Sunday, December 21, 2008

Shantage by N

by N
July 2007
Contemporary/ Erotica
Short Novella- 12,000 words

Translated by Nelli Rees

Buy it Phaze-$2.00

When Zina Pavlovna, the youngest Leitenant in the Moscow Police Investigation Bureau, is handed a case of sexual blackmail--shantage--involving an air-headed member of Russia's detested nouveau riche, Zina is less than impressed. But as she discovers, shantage can be a rewarding experience. Translated by Nelli Rees.

In my quest to review as many f/f books that are out there for those of us who like to read it, I’ve decided that I won’t be discriminatory about what I read, but to put out as much info through reviews no matter what the quality of story telling and writing is. With that in mind, I picked up Shantage because it’s one of the few books on Phaze with f/f in it. For what it is, it’s a pretty good story.

Zina, a police investigator, is stuck getting all the crappy assignments those with more experience the men don’t want. The latest case she has to deal got dumped with is a seemingly high class rich woman, Irina, who’s being blackmailed.

Irina is being blackmailed by someone who took a video of her giving a blow job to a bartender at her wealthy and influential husband’s birthday party. Zinna being a bit pissed an bored at having to deal with these kind of petty cases, listens with all the interest of a dead fish to Irina’s tales of what she’s been requested to do by the blackmailer, which includes being instructed to go to certain people and service them sexually, like a prostitute.

When Zinna finds out who is blackmailing Irina, tired of slaving for low wages and being treated like a second class citizen in the police dept., she makes a deal of her own with the blackmailer, getting to stick it to everyone, including the smug Irina in the bargain.

Shantage is mostly a pure erotica story as it’s basically one sexual account after another as told to Zinna by Irina of the jobs she’s been forced to go on from the blackmailer. All include f/f, in case you wish to know. What is interesting about this book is that even though I’d classify it as erotica, there is a story, which had a rather unique and intriguing twist to it. I kind of liked that Zinna manages to get some satisfaction over those who’ve looked down on her.

The sex is written fairly hotly, including the f/f bits. Although due to the fact that this story is very short, I felt some of the sexual escapades of Irina to be stilted and abrupt in the telling, which frustrated me. Or maybe it was because none of the characters, except for Zinna, really get satisfied except at the basest of levels. It’s not something to really complain about in erotica where emotions can’t be expected to come into play though.

Shantage is one of those books that are good for a quick f/f to read in between more substantial and sexually satisfying stories. I enjoyed N’s style of writing although it is a bit choppy in parts. But that could be from the translation as the author is Russian and it was written originally in Russian. Still though, for what it is, it’s a decent read. I’d still be willing to check out some more of N’s work.

Sex rating: Damp panties. Erotically written, but didn’t really get me going that much.

Grade: C-


kirsten saell said...

Um, dude, why is there a naked man-torso on the cover if the main characters are women and the smexing is largely f/f?

MB (Leah) said...

I KNOW!!! WTF. Actually there is m/f smexing, but most of it is f/f.

Believe me, I checked and rechecked to make sure it was the right book cover. And what's really odd is that there is NOT one male lead character and the only male who could be considered a very minor character is NOT a cop.

I was going to say something about it on the review, but I forgot.

kirsten saell said...

See now, that kind of pisses me off, because it's like a bait and switch. How many women who love hot policemen (and do not necessarily love f/f) are going to buy that book and be annoyed that the story and the sexx0ring don't meet their expectations?

Judging by the very brief blurb, the cover, and the vague "contains f/f content" at the publisher site, I would have assumed it was a het erotica with a smattering of f/f, not the other way around.

Why why why do they do this?

MB (Leah) said...

This is the first time that I've experienced that. And as a matter of fact, when I bought the book, I did read the blurb and the fact that there was f/f in it, but I kind of assumed by the cover that it was going to be mainly a m/f with some f/f in it.

But outside of the mention of the blow job, one sex scene is a f/f, then a man is part of it. And the next is strictly f/f. So really, I have NO idea where they came up with the idea to put a 1/2 naked cop on the cover.

It's not even remotely representative of what's in the book.

Seriously, you're right, it blows.