Like a Thorn: An Anthology of BDSM Fairy Tales from Circlet Press

Edited by Cecilia Tan and Sarah Desautels

I don’t often have time to read erotic fiction, but every once in a while I will indulge myself.  I have always enjoyed Circlet Press, a small press who creates erotic sci-fi and dark fantasy E-Books featuring the best author’s of the genre with various sexual persuasions and genders well represented.  I was checking out their site the other day and came across “Like a Thorn” and after reading the teaser excerpt of “Skin Deep”, was hooked and bought the book, plus two more!  At $5.99 each, it was hard to resist such a naughty, inexpensive indulgence!

Like a Thorn” is an anthology of erotic Fairy Tales with a kink from Circlet Press.  Five classic stories are rewritten for adults with an added BDSM element to each story.  The stories include “Cinder Feet” by Mari Ness, “The Princess and Peony” by Mercy Loomis, “The Last Mistress of the Chatelaine” by Kieran Wyn Dewhurst, “That Wicked Witchcraft” by Sunny Moraine and “Skin Deep” by Shanna Germain.  The two stand-out stories in the anthology are “The Last Mistress of the Chatelaine” and “Skin Deep” which are worth the purchase price alone.

“The Last Mistress of the Chatelaine” by Kieran Wyn Dewhurst retells the macabre tale of Blackbeard, but with a new twist in the story and an unexpected power exchange.  It is beautifully written and Dewhurst has a wonderful way of turning a phrase to sweep you away into a distant land and time.  Plus, the sex and erotic bdsm elements are pretty hot.

Excerpt:

“My thighs spread apart to accommodate him even as I arch upon the bed, soundless and shocked as his mouth works upon me with kisses of a nature I have never known. The room around me begins to fade to nothing, falling away, leaving only the bed and the man bent at my hips, silently speaking to my pleasure. Something coils deep within my belly and for a moment I am afraid I will have to run for a pot to pass water… but then his hand finds me again and the thought is lost to the white blindness of the fingers now suddenly driven to the knuckle inside me. God forgive me, I wanted them there. I wanted him there.”

“Skin Deep” by Shanna Germain retells the story of Beauty and the Beast, but with a dark, gothic atmosphere featuring a cruel pale beauty who dominates her masochistic beast.  Again, this story is exquisitely written and twists the power exchange in a sadistic and bloody way.

Excerpt:

“They say I went willingly, and that part is true. It wasn’t for the rose, or even for the beast though—after all, I hadn’t met him yet. Would I have gone if I’d known what awaited me? Oh yes. Oh yes.  But I went for the stem, the thorns. Strong as a lash, sharp as claws. I bent the long stem of it over and over in my hands, closed my palms on their curved points until they pierced my flesh.  Oh, yes, I went willingly. Wantingly. Wantonly. A thorn in each hand.”

These dark fairy tales make great bedtime reading.  I became absorbed as I read them, falling under their spell of enchantment, wishing once they ended that the story would go on and on.  Luckily, I bought two more books, so in a way, the stories will go on and on!

You can purchase this e-book from the Circlet Press website, as well as in other formats listed on their site.  They also have many other selections to choose from including queer, lesbian, gay, sci-fi and dark fantasy.

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