Author: Kendall Grey
Series: Hard Rock Harlots #1
Date Published: April 20, 2013
Publisher: Howling Mad Press
Free-spirited musician Letty Dillinger adheres to a strict, “no strings attached” policy when it comes to men. After a wild night of unabashed sex in a fancy hotel room, she never expects to see the adventurous stud she dubs “Shades” again. When her all-girl rock trio books a tour at the last minute as the opening act for their archenemies, Letty’s shocked to discover she knows the competition’s new lead singer. Intimately. Shades is no longer a one-night stand. Now he’s the guy she has to one-up on stage every night for the sake of her career.Sharing close quarters on a bus with her sexy nemesis and his bad-boy buddies puts Letty’s Golden Rule to the test. On this tour, guitar strings aren’t the only things being played. And when heartstrings are pulled too hard, they’re bound to snap sooner or later.
WARNING: STRINGS is not suitable for slut shamers, uptight stone throwers, Holier-Than-Thou prudes, humorless virgins, persons with chronic neck or back pain, pearl-clutching bitties, those who disparage crude humor or vulgarity in their many forms, closed-minded people with sticks up their asses, or anyone under the age of 18. The vile, base language and shocking, unholy sexual acts contained herein are not condoned by anyone with a lick of sense and should certainly not be reproduced without proper training and protection. The potty-mouthed and perpetually horny "heroine" (the term is used loosely) of this book does not resemble a normal, well-adjusted, or remotely believable person in any way, shape, or form. The author acknowledges that the characters in this book are shallow and two-dimensional; the plot is both ridiculous and insipid. She makes no apologies for any of it.
* Readers are strongly advised to wear latex gloves whilst reading to minimize contamination risks.
I'm giving this book 4 stars simply because I had a good time reading it. And I don't care (just a little) how 2-dimensional the characters are. This one is purely for entertainment, you need not get attached.
I'm not really into erotica... when it comes to books. I had so many materials of it though—videos since I was 12. As to why I don't like erotica books? Emotions. And yeah, I have to agree with Letty here. Emotions are a baggage. With watching videos, there's no emotion involved. You know that the ones you are watching are simply playing the part for they are actors. And for the animation ones, the goal is for the viewer to be sexually stimulated and pleasured. As you may already know, books will always get you involved emotionally.
I just couldn't believe that in this kind of book, I will actually feel for Letty. This is not my first take of erotica book though. I had read The Claiming of Sleeping Beauty series by Anne Rice and that's entirely on a different level. I still have my emotions checked. In fact, I love the brutality of it. I even read Wicked Lovers by Shayla Black. But with Strings, I still want exclusivity despite Letty's promiscuity.
Maybe the difference of my feelings is because of the character's maturity. Reading the book, Letty has a personality of that of a teenager. Like a 14-year-old harlot if a fourteen-year-old could pass for one. And when you're young, you would long for your love. That's the feeling being instilled to me. Unlike the other erotica books I read, the characters kick ass and they think and act maturely like they exactly know where their life is headed. Perhaps, it's because of the background of the protagonist. She's broke and didn't go to college after all. And dreaming to become a rock star (and almost anything that involves music and arts), the future is almost an impossibility.
If it weren't for wordweb I installed in my laptop, I wouldn't have understood most of the words written in this book. Kendall Grey's words are a riot, which reflect the personality of the protagonist, Letty. Words used are unique which I presume is prevalent among rock-hard musicians, and the construction of sentences are meant to be foul and wild. Or maybe the author was just pushy with some words or she meant the protagonist to have such a wide vocab. Or they was meant to be playful. But then, why use the word proclivity when you can just use the words knack or inclination?
The pace is fast (faster, considering this is a smaller book; yes, smaller than others) and because of the vocabulary, I almost can't keep up. Which in honesty, sort of ruined my mood (this is an erotic book, right?). Maybe it's because of the language barrier. I'm not from an english-speaking country so I have to grasp what the protagonist (or author) is saying. But I never had that much trouble with other books.
But if Kendall Grey is going to write another story with a different background for the protagonist, I'm expecting that her writing style would be different. I mean it should be different for another person. For if the way she writes would be the same for another character, then it wouldn't be that character at all but Kendall herself unless it's another rock-hard musician. But everyone's mindset should be different even if a group of people is into the same thing so the train of thought which will be reflected in writing must be different too.
I know I'm bitching too much on vocab. Anyways, if there's one thing I definitely love about this book, that would be Killer Dixon's tattoos. The author is very imaginative on those. Killer Dixon is a band of three boys (at age 26, they act like boys) with Shades as the vocalist and bassist, Rax the lead guitarist and Toombs the drummer. They're Cherry Buzz Floater's archenemies for some apparent reason.
Despite Letty, I really like Shades. Everything about him is just rough and ripped. His crassitude in bed contrasts his well-off background. Here, he has issues with being rich— about how he's being dependent on his father's money. Now he's geared towards changing all that. He's going to prove that he's going to make it into the world through his music and his lovely voice.
Okay, let's get back to the tattoos.
Shades has a skeleton tattoo at his whole back reflecting what's exactly underneath his skin. Rax has a snake twirling his whole torso with the snake's head poising for a strike at his neck with its body swirling from his chest that goes around his back, winds down his stomach with its tail ending at the tip of his manhood. Isn't that just hot? I'm looking forward to him in another book. Toombs' tattoos are too difficult for me to describe. I guess you have to read the book for that. Anyhow, they involve stitches, slit throat, peeled flaps of skin and barbed wire. I'm not into emo and Toombs is like one. Maybe he'll surprise me in another book.
I love how Letty gives names to private parts and use poetry or personification to illustrate what's going on to them at the privy of the character's clothes. Moreover, I have to admit that her lyrics rock! I even have my own beat while reading the lyrics.
And even though I'm complaining with the usage of words, I appreciate the fact that I learned new words—words that don't need other words to describe what it is exactly when translated in english (remember I'm not from an english-speaking country)—like snarf.
There was a part where I felt my heart squeezed. So I took a break—pretty much the same as running my hands over my face in frustration. When I came back, I was surprised that the denouement of that particular affair came drastically on the next page. I shouldn't have had that heart attack in the first place!
With all of the characters' conflicts, everything went well in the end. I may not like how Letty behaves but that never wavers me in reading. If there's a thing that the author was great about, that's simulating their performances on stage. Everything felt real like I was really playing instruments with the characters. It's as if I was in the concert with them. The author really is in element when it comes to music. For that I could say She Rocks!.