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'07 Authors Insider Tips

by Louisa Burton
Formatting Your Manuscript
Scams / Choosing an Agent
Pitching Your Novel...
From The Call to Published...

Hard Business
From Greg Herren
Who Is Telling This Story?
It’s Work, Not A Hobby
Where Ideas Come From

Sexy on the Page
With Shanna Germain
Plotting Erotic Fiction
Seducing Your Muse
Creating Characters...
Description, Action & Dialogue
Fucking on Paper
Ten No-Nos of Erotic Fiction
Climactic Moments: First Draft
Critique Groups
Revising Your Erotic Story
Finding the Perfect Markets...
Just Submit Already
Rejections and Acceptances

Two Girls Kissing
With Amie M. Evans
Verb Tense Confusion
Coming Up with Story Ideas
Attend a Writers’ Conference
The Fundamentals of POV
Should I Sign That?
Etiquette for Authors
Erotica is Serious Work
No Body Writes for Free...
Shameless Self Promotions
The Myth of Writer's Block

The Write Stuff
From Ashley Lister
The Time is Write
The Beautiful People
A Book by Any Other...
Synopsis: the Necessary Evil
Erotica or Porn?
Feedback Whine

2007 Smutters Lounge

Ashley Lister Submits
by Ashley Lister
What's it like being a writer?
An Apology to Salespeople

Get All Worked Up
With J.T. Benjamin
About Secrets
The Perfect Fuck
About Choices
The Age of Consent
The Kingmaker
Kids and Sex
The Price of Beauty
The G.O.P.
All Worked Up About Hate
Real Men

Pondering Porn
With Ann Regentin
Good Sex: A Physics Lesson
Meet Frankenstein
Thoughts on the Orgasm Gap
The Very Bloody Marys
The Doomsday Erection
Online Threesome Porn

Riding The Storm
by Sydney Croft

Book Review by Lisabet Sarai

Riding the Storm by Sydney CroftHaley Holmes is a smart, non-nonsense young woman who works as a "parameteorologist" for the mysterious ACRO—Agency for Covert Rare Operatives, investigating mysterious weather phenomena. Unlike the electric-charged Annika, the ghost communicator Creed, and many of ACRO's other Special Ability operatives, Haley doesn't have any paranormal talents.  However, she's got what she needs for her current mission: to track down and seduce Remy Begnaud, and convince him to join forces with ACRO, before the evil opposition agency Itor gets hold of him. She's gorgeous, tough, single-minded, and due to a rough family history, she's not likely to be distracted by incidentals like love.

Unlike Haley, Remy is blessed—or cursed—with a highly unusual capability, the power to control weather and summon storms. His power is linked to his sexuality. Heavy weather brings on unbearable, insatiable arousal. Meanwhile, when he gets horny, clouds gather and thunder roars. Remy doesn't understand his talent, and can just barely manage it. It has made him a misanthropic loner and isolated him from most women, who can't handle the force of his lust.

When Remy and Haley meet, sparks fly, and I'm not just talking about lightning here. As you might predict, each tries to get the better of the other, all the while enjoying wild, extravagant sex that would wear out normal mortals. Meanwhile, despite Remy's suspicion and Haley's cynicism, they find themselves falling in love. They find that they have matching tattoos, a fist clutching a lightning bolt. As they race to escape the inhumanly cruel forces of Itor, they discover that they are psychicly linked, and can communicate and make love even when they are separated.

If you think that the plot outline above sounds somewhat over the top—a erotica version of X-Men, perhaps—you're not completely wrong. Nevertheless, RIDING THE STORM is great fun. The book is vivid, lively, well-written, sexy and romantic. Haley and Remy have enough flaws and idiosyncracies to be interesting, even though they're in some ways typical romance protagonists. Both their conversations and their sexual interactions crackle with energy. The authors (Sydney Croft is the pseudonym of a pair of writers) turn the metaphor of sex as hurricane into literal reality, to excellent effect. Remy's shack in the bayou is a wreck after the storm has passed, after Remy and Haley have fucked each other into oblivion: windows shattered, door torn off its hinges, branches littering the floor. Remy and Haley are a mess too, muddy, bruised, bleeding, but just aching to start again.

The book even pokes a bit of fun at romance clichés:

"Something in her expression must have betrayed her, because he reached out, cupped her cheek. An instant, sizzling spark arced between them, and she knew he felt it too, because his eyes flashed with confusion and annoyance.

'I'll take care of you.'

He swallowed her protest with a kiss, like he thought she'd swoon and follow him anywhere just because he could do things with his mouth that were probably illegal in this god-forsaken state.

