1 Star - Disappointing...
Book: The Schoolteacher and the Dom
Author: Ella Grey
Erotic Romance, BDSM
Nola Pryce didn’t expect much to happen over the Christmas holidays. She planned on spending it alone, eating too much chocolate and watching bad TV. She certainly didn’t expect Alex, a man with a secret that’s sure to change her life—if she lets it.
Alex Winchester runs The Black Rose Club with his business partner and friend Lilith Yee. It caters to every dark fantasy. But Alex is a Dom without a submissive, until he meets Nola. He invites her to The Black Rose Club Christmas party. A lot rests on this one night. Alex is giving Nola a choice. It’s up to her if she wants to say yes.
A more apt name for this book would have been The Schoolteacher Is the Domme. This book was a quick read, which is the only reason I actually powered through and finished it. The premise was cute - Alex is a Dom who owns a BDSM club and Nola is a teacher without much of a sex life. While Nola is out on a disappointing date, she meets Alex and he invites her to his club for a Christmas party.
The opening scene where Alex and Nola meet was fun and it seemed like a promising story, a hot short read. However, once we got to the actual interactions between Alex and Nola in the D/s context, it was sorely disappointing. There was no hot D/s sex, unless you want to consider Nola being the Domme and calling all the shots. Alex catered to her out of fear that she'd get overwhelmed and run away. While I totally get that fear of rejection and that even dominants have insecurities, it just totally takes away from the Alpha male image and his sex appeal. Being a little lenient for a first time can be forgivable and so I bravely read on hoping that it would get better.
It didn't get better. The rest of the book was just frustrating. This might be a bit of a spoiler... so SPOILER ALERT:
Alex tells Nola that he'd call her after she leaves the party, but then he decides that since he's the dominant and she the submissive, she needs to come to him and hence she needs to call him... so he sits by the phone and waits for her to call. (What a dominant thing to do...) Nola, on the other hand, takes Alex at his word, that if he says he'd call, that means he'd call... right? So, he waits a few days more than he should and then finally realizes that when he says he'd call and then doesn't call it looks like he's untrustworthy and, uh, stupid for thinking she'd just call him instead because she somehow needs to telepathically understand that being submissive means she needs to come to him (WHAT????), so he picks up the phone and is so very surprised when Nola is pissed because he made her wait so long. Ummm... if you got confused with this brilliant logic, then you're not alone.
I still don't understand where Alex found this rule about submissives needing to come to the Dominants... Or how it would take away from the Dominant's alpha status if he pursues what he wants, i.e. submissive he finds appealing (in this case). Isn't that one of the traits we find so hot in a Domly Alpha type? Assertive. Persistent. Stubborn. Strong-minded. Confident enough to put themselves out there. Willing to go after what he/she wants? I mean, a sub can be all these things too. Obviously. But we're talking about this silly fictional rule, so.... as long as he's not stalker-level crazy, pursing a sub he wants would not take away his domliness. Or do I live in an alternate universe?
The bottom line is that the story just wasn't as strong as I would have liked. There were some holes in logic that I couldn't get past and the sex and BDSM that was promised was very lacking in hotness for me. It might be hot for someone who likes their Doms to be mild and accommodating. However, I just don't think there was an accurate portrayal of a good D/s interaction here, unless the main characters reversed roles and forgot to tell the readers.