Format: Paperback (from T.C.)
Release Date: November 28, 2012
Purchase: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository
Tour Host: Smith Publicity
Evangeline Chase is standing at the edge of a crossroad. After choosing to be blissfully ignorant for far too long and willfully ignoring what her life has been lacking, fate is about to intervene. When Alexander Mason, a striking and powerful venture capitalist, is introduced as her new boss, Eva is overwhelmed by an intoxicating cocktail of hormones and lust that leaves her struggling to maintain her composure and more importantly, control of her life.
With an undeniable urge to dominate her new boss, her own lust-filled fantasies lead to a transformation that shakes her to her core. But when Alexander challenges Eva to satisfy her carnal urges, she is forced to choose between her career, her desires, and an unconventional and lustful relationship. Consumed by fear and forced to maintain control at all costs, Eva must decide if having it all is worth risking her career, her world, and possibly, love.
ADVISORY: Due to the strong sexual content, this book is recommended for readers 18 and up.
Finally, an erotica novel where the characters are kinky but normal and imperfect but not damaged. Like what T.C. Anthony mentioned in her interview, the genre is saturated and nowadays when someone says erotica we immediately think BDSM or tortured souls. Well THREE STAGES OF LOVE: LUST is kinky, explicit and naughty and as the story is heroine-centric as opposed to all those damaged Alpha billionaires we can't get enough of, it's something you probably haven't read before. Lived maybe but definitely not read.
Eva and Alex love story is insta-lust and not insta-love. The tension between them is palpable from the moment a drunk Eva literally landed on Alex's lap on her birthday, promising him mind blowing sex which remained unfulfilled. For days Eva kept on fantasizing about the dark and handsome stranger she met at the club and as fate would have it, Alexander Mason turned out to be Eva's new boss. Tricky but their attraction to each other is so great not even an office scandal or a possible sexual harassment case can pry these two off each other.
And like any new couple these two had a lot of crazy monkey sex, trying out different things, showing off their skills in the boudoir, proving that each is the best lover the other probably has or will ever had. I find Eva's pre-coital production to be both amusing, sexy and familiar. She would dress up in sexy lacy lingerie to seduce her man, creating an ambiance, introducing bedroom toys to spice things up and heighten their sexual experience. Alex as expected is a very gorgeous, attentive and giving lover, giving Eva what she craves and needs with so much skill it'll be difficult not to fantasize about the man!
Aside from being highly skilled in the sheets, Alexander Mason is the guy you'd be proud to take home and introduce to your Grandma. He's gorgeous, smart, very successful, financially flushed and smells like Burberry. He may have been vanilla before he got involved with Eva but his eagerness to please and satisfy her trumped any uncertainty he might have about using sexual props. The man is sensitive without being sappy, protective but not overbearing and he treats Eva as his equal and with such respect he's nothing but The Perfect Boyfriend. Now I might be speaking too soon but from his characterization in THREE STAGES OF LOVE: LUST, Alex is no damaged, kinky hero who can only get off when pain is involved, nor does he exhibit any soul shattering experience that messed him up like the other kinky billionaires we've met before. The only sob story he shared was spending time at the orphanage but other than that, Alex is a very healthy and virile male. In fact it's Eva who seemed to be the more dominant of the two.
Evangeline Chase. Now this girl is a firecracker and some might even call her a witch spelled with a capital B because she is the female version of your Alpha jackass. I think it's fair to say that Eva is a little hard to like, she's ambitious, drunk with success, confident, uncompromising and a cold, calculating career woman through and through. Though she's a very loyal friend and fairly a good daughter but as far as relationships go, she's a Maneater and considers sex as something recreational, a physiological need that has to be met on a regular basis. She's not keen on keeping relationships nor does she want a family, her priority lies on her career and making a name for herself in the financial world. I, for one, actually love Eva, true she may be all that but at the same time she's a breath of fresh air from all the sweet subs saturating the genre. Her controlling Type A personality is clearly a facade, she's so guarded her walls are thicker than the Great Wall of China. I actually find her character realistic and relatable because it's either we are Evas ourselves or we know someone who is version of her.
The character blueprint one usually finds in romantic novels is completely reversed here which I think is one of the reasons why I love the book and why some people might find Eva abrasive and hard to like. While Alex is sweet, loving and romantic, Eva is a commitment-phobe, she's not in it for the long haul, she'll stick around while its still fun but the moment the scent of love and relationship fills the air, her flight reflex kicks in. It's a great strategy to avoid heartbreak but she's met her match in Alex because no matter how hard she tried, Alex managed to melt the ice encasing her heart. Clearly I love the romance development and the career driven parts of the story, but no book is perfect and there are only two things that didn't really work for me: (1) Alex giggles - I'm sorry but when I see the word giggle I think of a girl wearing a plaid skirt and pigtails; and (2) the conflict is a little shallow and/or Eva is just a drama queen. I think it's both. The guy whisks you away to Bora-Bora, full disclosure, and you blame him for something he has no control over is plain bananas!
But despite these, I love, Love, LOVE THREE STAGES OF LOVE: LUST by T.C. Anthony, it's a story written by a woman for women and it's something I highly recommend romance readers take the time to read. The characters are delightful and Eva in particular is very layered and multi-dimensional. Some women might hate her others might admire her iron clad resolve but I definitely think you'll find a piece or two of yourself in Eva regardless because her story is every woman's story especially those who had, have and are aspiring to have a career. A definite must-read.
Favorite QuotesYup, I'm a cynic at best! Truth is, I still adore [Emily]Griffin and [Nicolas] Sparks as authors, but I'm just too cynical to believe that their plots could ever be possible.
To the love that will find you when it's time, and to the strength and courage you'll need to accept it with an open mind and open heart.
Your wanting it all, your unwillingness to try, your fear of having to sacrifice anything for it: you are fooling yourself into thinking that this is protection.
I resisted giving myself the release of losing the control. Love is uncontrollable, and I was all about control!
Men jump and then look down to see the fall. But women... Woman measure the fall, evaluate the fall, time the fall; we plan it to the point where there is no more thrill in falling.
Do you know why you are so certain that fairy tales don't exist, Ms. Chase? It is because you are so fucking good at erasing them the minute you see something magical coming from a distance.
We are giving away two digital copies of Three Stages of Lust: Love by T.C. Archer.
This is an International Giveaway