What would you sacrifice to save your family’s legacy?
Meet Hunter Wilder, a man that is terrified of happily ever after.
Hunter is used to dominating, taking control of situations and bending them to his will. He may live in a New York castle, but he’s no prince. Cursed by loss, Hunter is a closed book with an emptiness that he can’t escape.
Until he meets her.
Ella Darien may be gorgeous and driven, but her Cinderella story is more than it appears. The death of her father left her with a wicked stepmother intent on sabotaging the business her parents worked so hard to create.
One enchanted night of all-consuming and absolute pleasure brings two broken souls together. With a new version of their future finally in sight, a promise kept might cost them everything.
Will this Cinderella find her prince, or will they watch their happily ever after disappear at the stroke of midnight?
|Series:||Dirty Sexy Fairytales (Book 2)|
|Point of View:|
|Release Date:||15th October, 2019|
An enjoyable twist on a fairytale
I had no idea, until I went to write this review, that Erika Wilde is an alter-ego of Janelle Denison – one of my favourite authors from back in the good ol’ days of Harlequin/Mills & Boon Blaze. That explains why I was drawn to this tale, and very much enjoyed the writing style.
Absolute Pleasure is the second in Ms Wilde’s Dirty Sexy Fairytale series, taking its cues roughly from the story of Cinderella. It takes place at roughly the same time (and a little after) the events from the first book, Total Surrender (which is a take on Beauty and the Beast, if you’re interested!). The stories are somewhat interlinked yet still stand completely alone from each other. It does do a good job of making you want to read the first book in the series – and the next, which will hopefully be Tempest’s story.
This is the story of Hunter and Ella. Having met at a fairy tale ball, Hunter is instantly smitten with the gorgeous Ella – even more so when he hears her being maligned by the wicked stepmother and stepsisters.
I loved Hunter and Ella as a couple. Loved even more the fact that Ella, while delicate in some ways, really was a strong, capable woman. Hunter’s usually a one night and done, kind of guy – so when Ella got the jump on him and said she was done first – I all but cheered! There was definitely chemistry between our pair (and sex, obviously) but I do get a bit peeved when characters talk about how filthy and dirty they are and then don’t really back it up. The sex was hot and steamy – don’t get me wrong. And it’s not that I’m looking for depraved sex in my romances – but there’s no need for characters to go on about how naughty they are when they’re really just the same kind of naughty as all of the rest of us!
The Cinderella aspect of the story is well done, and doesn’t take itself too seriously. It all felt real, rather than a fairytale, and the characters acknowledging the parallels in their story made me smile.
While I really enjoyed the story – Ms Wilde/Denison has a writing style that is inherently readable and engaging – there were a few points that stopped me from giving this story the full 5 stars (other than my annoyance with there not being a proper scale of sexual naughtiness, apparently!). Without giving anything away, I thought the reason for Elle’s sickness was a bit far-fetched. Even more far-fetched was the way that the stepmother/sister storyline was resolved. Perhaps I’m just bloodthirsty but I want people to pay, dammit! I’m also never fond of a hero or heroine whose previous ‘love of their life’ has died. This was a big sticking point for Hunter, in theory, but he sure did bat it away when Elle came on the scene. Folk can be afraid of, or unwilling to do, commitment without having some major issues in their past. Just saying.
But despite all that, as I said, I very much enjoyed this book. I’ve got the first book in the series on my TBR pile and I’m also very much looking forward to the next in the series, too. And now that I know that Erika Wilde is Janelle Denison, I’m also away to search Ms Wilde’s back catalogue to see what I might have missed. 4 very enjoyable stars.
Erika Wilde is a New York Times Bestselling author. She is best known for her super sexy Marriage Diaries series and The Players Club series, and has also co-written the Dirty Sexy Series and the Book Boyfriend Series with Carly Phillips, her best friend and writing buddy for the past twenty years. She lives in Oregon with her husband and two daughters, and when she’s not writing you can find her exploring the beautiful Pacific Northwest. For more information on her upcoming releases, please visit her website at www.erikawilde.com and sign up for her mailing list for updates and news!