Thursday, December 5, 2013

Competing with Fifty Shades? That's Not My Goal!

I got a review today on Goodreads about the new book Whore, which frankly disturbed me a little.  Not that I mind a person speaking their mind but the idea behind this was that all these authors were trying to rewrite Fifty Shades of Grey.  I thought the comment deserved to be brought up for further discussison and contrary to popular belief E.L. James wasn't the first person to write a romance novel with a BDSM theme.  Not taking anything away from Mrs. James on the success of her work, but the person I hold as the person who started this genre was Anne Rice.

Anne wrote a great series called the Sleeping Beauty trilogy and it was my first introduction to BDSM themed romance.  Trust me when I say Christian had nothing on her characters when it came to sadomasochism!  The first book came out in 1999 and I have to say it changed my life in ways I won't get into in this posting.  I obviously don't know the mindset Anne Rice was trying to portray with this series, but it spoke to the darkest part of my soul and I was fascinated.

Another point that was raised in this review was the Virgin/Millionaire scenario.  Again let me share my view that E.L  James didn't create that phenomenon either.  Harlequin Romance brought that out into the field and I remember reading my grandmother's four box set that came every month (I was only eight at the time) so giving credit where it's due is deserved.  Trust me I'm not downing the Fifty Shades phenomenon.  I enjoyed all of those books and I'm very happy for James on her success, but saying that she has already done the theme is a little ridiculous.

I've been writing virgin/alpha romances since 2009 myself and that was years before James published her book.  The truth is that's what I enjoy writing and there are still readers out there that want to read books along that theme.  If you as a reader don't that's your reading privilege but saying that an author is copying someone else is ludicrous when no author has the rights to the topic.  It also shows that the reviewer didn't actually read my book because Whore has very little to do with the issues of BDSM.

Taylor Ross wasn't abused as a child, nor does he have the need to control every facet of Laura's life.  He is rich and powerful and believes he can pay for sex.  He doesn't believe in relationships and he has a very good reason for wanting Laura to be his whore.  That reason comes out throughout the book, and I won't spoil it here.

Laura is struggling in life after being abandoned by her mother and she has to make a decision about what's important to her.  She's definitely not had an easy life and here's this strong male accustomed to getting what he wants not only in business but his personal life as well.  He offers her the opportunity to better herself but in doing so she will have to give up who she is as a person.  I consider this to be a coming of age, new adult romance, because the decisions she's faced with deal more with finding out who she is as a person.

What I'm hoping readers will take away from this book is her internal struggle.  There are some sexy scenes that might be a little much for some readers, but to me it's all about Laura's ability to see past what she thinks is right and her own sexuality.  She isn't taken to a dungeon, whipped into submission or anything of the like.  Taylor is just a true Alpha Male who likes to push buttons and he's going to see just how far she'll bend.

The ultimate question this book tries to answer is can a virgin be a whore?  I have my own ideas about this and after reading it, I'm hoping that readers might question there thoughts about the question.  This entire book started because of that question.  I love how the muse throws things at me (when it doesn't wake me up from a sound sleep to write).  Whore was my nanowrimo challenge as well and I'm proud to say I managed 52,000 words in 14 days to meet it!

In closing let me just say that while I support E.L James and her great success, she didn't create this genre and people have been writing about Alpha Male/Virgin scenarios long before either one of us ever typed our first manuscript.  The Pioneers of this genre have given me incredible books to fantasize about over the years and I  hope the theme never dies!

1 comment :

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