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The Fangirl

Long time geek, fangirl, mother, and reader. I've got a lot to say, you might not like it all, but it will be honest and hopefully helpful.

Raine (Lords of Satyr Series #2)

Raine - Elizabeth Amber Have you ever started read an unconventional romance novel that you genuinely like only to have it ruined by a graphic depiction of a brutal rape and murder? This happened before the two romantic leads have even had a chance to kiss. Talk about a mood killer. The best way I can describe the issues I had with this book without spoilers* are by describing them as the deplorable treatment of a leading female (not by the leading male) and the overwrought theme of “this is as good as it gets.” It was obvious that the leads both perceive themselves to be freaks and feel trapped in their lives, and that will be what ultimately connects them. However, the treatment of the theme of "being different" was clumsy and heavy handed.Despite all this I found both the quirky lead characters compelling enough to keep reading, that is until reached the first sex scene. That turned out to be the last straw for me. While the language utilized in the scene does remind me of actual victorian erotica (hilariously vulgar descriptors and all), it was also so laughable revolting I just couldn't bring myself to finish the book.Maybe if I had been better prepared to read this story, if it was billed are a gritty historical drama or a horror erotica, I wouldn’t have been repulsed. But the graphically detailed abuse, objectification and violence didn’t ring true for an erotic, fantasy romance. Then again, I don’t think I could ever get over the message that people who are born “different” should be thankful for any scrap of affection that happens to be tossed their way. *Note: The death of said male prostitute seemed to have little to no bearing on the overall plot, which angered me even more. Using something so horrific to show that an already obviously despicable character is bad felt gratuitous and lazy. Though, it was on par with the overall graphic nature of the abuse depicted in the first part of the story. The rest of this review contains spoilers, incoherent ranting and snort-worthy quotes. Read on at your own risk.Where to start?I went into this novel knowing that it was different. I mean the male lead is a satyr and if you know anything about greek mythology that means a very interesting penis and a voracious sexual appetite at least. I was also very intrigued and excited when I discovered that the Jordan (the female lead) was in fact a hermaphrodite. I really loved her internal monologue and snarky attitude. Her behavior in the beginning of the story rang true of a woman being forced to live as a man. I even felt compassion for her lot in life and began to really care about her. Then, I had to watch her being molested in graphic detail by several men. This is in very beginning of the book and it drags on for way too long. To the point that was getting repulsed and wanted to skim, but I stuck with it in the hopes that there would be a point to it. Sadly, the only points was to further demonstrate that Jordan was an outcast in society, with no option other than to prostitute herself to science. Which I kind of got in the first few pages when she was essentially finger fucked by some curious gentlemen at the medical lecture, of which she was the featured subject. But oh no, the author had to drag it on and add forced masturbation and non-con anal penetration to the list. Just when we get a break from seeing Jordan’s abuse and she finally meets Raine the moment is soon ruined by the aforementioned rape and murder of a male prostitute. Don't even get me started on the fact that one of the apparent villains of the story is a deeply closeted homosexual clergyman. The general (legitimately historically accurate) air of disgust and disapproval toward homosexuality running through the story felt vaguely homophobic, but I might not be the best judge, at the moment. I’ve given up on trying to figure out the reasoning behind the graphic depiction of violence and abuse in the story. Maybe if a relationship had been established between to the two leads before the rape I could have hung on, but it all felt like shit piled on top of shit piled on top of fuckery. Then there was the language used in the sex scene...oh boy. I don’t know how to explain it other than to just quote it. ...he pierced her vaginal slit.He plumbed deep...Her channel had turned juicier now and was sucking at his fingers like a babe at its mother’s breasts.Seriously, when is it ever arousing to mention breast feeding during a sex scene?In a single lunge, he went to the rest of the way home, ploughing her deep and hard.This sounds like a yoga move gone wrong.He stared, hypnotized by the sight of his dark reddened rod ducking in and out of her wet cave.*hits head against desk repeatedly to try to banish image from her mind*Like a mindless, rutting bull, he came, shooting his hot syrupy jism fathoms deep.The revolting description of ejaculate aside, I think there should be a standing rule in erotica to NEVER use a descriptor for a vagina that insinuates it’s overly large or liken it to a bottomless pit. It summons up images of a hotdog being thrown down hallway and no woman that I know finds that comparison even remotely flattering, much less arousing.In summation, great idea and cool characters, but shitty execution.