Friday, December 11, 2009

Review- Where Angels Dare to Tread by Leigh Ellwood

Where Angels Dare to Tread
by Leigh Ellwood
Contemporary/ f/f- bi
6.8K words- $1.29

Buy it DLP Books, Are/OmniLit

October’s Black Rose Festival comes to Dareville, along with a sexy party Carole Douglas can’t wait to attend. While she hopes to catch more than a few interested looks with her skimpy angel costume, meeting the enchanting Bella Reeve has her ready to turn in her halo. Will the town’s first Vamp Ball bring her love at first “bite”?

You all know how I’ve been bitching about really short books that suck brain cells for a ridiculous price? Well, I’ve been having a streak of really good short stories lately and just know something bad is going to happen. Having no choice really due to the fact that f/f is so rare to find and when I do, it’s usually a short story, I still keep risking it. I also feel that since I decided to do a blog to let others who like f/f know what’s out there and do some reviews, I do accept that it’s sort of my job to take it for the team often.

Where Angels Dare to Tread defies the usual and gives me hope that my bad experiences aren't the norm, but just bad luck.This story is such a fun, hot little ditty that I’m still enjoying the good vibrations after the fact.

The blurb kind of implies that this might be a paranormal, but it’s not. Apparently, and I did not know this when I bought the book, the town of Dareville is the setting of series of books by Leigh Ellwood. This is just one little stand alone story that takes place there and one doesn’t need to know the history to get what’s going on.

In this book, the town is celebrating a festival called Black Rose, which they created way back when a woman named Rose Smith was considered a witch during colonial times. Apparently, they all believed that animals and crops would die if she passed by. But instead of killing her, they let her leave town and everything turned back to normal. So they keep celebrating it every year to keep the town vibrant. And it usually happens around Halloween, which adds to the spooky ambiance of it all and gives a gothy backdrop for this story.

Carole is young, single and is looking forward to the main costume Vamp Ball, hoping to hook up with someone for a hot sexual tryst. During the day though, while manning a booth in the fair, she meets a beautiful women who captures her attention. Carole is basically straight, but has kissed her girlfriends often in bars doing the chick on chick thing to attract guys, but has never really thought about being really sexual with a girl.

Meeting Bella is making her think twice about that though, and she can’t stop thinking about her all day. While getting ready, she feels nervous, hoping to meet up with Bella at the ball, which of course is what happens.

Carole is such a fun character. Easy and light, she’s up for anything. But at the same time, it’s clear that she feels out of place in the ball, not knowing many people, which I thought a bit odd since she grew up there. All she wanted to do was find Bella and hang out with her, which in a way I liked because it made Carole seems less ditzy whorish then she could have come across if she were the belle of the ball. It’s clear she’s not normally a player, and maybe even a homebody, even if she does flirt with other girls to get guys.

This story is mainly written from Carole’s POV even though it’s not first person. We never get into the head of any other character really, so there’s not much about Bella other than that she comes across as a self confident women who’s a friend of the drummer in the band that played at the Ball. I have no idea if she’s a lesbian, or fools around with women here and there, what she does, anything about her past, where she lives normally, and yet, she’s a very, warm, friendly, likeable woman. She takes the lead in initiating the sexual encounter between her and Carole, which suggests that she’s experienced, but I kind of got off on her sexual ambiguity and lack of clear defining of who she is.

This story really is nothing more than a day in the life of these two women and one sexual encounter but the writing is so clean and crisp and was such a pleasure to read. In such a short space, I got just enough about these women to see that they do click. And the one sexual encounter is really juicy. They really go for it with each other.

Of course there’s no HEA here being as it’s more of short fantasy, but Carole does want to keep going with Bella and Bella seems to want that as well, so it’s left off as a HFN even if their future is not much more than carrying on some more at Carole's place when the book left off.

All in all, Where Angels Dare to Tread is a very satisfying little quickie that felt complete in itself. It’s a definite recommend from me if you want something short and sweet to hit the spot between those longer affairs.

Sex rating: Orgasmic- very steamy vanilla f/f.

Grade: A-

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