Sep 25

Autumn’s Bookshelf: “the Blind Date” by Delaney Diamond

downloadThe Blind Date is a bit of a whirl wind romance with a twist. Shawna Ferguson engages in a blind date that takes her down a path to an unknown ending. Overall, the plot was developed well. As a reader, I did not find myself lacking information as far as any glaring loopholes as to why things were presented in the manner that they were.  All of the questions that were raised by the book were resolved in the beginning.

 

As far as the characters, Shawna Ferguson presents herself as the archetypal strong, independent black woman who probably feels that she doesn’t need a man but secretly longs for one. It was refreshing to see that as the story developed she didn’t seem to lose her faculties or her personality and off of a sudden become this dim-witted, ditzy school girl. Yes, she was falling for someone, but it doesn’t make her stupid. As a woman I could relate to that.  Love doesn’t always make one stupid even if it can make one blind to the other’s faults.

 

The characters romantic development was in line with the pace of the story fast at some parts and slower in others. It was characteristic of a traditional romance. The setting of the book wasn’t as prominent in the story as the characters.  There were two main places Atlanta and Chicago that were mentioned.  The importance of the locations were more because of the events that took place more than the actual locations themselves.  However, they fit well with the story.  Slow in some areas and fast paced in others.

 

The book overall made me laugh, it made me smile; I would definitely read it again. I found myself coming to care for the characters as if they were a part of me.  I was happy for the ending it was a well-deserved conclusion to a loving story that can hit home with the books target audience. I give it a Four Leaves rating. Overall this is my second read of a Delaney Diamond book and I look forward to reading more.

4rating

Sep 22

I ain’t saying she’s a gold digger…

For the record, I do not believe that Ray Rice’s wife is a gold digger. And quite honestly that’s not what this article is about. It’s about the travesty that is domestic violence and how one moment of thoughtlessness can reek havoc on two plus people’s lives. Actually, the only person that truly suffers in all of this is his daughter because she will have to learn of the shame that her parents brought to the Rice family name.

Ray Rice, Janay PalmerEveryone’s seen the video, the photos, heard the story, so I won’t go into it, but I will say this, it is a horrible act. No person, man or woman, should ever feel justified putting his or her hands on another person, drunk or not. Neither of their actions were acceptable for normal people or celebrities. She eggs him on; he retaliates. This is not the normal course of traditional domestic violence cases, but she was too quick to get in his face, and he was too quick to retaliate. I’m just speculating here but I don’t think this was either of their first merry-go-round.

Now what we see after all of this is the slew of charges being brought against players over years in the NFL being called to light because again, one moment of thoughtlessness costed a man his career, his lively hood, and has reeked havoc on his family. It has called into question the effectiveness of the NFL to truly and adequately monitor its players. Are they being model citizens as we often hope they are?

Ray Rice’s wife (then fiance) has stood by him through out this entire ordeal. Prompting some to feel that she is in it for the money. But even when he lost his endorsements, and contracts, etc, she’s still there because I think she loves him. Unfortunately, in the cycle of domestic violence, that is too often the problem, the victim still loves the abuser. And there is no way of telling whether it will or will not happen again. There is no real way of knowing if this was a one time instance or a recurring thing, but both of them need to seek counseling and help to make sure that the other victim, that little girl, doesn’t suffer as well.

Dec 29

The 5 Be’s of Long Distance BDSM Training

long-distance-relationshipThe essence of BDSM often involves some training of some sort.  Long distance BDSM training IMHO is not that different from regular training, but that’s just my opinion. Many people lead very busy lives and there is nothing to say that if they did live in the same city they would see one another that much more often.  Personally, I have school, work, and a son.  These are just some lessons that I have learned along the way they are by no means exhaustive or complete but just a portion of the things I have learned.

  1. **Be Patient. **The number one lesson that I have learned in all of this is patience.  How to really be patient with another.  While sometimes I have been tempted to act unseemly for attention (I am an attention whore) I don’t because I would never do anything to bring ill looks upon my Trainer.  When people seem or encounter me I always want them to thing that I was trained/mentored well.  That is something that I strive for.
  2. **Be Honest. **Honesty and I don’t just mean with him but with myself.  I am honest enough to say that I am an attention whore and a cuddle slut.  I can admit that.  I have slut-like tendencies.  I know this as well.  Part of my training has focused on being able to admit those not so pleasant parts to myself and thus come to accept them.  This also goes back to patience.  Being an attention whore and admitting it allowed me to come to terms and be okay when he’s not giving me attention or giving someone else attention.
  3. **Be Real. **This may be a subset of being honest but I think that it always called for its own territory because I think this goes more into not just who you are but how you feel.  I think that this part of my training helped me to become one with my feelings and desires. I was able to express legitimately that I had desires and feelings about things that I am not comfortable expressing to other people.  I was real in a way that scared me because I had never been that honest/real with myself.
  4. **Be Vulnerable.**  This was/is the hardest one for me to master.  While patience takes the longest being vulnerable IMHO is the hardest.  To be emotionally vulnerable with a person that I hadn’t met (in person at the time) required a level of openness and submission that I wasn’t sure I was ready for but once I did it was eye opening and refreshing to really be able to be that way with someone to have someone care for me in that way and protect my feelings.  To learn it’s okay to cry.  And if necessary have someone to cry with.
  5. **Be Open. ** this kind coincides with being vulnerable but it’s kinda different.  I think this more is in reference to being open to correction, punishment, discipline, and change.  These are also the fundamentals of growth and change in a person. If one is not open to growth then one cannot change or do better than where one is.  If one is not open to discipline and correction, how can one expect to do better.  This is one of the fundamental lessons that I ended up learning rather early.

