Thanks to Diana and Tanya for hosting me on Forbidden Bookshelf!
Today we’re going to peek in on a little sex therapy session with Allie. She’s the heroine from the new erotic romance, Giving It Up, and I think it’s fair to say she’s got issues. Let’s take a look…
Allie: Oh, he looked way too nice. Dress slacks and a handsome smile. I could just imagine him in bed, adorably hesitant. Asking permission instead of taking what he wanted. Sweet, but that’s not what I needed. I needed a man who could give it to me rough.
Therapist: Rough? So what is this about, kinky sex?
Allie: I’m not really kinky, per se, unless fucked-up counts as a kink. And I’m definitely not safe, sane or consensual.
Some people have sex to find intimacy, but for me it was the opposite. I didn’t want to connect with a man; I wanted to prove that no matter what they did to my body, they could never touch me on the inside.
Therapist: That sounds…pretty awful. Who did you end up going home with?
Allie: It was awful. There was this other guy; he kept watching me. He looked cold. Mean. I figured he could handle me, which turned out to be right. I also thought that I could control him, which turned out to be so wrong.
I was ready to take whatever he had to dish out, dirty sex or even pain, and instead he wanted to go down on me. You know, give me oral. [laughs] Okay, it doesn’t sound bad, but at the time I could hardly stand it. I was losing control, just lost in the feel of it and my climax, and he’s paying so much attention. Trying to figure me out. It was intense.
Therapist: What happened next? I can’t imagine you were ready to change your ways so quickly.
Allie: No, no. It was too ingrained in me. I thought men only wanted sex, that they would do anything to get it and they could never care about me. It wasn’t fun to think like that, not even a choice; it was a way to survive.
I couldn’t believe in Colin right then. No matter what happened or how I intrigued I was, it had to be just sex.
Therapist: How did you finally break through? What led you back to Colin?
Allie: I didn’t have an epiphany, if that’s what you’re asking. [looks away]
It wasn’t a good thing that happened. Pretty terrifying, actually. But you know, sometimes bad things can be good. If you’re stuck, trapped in a nightmare, they can wake you up.
When I needed help, Colin was there for me. [smiles] I learned later on that Colin is a persistent guy. I have a feeling we would have found our way back to each other even if I hadn’t sought him out.
Therapist: You’re blushing. You didn’t do that when you were talking about rough sex with strangers, but now you are.
Allie: I’m not… [laughs] Okay. I am.
I told you, sex wasn’t about intimacy. And it isn’t, really. It’s a physical thing. Body parts mashing and fluids mixing. I’m not making it sound very sexy, am I? But that’s how it is, a lot of the time. You don’t have to like someone to have sex with them. You don’t even have to know them.
Therapist: But you liked him, right? You know him.
Allie: Sure, now. Do you want me to say I love him? The words aren’t enough. People say them all the time, but then they change their minds. They turn on you. Learned that one the hard way.
Colin accepts me. He saw the worst parts of me first, and still he wants me. That’s such a rare thing. It’s like love, but even more precious.
Therapist: Okay, acceptance is greater than love. Where does submission fit in? Do you still need rough sex?
Allie: Hah! Well, I’m still fucked up, that’s for sure. But it’s okay, because Colin takes me as I am.
That’s the other half of it, though. For us, submission isn’t about handcuffs or even spankings. It’s about withholding something I want because it will hurt me. It’s about giving me what I need instead.
In that respect, Colin’s as fucking dominant as they come. Any guy could hurt me, but I think only Colin could handle me.
Therapist: Because you’re tough.
Allie: [pauses] I was tough then, but I wasn’t happy. That outer shell… that wasn’t really me. It was hard to pretend. Hard to carry around that armor all the time.
Therapist: And now?
Allie: I let it go. It’s just me now.
Allie prowls the club for a man who will use her hard and then ditch her. Hey, it’s not rape if she wants it. Instead she finds Colin, who looks tough but treats her tenderly, despite her protests.
