Today we check out Juliet Takes First, by KD West. This is a student and teacher relationship, and it is a very nicely done one. Of course, they wait until the time is right, so bonus points for that. The book covers the initial lust and longing, the moment these two hook up, and the parts afterward that got very interesting.
The book is framed around him as her drama teacher, and the play or Romeo and Juliet. There is a metaphor and ongoing story here that ties in closely that I shall not spoil, and it is a good one. There are ‘out of time’ snips inserted into the text of sex and the other kinky things these two do together, so the story jumps around, but it is a fun technique because it allows us to follow along through these character’s histories while keeping the heat level high – nicely played.
The cover is different, not really my favorite, sort of a quad-menage of undressing photos with a Photoshop stipple or oil-paint filter applied. It’s interesting and different, a bit strange, so I guess it catches my eye. Thematically, I could see how this relates to drama (character on darkened stage), art, and the acts of a play, so there is that. The font is nice, though I would like to see some better tonal separation between the font and the photo. Average cover, it takes a bit of figuring out.
The text-quality is good, though there are some drastic style jumps in some of the sections, such as font, indent, and formatting changes as the text goes to the sex-snips, texting, and the main narrative. I’m not normally a fan of the jump in formatting, to me, this could all be done with the same text style as the rest of the book, with minor changes, like texting hinted-at in-line like this:
Juliet: LVRBOY, hws the new iPhone?
Romeo69: itscool, luv it, TTYL and ILU
Nothing too out there like a format change, maybe an indent on the entire section to call it out, but absolutely no font or typeface changes. Text-quality otherwise is good, I liked the writing style here, it’s relaxed, moves, and drives the plot forward nicely. Heat-level is very good, I loved the characters, and there was even a surprise lesbian turn to the story that I loved and that burned up the pages for me. Very nice work on the sex in this book, it is great, memorable, and very nicely done.
Oh my, this sounds like a recommend today, but no, the heat-level and one other plot-twist pushes this to a strong recommend. There is this one part where our teacher loses his wife in a heart-breaking and gripping scene, and it is a brave little thing to include, and a key part of our male character’s psyche and experience. I love these little heart-breakers, they remind me of stories that mess with my heart in great romance, and I hate them and love them at the same time. This is a very well-done story of how a relationship between three people develops, and I love the twisted and turning path it took through their lives. The sex is great too, and I loved it.
A nice job on this one, and this is one that will stick with me in my thoughts. Great stories do that, and this is one of those. Nice job.