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Lysistrata Cove Paperback – 13 Sep 2016
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About the Author
Dena Hankins writes aboard her boat, whether on the high seas or in a quiet anchorage. She spent eight years as a sexpert at Babeland, soaking up the most stimulating stories of human sexuality, and is honored to provide some tales in return. Being a military brat, wanderlust is deep in her, and she has been sailing since 1999, covering waters from Seattle to San Francisco, across to Hawaii, and from Virginia to Maine.
Her first three publications are erotic short stories with far-flung setting--India, North Carolina, and deep space. Whether traveling in the physical world or ranging far in her imagination, she is happiest accompanied by her partner of seventeen years.
Top customer reviews
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Eve is in hiding from the world. A former diva and singing superstar, she is in the midst of plans to restore creative freedom to her fellow musician. But what she is doing is illegal, and if found out, could see her being sent to jail and her work lost. Jack's arrival on the island puts all her efforts in jeopardy, but her initial hostility turns to intrigue, as Jack cautiously gets under her skin.
This is a beautiful, complicated love story, with rip-roaring sex and lashings of sparky dialogue. As with Dena's other work, The Heart Of The Lilikoi, her writing is vivid, effortlessly luring the reader into whichever location she is describing. Jack is a pirate at heart, a sexual explorer and BDSM bottom who isn't afraid to push his sensual boundaries. When he sees Eve for the first time, he instantly knows who she is. He has had her music in his heart for years. Yet whilst he is smitten and cannot keep away, Eve does not want him anywhere near her.
The project she is working on is illegal, yet driven by the suicide of a former lover who saw all his work destroyed by a legal battle. She wants musicians to get the credit they deserve, and has set up a complicated control room of technical capabilities to enable that to happen. If anyone gets wind of what she is doing, her work will be destroyed.
It's a complicated scenario. Eve has a live-in lover, Harmonie, who keeps her on the straight and narrow. Harmonie is a slightly sinister figure, and I was never sure of her motives. Their relationship is on the wane, but the way it was done was very clever. I cannot say more without adding spoilers.
Dena Hankins injects excitement in what could have been a lush, sleepy tale of sun and sex. Her experience as a sailor is obvious in Jack, the maverick hero, and he is supported by a raft of strong characters, including Marie, his right-hand woman, who I suspected was in love with him.
And the sex, sometimes brutal, always honest. The most sensual scene had no sex at all, just eating. It wasn't very long, but enough that it was obvious these two people would be sharing more than coconut juice in the very near future.
Just a couple of niggles; the club scene seemed a little out of place. It was necessary to establish Jack's status as a BDSM bottom, and Eve's force of character as a top, but for me it didn't quite fit in with the rest of the story. That being said, it was brilliantly written and very sexy. And the Eve/Evrim thing might confuse some people. I did have to read through a couple of times to figure out why the change of name was relevant. It is, but it might be missed by some.
Maybe towards the end, the story felt a little rushed. A lot happened at once, after most of the story was spent concentrating on building of the relationship and the dynamic between Jack and Eve. (Love that a waterspout was included in the storm scene, and that it didn't end as I expected it to.) The suspense could have been drawn out even more than it was. Again, I can't say any more without revealing spoilers. There are a few romance tropes, but Dena has cleverly couched them in her own unique style. I guess what I'm trying to say is that I wanted the book to continue for longer than it did. And that has to be the sign of a great, satisfying read.
Finally, kudos for writing a book set in the Carribbean that doesn't mention the green flash....
Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
Speaking of treasure, there are no pirates in this story, but a huge amount of page time is dedicated to the daily maintenance of sailboats. Something I didn’t expect but in hindsight the first line of the blurb should have clued me into. I’m not saying that’s either good or bad, just that I got an education in regards to captaining a ship, how to cleat a line, yawl boats, and even what type of wood they are made of.
I totally fell in love with Jack. Days after finishing this book, I’m still drawn to his character, and how he chose to transition at his own rate. I really liked the limits he set as a submissive.
The BDSM in this story was delicious. The terminology not so much. In erotica, sometimes the C word works well (for me) other times it just comes across as crass and can turn a sexy scene into something straight out of R18 Magazine.
Despite the story being told from both main characters POV, it took me a while to warm to Eve. With that said I loved her dominance, she had a sadistic streak but was far from cruel, never abusing the power afforded to her. The story also did a great job of portraying, dominant woman or not, she had insecurities and a need to be accepted just like the next person.
A favorite paragraph – “Antagonism follows sexual attraction for any combination of genders, especially when the yen is one-sided. It’s embedded in the process of deciding whether or not to f%*k.”
Ships and sex aside, the entire story of how Jack comes to be at Lysistrata cove, why he chose to keep returning and more importantly, why Superstar Eve was hiding out, is very well done. The last twenty percent of this story took me completely by surprise. It left me smiling and gave me plenty to think about.
In summary, this story kept me turning the pages and have I no problem recommending it to all and sundry.
Jack is a transmasculine man that enjoys being a BDSM bottom. He is taking his time working his way through his transition, is supported well in the Trans/BDSM community and loves his life on his junk rig sailboat in the Caribbean. On one such voyage he finds a mysterious island and discovers an even more mysterious inhabitant.
Eve wants to change the world. Her music career has funded her lavish lifestyle and she now wants to make a difference in the music industry and she is not one to apologize for her crimes en route to success…
Jack and Eve are attracted to one another for the moment their eyes meet. Could this attraction could ruin everything they have both worked for?
My head is still spinning from this novel. I needed a few days to come down from my Hankins high before starting anything else. I learned so much from this book and I was forced to put the book down a few times to use Google to make sure I was understanding Jacks transition but also to correctly interpret some of the BDSM lingo.
Firstly I want to hang out with the main protagonist Jack and get to know his story from the beginning. Jack’s transition from female to male was one I hadn’t come across before. It was refreshing and I really enjoyed every moment that concentrated on him.
Eve and Harmony’s relationship confused me in the beginning but by the end I understood the dynamic a little better. Harmony really was something special though and I’d like to see a novel focused solely on her. Also her sex scenes were extremely hot and I was left wanting more…
Talking of sex scenes. Wow! Just a few words to describe them…
HOT! EXPLOSIVE! SENSUOUS! DARING! Did I say WOW??? I couldn’t sleep after reading the sex scenes and at one point had to put the book down because I was in public… Yes I was blushing which is shocking because nothing fazes me and I definitely don’t blush!
All I’ll say is the description of Eve dressed Aphrodite has had my mind running since that chapter ended…
I think a sequel to Lysistrata Cove is a must. I want to go along for Eve and Jacks next adventure...
In Lysistrata Cove the intricate plot and engrossing characters sweep you along so compellingly that you may not even notice how much you’re learning about everything from seamanship to music production technology (and music piracy and politics) to non-binary gender presentation to the world of BDSM. You will, however, definitely notice the extreme heat provided by the dominance/submission and threesome scenes. Explicit and intense don’t even begin to describe them. All of this and more make for a book well worth reading. Good writing pushes my buttons almost as hard as good sex scenes, so I especially enjoyed the author’s descriptions and imagery, and knew I was in good hands when I came to passages like: “The pumping energy exchange between a performer and a live audience mirrored the Escher-like waterfall of energy between [Eve] and a bottom in a scene.”