November 20th, 2012

andrew potter

Ricochet by Xanthe Walter

Yes, I'm aware this novel is set in the BDSM universe that the author first created in the "General & Doctor Sheppard" fanfiction community. Yes, I bought this book, I don't mind to pay for a novel once the author decides to re-use the setting for a standalone novel.

Paraphrasing one of the supporting characters, describing an hypothetical alternative reality to their own (our reality), Ricochet is ""is a sort of sci-fi thing - an alternative universe in which everybody identifies as dom or sub. The author tried to do it as a sort of high-minded exploration of how such a society would work. People identify as dom, sub or switch. They have weddings, but they use wedding collars instead of rings. When couples in a romantic relationship became serious they often started sharing a plate, with the dom hand-feeding the sub."

Being a Dom or a sub is something you are born to be; the majority of people is bisexual, the few "monosexuals" are an exception. Same sex marriage is as common as heterosexual marriage; giving birth or using a surrogate mother is more or less the same, some same sex couples (or singles), have "temple born" children, meaning that they participated to a ceremony were priests are like "natural donors".

Once you enter in the "alternative reality" the characters are living in, the novel becomes an "ordinary" show business romance, pretty much comedy like. Rick and Matt play two FBI agents, and subs, in a very popular fiction; but in real life only Matt is a sub, Rick instead is a Dom. They are also friends, even if prim-and-proper Matt is sometime exasperated by Rick's laissez-faire attitude. Of course they are really in love with each other, and all their colleagues are aware of that other than them. When Rick proposes to help Matt to "train" for a very intense sex scene, the sparks between them become a full fire.

I think the most interesting side of this novel was how the author managed to turn a not ordinary scenario (D/s relationships) in something so natural that the reader was almost forgetting about it; there is no reluctance at all in the characters, on the contrary, they felt lost when their routine is mined.

Amazon Kindle: Ricochet
Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.

Reading List: http://www.librarything.com/catalog_bottom.php?tag=reading list&view=elisa.rolle

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andrew potter

On a Wednesday in September by Stephan Niederwieser

This is the story of a ring, and I don’t mean only the physical jewel Edvard gave, as a love token, to his boyfriend Bernhard, it’s also the metaphysical cycle of time, started many years ago and that has to find a closure now, in the present.

When Edvard gives Bernhard a ring, he was not expecting for it to be the ending of their relationship, but that is what apparently happened. Bernhard literally runs away from Edvard, and disappears without any explanation. What Edvard doesn’t know is that, right when he put the ring on Bernhard’s finger, he opened a portal on a past that is not yet forgotten, not until the only survivor will still remember a boy from the past. Once I heard a legend about the fact that dead people cannot rest until the last one on heart remembering them will not die; only then they will be able to move to the alterlife.

Bernhard is physically ill, the ring was like an arrow to his heart, and he is experimenting emotions that are true to him, but that he doesn’t understand. The impeding feeling is that his relationship with Edvard is at risk, and that something tragic will soon happen. Someone near him will die, but Bernhard knows that is not the tragedy he is waiting to struck, actually it seems like this death is closing the circle. Nevertheless, Bernhard is forced apart from Edvard, and various misunderstanding will make really difficult for them to mend the path bringing them together again. Maybe only the ring will be able to.

The novel is no light romance at all, but it’s intense and bittersweet. In a way, all lovers involved will have their happily ever after, some of them in the near future, some of them will wait for a life. It was not an easy read, it had always like a dark cloak wrapping it, at the same time warming but also obscuring the light, that light that was escaping the lovers who came into contact with the ring. Had the cycle to be broken, before Bernhard and Edvard could be happy? Or instead had it to be completed? The ring of lovers is at the same time happiness and tragedy.

Amazon: On a Wednesday in September
Paperback: 304 pages
Publisher: Bruno Gmunder Verlag Gmbh (November 1, 2012)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 3867874441
ISBN-13: 978-3867874441

Reading List: http://www.librarything.com/catalog_bottom.php?tag=reading list&view=elisa.rolle

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