I loved this book-as a big fan of Laura's Marketplace books I was unsure what to expect with regards the quality of this anthology of Fan fiction. While the short stories that ran throughout the Academy were penned by a highly trusted cabal of proven writers, I was nervous whether this collection would match up.
Frankly I was blown away, the depth of characterisation and the potent hotness of the stories made me feel as though they'd been written by the creator of the Marketplace herself. Written from a broad array of perspectives (slaves, Owners, Trainers, ex-Marketplace) the stories capture what I love most about the Original series- diverse eroticism combined with a deep sense of vocation that is connected to authentic power-exchange relationships. Transcendent smut most definitely!
2013 promises to be a big year for Laura with "The Killer Wore Leather" out in March and the long-awaited "The Inheritor" due out towards the end of the year. Until then this book provides a more than ample appetizer!
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Laura Antoniou's 'Marketplace' is such a rich and thought-provoking idea that reading her books always makes me ponder new scenarios or just how this or that might work. It seems I'm not alone - this collection is the result of some very accomplished writers doing just that.
I had expected it to be a pleasant stopgap while waiting for Book 6 in the main series, but it's a great book in its own right. The writers have their individual voices, yet enough similarity to Ms Antoniou's style that the difference isn't jarring. There are some absolutely golden moments: Ms Pauline's turns of phrase; Evan's choice of reward; the delicious idea of buying slave for the sole purpose that Oliver is put to. And S. Lowry got Chris Parker spot on - that made me happy.
If you're already a follower of the Marketplace, I thoroughly recommend 'No Safewords'. If you're new to it, or to BDSM erotica in general, this is an excellent place to start. While it's about a fictional organisation, the emotions, sensations and motivations depicted are remarkably true to life. If you have even a little bit of kink in your wiring, it will speak to you and inspire you. Enjoy!