Disclaimer: This is an 18+ book with erotic BDSM scenes and explicit language.
Can two dark souls ever make a light?
As president of her own distribution company, Julie Dawson has all she ever wanted -- money, power, and respect. But her carefully crafted façade conceals a torment of abuse and helplessness. After years remaining emotionally aloof, she is finally independent, but alone. Because she refuses to rely on anyone but herself ever again.
Evan Adams is no stranger to success, or personal demons. The horrific trauma that destroyed his twin sister, and tore his family apart, forced him to craft a new life from the ashes of the old. He's content enough, focusing ahead and not dwelling on his murky past. But something important is missing. He knows what that thing is but refuses to acknowledge it.
When a chance encounter brings these two strong-willed but damaged people together , what seems like a long, erotic journey through hell could lead them to a match made in heaven.
A coming of age novel about trust...on the long road to love.
A Writer’s Life
By Liz Crowe
No, I’m not gonna bore you with my “process” or my “habits” or what I’m drinking, eating, listening to or what time I’m doing the actual writing. I’m guessing my habits are not that much different than anyone else’s.
I am here to talk about how hard it is to separate yourself from the process. At least for me it is. I do have a day job, like many writers. It’s one that allows me some flexibility. As the owner of a craft microbrewery, and the bar manager/marketing director/toilet swisher-outer and general putter-outer-of-fires, I have a bit of sitting around time. Since I published 10 books last year, you might guess that I spent every spare second of my life writing. It would be a good guess.
This year, I’m slowing down a little, writing longer books with deeper back stories and character motivations and am even contemplating a mainstream novel. But I get just as sucked into that as I did when I was cranking them out every month or so. It’s simply an occupational hazard I’m starting to realize. If I’m not actually writing, I’m contemplating plot twists, or I’m editing, or I’m arguing with various editors about plot twists, or promoting. What I’m finding, the more I write, the more I want to write. The more I get done, the more ideas my well-known 6’4” blond-haired, blue-eyed, lederhosen-wearing muse Hans stuffs into my head, bless him.
Whenever a pre-published author asks me The Question: how do you deal with writers block? I say: well, I have sex…no, sorry, wrong interview. What I say is, I’m not sure what that means. I’ve only experienced that once and it was because I was forcing myself to write something that felt false. So, I had sex (ahem) and then put that aside and picked up something else.
To all pre-pubbed authors good luck! To all newbies hang in there! To all of us who are here and writing and still wondering “where is our Oprah moment?” --- keep on trucking!
A leather chair appeared from the gloom. Evan looked around, then took the seat, disappointed but intrigued. He could hear Jack’s voice, his laughter low and inviting. What the fuck? Was Gordon getting in on action while he had to watch? Then he heard Jenna’s annoying giggle and realized the club must be making her watch too, only she got to do it with her date. He sighed, leaned back, and prepared himself to be underwhelmed.
“No,” a sexy, rough female voice broke through the clamor in his head. It must have surprised everyone because all the people on the couches glanced up. “I want him. Out here.” Evan looked straight at her and saw the hot-as-shit Domme point her bullwhip right at him. He gulped, actually looked around like a dork, thinking there must be someone behind him. He was no sub.
She crooked her finger, her ruby-red moist lips drawing his gaze and making him feel positively hypnotized. His cock kept up its painful pressure along the inside of his zipper. A drop of sweat formed on his temple but he couldn’t move his arms to brush it away. All he knew… was her.
“Mr. Adams,” the disembodied voice said. “Your presence has been requested by our Mistress. Please. Do not make her wait.” The sheer curtain separating him from the crowd parted as he stood. Shoving his hands in his pockets and no longer aware of anything at all but what he wanted right now, he took the few steps down to the main floor.
“Stop!” She held up a hand. “Do not come any closer until I tell you.” She snapped her fingers. A tall man dressed only in leather pants emerged from somewhere to her left. A woman approached him, smiling and holding out a tray filled with… He stared, then shook his head, backing away, his brain on fire and his body in flight mode. “Where are you going, slave?” The woman cracked her whip. Evan sensed its bite near his cheek.
“I am no one’s slave,” he croaked out, sounding like a whiney kid.
“Perhaps. But I am not just anyone.” Before he could catch a breath, the woman was in his space. He kept his hands at his sides, knowing if he touched her he would be punished. Her full lips were inches from his. She leaned in, placed a tender kiss on his cheek, then stepped back.
“The Mistress has chosen!” the voice boomed and the room heaved a collective sigh. Evan whipped his head around, suddenly terrified and hornier than he had been in his entire existence. He closed his eyes as a loud whooshing sound started echoing around in his head in perfect time with his heartbeat. He held his ground, biting the inside of his cheek raw to keep from falling to his knees and kissing his way up her shiny patent leather shoe. The woman stood, the cape-like cloak draped around her tall, perfect body. He couldn’t move and had no idea what to do now anyway.
