My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Title: Asking for It
Author: Lilah Pace
Series: Asking for It, #1
Date: June 2, 2015
“This is who I am. This is what I want. Now I need a man dangerous enough to give it to me.”
Graduate student Vivienne Charles is afraid of her own desires—ashamed to admit that she fantasizes about being taken by force, by a man who will claim her completely and without mercy. When the magnetic, mysterious Jonah Marks learns her secret, he makes an offer that stuns her: they will remain near-strangers to each other, and meet in secret so that he can fulfill her fantasy.
Their arrangement is twisted. The sex is incredible. And—despite their attempts to stay apart—soon their emotions are bound together as tightly as the rope around Vivienne’s wrists. But the secrets in their pasts threaten to turn their affair even darker…
Reader Advisory: Asking for It deals explicitly with fantasies of non-consensual sex. Readers sensitive to portrayals of non-consensual sex should be advised.
I was hesitant when this book was offered to me to review. The focus on rape fantasies disturbed me and I was not sure I would be able to read the book. I agreed to try it and then let it sit unread for weeks. That was a mistake.
Once I actually started the book, I was totally engrossed. The writing is excellent and the sex scenes are amazing. I mean really amazing.
Although Vivienne cannot get off without the fantasy of forced sex, it is just a fantasy. She and Jonah negotiate what is and is not allowed and even have a safe word. It reads more like a D/s scene than anything else. There is even a reference to that.
Eventually, Vivienne and Jonah begin to develop a true relationship, not just a sexual one. They both have secrets in their pasts that they are trying to overcome. Vivienne is seeing a therapist and I really think Jonah should as well.
I really liked the subplot involving Vivienne and her therapist. Vivienne thinks she needs to be “fixed,” but her therapist is more interested in getting her to accept herself. I hate books that imply there is something wrong with a person if they have a sexual kink.
This book was a five star right up to the ending. There isn’t one . . . an ending, I mean. There is not a cliffhanger, but the relationship is unresolved. The second book, Begging for It, is due out in September and I have already preordered my copy. I tweeted the author and she has assured me there is not a cliffhanger ending in it.
This really is an amazing book and I cannot wait for the sequel. Don’t let the content warning keep you from it. If you enjoy darker books, this is definitely something you should read.
This book was sent to me by NetGalley in return for an honest review.