Monday, December 21, 2009

Review- Thirteen Hours by Meghan O'Brien

Thirteen Hours
by Meghan O’Brien
April 22, 2008
Contemporary/ lesbian/ erotic romance
288 pgs. $12.-$16

Buy it Bold Strokes Books, Amazon, OmniLit

Can you fall in love in thirteen hours?

It's her birthday but lonely workaholic Dana Watts is at the office late, drafting a proposal. The very last interruption she expects comes in the form of the most beautiful breasts she has ever seen. These belong to an incredibly hot woman, who is standing in front of her, stripping to music.

Laurel Stanley performs strip-o-grams to pay her way through school. She has never encountered a more ungrateful recipient than Dana. The uptight project manager makes it clear that she is furious to be distracted from her work by the "gift" a colleague sent and equally appalled by Laurel's occupation.

After Dana is rude and insulting, and insists on escorting Laurel from the building, the two women take an elevator ride that changes everything. Stuck with each other for thirteen long hours after the elevator breaks down, they discover how wrong first impressions can be and how right two strangers can feel together.

Can everything change in less than a day? Dana and Laurel set out to discover if their passionate elevator encounter can mean more in this fast-paced, erotic story of lust, loneliness, fantasy, and desire.

Yeah, umm bottom line… this is an excellent story for one handed reading. I’ve been coveting this book for a long time and finally broke down and bought it. I liked the premise from the blurb and that part delivered.

It's not totally sex though, there's also an intense romance involved with all the “I love you’s” you want and promises of a committed future. However, Thirteen Hours is mainly the story of the sexual relationship between two very compatible women in that area. For what it is, it’s a fun, light read that skirted the edges of becoming tongue-in- cheek sexual romp but didn’t quite get into that territory.

The first part of this book was great. Uptight Dana, a workaholic who hasn’t had a date in years and only had sex once in her life, gets a strip-o-gram as a birthday present from her male co-worker friend. Oh she gets good and pissed as this strange, but gorgeous woman who’s mostly naked sits in her lap, her perfect breasts calling out to Dana. Of course she immediately pegs this woman as a slutty whore who doesn’t have two brains cells to rub together to have a decent, respectable job and she tries to shuffle her out of the building.

Laurel is that cliché of the good person stripper who dances to put herself through college. Of course she has a brain and not only just a brain, but a really smart brain since she’s just about done with her schooling to be a Veterinary Dr. She’s shocked at Dana’s reaction since she assumed that whoever paid for her to dance would have only sent her to a woman who likes women, since she only dances privately for women.

They get trapped in the elevator for, yes, thirteen hours and as they open up to each other they find both their judgments of each other are all wrong.

This part of the book was great. Laurel and Dana, being bored after a while, start playing truth or dare and some interesting things come out about each that tells a deeper story. Dana admits for the first time ever in her life and to herself that yes, she has been attracted to women, although she’s only been with one man.

And Laurel tells of her sad tale of her father walking out while her mother was dying. Their conversations and banter at that point are witty, a bit sarcastic and touching, which kept it interesting. Of course, as the night progresses and Dana becomes more comfortable with the knowledge that, yes, she does like women and yes, she is attracted to Laurel, things get really steamy.

After they get out of the elevator, they proceed then for the rest of the book to pretty much have non-stop sex. Some of it’s very amusing and lighthearted, which did keep me interested and kind of turned on. Both open up emotionally and I really did feel that they trust each other enough to go to some places that Laurel has fantasized about sexually as one of those fantasies is being submissive.

Anyone who reads my reviews knows I’m not that hot on the whole BDSM thing, but this particular fantasy was written in a really fun, and frankly, freaking hot way. There’s lots of spanking and ordering around, but it’s done in non serious way, more as role play, which I really liked. They go on to fulfill other fantasies as the story progresses with just minor outside story lines going on.

This is the downside of this book for me though. After a while, there’s really nothing going on except for a few minor glitches like a mini fight they have after moving in, to carry this story outside of the incredible sexual connection they have. There are some moments in between the sex in which they discuss how to proceed and suss out what each feels, not wanting to push but at the same time wanting each other really badly. Fortunately, this didn’t go the way of yak, yak, yak lets talk about our feelings all the time as some of these stories are wont to do, but it gave some brief intermissions from the sex.

I really don’t know much about either character other than what they’re like in bed and what they like in bed. There’s no story or plot going on, even though the author seemed to be trying hard to make this a romance. It is a romance, but developed strictly through the characters having sex with all their cooing and I love you’s and so on repeated over and over to let us know they love each other deeply.

I think Meghan O’Brien has great talent as a writer and she wrote this at a young age, so maybe her next books are more developed. The writing itself is very nice and the sex, damn, but she can write really erotic sexual scenarios. By the end though, I was totally bored with yet another sex scene and I walked away from this book thinking that I need to read a fantasy or some other sub genre besides contemporary because really, where could this story go to keep it interesting? I was craving something, anything outside of the sex to spark my interest or care about these two.

Still though, if you’re really in the mood for something hot and steamy that’s not too serious or gets into too much drama, Thirteen Hours will hit the spot. It’s also got a variety of sexual scenarios in it to satisfy anyone on some level and the love story part is kind of sweet and very prominent.

Sex rating: Orgasmic- many, many very hot, graphic sexual scenarios. Spanking, light D/s play, anal penetration with a strap on.

Grade: For the actual writing B+, for being a bit boring or even lack of story after a while, C


Anonymous said...

Sounds like a good read. I haven't read any f/f romance, but I think I'll have to give it a try.

MB (Leah) said...

Eyre! Whoa! You're jumping straight into the fire then, huh? No dipping your toes first with a mini bisexual story? :D

Heh, I guess if you're going to try a f/f might as well hold your nose, close your eyes and jump in to see if it's something you like or not.

I first got turned on to f/f by reading a f/f/m story, shocked that I liked it. But very quickly after, I jumped right in with straight up lesbian erotica. Pure lesbian is still not really my cuppa as much as bisexual stories or gay for you, but it's still appealing at times.

Anonymous said...

Well, I have read the Wolf Tales books by Kate Douglas. They do have f/f interaction, but they don't have actual f/f romance/relationship building. I think I'd like to see how that works for me.

Cathy in AK said...

...I walked away from this book thinking that I need to read a fantasy or some other sub genre besides contemporary because really, where could this story go to keep it interesting? I was craving something, anything outside of the sex to spark my interest or care about these two.

It sounds like this would have worked better as a novella. Or as you said, with more external conflict to sustain the novel-length. Hot sex/learning about yourself is nice, but there needs to be more for me. Hence *my* preference for sf/f or suspense or whatever over straight contemporary : )

Still, it sounds like the author has some talent worth watching for.

MB (Leah) said...

Cathy, I don't mind reading contemps, but really, it's seems hard to keep up a story unless something else is going on. If not, then it's relationship emo stuff and lots of sex.

I think in this case, yes, the story would have rocked if it were a novella with 1/4 of the sex scenes cut.