Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Catalyst by S.L. Armstrong and K. Piet


I've been in a bit of a reading funk. The last three books I've attempted to read (excluding this one) have been DNF's for me, and that's bugged me. But I just couldn't finish the books. In one of them I actually got angry at a cheap plot device and put the book down. I have not reviewed the books because I don't think I can do so without coming off as a bitch. All three books were new-to-me authors, where either the author or the publisher sent me the book. But, the blurb on all three sounded interesting.


Catalyst was also sent to me by the publisher, and in this case the blurb made me cautious, as I do believe that for ethical reasons, a therapist or psychiatrist should not allow themselves to get involved with a patient. However, I decided to go ahead and give it a try, anyway.

As it turns out, the way the authors treated the therapist-patient relationship, and because it is the patient who is the Dom... the relationship didn't bother me as much as it normally would. Still unethical, but because of the circumstances I could still read and enjoy the book.

Here's the blurb:

Logan Walker has a problem. He has a blood fetish. A compulsion he can't seem to control. After almost killing his newest submissive, Logan decides enough is enough and he seeks help. Help happens to be in the form of an athletic, smart psychologist by the name of Dr. Kasper Bromley.

Kasper, though, soon finds himself swept up in the fantasies Logan came to him to control. Reluctantly throwing his ethics to the wind, Kasper submits himself to Logan, gambling his career, his future, and his heart on a man who craves his blood and submission.

The blurb describes less than half of the book, as the authors took things in a direction that I had not expected them to go.

Catalyst, for a short time, is about the physical aspects of fetish, kink, and BDSM. But then it transforms into being almost solely about the mental aspects. I can't say a lot more than that without giving spoilers.

I am not into blood play, not even a teeny tiny bit. But for the most part the blood play in the book didn't squick me too bad. It is talked about a good deal, but is not experienced in scenes very often.

Rating the BDSM elements is going to be tricky without giving spoilers, but I'll give it a try.

BDSM elements:
  • Bondage and Discipline: No major discipline, some bondage. 2 of 3
  • Dominance and Submission: Yes. Sort of, but it gets all screwed up. There is Dominance, but I'm not so sure about the submission part. 1 of 3.
  • Sadism and Masochism: Yes. 3 of 3, though some of it goes too far, even for me.
  • Extra Point: No
As for the writing elements: The plot was interesting with parts of it not being predictable. Pacing had some issues. I don't recall problems with the prose or dialogue. Character development was exceptionally well done.
  • Book Rating::8 of 10
  • BDSM Intensity Level: 6 of 10, but be aware the S&M is intense
  • Heat Level: 4 of 5

Catalyst was a nice change of pace. And it made me think. It is easy for a masochist to get addicted, the body makes some powerful drugs (endorphins), and I'm well aware of the process of trying to keep upping the ante without causing harm.



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