Thursday, November 1, 2012


Pages: 354
Date: 01/11/2012
Grade: 4+
Details: No. 1 Beyond
            Received from Author
            Through NetGalley
Own: Kindle

“A dangerous world of sex, lust and violence…

All Noelle Cunningham has ever wanted is a life beyond–beyond the walls of Eden, where only the righteous are allowed to remain, and beyond her stiflingly restrictive existence as a councilman’s daughter. But only ruins lie outside the City, remnants of a society destroyed by solar storms decades earlier.

The sectors surrounding Eden house the corrupt, the criminal–men like Jasper McCray, bootlegger and cage fighter. Jas clawed his way up from nothing to stand at the right hand of Sector Four’s ruthless leader, Dallas, and he’ll defend the O’Kane gang with his life. But no fight ever prepared him for the exiled City girl who falls at his feet.

Her innocence is undeniable, but so is their intense sexual attraction, and soon they’re crossing every boundary Noelle barely knew she had. But if she wants to belong to Jas, first she’ll have to open herself to the gang, and to a world where passion is power, and freedom is found in submission.”

I enjoyed this dystopian erotic romance. It came with interesting characters, a nice story, a fascinating setting and lots of hot sexual exploits. What’s not to like? It would be easy to categorize this story as little more than explicit erotic scenes, but that would be doing the book a huge disservice. The authors have created real and multi-facetted characters and move them through a plot-line that forces them to take a hard look at themselves, at their feelings and what they really want. 

Noelle, the main character gets evicted from her secluded, restricted and completely controlled but privileged live because of her desires and curiosity. In the world where she ends up sex is both a life-force and the most common currency, and she is slowly, but very securely introduced to that world; a world she appears to be made for, so closely do her desires resemble her new daily life. Raised in an environment where feelings were discouraged and frowned upon, Noelle has to learn to recognise and accept the emotions sweeping through her mind and body, just as she has to figure out a way of interpreting and understanding what those around her might be feeling and hiding behind stoic faces. 
And Jasper faces a similar journey. Not used to caring about another person almost more than he does about himself, this hard man finds himself facing decisions more frightening than anything else in his violent life . Learning to trust that others know what they want and need and allowing them to live according to those needs is the hardest thing he has ever had to do in his far from easy life, but also the only way to happiness. 

There are more fascinating characters in this story like Dallas O’Kane, the leader of the gang, ruling his sector with an iron hand and Lexi, the free-spirited girl who obviously belongs with Dallas but refuses to submit to the man who is enthralled by her. I would have loved to read more about their story, but I understand this is the first book in a series and guess I will have to wait for one of the sequels before I get to know them better. And I find myself eagerly looking forward to those sequels because there is a lot more story to tell and a lot more conflict to be resolved.

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