While I’ve been reading more and more erotica lately, I’m by no means an expert, and I’ve been very pleasantly surprised by how varied a genre it is. In the last, say, three months, I read The X Ingredient by Roslyn Sinclair, Party of Three by Sandy Lowe (the audiobook version, perfectly narrated by Lori Prince), Double Six by Brenda Murphy and now this one, The Good Girl by Madeleine Taylor. The only common feature between these four books is how hot they are. If I had to describe each of them in one word, beyond their sexy qualities, I’d say fun for the first one, light for the second one, BDSM for the third and tender for The Good Girl.
Madeleine Taylor’s first erotic novella loses no time in building tension. It begins with Emily Evans, a thirty-five-year-old sales manager from Arizona, walking down a New York hotel corridor to get to the room of a woman she met an hour before at the bar. That’s not who she is, as she keeps telling herself, and she’s excited and terrified in equal measure. The one-night-stand turns into two nights, then more, despite neither woman expecting anything serious to come of a few hours of really hot sex. And yet, very early in, it becomes rather obvious that the lust they share is some sort of prelude to a most unexpected love. Sometimes people just click. I know not everyone believes in instalust, let alone instalove, but neither bothers me when they’re written the right way. If I can feel the pull between the characters, I don’t care whether it’s instantaneous or if takes them eons to get together.
The story is told in first person, from Emily’s point of view, which enhances the mystery of the other woman and the thrill of the encounter. Emily’s life revolves entirely around her job, she has been sacrificing every thing else to advance her career. Her strict protestant upbringing means she’s also very used to keeping her emotions in check. She doesn’t miss having a love life, seemingly content with once in a while dating women she meets through apps. The compelling desire she experiences with this woman, the lengths she’s ready to go to to fulfil it, all of it is brand new to her.
This novella is beautifully written. I’ve noticed that I tend to comment on the writing more often with erotica than with other genres. While I can enjoy a romance even if the writing is just okay, I’m a lot more demanding with erotica. It’s too easy for sex scenes to turn tacky or sleazy. That’s not a problem with this book at all, however. The characters are intriguing, the pace is good – despite a slight slump leading to the last part, but nothing significant – and the story succeeds in being both steamy hot and sweet.
The ebook and paperback will be released on November 29th and can be pre-ordered already (link below), and an audiobook, narrated by Tessa Stavers, will follow soon.