 

Oct 07

His Wife, His Whore, and the Mother of His kids

wedding_104

Almost year ago, I posted on Facebook.com that my fiancé wanted me to be “his wife, his whore, and the mother of his kids”.  Much to my surprise the amount of personal and moral outrage that I received from the female portion of the population.  There were several personal friends who congratulated me one this (no this was not his actual proposal); however, there were several former friends (even one who blocked me) who were personally and deeply offended that I relish in the thought of being his whore.

 

With all due respect, I don’t think it’s anyone’s right to judge what happens in another’s relationship. I don’t feel that anyone had a problem with his desire for me to be his wife and the mother of his kids, but apparently there is a problem with being a man’s personal whore. His slut. His all-encompassing fantasy. His concubine. His everything.  What is the problem with that? Have we become a society that is so hung up on words that we miss the very point of what it is that someone is trying to say?

 

Why can’t a woman be all three? Most people feel that slut shaming is appropriate and okay.  Slut-shaming is the act of making a woman feel guilty or inferior for being sexual, having one or more sexual partners, acknowledging and/or acting on sexual feelings by calling her a “slut” or any synonym of the word (via Wikipedia). Slut or slattern is a term applied to an individual who is considered to have loose sexual morals or who is sexually promiscuous. The term is generally pejorative and often applied to women as an insult or offensive term of disparagement, meaning “dirty or slovenly.” (via Wikipedia) “A slut is a person of any gender who has the courage to lead life according to the radical proposition that sex is nice and pleasure is good for you” (via TES). A slut is a person who has taken control of their sexuality and has sex with whomever they choose, regardless of religious or social pressures or conventions to conform to a straight-laced monogamous lifestyle committed to one partner for life. The term has been “taken back” to express the rejection of the concept that government, society, or religion may judge or control one’s personal liberties, and the right to control one’s own sexuality.

 

If whore is socially unacceptable then what is its socially acceptable counterpart?

  • In the GLBT community, queer is acceptable
  • In the black community, nigga is 50% acceptable
  • When is whore acceptable?

 

“I think all women in Hollywood are known as sex symbols. That’s what our purpose is in this business. You’re merchandised, you’re a product. You’re sold and it’s based on sex. But that’s okay. I think women should be empowered by that, not degraded.”  ~Megan Fox

 

Your sex is what you make it. If you choose to let someone degrade you based on it that is your choice. Just because someone calls you stupid doesn’t mean that you are.

Sep 20

Autumn’s Bookshelf: “Sugar Daddy” by Jon Bradbury

Sugar-Daddy-cover-artSimone White was just an average woman trying to make it in this economy.  When she was down on her luck and trying to find a way to continue to support herself, she came across an interesting job opportunity.  Sugar Daddy takes us on the journey as Simone finds out more about herself and her desires.

 

The plot was developed at a decent pace. However, some of the questions raised were not completely answered.  The characters were likable and they were very amiable people.  They come off as realistic and believable.

 

The overall speed of the story seems a bit slow and somewhat unfinished. I liked the direction that it was headed and the author had a good story arc going but I felt disappointed by the ending.  I wanted to read more.  Maybe that was his intent to have me come back for a second book; however, I don’t feel that it is a great stand alone.

 

I was pulled into Simone’s current situation and how she felt about her job choices.  While I don’t have experience as an escort, I could relate to how as a woman she felt about becoming one.  The book made me sympathetic to those who feel that they have to live that lifestyle but also made me hopeful that Simone was able to find something that she enjoyed doing, being in the company of someone powerful.

 

The story’s setting was very realistic. I appreciated the authenticity of how he portrayed the world in which the characters lived in.  I do not suggest this book for anyone who is not interested in interracial romance nor someone who has problems with women as professional escorts.

 

I would recommend this book over all. I do give it Three Leaves rating.  I think that as an impression, I would edit it some more and flesh out the plot; that would take this book from a good book to something great.3rating

Sep 16

Teenage pregnancy down according to CDC

082614-Health-CDC-Rates-of-Black-Teen-Pregnancy-Way-DownTeenage pregnancy rates have hit a thirty year low according to the CDC. However, this does not mean that sexual activity have decreased among those aged 14-19. Studies show that sexual activity has increased among teens while contraceptive use has also increased. The United States has the highest teen pregnancy rates among developed countries. Teenagers are being more responsible about their lifestyle choices. Teen pregnancy rates are still the highest in conservative, strong Christian based areas like the Bible belt in the South. More comprehensive sexual health education can lead to teenagers making responsible decisions about their lives whether to remain abstinent or engage in responsible sexual behavior. Overall still more that 50% of teenagers are still not engaging in sexual activity until at least 18. For more information see the CDC’s website.

