Tag: Candace Blevins

Guest Review: Safewords:Davenport & Chiffon by Candace Blevins

Posted October 13, 2012 by Book Binge Guest Blogger in Reviews | 0 Comments

Judith’s review of Safewords: Davenport and Chiffon (Safewords #5) by Candace Blevins 

Dana is ready to submit to Zach, but she’s going to be surprised by the depth of her submission. She’s comfortable Dominating Jacob, but how will the four of them form a unit?

Zach thought he’d worked through his issues, and he was patient with Dana as she worked through hers, but a painful reminder of the past makes him question whether he can accept Dana’s submission. Will he be able to handle being completely vulnerable once again?

Safewords: Davenport and Chiffon is the continuation of a story begun in Safeword: Davenport.


Dana’s story which began in the previous novel in this series now moves on to the development of her relationship with her new lover and Dom, Zach.  It is not an easy story to read because these two highly intelligent and highly successful professionals are still dealing with issues connected to their past relationships with their now-dead spouses.  Both have been meeting with a counselor and were moving forward with their lives.  But occurrences and situations manage to remind each of them that there are still fears and feelings that need to be addressed.

For Dana, Zach has a problem with impact play (which is a fancy way of expressing painful elements of BDSM).  He has difficulties accepting that Dana needs this pain several times a year–giving in to the pain and releasing her emotions is a way of releasing deeper emotions that are connected with other aspects of her life.  But Zach has to accept this in her and himself and thus Dana returns to a club where she and her husband “played” before his death.  Here she meets up with a Dom who was one of her best friends and with whom she has not been in contact since her husband’s death.  He is gay and now has a 24/7 sub named Jacob, a bi-sexual man.  Dana’s friend recognizes that Jacob needs to be with a woman from time to time and as it turns out Dana and Jacob are greatly attracted to one another.  Oddly enough, Zach understands this and he and Dana work through this so that Jacob and his Dom become a part of the relationships in Dana and Zach’s world.  Dana has now also realized that she is deeply submissive to Zach, but she also has a Domme streak that demands satisfaction as well.  Her relationship with Jacob is helpful in meeting that need.

Zach must confront some latent issues that have to do with his wife’s death–she was killed while she was walking in a shopping area, stepped off the curb without looking, and was hit by a car and died.  When Dana is involved and badly injured in an auto accident, Zach walks away from her and their relationship is put on hold.  How they resolve this, how each manages to accept and forgive, is very much at the core of their love for one another and their willingness to give each other what they need.  Zach must also accept some latent bi-sexuality in himself that he has been reluctant to confront and accept, so this novel is about a lot of self-awareness and learning that is essential to the success of their relationship as well as their sense of self.

Ms Blevins is a fine writer.  I had not read any of her work before these two stories in this series but find that she has a compelling style of telling a very good story, of helping her characters develop their own tale, of keeping a balance between introspection and dialogue.  She doesn’t back away from the realities of the BDSM lifestyle–the elements of its “play,” the rationale and thought behind the D/s relationships, the power exchanges at various levels of relationship, and the healing that can come from letting go of oneself to another person who has one’s complete trust.  It is an engaging story and one that will stimulate the reader’s consideration of the lifestyle and quite possibly entertain as well.  It is worth exploring and well worth the time and effort to read.  Even those who have not read much BDSM just might gain some important insights from this novel.

I give it a rating of 4 out of 5.

The Series:
Book Cover Book Cover Book Cover Book Cover Book Cover

You can read more from Judith at Dr J’s Book Place.

This book is available from Excessica Publishing. You can buy it here or here in e-format. This book was provided by the publisher for an honest review.

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Guest Review: Safeword Davenport by Candace Blevins

Posted September 29, 2012 by Book Binge Guest Blogger in Reviews | 1 Comment

Judith’s review of Safeword Davenport  (Safewords #4) by Candace Blevins

Dana has never submitted to anyone but her husband — he trained her, taught her to submit. He’s been dead a year and a half though, and she’s beginning to consider the possibility of dating again. She sticks to vanilla at first, but quickly realizes she’s going to need more. As she’s considering the idea of finding someone who would enjoy hurting her without requiring her submission, her life is complicated by a Dom who pushes all of her buttons.

Safeword: Davenport is the first half of Dana’s story, it’s the personal part of her journey, and has a Happy for Now ending.

I have read quite a number of BDSM books in the recent months and found this one to be quite different in its tone and emphasis.  The fact that the heroine is the widow of her one and only Dom, a very successful interior decorator who is working very hard to move on with her life.  Yet she has come to recognize that there are aspects of her personality, her sexuality that are not going to be satisfied with a “vanilla” relationship.  So her first few forays into the dating scene are very unexceptional and highly dissatisfying.  Now she has met a man whose wife has died just about the same time as her husband.  Both spouses’ deaths were accidental and therefore have been even harder to accept.  Yet she knows that her much loved but dead husband would not want her to be “stuck” without finding happiness and a person who can meet her needs.  She only has one problem:  she doesn’t want to be in a usual D/s relationship.  She needs the stress of the kink but she is fearful of submitting to someone new.  It is a unique and difficult problem.

This story does indeed contain some very overt BDSM action and is filled with discussions of what that lifestyle means to its participants and how it meets their needs.  It is first and foremost the story of a woman’s effort to find a new path in a world that has gone awry and dealing with the aftermath of her loss.  She is dealing honestly with her needs but her fears are very much a part of the process.  Only one man has ever been a part of her BDSM adventure and she is not sure that she can ever have that kind of relationship with another.

Those who are troubled by the BDSM lifestyle and way of looking at life and love might find this book helpful.  It is definitely open and doesn’t back away from what that lifestyle means to those who find themselves involved and who need what it offers.  This story, however, is one where two people are really working to find their way toward each other, are needing to come to honest understanding and compromise, whose discussions may be good in helping readers understand that those needing this kind of kink aren’t perverts.  They do indulge in a very hidden way because general society has put the “taboo” label on anyone who seeks to live “outside” the box with their lifestyle and especially their sexuality.

I found this book to be a compelling and introspective read.  It was looking at the BDSM way of life through Dana’s eyes, walking her life journey with her, and becoming emotionally involved in her struggles to understand herself and how she and her new lover can structure their lives and relationship.  I think it is really worth reading and many will find it helpful, even entertaining.  It is a very good love story.

I give it a rating of 4 out of 5.

The Series:
Book Cover Book Cover Book Cover Book Cover

 You can read more from Judith at Dr J’s Book Place.

This book is available from Excessica Publishing. You can buy it here or here in e-format. This book was provided by the publisher for an honest review.

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