Thursday, January 5, 2012

Reviews of Marie-Elise Bassett Songs of Sappho Books

Over the holidays there were lots of book sales going on. One of them was at All Romance Ebooks wherein for a lot of their stock you’d get 50% back in ebook bucks. I like to buy cheaper books and then use my bucks to buy more expensive books when they build up.

I hadn’t been there for quite a while and did some looking. I wanted to get a few new-to me authors. I came across the books of Marie-Elise Bassett and one of them looked good to me. It’s an f/f set in Regency period and I’m kind of aching for anything but contemporary at the moment. It was only $.99 and even though it’s around 7K words, I thought if it sucked I wouldn’t be too pissed. 

Each book is only $.99 so they’re so easy to buy. :D
Currently they’re offering ebook bucks rebate on these books at ARe so even cheaper!

All books by Marie-Elise Bassett

Lily In Bloom (Songs of Sappho 1)
Oct 17, 2011
7K words, Musa Publishing

Lovely widow Lily Winslow isn't happy with her life. She longs for travel and adventure, but lacks the courage to leave her brother's home. Her brother wants her to marry a local squire, but Lily never liked being married. She especially disliked sharing her husband's bed and believes herself frigid. When Lily discovers a mutual attraction to her brother's governess, Emmaline, she undertakes a sensual journey which will bring all her dreams within reach.

 MA's  Review of Lily In Bloom

My Lady’s Service (Songs of Sappho 2)
Nov 1, 2011
8.5K words, Musa Publishing

When Lady Kate's parents make a match for her, she is horrified to discover that her new bridegroom is very rich and very old. The only person who can calm her fears is her maid, Hannah. Hannah sets out to teach her young mistress how to pleasure herself, but receives more in return than she ever expected.

A Sweet Revenge (Songs of Sappho 3)
Nov. 11, 2011
11 K words, Musa Publishing

Helen, Lady Hammersly is ready for a change. Helen knows she wants more from life than simply doing good works and trying to redeem the family honor after her husband’s public infidelity with his mistress. What she really wants is Jane, her husband’s cousin. She wants Jane in her bed and in her life forever. But does she have the courage to claim the life she wants?

The Food of Love (Songs of Sappho 4)
Dec. 11, 2011
13K words, Musa Publishing

Minerva Beverly knows better than to want what she can't have. After rejecting her father's plans for an arranged marriage, she takes a position as the literature instructor at a girls academy When overcrowding forces her to take a roommate, the gorgeous music teacher Isabella Korolli, the temptation to touch grows too strong. Minerva is willing to risk it all to discover if music really is the food of love.

This one was my favorite. There’s a really nice build up in the tension between these two before they hit the sheets. And Minerva has the characteristic of aching for something she’s never had, knowing she’s a lesbian but not knowing if Isabella is really sending the signals that’s she’s into women herself. There’s just a kind of sweet and vulnerable dance between them.

Bound by Fortune (Songs of Sappho 5)
Dec. 30, 2011
10.7 K words, Musa Publishing

Someone has stolen a famous diamond necklace and all clues point to an infamous jewel thief known as the Magpie. Widow Hermione Dunnaby thinks it’s the most exciting thing that ever happened to her—until she finds Perdita Blakemoor climbing through her window in the dead of night. Although Hermione isn’t completely convinced by Perdita’s protestations of innocence, she agrees to help uncover the thief.

Will Perdita and Hermione find the missing diamonds? Or will they find something else they've both been missing--and never dared to search for?


I read that first book, loved the writing style and story even if there were some things that bothered me so I got the other 4 books in the series. Apparently she’s writing short stories for this series one to come out every few weeks.

I immediately read all of them in the row and I absolutely love them and am kind of addicted to them now. I decided to do a group review because they are fairly formulaic with variations on the story of two women coming together sexually and romantically. Basically they’re all about a first time lesbian experience for one of the women, often one who is widowed or betrothed or is a spinster due to being a lesbian.

In all of them the women easily go for it even if it’s a shock to one party and I got off on that. The sex is very erotic. In each story there’s a bit of a build up to the relationship between the women, a nice dance around each other and then the sex. It’s often an erotic seduction by the more experienced woman. There’s something very soft in the way the sex is written as well.

Each story flowed nicely and felt fairly complete with a happy ending, often with circumstances that allow the women to stay together. And even though formulaic, they are still each very unique with compelling characters. For some I think the stories might be too short. For sure, I’d love a much longer book by this author. I’d scoop it up in a heartbeat. But because she’s got several stories out I felt in some way very satisfied.

I rather enjoyed the whole historical flavor to them as well. I’m really not knowledgeable about mores of the Regency period or language that would be used, or conditions under which women would have had their own possessions or be forced to marry, but it rang authentic enough to me for me to really enjoy them as historicals.

The only negative for me was some word usage. I’m not fond of nubbin or muff but the author did try to mix it up and didn’t use those words exclusively.

I actually can’t wait for the next one to come out. I like that they are quick, hot, entertaining reads.

Heat level- 4 on all the books. Erotically written but not extremely explicit.

Grade: Loved 


Katey said...

I juuuuust saw a review of the third book and thought this series looked awesome. I built up a ton of those book buck things over the hols. Thanks for that, you totally made up my mind. :D

M.A. said...

Goodness, I just read the first few pages of "Lily in Bloom." The author's voice is enchanting and has a delightful, authentic tone. Looking forward to the read. : )

LVLM(Leah) said...

Katey- What's nice about these books is that you can try any one of them and it's not going to break your bank or piss you off if it's not really your taste.

MA- I'm very curious as to your take on this writer when you read one. I thought she wrote fairly authentic historicals however, you are far more expert and can judge them more accurately.

I just enjoyed them as they are. And I like how the author wrote two women together. I hope you do enjoy it.