He tempts her, but kindness and a few mindblowing orgasms aren’t enough to put her back together again. Allie has no hope for a real relationship. Two years ago her best friend betrayed her in the worst possible way – she’d be stupid to trust a man again. Besides, she has her daughter to think of, the only good thing to have come from that dark night.
But when her rapist returns, threatening her sanity and custody of her daughter, Allie turns to Colin. Under his protection and patient touch, Allie begins to heal and learns to hope. Colin’s no saint, though, and his criminal past draws danger of its own. Allie must fight to protect her child and the man she loves, hoping her newfound power will be enough to save them all.
“A ballsy departure from romantic conventions. At once gritty and tender, stark and hopeful.”
— Cara McKenna, author of Willing Victim
“Giving It Up is an erotic, compelling story that takes us to the shadowy, lonely places but doesn’t leave us there. Amber Lin shows us that romance isn’t just for the rich and shiny. Love can find its way even into the dark corners of the most damaged hearts.”
— Tiffany Reisz, author of The Siren
Excerpt from GIVING IT UP:
We stripped at the same time, both eager. I wanted to see his body, to witness what he offered me, but it was dark in the room. Then he kissed me back onto the bed, and there was no more time to wonder. The cheap bedspread was rough and cool against my skin. His hands stroked over my breasts and then played gently with my nipples.
My body responded, turning liquid, but something was wrong.
I’d had this problem before. Not everyone wanted to play rough, but I was surprised that I’d misread him. His muscles were hard, the pads of his fingers were calloused. I didn’t know how he could touch me so softly. Everything about him screamed that he could hurt me, so why didn’t he?
I wanted him to have his nasty way with me, but every sweet caress destroyed the illusion. My fantasy was to let him do whatever he wanted with me, but not this.
“Harder,” I said. “I need it harder.”
Instead his hands gentled. The one that had been holding my breast traced the curve around and under.
I groaned in frustration. “What’s wrong?”
He reached down, still breathing heavily, and pressed a finger lightly to my cunt, then stroked upward through the moisture. I gasped, rocking my hips to follow his finger.
“You like this,” he said.
Yes, I liked it. I was undeniably aroused but too aware. I needed the emptiness of being taken. “I like it better rough.”
Colin frowned. My eyes widened at the ferocity of his expression.
In one smooth motion he flipped me onto my stomach. I lost my breath from the surprise and impact. His left hand slid under my body between my legs and cupped me. His right hand fisted in my hair, pulling my head back. His erection throbbed beside my ass in promise. I wanted to beg him to fuck me, but all I could do was gasp. He didn’t need to be told, though, and ground against me, using my hair as a handle.
That small pain on my scalp was perfection, sharp and sweet. Numbness spread through me, as did relief.
The pain dimmed. My arousal did too, but that was okay. I was only vaguely aware of him continuing to work my body from behind.
I went somewhere else in my mind. I’d stay that way all night.
At least that’s what usually happened.
About Amber Lin:
Amber Lin loves to read angsty romance with plenty of sex, so it was no surprise that her debut book turned out to be erotic romance set against a dark urban landscape. She writes with one rule in mind: it has to get worse before it can get better. She lives with her husband, son and passel of puppy dogs in the great state of Texas.
Book Video link: http://youtu.be/5NQ7NTuzFFI
Please be sure to leave a comment or question for Amber on this post (along with your email address), and you will be entered in the drawings for the following amazing prizes:
* One randomly drawn winner from each blog will receive the Giving It Up Swag Pack pictured above, which includes romance trading cards, a signed cover flat, a signature soap bar for showers together handcrafted by AnaBanana Creations and a $10 Amazon gift card.
* One randomly drawn commenter on the tour will win an erotic romance prize pack, including paperback copies of Bared to You by Sylvia Day, Simply Carnal by Kate Pearce, Lessons in Letting Go by Cara McKenna (print combo of Willing Victim and Curio), Comfort Object by Annabel Joseph, a collection of signed Giving It Up swag AND a $50 Amazon Gift Card (BN.com or All Romance may be substituted)
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