Mini Swarms: Tie me up, tie me down…yawn.

Posted 17 March, 2014 | Mary @ TheBookSwarm | | 22 Comments

HIGH SEDUCTION (Adrenaline Search and Rescue #3) by Vivian Arend
Erotica/Romantic Suspense
304 pages, paperback
Available now (February 2014)
Publisher: Berkley Sensation
Review copy provided by publisher for honest review

As the chopper pilot for the elite Search and Rescue team Lifeline, Erin Tate is used to handling power. Calling the shots in the air is one thing—in the bedroom it leaves her cold. What she wants is a man strong enough to strip away her control.

Paramedic Timothy Dextor has a wildcard reputation, and the dark appetites to prove it. The only thing missing is a woman he can share them with. Landing a position on the Lifeline squad puts his old flame back within reach. He already knows what Erin needs, and this time he’s not letting her go..


But when an emergency throws Erin and Timothy together in ways they hadn’t anticipated, the stakes are raised—on the job and off. Now they’ll both discover the real meaning of control…and the risks that come from falling in love.


This one started off great. A wide and diverse cast of characters of a variety of races, backgrounds and abilities (yay!). A snarky and incredibly competent female chopper pilot who likes making the noobs puke with her maneuvers. The tension of a prior broken relationship with a hot paramedic.


And then they brought in the handcuffs.

Besides discovering “the real meaning of control”, does this seem like it’s going to be a tie-me-up, tie-me-down kind of book? I didn’t think so. And, really, I’ve read enough of those to last me for quite a while so, if I’d known it was part of the new wave of this kind of erotica (thanks 50 Shades *eyeroll*), I would have passed it up. Another question for you: Are there erotica clubs in every city/town? I know I’m naive but… are there? I just don’t even know. But there is one in this small Alaska town. What are the odds?

I DNFed this one just because I couldn’t work my way through another submissive/dominant relationship. However, the writing was good, and I liked the characters so I think I’m going to try another in this series.

Available on Amazon | IndieBound

FULL THROTTLE (Fast Track #7) by Erin McCarthy
Erotica/Romance
304 pages, paperback
Available now (December 2013)
Publisher: Berkley
Review copy provided by publisher for honest review

Easing into the turns…

As one of only two girls on the tween racing circuit, Shawn Hamby has always run with a fast crowd. But now at thirty-two, she doesn’t need to prove anything to anyone. And she definitely doesn’t need a man bossing her around off of the track…

Putting the pedal to the metal…

But after a silly girls’ night at a fetish club, Shawn can’t get Rhett Ford out of her mind. He’s younger than her, and he’s her best friend’s brother-in-law, which should be red flags. Rhett is looking for someone to lead in bed, but he can’t imagine that Shawn would ever submit to him. Boldly surrendering is more her style. And with Rhett behind the wheel, it’s going to be one wild ride…

What is it with powerful women turning into submissives in the bedroom? I have no problem with bedroom games but to always be the submissive? Like, under a contract? Especially for a woman who is in control, who is a strong professional. Oh, and then there’s the twisted will left by Shawn’s grandfather, who supposedly adored her. She has to marry within two weeks or she won’t get her inheritance of the racetrack. Come on. Seriously?

Maybe I’m a little touchy about women in power being allowed to actually, you know, be in power without some dude trying to control her.

I didn’t finish this one, either. Again, that’s not to say the writing was bad. There were actually some funny bits to it. However, I just couldn’t reconcile with the submission or the will’s bizarre and unethical codicil. Perhaps, I’ll check out some of the other books in this series. 

Available on Amazon | IndieBound

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22 Responses to “Mini Swarms: Tie me up, tie me down…yawn.”

  1. Two DNFs in a row. Yuck. I’m just as naive as you are about bondage clubs, so I have no idea if they really are everywhere (including Alaska), but I find it hard to believe. I have a couple of Mountain Men uncles who have lived or summered there, and in some of the small towns, supplies are brought in by boat, so if they don’t have a general store, but they do have a sex club . . .

    As for the other, I’m sick of that too. It’s like there’s this whole sub-genre of contemporary romance that caters to women who want to be high-powered career women, but sex kittens in the bedroom. Blah. Better luck next time 😉

    Jessica @ Rabid Reads

  2. I’ve really enjoyed Arend’s werewolves in the past, sorry to hear that this romantic suspense title wasn’t quite up to snuff. Hopefully your next read will be better! I’d be in danger of falling into a reading slump if I had two DNF back-to-back. o_O Oh well, I guess that’s just how it goes sometimes. Happy St Patrick’s Day!

