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The Tao of Sex (Harlequin Blaze) Mass Market Paperback – 1 Jan 2008
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However, Tracy is stunned to learn from a flyer and several beautiful females that Mr. Gao is an experienced Dragon master teaching Tantric Sex Classes in apartment 4C. Fearing his arrest for prostitution will drive down the price of the building, she wants him to either stop teaching the secrets of sexual immortality or leave. Nathan explains he needs the money to stay in school and offers private lessons, but realizes as he falls in love, she is a goddess whom he must give up so that she can go to Hong Kong for a lifetime of training.
Known for her Tigress Asian romantic historical fantasies, Jade Lee uses contemporary Illinois and Hong Kong, and an otherworldly realm to provide the audience with a terrific extremely Blazing paranormal romance. Through Nathan's teaching of Tracy, readers obtain an insightful look at Eastern philosophy in which sex is a major form of power. THE TAO OF SEX is fabulous as the teacher and the student learn the lessons of yin and yang love.
I have mixed feelings about this book. I liked the heroine, Tracy mostly. She is spunky, classy and dedicated to raising her brother in difficult circumstances. As the landlord of an apartment building she has to be tough as nails but also considerate to her tenants too.
Tracy has secret fantasies about Nathan Gao, one of her tenants. Nathan is from Hong Kong and is a student of Tantric Sex. To support himself as a local college student he offers Tantric sex classes. Tracy stumbles into one and is shocked, four bubbly coeds are bare breasted and Nathan is wearing only a loin type covering. She wants him evicted but Nathan changes her mind when he shows her that her chi is not in harmony.
Nathan realizes that Tracy is a Tigress, which is a woman who can reach heaven (and I do mean literally) through sex. He is quick to tell her that Tantric sex is not really sex and here I had to stifle a groan. Of course it is sex, yes it is more, but it is sex, you only achieve your slice of the heavens engaging in mind blowing intercourse.
Nathan is wary of Tracy. He has been burned in the past by Tigresses. I can't blame him for his caution. It seems that tenets of this tantric sect are obsessed with themselves and other people's feeling matter little in order for them to achieve their own nirvana. A Tigress moves from one sexual relationship to another when her partner can no longer make her go to heaven. Love, except for self, has nothing to do with it. Here is where the book contained many problems for me. Why would seemingly selfless Tracy even consider becoming a member of this sect if it uses men as instruments only to achieve a woman's sexual nirvana? Also Tracy presumably could not contain herself when her Tigress was aroused and would basically be unable to control her lust. This puts her about a notch above a sex addict.
Still, the leads of this novel manage to form a passionate and romantic relationship. Jade Lee did a good job in a short amount of pages of letting the reader understand both characters actions and feelings. Both were fully developed. All in all this rates 2.5 stars
However, Tracy believes it's a hoax but Tracy is somehow struck with the 'tigress awakening' (or lightening) one day and needs sex, which occurs with Nathan. However, Nathan is afraid of committment; also still somewhat clinging onto his 'Tantric Sex' beliefs, that he can't fall in love with a tigeress.(He teeters back and forth in believing the myth). Meanwhile, Tracy asks a detective friend to run a check on Nathan to see if he is legit.
Later on, while on a 'friendly' date with Nathan, her brother Joey, and Joey's girlfriend....Tracy tells Nathan openly that the police think Nathan's mother is operating a prostitution ring.This is interesting, because Tracy doesn't confront him privately, especially as she is trying to pursue a relationship with Nathan.Too, it turns out that Nathan's mother actually runs a sexual awakening('Tantric Sex') temple in where Nathan fell in love with a woman who had her tigress awakened...and he was kicked out for falling in love with her.
Tracy comes off as a strong-willed woman, although, as shown above...not always making the right decisions. However, Nathan seems to be the one that is not as strong; it's his belief in the Tantric sex (and the scenes at the temple where we meet Nathan's mother who is the head of the temple) that things become a bit hoaky. It becomes jarring with the juxtaposition of the 'fantasy' elements of the Tantric sex, then the 'reality' moments that just have the two getting to know one another.
There are inconsistent characters and situations, as well as situations that don't ring true. Even though there are some fantasy elements, you want to have a sense that you believe in what the characters are going through. Since said fantasy elements don't necessarily jell with the non-fantasy moments, those aspects don't help the characters or the story...