Monday, 8 July 2013


           My Year of Submission
Pages: 244
Date: 08/07/2013
Grade: 4.5
Details: Non-Fiction
            Received from Black Lace

“I can, without hesitation, thoroughly recommend nipple clamps.”

When Kelly, a twenty-six year old adult literacy teacher, meets Alex the attraction between them is instant. But even on their very first date it becomes clear that Alex isn’t like the men Kelly has dated before. He tells her to wear something red – a request (or is it an order?) she ignores - orders her drink for her without asking what she wants and shows her what happens to girls who don’t do as they’re told as soon as they get back to her house. A spanking isn’t what Kelly was expecting at the end of her first date and she knows she should put a stop to it, but:

“…and as much as part of me wanted to jump out of his grasp and demand he leave, my body was a purring kitten under his touch, she wasn’t going anywhere. My inner slut was well and truly taking over.”

It is on subsequent date that Alex explains to Kelly that his passions are far from what is considered regular. He is into BDSM, wants to dominate the woman he is with and needs her to submit to him. Kelly is confused about what he has told her and doesn’t really know what any of it means but:

“I couldn’t lie to myself: I was intrigued. I wanted to know exactly what he had in mind, to experience the secrets his words hinted at.”

A visit to a local fetish club and talk with the professional Dominatrix she meets there, clarify some aspects of this lifestyle for her but no amount of watching or talking can prepare her for the things she will experience once she decides that she does want to explore this world. Her attraction to Alex is too strong and her curiosity has been aroused by the way she reacted to that first spanking. And after her first full play session with Alex she has to admit that:

“Even if I never saw Alex again, I knew I wouldn’t be the same person, at least sexually, as I had been before I stepped into that bedroom.”

It isn’t long before both Kelly and Alex have to admit that what they are experiencing is more than just sexual attraction and compatibility. Kelly falls completely under Alex’ spell:

“The way he could switch from being the perfect gentleman to looking at me like he could strip my clothes from my flesh with just the force of his gaze made my mouth go dry.”

But their relationship and growing feelings don’t leave the far more experienced Alex unaffected either:

“…I feel like I’m losing myself in you. I was planning on keeping the orgasm denial going until tomorrow but as soon as I was inside you, I lost all thought. It was remiss of me.”

But just as it seems that Alex and Kelly have found their way to happiness, a blast from Alex’ past emerges to throw a spanner in the works; a spanner of such magnitude that it may just put an end to Kelly’s happiness and newly discovered pleasures.

As you may have noticed, I’ve been reading a lot of erotic books lately. And quite a few of those books had stories about a character being somewhat sexually frustrated for reasons they couldn’t identify, meeting someone who turns out to be into BDSM, recognises their need/want and sets out to seduce them and introduce them to the pleasures of submission.

The story in this book runs along those lines as well. Except that it isn’t a story that sprung from someone’s imagination. No, according to the cover this is “a real-life erotic romance”. While reading this book I couldn’t get over how much fact – or real life if you will – imitates fiction. And then I had to give myself a good face-slap. Fact imitating fiction? I don't think so. It is far more likely that the people who wrote the erotic novels I have been reading and enjoying actually knew what they were writing about and got it so right that by the time I read a factual account of submission I had a hard time remembering that it wasn’t fiction.

This book reads as easy as a good work of fiction does. The story is as gripping and as hot as any work of erotica should be while the characters - well they aren’t really characters of course since this isn’t a work of fiction - are fascinating. In fact it is because this book isn’t fiction that the story is so intriguing. While Kerry does resemble a lot of the newly submissive characters you find in novels, Alex is a bit more realistic than most Doms you find in erotic fiction. He’s no billionaire for starters and does make mistakes, can’t always keep his Dom persona up and is as vulnerable as Kerry when the relationship is under threat. And, more importantly, he’s not afraid to share those mistakes and doubts with Kerry.

This book fascinated me as did Kerry. I loved everything she discovered about herself and how she continued to explore her boundaries even while questioning herself.

“And so there was another line crossed, and yet more territory he had conquered.”

I smiled when Anna, the Dominatrix gives Kerry some literature to learn more about BDSM: “The Story of O” and “Exit to Eden”; two works of fiction I’m well familiar with and which do, indeed, provide a lot of insight into the lifestyle.

I think this is a wonderful book for anyone who has been reading erotic novels and, like me, has found themselves wondering how realistic they actually are. This book does prove that the line between fact and fiction, like the one between pain and pleasure, is indeed a very fine one.

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