  3. I’m a bit tired of the whole idea of submissives, to be honest. I understand you completely. Neither of these sounds like something I’d enjoy, so I’ll just steer clear.
    I admire you for finishing both. That took patience. 🙂

  4. I’m getting good at reading between the lines of these blurbs so I would have been tipped off at “Calling the shots in the air is one thing—in the bedroom it leaves her cold. What she wants is a man strong enough to strip away her control.” & “dark appetites” lol

    I really try to be open minded because I know everyone has their own thing that they like – even if it’s not what I enjoy but I’m with you. Why does every book have to have a strong woman who then surrenders all her power in the bedroom??

    When I read these scenes, I’m always waiting for the next one to flip around and have her be in control. i know logically that’s not how D/s works but it’s always what I hope for.

    I’ve only read two books where there was a bit of a gender flip on that (cars McKenna does this very well). But I’m not really into the BDSM thing anyway. Or I should say – it’s been overdone.

  5. haha I see a definite theme here! I am not a fan of submissive stories, I don’t really understand the charm of them at all. Sorry that both of these missed the mark for you and I hope your next read is a much better one!

  6. Aw, two DNF’s in a row:( But, I can completely understand that this “submissive” theme is getting a bit old. The writing sounds like you may enjoy other books by these authors, just not the this particular theme, Mary. Like Karen mentioned, I really try to eyeball those blurbs, sometimes it helps. Thanks for sharing 🙂

  7. I’m not big on these types of stories either, and unfortunately they seem to be everywhere after 50 shades. I wonder if the movie will make the trend worse? I don’t blame you for DNFing, thanks for your reviews, I’m definitely going to steer clear of these.

  8. That sucks you couldn’t get into them. I guess I’ve not tired of many themes since I keep my reading very varied and don’t read too many of anything in a certain period. *shrugs* The submissive thing though makes complete sense to me but maybe because it’s what I’d go for? I’ve run my own business for the past 12 years. My ENTIRE adult life. Every decision at work, at home, 24/7/365. It’s been on my shoulders. So being able to give up control and not have to decide everything totally works for me. lol Hope your next read ends up working for you.

  9. Oh, dear. I’ve been wanting to post mini DNF’s on my blog as well, but I hate doing them. I think, like Melissa, we’re getting more and more picky, mostly because we have so many to choose from! And it seems like you DNF’ed them both for seeming a little too unrealistic—and I agree!

  10. I NEVER would have guessed the content of book 1. I thought it was a survivor story? The second one doesn’t sound like my thing either. Actually I can’t read BDSM. One person having ultimate control doesn’t do it for me. Glad you were able to give these up and move on, but sorry you had to suffer thru the beginning.

  11. I’m not drawn to these types of books, but I’m glad that the writing is good. Maybe if I try one, I might try one of these since I’m not burnt out on them… however, there is a reason I’m not drawn to them. Hopefully your next smexy book will not make you yawn! 😀

  12. I would suck at submissive, although the idea of reading to my hearts content and being worshiped and taken care of appeals..LOL You crack me up, not sure if these are for me.

  13. That sucks that you weren’t able to finish either book Mary, but unrealistic situations such has having to marry within two weeks otherwise no inheritance would tick me off too! Here’s hoping your next couple of reads are good ones!

  14. I wouldn’t think these types of clubs are all over the place either. I’ve never heard of one and I live fairly close to Los Angeles. There’s got to be one in Hollywood, though. There’s all kinds of stuff down there! I probably wouldn’t know anyhow, but I doubt there would be one in some small Alaskan town.

    Unbelievable plots are annoying and being required to marry to inherit doesn’t seem plausible in this day and age. Not sure I would’ve stuck it out with these books either. Great minis, Mary! 🙂

  15. THANK YOU. I am so tired of tossing a pair of handcuffs in a book it slapping it with a BDSM label. Post 50 Shades the market got so saturated and unless it’s done very well (which isn’t often), I find myself being totally turned off. Sigh. I won’t be grabbing either of these – thanks for the heads up!