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  • Fun fantasy story

    This was a really funny story. Twisting many mythologies and supernatural creatures together (including a sort of sentient desk, yes a desk) Alexa Piper comes up with one of the funniest things that I have read this year. This is book three of The Fairvew Chronicles, a series that I really love and hope goes on for many books. So often fantasy series are terribly serious and it is great to see someone writing this kind of thing. Just a warning that there are relationships that are m/m in this series if that is not your thing. I can’t wait to read the next one. Meanwhile I am going to re read this one like I would a good movie to catch all the many little bits of business and mythological references that I missed the first time. I received a free copy of this book via Booksprout and am voluntarily leaving a review.

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  • An enjoyable read with Shakespearian vibes

    This was great fun! It's not an actual retelling of A Midsummer Night's Dream, though the Shakespeare vibes are strongly present. The humour, complications, over-the-top play of bewitchings and love polygons (I stopped counting the angles halfway through) were as enjoyable as the play this references. Erotic romance with a sense of humour is the best kind. I particularly liked the sense of joy permeating the book. We still live in a culture where any excuse to demonise love and sex is gladly seized, and where sex is still often portrayed as problematic, a source of shame or misery. As fiction needs conflict to exist, romance often plays on the idea that there is (or could be) something wrong about the relationships it portrays. It's not so common to read a book where the message is: go ahead, have fun, maybe you'll mess something up in the process but love and sex in themselves are not the problem, they're good things and why shouldn't you indulge? For instance, the story literally starts with a character summoning a demon, and saying, 'Hey, you're hot. While you're here, what about going to bed?' I just enjoyed the sense of unrestrained freedom that was carried through the whole book. Interestingly, the main character is supposed to have no greed in him (you have to read the first book in the series to understand what this is about, though this is otherwise a standalone book). That doesn't prevent him from enthusiastically lusting after the other lead. I liked this idea, that greed and libido should be construed as two completely different things, that having sex with someone has nothing to do with owning them or defeating them. It just added to the guilt-free pleasure of the whole. This is still an erotic romance novella, so, meant for entertainment, not careful intellectual reading. It's still really cool to read that sort of literature written by an author who manifestly has a very intelligent perspective on what she writes about.

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