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Review: Master Bear by Angelia Sparrow and Naomi Brooks

May 21, 2010

I read Master Bear recently, which is by Angelia Sparrow and Naomi Brooks. I went into this with a wary eye. As most friends here know, Roger and I are very much a part of the BDSM community. We have been for many years now. Very few BDSM stories I’ve bought have lived up to even the fantasy of BDSM, let alone the reality.

Sad to say, I wasn’t impressed with this offering. I felt that most of it was a lot of telling instead of showing, and the language was… simple. Which might have been mainly due to the telling aspect of the story, using very simple, declarative sentences, which just read awkward at times or just terribly simplistic.

I wanted to feel for the characters, but they were very stiff. They felt more superficially created than deeply emotional. There were many times I felt the narrative cheated by just brushing over events rather than delving into the emotional upheaval Chris (the main character) should have been feeling. But we’re told of his emotional upheaval instead of experiencing it with him. William was barely there, brushed aside quickly as soon as he abruptly tells Chris he is dying within the first few pages. He felt very much dead and buried before I was a quarter of the way into the novella, and I didn’t like that feeling.

There was a lot of potential here, but I just don’t think it quite reached it. There were many points I had to set my Kindle aside and shake my head or have a long talk with Roger about what I was reading, from the TPE behaviors I didn’t buy into to wording to so-so sex to squirrelly timing near the end. (In fact, I thought all the actual sex could have probably been removed with how glossed over the scenes read.) The whole thing felt rushed, thrown together, and just… wasn’t really a satisfying read.

I have to say, though, that I didn’t tab out of the novella thinking I’d wasted my time. I’d not read anything by either author, which was part of why I’d picked this one up, and I may try something longer by them to just see if it was the format that didn’t work (though the subject matter seemed forced, so that might have also been part of the problem).

That is not to say I don’t recommend the novella, only that I didn’t care for it. 🙂

Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5

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