Pamela's Reviews > Dream Lover: Paranormal Tales of Erotic Romance

Dream Lover by Kristina Wright
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May 25, 11

bookshelves: fiction, paranormal-romance, erotic-romance, short-stories-anthology
Read from May 22 to 24, 2011

I enjoy paranormal romance and urban fantasy, and I also enjoy a good, hot sex scene in a book. Luckily for me, Dream Lover fits the bill. It’s a solid collection of sexy paranormal stories: some more romantic, some more erotic, and all hot.

The Hits

The stories I liked best, in terms of storytelling blended with erotica, were “Living Off Lovers” by Kristina Lloyd, “Folly” by Kate Pearce, and “Lust As Old As Us” by Madeline Moore. “Living Off Lovers” is a strange story, told from the point of view of a woman living in an apartment building that seems to be gaining sentience. She’s intrigued by her neighbor, and finds that they’ve both been drawn into a ghostly disturbance. The sex in “Living Off Lovers” is shockingly erotic, though due to, er, certain sex acts it might not be to everyone’s taste.

In “Folly,” Rose gives in to her urge to explore a ruined old house and brings to life an ancient being. Pearce’s writing is smooth and believable, and even in such a short story, Rose is a believable, sympathetic character who is trying to get over her boyfriend’s betrayal and deal with the magic she’s awakened in the stone.

“Lust As Old As Us” isn’t a traditionally romantic story, and the love it deals with–between a mortal woman and a vampire–strays far over the border into obsession. While the love story isn’t my ideal, I was definitely fascinated by the power the woman and the vampire had over each other. The ending really surprised me. I don’t want to spoil it, but while it does have something of a Happily Ever After, it definitely wasn’t what I expected.

The sexiest and most romantic stories for me were “Dreaming By The Sea” by Delilah Devlin, “Devil’s Food” by Shanna Germain, and “Vanilla” by Victoria Janssen. “Dreaming By The Sea” was lovely and sensual, about a woman afraid of the sea whose repressed history is brought back by a mysterious visitor on her beach. “Devil’s Food” was a cute and romantic story about a baker and a mysterious, sugar-craving man (There are lots of mysterious men in this anthology). “Vanilla” is more of a snippet than a complete short story, about a telepath who finally lets someone close to her. Janssen is a wonderful writer, and I think I’m going to have to poke around and see if “Vanilla” is part of a larger story.

The Misses

There were a few stories that didn’t ring my bell. The first in the anthology, “Love Resurrection” by Justine Elyot, involved a woman summoning up a ghostly lover, a poet who sold his soul to the devil. The concept is great, but the execution left something to be desired. The happy ending seemed too pat and had me rolling my eyes. Most of the few stories that didn’t do it for me involved Happily Ever Afters shoehorned into stories about people who’ve just met. Your mileage may vary, of course, but I personally prefer HEAs that come about after character have gotten to know each other, not an hour after they’ve had sex for the first time. But that is my own personal reading quirk, and if you dig the love-at-first-sight kind of romances, you’ll probably enjoy the stories that I didn’t.

Overall

Dream Lover is a great blend of sexy stories, with something for every reader. If you want down-and-dirty erotica, you’ll find it here. If you’re looking for a little more tenderness and romance to go with that hot sex, you’ll find that, too. For me, there were many more hits than misses, and I’m glad I picked this up. In fact, I’ll probably end up re-reading quite a few of these stories.
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