Of course, when he slipped his tongue inside her mouth, tasting of toothpaste, she did sort of melt against him. Her body went all pliant and hot, and her mind went all blank and dizzy.

She swooned, dammit."

Haley and Remy are not the only ones getting laid in this novel. Creed manages to seduce the prickly Annika, who is still a virgin because she tends to emit fifty thousand volts at the moment of orgasm. And Dev, the blind psychic who is the head of ACRO, seeks relief from the memories of his true love in the flesh of his assistants and friends.

The couplings among these characters serve as counter-point to Remy and Haley's passions. However, the various sub-characters and subplots are never integrated into the main story. Creed and Annika are investigating a haunting in Dev's childhood home, which may reveal the mystery of his history and identity. However, the authors don't tie up these threads. Dev, Creed, and Annika become minor subcharacters as they join the final battle against Itor. This sloppiness in plotting made me suspect that the other sex scenes were added just to heat up the book and provide some sexual variety, or else that the authors hit a deadline and didn't have the opportunity to play out their other ideas. It's a shame, because Creed and Annika are strikingly original characters.

Another weakness in the book is some muddiness about the nature of Remy's power. Storms cause him to become uncontrollably horny; on the other hand when he's aroused he can summon storms. There seems to be a circularity or logical inconsistency here.

However, in the final analysis, one should not read RIDING THE STORM for the plot or the premise. Read it for the sizzling, believable sex scenes which don't get boring even though there's hardly a single kink; for the vivid descriptions of Cajun country; and for the old-fashioned satisfaction of seeing true love triumph.

Lisabet Sarai
November 2007

Riding The Storm by Sydney Croft
(Delta; August 28, 2007; ISBN-10: 038534080X)
Available at:  / Amazon UK

© 2007 Lisabet Sarai. All rights reserved. Content may not be copied or used in whole or part without written permission from the author.

About the Author:
Lisabet Sarai has been writing ever since she learned how to hold a pencil. She is the author of three erotic novels, Raw Silk, Incognito, and Ruby's Rules; co-editor, with S.F. Mayfair, of the anthology Sacred Exchange  (Blue Moon); and editor of Cream, the Best of the Erotica Readers & Writers Association. 
Visit her website, Lisabet Sarai's Fantasy Factory for more information and samples of her writing.
Join Lisabet's List on Yahoo for exciting chat, contests, and up-to-date information on publications and events:

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'07 Book Reviews


A for Amour / B for Bondage
Review by Ashley Lister

Best Women's Erotica '07
Review by Ashley Lister

The Butcher, The Baker...
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C is for Coeds
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Cream: The Best of ERWA
Review by Ashley Lister

Cream: The Best of ERWA
Perceptions by Cervo

Coming Together for the Cure
Review by Lisabet

Review by Ashley Lister

F is for Fetish
Review by Ashley Lister

Got a Minute?
Review by Ashley Lister

He's on Top
Review by Ashley Lister

Love on the Dark Side
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Lust: ...Fantasies for Women
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The Mammoth Book Vol 6
Review by Lisabet Sarai

Naughty Spanking Stories
Review by Ashley Lister

Quickies 1
Review by Angelika Devlyn

She's on Top
Review by Ashley Lister

Sixteen of the Best
Review by Ashley Lister


Amorous Woman
Review by Lisabet Sarai

The Boss
Review by Angelika Devlyn

Burning Bright
Review by Lisabet Sarai

Call Me By Your Name
Review by Lisabet Sarai

Review by Lisabet Sarai

Review by Ashley Lister

Dark Designs
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Equal Opportunities
Review by Lisabet Sarai

Review by Angelika Devlyn

Review by Angelika Devlyn

Gothic Blue
Review by Ashley Lister

Review by Ashley Liste

The Lords of Satyr: Nicholas
Review by Helen E. H. Madden

Love Song of the Dominatrix
Review by Angelika Devlyn

Review by Angelika Devlyn

Riding the Storm
Review by Lisabet Sarai

The Silver Collar
Review by Ashley Lister

Review by Ashley Lister

Suite Seventeen
Review by Ashley Lister

Sweet as Sin
Review by Angelika Devlyn

Tiffany Twisted
Review by Lisabet Sarai

Top of Her Game
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Whalebone Strict
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Wife Swap
Review by Gary Russell

Wings of Madness
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Gay Erotica

Historical Obsessions
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Homosex: 60 Years of Gay...
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Dirt for Art's Sake
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Entangled Lives
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