short when it came to the follow through. But let's talk about what did work in the story....
The story starts off with the heroine being pursued through an airport in S. America. She's a reporter doing an expose on the drug trafficking and has stirred up something along the way. She needs an escape fast and her editor finds it by quickly slating her to do an interview of a hot A-list actor, Jack, who just happens to be at the same airport with a private jet. While en route, the pilot has a heart attack and they end up crashed in the jungle for 4 days. Honestly, if the authors had stayed with this story line....jungle, danger, intrigue...I would have been thrilled with this book. It was creative and entertaining and we got to see Jack being all alpha without being full-on Dom (although he did still have his moments). I liked that the heroine is a tough reporter and being threatened because of it. Unfortunately, the closure for this story line was rushed and unsatisfactory. Seriously, this part alone could have elevated this book to such a great level. It's sad when I see such amazing possibilities that don't quite live up to where they could have gone.
The book read well and was most definitely entertaining. I enjoyed both the main characters. There were some aspects of Jack (movie star that's been burned by his lifestyle before) that made him a great hero with some vulnerabilities. I liked how the author showed that he's just as affected by Abbie is she is by him, even though he's the Dom in story and in full take-charge mode most of the time. He's still human and I liked that... a LOT!
I really loved the last 25% of the book. There are some scenes from Ireland that I really enjoyed. Although I had a few issues with the way that it transpired, I thought the controversy in the last half of the book was good and loaded with great angst. I liked it. Overall, this was a great book. Would it be out there without Fifty Shades? Probably not, and I find that somewhat sad. I like what Fifty Shades has done for the erotica world. I just wish that there was a bit more creativity put into the end-result, but that doesn't change the fact that I enjoyed this one and it was definitely worth my time.
I received a complimentary copy of this book in return for an honest review.