The Red by Tiffany Reisz Review

Review: The Red by Tiffany Reisz
The Red by
Publishing Date:
Publisher: 8th Circle Press
Language: English
Genre: Erotica
ISBN: 9781537217765
Format: paperback (I got an eARC from Netgalley for an honest review)

Mona Lisa St. James made a deathbed promise that she would do anything to save her mother's art gallery. Unfortunately, not only is The Red painted red, but it's in the red. She soon realizes she has no choice but to sell it.

Just as she realizes she has no choice but to sell it, a mysterious man comes in after closing time and makes her an offer: He will save The Red if she agrees to submit to him for the period of one year.

The man is handsome, English, and terribly tempting...but surely her mother didn't mean for Mona to sell herself to a stranger. Then again, she did promise to do anything to save The Red...

The Red is a standalone novel of erotic fantasy from Tiffany Reisz, international bestselling author of The Bourbon Thief and the Original Sinners series.


I didn't bother reading the synopsis. All I expected was that this is an erotic book (as categorized on Netgalley) and I was smitten by the lovely cover (reminds me of Jessica Rabbit for some reason, not that I was smitten by Jessica Rabbit).

BDSM has become quite the rage in the erotica genre. We don't have a dungeon in this book but rather the back room of an art gallery in which the male character can turn into any setting however he likes it.

This is my perception of the male lead 65% into the book:

Malcolm is a man with manners, a gentleman from England. He's a refined man, filthy rich with an impeccable taste for pussy. He'd be all gentlemanly with Mona (read: speak in an elegant accent with sweet nothings in a proper language) while fucking her hard. Other people might find that hot but I was long done with such a man, I was bored to death reading the first half of the book. I tried hard fantasizing Daddy Long Legs in such a position with Jerusha Abbott (yes, I'm that nasty) but I don't think Jervis Pendleton would be all so irritatingly classy with Judy even if he's into bondage.

Meanwhile, this was my perception of Mona 65% into the book:

Mona is a plane Jane in terms of personality. She's pretty all right (it said so in the book) but she's bland. That's just me. Nothing jumps out to me with her character (despite her matching up to Malcolm's witty double entendre). I don't know. She's just a typical person you would never want to know more (like those pretty girls working certain jobs that you'd simply dismiss with nothing going on much with their brains; I find strippers more intriguing than them on that regard). Sure, she's knowledgeable in art since she grew up with a mom who owns an art gallery (that now she's managing since the mom's dead) but perhaps it's because of the limited number of pages that we don't get to see more of her (like maybe about how she perceives the world and relates art with it, how she views things around her, or perhaps, other things she likes apart from pleasing a dead person).


The thing I definitely didn't like about this book was when Malcolm fucked Mona with a glass bottle without the screw cap on! I had this horror story when I was seven: news of a former neighbor spread on our neighborhood that she was sent to the hospital (with the help of three of her new neighbors) when her uterus got sucked in by a glass bottle that she masturbated with. You see, it's very simple logic that hollow objects will create a strong suction when pulled in and out of a tunnel. What the couple did in The Red is dangerous! The only time their action won't pose a threat to Mona's uterus would be if Mona's vagina is so loose, there will always be room for air to pass through even if you plunge a big object inside her.

There was one scene I find so hot however. That was when Malcolm decided to role-play Nymphs and Satyr by William-Adolphe Bouguereau. He brought three young nubile girls on the set (by that, I mean Mona's art gallery) to complete the picture with Mona as the fourth. He gets to fuck everybody multiple times while they play their role as nymphs frolicking and dancing about. I'd usually get jealous (sympathizing with the female protagonist) when there are other women around while get so aroused when there are other men around. But by the way Tiffany Reisz has written that chapter, I felt the need to badly get off. I actually like all of the crazy imaginative role plays.

Despite the hotness from the above paragraph, I'm giving this 2.5 stars out of 5 since I was never invested in either character. I could totally understand the lack of real connection between the two because of the ending. The last quarter of the book should have been titillating and yet, it reminded me again of another book, of what my friend and I had thought that the man whom the female protagonist eventually married deserved far better than being... I won't tell you because of spoiler.

You see, this is the second book I found with a similar plot twist with that of the others. The only good thing about this book is that Mona in that particular plot twist is no longer a virgin whereas in those other books, there's one wherein the female lead is still a virgin until meeting the man she married while the other has a heroine who's technically still a virgin until meeting her man. Technically because whatever happened to her in dreams should not reflect in real life albeit her experiences in that realm are all real.

The plot should be good for those who are new to it because it just feels repetitive on my part (and terribly so because I felt it being unfair). If you're so intrigued, then buy the book. It isn't long but not short either. You'd really enjoy it if you haven't crossed upon such plot before unless you like such plot to begin with (in the same manner you prefer particular tags when choosing your p0rn).

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