Georgette Kaplan has her own universe and it’s kinda freaky and exciting. You never know where she’s taking you, you just have to trust her. Just like Sarah has to trust Nina. Leave all expectations behind. Things are probably not going to happen the way you think they are.
The Woman at the Edge of Town begins like something out of The Addams Family then unexpectedly (well, not quite, as I’d read other reviews before reading this novel) veers into a very steamy sex scene. Add a touch of BDSM and it becomes a completely different book.
I’m going to digress a little here. I don’t read a lot of erotica but I enjoy it once in a while. Same with BDSM. The first book I read that touched on the subject was Kate Allen’s Tell Me What You Like. I was pretty new to lesfic at the time, and read mostly mysteries. I’m sure it would feel dated to someone reading it in 2019 but to me, in the mid-nineties, Tell Me What You Like was some sort of revelation. What I remember best about it is something Stacy (a murder suspect and a dominatrix) tells Alison (her love interest and the police officer investigating the murders): the best thing about being kinky is that you can still be vanilla whenever you feel like it. That’s one of the things I liked in The Woman at the Edge of Town. I’m not sure whether it was planned or part of the book’s identity crisis but I appreciated the back and forth in the relationship, how Sarah and Nina enjoy the domination / submission thing but are also very romantic. There’s this one scene where Nina is sad and Sarah reminds her of how love is the foundation of the relationship and the sex is a bonus. I love the way Kaplan wrote it and I don’t want to spoil so I’m paraphrasing but not doing a really good job. Go read it instead.
I liked how the lust between the characters was built up, the waiting and all that, and it worked perfectly. The love part was too rushed for me, I wasn’t totally convinced. Also, the ending was a bit abrupt and I still have so many questions, I’m left with so many untied loose ends… Yet despite its faults, I really enjoyed this book, even if it frustrated me quite a bit. I love Kaplan’s style, some of the sentences she writes are some of the best I’ve read and I wish I could remember them all.