She took two long steps and was back in his space, tugging his tie, lifting it free of his collar and letting her lips linger over his, tempting, teasing, and bringing his body to full attention from his scalp to his toes. What in the hell was going on here? He was a sub? But the whooshing sound would not stop; it deafened him and he started to shake. The woman put her hands on his shoulders and kept kissing him just enough to make him insane. Disembodied hands removed his suit coat. Then, with a powerful jerk, She ripped his dress shirt into two scraps of expensive cotton that hung from his wrists.
His nipples hardened, his skin broke out in goose bumps. More bodiless hands unfastened his cuffs and took what remained of his shirt away. The woman kept smiling, trailing her fingertip down his chest. Evan’s lungs hurt he was breathing so hard.
“You are very…” She leaned in and touched her tongue to a nipple, making him gasp. “In need of…” She licked her way across his chest to the other hardened nub of flesh and bit, hard, making him yelp and grunt to distract himself from coming in his trousers. “A lesson in what it means to wield control.”
She unfurled the whip, keeping her lips on his skin, licking and nibbling her way up his neck as he stood, fists clenched and teeth grinding. Then she bit down on his lower lip, bringing tears to his eyes and yet more urgency to fuck. What was happening to him?
“Sit.” She shoved him down. Evan dropped, hoping someone had put a chair there. His ass hit leather and wood. Watching mesmerized as she dug a sharp heel into his still-covered thigh. The pulsing behind his zipper had reached a level he’d never experienced. It was as if he were already coming, in his head, trying to relieve the pressure without actually ejaculating. This was a total goddamn trip. He sighed, looked up at the ceiling.
“Don’t look away from me, slave.” Her rough voice made the whooshing sound return between his ears. She snapped her fingers. Two nearly naked women scuttled to his side, undid his belt, unzipped his pants, and pulled off his shoes while removing his trousers, leaving only his tie and boxers.
“Holy fucking mother of… ah!” he cried out, unable to stop when the woman stood over him, her warm, inviting sex right at his eye level. Other hands rubbed, teased him through his underwear. But he kept his eyes trained up as he sucked in a lungful of her heady scent.
“You think this is all there is, don’t you, boy?” The woman’s voice filled his head. “Your giant cock and what you can do with it.” She stepped away from him, flicking her whip at his inner thighs, breaking up the pleasure with a bite of pain that made him curse and lean forward. The lovely, soft hands that had been on his aching shaft disappeared. “Oh no you don’t. You sit; you take, and you do not come. For any reason. If you do, I will make you very,” she slid the handle of the whip along his reddened inner leg, “very sorry. Are we clear? Dear?”
I love a story that just sucks you in on the first page and sinks its teeth in. Mutual Release is just that kind of book. You follow the breakup of a family and feel every betrayal that Evan experiences and then you follow him as he takes a journey into what it means to be a member of the BDSM community. Hot, hot and hot!!!! Liz Crowe takes a story and digs grooves right into your heart while you are reading. Just don't plan on sleeping any time soon! (Or not having ice water by the bed, cause you are going to need it!)
What I really enjoyed about this book was of course the steamy sex scenes and the constant workings of the plot that had me guessing the entire time. Just when I thought I figured it out, another zinger came out of nowhere and I was back to happily drowning in Ms. Crowe's luminous prose. (And kink scenes...happy sigh.)
I am still reading this wonderful book and in fact it is coming to bed with me tonight as I finish typing this review. Liz, you wow me every single time. No matter what the story, the real characters come right through the pages and breathe right in front of me. Now if only I had one of those genie moments and I could manifest Evan and a nice flogger...
Microbrewery owner, best-selling author, beer blogger and journalist, mom of three teenagers, and soccer fan, Liz lives in the great Midwest, in a major college town. Years of experience in sales and fund raising, plus an eight-year stint as an ex-pat trailing spouse, plus making her way in a world of men (i.e. the beer industry), has prepped her for life as erotic romance author.
When she isn't sweating inventory and sales figures for the brewery, she can be found writing, editing or sweating promotional efforts for her latest publications.
Her groundbreaking romance subgenre, “Romance for Real Life,” has gained thousands of fans and followers who are interested less in the “HEA” and more in the “WHA” (“What Happens After?”)
Her beer blog a2beerwench.com is nationally recognized for its insider yet outsider views on the craft beer industry. Her books are set in the not-so-common worlds of breweries, on the soccer pitch and in high-powered real estate offices. Don’t ask her for anything “like” a Budweiser or risk painful injury.
Are you in the mood for some prizes? Make sure you leave a comment and your email and make sure to follow the blog for more updates and giveaways!
Grand Prize: Paperwhite Kindle (http://www.amazon.com/gp/
1st Prize: Signed set of first 6 books (Includes all books in the series *except for* Mutual
2nd Prize: boxed set of first 3 Stewart Realty ebooks (Floor Time, Sweat Equity, Closing Costs)
3rd Prize: Zazzle store Stewart swag pack (including canvas tote bag, mug, t-shirt, keychain)