Aug 29

Kama Sutra vs Tantra: What’s the Difference?

 

Often times I get asked, “what is the difference between kama sutra and tantra“. Quite honestly, that is a good question. Given the portrayal of them both in popular culture, it can be difficult to see the differences between them. They both involve some eastern philosophical approaches to sex and sexuality. They both are spiritual in nature of some sort. But the two are very different in practice. But how do they differ. Well let’s find out.couple-practicing-tantra-yoga-22400979

Kama Sutra is an old eastern philosophy that goes into the details of different positions that increase the chances of the woman to enjoy sex. Their book shows the details of each position. Kama sutra is more about the positions of sex and sexuality designed to facilitate enjoyment by both partners. “Sutra” itself means a collection. “Kama” pertains to sexual desires. More importantly it focuses on the superficial aesthetic enjoyment of sex.

Tantra is mid eastern that is more into the chakras or seven broad areas of the body that all of emotion and feelings go through. Tantra is a sacred spiritual sexual practice that involves more than just the physical but understanding the mental and emotional components that make up our sexual natures. In Tantra one learns how to please someone else through ways that are not focused on pure sexual pleasure but intimate connection. The Focus of tantra is NOT the orgasm but the connection between oneself, his or her partner, and the cosmos. Tantra is used as a guide to help people become more self aware and often used as a sacred spiritual practice by many Buddhists.

Jul 29

Autumn’s Bookshelf: “Maybe, Never” by Nia Forrester

297730294054682451_1361464087Tracy didn’t plan for her life to go the way that it did. She didn’t intend for things to come to that point, but when faced with an incredibly difficult situation, she had to ask herself who does she love more?

 

The plot to Maybe, Never is thoroughly developed. It is a sequel to the book Unsuitable Men by the same author.  All the questions concerning the relationship of the two main characters, Tracy and Brendan, generally were resolved. As a reader, I didn’t feel that I was missing anything. I didn’t feel incomplete.  As far as the character development, I didn’t care for the way that Tracy and Brendan are developed. I didn’t feel like their actions were always realistic.  I understand that fiction is just that fiction, however in some instances their actions seemed to lack a certain authenticity to them. I did however like how some of Tracy’s eccentricities pointed out the unrealistic expectations that women can place on their potential romantic partner.  That was an accurate portrayal of real life situations.  I did come to like the characters overall.  I couldn’t always relate to them but I could understand and empathize to their situation.

 

Romantically, there was good pacing in the relationship. Forrester chose a situation that many people can relate to from personal experience or knowledge of others’ situations, unplanned pregnancy.  While this was also the conflict of the story, it drove the plot forward to create the desired ending for the readers.  The author used real world parallels to build the characters’ universe.  Set in New York, she was able to replicate the fast pace lifestyle of the entertainment industry.

 

Overall, the pacing of the book was appropriate. I gave it Four Leaves. It was fast in some areas and slow in others. It read moderately evenly.  It is something that I could easily read again.  I think that this book hits home with romantic readers.  Those who love a heartwarming happy ending would like this book.  I would recommend this book to those who are looking for an easy reading novel that is good fireplace reading.  This is definitely a book to read on a cold, rainy day under a blanket by the fire.  While this was my first piece with Forrester, I look forward to reading more. I would recommend reading Unsuitable Men first as certain things will make more sense; however, it is not required, and the reader can generally make appropriate inferences without it.

4rating

Status update

Its national Masturbation Month… how will you celebrate?

Apr 22

Autumn’s Bookshelf: “The Ultimate Merger” by Delaney Diamond

2696c2800783f48bd0743102a07053b2The story was sweet, endearing, and lovely.  I found the book brief but to the point.  It left me wanting to read more and wanting to know what is next for the two main characters.  The plot was developed well and there were no glaring loopholes or gaps that needed to be fixed.  The characters were very believable and I liked them.  While I didn’t have a lot in common with them, I could still relate to them.

 

The romantic development between the two characters felt a bit rushed, but then what relationship is really perfect.  The book overall made me want to read it again and I wished there was more to the story (Thankfully, there is and I can’t wait to read that).  I enjoyed the dialogue and loved the language used in the book.  I didn’t see any glaring errors or any grammatical mistakes that needed to be fixed. I appreciated the end where the book tied into the next saga in the story.

 

The writing was very clear and fluid.  I enjoyed the descriptions. They weren’t repetitive or glossy.  The sex scene was four alarm sexy hot.  I loved it.  The fluidity of the prose and writing helped the story to flow from one scene to the next.

 

Overall, I give this book Four Leaves rating definitely a must read for romance enthusiasts.  For me, it wasn’t a page turner, I would have liked to see more conflict between the characters and a bit more development and complexity but I think we will see that in the next book.4rating

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