2014 Reading Challenge: Erotica - Part 2

All right, we're at the halfway point as erotica newbies Elissa and DJ read Elisa's pick, The Siren by Tiffany Reisz! If you're new 'round these parts, this experiment is part of our 2014 Reading Resolution — to read outside of our comfort zones! We kicked things off last week with erotica. So, how are our BDSM erotica newbies faring? Do they want to hug or punch Søren? Let's find out ....


Elissa's thoughts:

Well! My, my, my. I'm halfway through The Siren and I've been surprised by a few things:

1. There's not so much sex. The sex there is, however, hoo boy! I was reading The Siren on the train the other day and I had to keep moving my ereader away from the snooping man sitting next to me. Not sure you're ready for Søren, good sir. 

2. Søren is pretty jerky! So I haven't read 50 Shades or Sylvia Day's Crossfire trilogy or any of the other super popular BDSM titles — hence the experiment — so I don't know if this is normal. But man do I kind of want to punch him square in the nose. It's really interesting to me because in some ways he's the classic romance hero — minus his, uh, profession — he's tall and handsome and forceful and people admire him, and he adores Nora above all others. (Though is that necessarily a good thing?)

It's a neat trick that Tiffany pulls off, with Wesley and Zack being so out of the scene, we can see things through their naive eyes, and they provide an introduction to this dark world that Nora and Søren rule over.

I've worked at RT for so long that even though I don't necessarily read much erotica, I'm not necessarily shocked by the content. I'm like, 'Oh, and then he flogged her or whatever.' But to hear Wesley categorize what Nora goes through in her relationship with Søren as abuse is eye-opening, especially when he beats the crap out of her. But she likes it! What to think, what to think.

Basically, this book is a lot meatier than I thought, and as I actually "meet" Søren, I think a serious case of the Feels is coming on. Though I still do want to punch him in his perfect nose. 

DJ's thoughts:

Wow. Just wow. There is so much more to this book than the erotic content and I was not prepared for how emotional the story would be. Nora is a feisty and surprising character, one I love more and more as the story continues. Her banter with Zach is enjoyable and the strong contrast between the two of them is beautiful. I'm not sure what to make of Nora's relationship with Wesley, though. I don't really understand their connection, but I'm assuming there'll be some sort of backstory introduced later to provide a solid foundation for them. And I really don't see the Søren's appeal at all. Major creeper in my opinion. I also keep wondering where Nora's literary agent is in all this, particularly in regards to all the talk about Nora's contract with Zach's publisher. Still, the writing is blowing me away and I love how Tiffany dives into the psychological nature of a D/s lifestyle. So far, this is an A+ book for me.

Elisa's reaction:

I'm still laughing at DJ wondering where Nora's literary agent is. I feel like a sci fi nerd reassuring a skeptical scientist that "This is science FICTION, it doesn't have to be entirely accurate." I love it when other people read books I love and bring things to my attention that I never even thought about!

I also love that you both dislike Søren. He is such a tool in this story, but defintiely redeems himself in The Angel. But despite your dislike for the hero, you're both still enjoying the book, which makes me happy. Keep reading!

There you have it, folks! Are you reading along with us? Have you already joined Team Søren or Team Wesley ... or Team Zach or Team Nora? Let us know below! And check back next week as we finish The Siren. In the meantime, for more steamy tales, visit our Everything Erotica page.