Tuesday, April 2, 2013


Pages: 160
Date: 01/04/2013
Grade: 4.5
Details: No. 1 Under Mr. Nolan’s Bed
             Received from the author
Own / Kindle

The blurb:

"Lead us not into temptation..." ~Matthew 6:13

What happens when you fall in love with your best friend's father?

Leah is a good, Catholic girl, and she and Erica have been best friends since their first communion. Sure, Erica's father is handsome and charming, but Leah spends so much time at the Nolan's--just Erica and her famous, photographer father now, since Erica's mother died--that she's practically part of the family.

Both girls have led privileged, sheltered lives and are on the "good girl" track at St. Mary Magdalene's Preparatory College, Leah pursuing her love of dance and Erica sating her endless curiosity as editor of the newspaper. Neither of them could have ever imagined that one fateful discovery will not only push the boundaries of their strict, repressive upbringing, but the bonds of their friendship as well.

Leah certainly never could have imagined finding herself torn between her best friend and her best friend's father. Sure, Leah's mother had always talked about Mr. Nolan as "a catch," but Leah herself had never thought of him as anything other than just Erica's dad--until the girls discover something darkly erotic under Mr. Nolan's bed, a deep, shameful secret that will not only lead them into temptation, but will deliver them into a far greater revelation than any of them could ever have imagined.”

Set in the 1950’s this is a wonderful and imaginative story of sexual awakening and forbidden love. And, as awakenings go, this is a rather abrupt one. It takes young Leah little or no time to change from an inexperienced innocent into a wanton sex vixen. What starts of as guiltily exploring unknown pleasures soon turns into actively pursuing and creating every opportunity to be intimate with the man she has fallen in love and in lust with.

The sexual tension spills off the page. The writing is so good that you can feel the excitement yourself while reading. It is almost as if, with Leah, you are discovering your own sexuality all over again. I can’t speak for anybody else, but it brought some delightful memories back to me. In fact, I think I enjoyed those early scenes, when the whole sexual experience is still completely new to Leah more than the later ones.

This is definitely an erotic story rather than a romance with erotic overtones. The scenes are well written, descriptive and very easy to visualise. In fact, the whole book is well written. The story is told from Leah’s point of view and it is especially easy to get a good picture of her character. The one thing I did question in this story is the confidence with which Leah interprets Mr. Nolan’s thoughts and feelings. It just doesn’t seem realistic that she would have such a well developed intuition or insight into his emotions. Not only do I not quite believe an inexperienced 18 year old would be so insightful, I have a hard time believing anybody could.

I actually went so far as to google the average age people start college at, and that turns out to be 17 or 18. The fact that these girls seem younger than that is due to the story being set in 1953 when young people were supposed to stay innocent longer – I would love to say when the world was a more innocent place but I don’t think that would be true -. The fact that the two girls in this story are as young as they are and that Leah falls for and gets intimate with her friend’s father may be a step too far for some readers. Just as I’m sure that some people will take offence at some descriptions relating to the Catholic Church and the two priests in the book. I didn’t feel offended or embarrassed at anything described in this book, but I have been told that I’m a bit more liberal than a lot of people around me.

This book is a re-written version of both “Under Mr. Nolan’s Bed” and “Plaid Skirt Confessions”. Since I’ve read neither of those two earlier stories I can’t say how they compare to this one. What I can say is that I enjoyed this book so much that I’m delighted that I already have a copy of the sequel on my Kindle. I’m not entirely sure where this story may be going next but I do know that I’m going to enjoy finding out.

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