Monday, August 30, 2010

Deviations: Submission by Chris Owen and Jodi Payne

I'm re-reading the Deviations series in preparation for the release of the fifth book, Deviations: Safe Word.

It's been a while since I read Deviations: Submission, and I was a bit nervous about reading it again. I loved it when I first read it, I've compared other books to it, and I've been disappointed when other books did not live up to the Deviations series. What if a re-read isn't as good as the original read? What if I've become jaded and it's no longer the book I remember it? That would have been so disappointing.

Thankfully, after a re-read, I still consider this one of the best BDSM stories I've ever read. Or rather, the beginning of one of the best BDSM stories, and I look forward to a re-read of books two through four.

I am reminded of the descriptions used, and how I emailed some phrases from the book to my husband when I first read the book. Phrases like:

"...Tell me, do you get off on the pain itself, or is it the surrender?"

"Both, though it's more the surrender, sir." Noah licked his lips. "The pain is a present, active reminder that someone else is in control..."

I had tried to explain to him before how, even when one is not getting off on the pain, one can get off on the control implied by the pain. I had spent too many words trying to explain that, and then there it was.. all concise and stuff, "Pain is a present, active reminder that someone else is in control". Beautiful.

The Deviations series speaks to me on so many levels, is it possible I enjoy it so much because of the type of control Tobias wields? Because of the way Noah expresses his submission? Yes, I suppose so, but I'd like to think it's because of the character development, and because of the intensity of the emotions that are explored. Oh, and because of the quite accurate descriptions of so much of the physical stuff, too. Mmmmmm.

I've put the Deviations series into the Realistic BDSM category, even though the club they belong to is all fantasy, as is Tobias' playroom. But the rest? The meat of the story? It paints a fairly realistic picture of one type of BDSM relationship. 

Here's the blurb:

Tobias is a skilled Dom, able to bring even the most hesitant submissive around. Noah is a man in need of just that. He wants to sub badly, but has yet to find someone he believes can take him where he needs to go. Through a series of encounters in the world of bondage and discipline, Noah reveals why he has trouble trusting, why he needs such a firm, steady hand. Tobias may allow himself to dominate, but he has trouble letting himself love. Still, Tobias can't resist Noah's charms, and the two of them set about making a scene for themselves, one that works for them and their unique set of problems. They learn to love, but can they stay together while they explore each others' secrets, in a world where all is laid bare and emotions run high? 

BDSM elements:
  • Bondage and Discipline: Oh yes. Very yummy discipline, too. 3 of 3.
  • Dominance and Submission: A very sexy Dom who is Topping a sub who wants to be taken places.  Perfect.  3 of 3.
  • Sadism and Masochism: Tobias is a Sadist, but he's a caring Sadist. I know, sounds like an oxymoron, but it isn't.  Noah has a masochistic streak, but he's not into heavy pain. He loves to be made to fly, though. And Tobias is great at making him fly. Tobias is also good at making the Discipline be truly Discipline when it needs to be. 3 of 3.
  • Extra Point: Yes, the BDSM is an intricate part of the book and the series.
As for the writing elements: the plot seems fairly simple in book one, but I know that book one is a set up for a much more complicated plot later in the story. It's a beautiful plot, and I enjoyed reading Deviations: Submission again, and watching all of the pieces be oh-so-carefully laid so they would be in place for later books. The pacing is perfect, prose is very well done, dialogue is great (complete with comic moments and relaxed conversation as well as formal scene conversation).  I can't say enough about the character development, it is really well done.
  • Book Rating:: 10 of 10
  • BDSM Intensity Level: 10 of 10
  • Heat Level: 5 of 5
Sometimes picking up a favorite book really is like visiting with old friends.

1. Deviations: Submission
2. Deviations: Domination
3. Deviations: Discipline
4. Deviations: Bondage
5. Deviations: Safe Word (due out in September 2010)


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