Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Marianne!: A Journey Round A Golden Sun by Simon Lowrie


Marianne!: A Journey Round A Golden Sun  is... different. For one thing, the voice is interesting, with lots of fun British sayings.

But mainly, it's different because it's not your typical erotica. There are no descriptions of sex, and very few blow by blows of punishments. There is a lot of telling, not a lot of showing, and almost all of the juicy stuff is left to the reader's imagination.

Let me try again. The story is one you won't find in a mainstream book. The story is pure erotica. But the telling of it is pretty mainstream. Very mainstream, and a bit literary.

To be honest, I think I'd have been happier knowing they had sex instead of assuming it. And I'd have been happier with some more descriptions of what happened in a normal day -- the rules, and the discipline needed. Most of the training is just jumped right over, so we go from the first day to almost-fully-trained with only a few paragraphs to describe what happened. Part of me wants to say it's a really good story that was only half-way told to us... but then another part of me has to respect the author for telling it in his own way. It's almost as if he's aware it's a sordid story and is trying to keep it as respectable as possible.

Also, the story moves along rather slowly, at first. And... I'm not sure when it takes place. At first I thought it was historical, but then I decided maybe it was present day and some of the words I'm not used to are just Brittish words, not necessarily historical words.  By the time I reached the end I'd decided it was probably closer to present day. Still, some of the actions and assumed morality seemed almost anachronistic, as if they don't belong in the present day. Other actions are firmly rooted in present day, though... so, that's where I ended up envisioning the story.

Here's the blurb:

Marianne and Simon have been more than friends since they were kids, but when she meets Mark, her whole life changes. It's not easy being spanked when you're not used to it, but although the two men in her life are rivals, the one thing they firmly agree on is Marianne needs her wild side tamed. Once she's had a taste of that kind of life, she's not sure she wants to argue. She loves them both, but Mark is not the kind of man to share. When he breaks the triangle, he makes her choose, at a cost to everyone. Can Sophie, the quiet girl who accepts Simon's discipline with absolute humility and never one word of complaint, save the day? She isn't beautiful and dazzling like Marianne, and the special qualities she has aren't on the surface, but her love for Simon goes past all limits. Shy and gentle though she is, perhaps Sophie's resolve to heal two broken hearts will prove to be more powerful than all Mark's dominance and strength...

BDSM elements:
  • Bondage and Discipline: There is a dream with some bondage, and we get the idea that there is a great deal of discipline, but we aren't shown much of it. 1 of 3
  • Dominance and Submission: Yes, a whole lot of both. 3 of 3.
  • Sadism and Masochism: You know... I really don't think so. I think it's all about the D/s. Well, with Simon and Sophie anyway. It could be more S&M than D/s with Marianne and Mark, come to think of it. 1 of 3.
  • Extra Point:  No.
As for the writing elements: The plot is a good one, pacing has some issues, prose and dialogue are exceptionally well done. Character development is... spotty. I mean, what we get of them is mostly well done, but there are four characters and I don't feel that I know any of them all that well. I know parts of them well enough, but knowing them inside and out? Not so much.
  • Book Rating: Marianne!: 8 of 10
  • Intensity Level: 5 of 10
  • Heat Level: 3 of 5
I've complained often enough about erotica authors who need to work on the craft. I've said that it's wonderful to be able to imagine a good story and characters, and great to have a good understanding of BDSM... but you've also got to be able to string sentences together grammatically in a way that is pleasing to read. Simon Lowrie has a beautiful writing style, I would even go so far as to say he's gifted when it comes to using words to get his point across. There are no issues with grammar here. It's also a well crafted story, and he does seem to have a decent idea of the dynamics behind D/s.  I'm knocking points off, though, because I wanted there to be more showing and not so much telling. So, an 8 of 10.  The intensity level, if we'd seen everything that happened, would likely have been an 8 or  9 of 10. But we must use our imaginations about much of what happened, so that brings the intensity level to a 5.

I am debating about whether I want to go back and read Mr. Lowrie's previous book, Journey Round a Darker Sun. If I do, it won't be right away. I enjoyed Marianne!: A Journey Round A Golden Sun, but I was also frustrated by the parts not shown.

The author has stated that he's considering writing a sequel so that we see what happens to the characters beyond the end of the book. I would like that, as I'm quite interested in hearing the juicy tidbits about how their lives continue. But that's just it... it's the juicy tidbits I want, not just an overall description of what happens next.

No comments:

Post a Comment