Wednesday, 26 July 2017

Release Day Review ~ Shame Me Not by Fiona Cole

Book Description:

Shame. Panic. Desire. Dominance. Disgust. 

All feelings that I was familiar with from the age of sixteen. That's when I met Ana. The girl next door who became so much more. Until her, I was alone in the dark desires that I didn't understand, that I couldn't reconcile. 

My best friend, she accepted me. Helped me see that there was no shame in the things that we both craved. Her submission was a drug, my dominance over her a high that I'd never experienced. When we were together, I was at peace for the first time in my life. 

But it was too good to last. Our own guilt over our feelings, of our appetite for pain and pleasure, destroyed us. 

I was convinced that all I needed was a chance, just one more chance to overcome my shame, and Ana would be able to trust me again. 

If only it were that easy.

*WARNING: This book is an erotic romance and does contain consensual sexual situations between characters under eighteen that include submission and domination.

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Our Review:

Reviewed by Donna ~ 4 stars
***ARC received for an honest review***

“It was just Kevin and that was what scared me. There was no just about him.”

Sexual exploration and discovery is not a new trope, far from it, especially when it comes to exploring kink. However, what made this book stand out from the crowd was the age of our hero and heroine and this was something that I simply adored. When you are young, naïve and inexperienced wanting something different can be frightening. It makes you question who you are, if you are “normal” and undoubtedly, what the hell is going on. In Shame Me Not, Fiona Cole takes you on a long and often fraught road with two best friends and next-door neighbours who undoubtedly love each other and have done for a very long time, but each have very distinct, yet complementing needs. This is their voyage of discovery, from young kids, to teens to adults. Normal is different for everybody and this is theirs.

“It was everything I wanted and everything I was scared to have.”

This best friends to lovers story spans ten years, ten years that had me glued to every single page. I adored this story, not only because of the age of the hero and heroine but because it was a complete journey, one that made the character connection that I crave all consuming. I became invested in this couple, and yes, at times, I could have bashed their heads together, but it was this that made their story all the more honest, real and somewhat relatable.

This book is divided into three parts, part one as kids, part two at college and part three as adults. I simply adored part one, this was by far my favourite part and to see how these two came to be best friends and their ensuing friendship had me in tears several times. It is unusual for best friends to be of the opposite sex, but these two were perfect for one and other. They brought out the best in each other, they understood each other, but more importantly, they loved one and other completely. As with any best friends story, there is always that push and pull as to whether to cross that line, that line that could mean having or losing everything. To take that relationship to the next level is always a risk and these two knew that and yet, eventually, even they had to succumb and I loved it.

“I’m a man who knows what you need and would move heaven and earth to give it to you.”

Part two and part three were somewhat hard to read, of course the course of true love never runs smooth and you have to work at it. Part two was especially frustrating, yet understandable and when they hurt, I hurt too. When you connect with two characters as much as I did you become so entrenched in the story and their lives that life just blurs around you, and that is what happened with this book. The tears were plentiful, but the smiles, the laughs and the fit to bursting heart more than made up for the ride.

“But I couldn’t help but think that the more we tugged, the more likely we would snap back together.”

Kevin and Ana were simply adorable together, apart they were little shits, but hey, it is this that makes the book interesting. While I wanted to bash their heads together at times, I loved them more. Yes, what they needed was different, but they found it together. That kind of connection does not come easy, it doesn’t come often, so when you find it…you embrace it, you cherish it and most importantly you love it.

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