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July 13, 2013

Braine Reviews: Miss Chatterley by Logan Belle

Torn, Hungry, Dirty & Spent
Miss Chatterley 1-4
Logan Belle
eSerial, 2013
Pocket Star
Contemporary Erotica
I‘m torn between love and sex. But by the time I decide, it could be too late.

I’ve loved Cliff since the day we met. For three years, he’s been my boyfriend and my best friend. But for the first time, something is missing. Sex.

It’s been months since Cliff has touched me. And I don’t know how much longer I can wait — especially since I’ve met someone else. For the first time, I feel doubt.

Temptation.

Oliver Mellors is nothing like Cliff. He’s purely physical and intensely focused on my body. But then, he has to be: he’s my CrossFit trainer. I know I can’t confuse sex with love. I know I shouldn’t risk love for sex. But now, caught between two men, I wonder: Is there a way to have both?

A modern day re-imagining of D.H. Lawrence’s erotic masterpiece.
From the get go I know MISS CHATTERLEY by Logan Belle is a modern take on D.H. Lawrence's classic, Lady Chatterley. So going in to the serials there's already a sense of predictability and I personally wasn't looking for any uniqueness in terms of plot due to the premise. I was hoping though that MISS CHATTERLEY won't be a complete rip-off. Obviously Logan Belle did good and here's why. 

The infamous Lady Chatterley was a heroine that's easy to hate because of her recklessness of her choices and actions. Connie Chatterley mirrored Constance Chatterley's frustrations and temptations albeit under a different circumstance and time. She cheated on her boyfriend Cliff Reid because of lack in physical and emotional intimacy. At first I find it hard to empathize with Connie disregarding whatever excuse and justification she has for taking up an affair with her CrossFit coach, Oliver Mellors. But as the story grew, seeing Connie reach out to Cliff and get rejected, feeling remorse for her affair and taking emotional responsibility for her actions, I found myself rooting and feeling protective of her. So despite the wrongness of Connie's actions, her character growth hooked me to the story right away. 

I also greatly appreciate the modern setting and situation that LBelle employed in this retelling. Again, the underlying moral theme of fidelity is present but LBelle made it relatable and to an extent, debatable given this day and age. To be specific, I love the Social Network theme of the setting and how Silicon Valley contrasted Cliff and Connie's needs and priorities. Cliff's imminent success had the couple struggling in terms of keeping things grounded and balance amidst change. Another factor in terms of layering up intrigue is that Cliff and Connie aren't married and in some way this provided some wiggle room to discuss and argue each other's point. Not to condone cheating but in Connie's POV, it made her take a close look at her relationship with Cliff, the pretty and ugly side, and really ponder if it's the life she wants and if she's worthy to be by Cliff's side should he become the next Mark Zuckerberg. As for Cliff, he's asking patience, space and understanding from Connie, after all he's working towards securing their future, sacrificing intimacy along the way. Both have arguable points but they are so extreme in their dispositions neither budged to meet in the middle.

I love, Love, LOVE the multi-layered conflict perpetrated by the secondary characters. Ivy Bolton Cliff's assistant, is one slick and persistent anti-hero but I have to admire her ambition and loyalty to Cliff. Oliver Mellors was one huge monkey wrench not in terms of strength in character but his pull on Connie and accessibility to her. The erotic element is powerful not because of the graphic sexual descriptions but due to the different kinds of awakening that happened not just to Connie but to the other players as well. The varying degrees of intimacy, sexual freedom, fidelity the characters experienced were wonderfully illustrated. MISS CHATTERLEY is emotionally erotic which is the kind that appeals to me. 

Plus as MISS CHATTERLEY is a serial, the story breaks provided much allure to the reading experience. LBelle cleverly planned and wrote her endings in such a way that you'll want to read what's next. It does look a lot like primetime drama or daytime soap because of her nail-biting white knuckle endings. From serials 1-3 I was on an emotional standstill and despite knowing more or less what's going to happen, I still want to have instant gratification in knowing what's next. Oh and as a teaser, LBelle gave us an alternate ending which I think most of us will appreciate especially those who are familiar with the original story

MISS CHATTERLEY is a great adaptation. I wasn't looking for anything new but LBelle gave it to me anyways. I love the overall depth of the characters in that LBelle really gave us the soul of each and every player from. Aside from the deplorable villain and opportunistic banker, Tom Dukes, the rest of the characters are neither heroes or antagonists because of their fallibility. I think die hard D.H. Lawrence fans will enjoy MISS CHATTERLEY, LBelle kept the essential parts and adding a fresh coat of scheming and moral angling to make it her own and at the same time paying great homage to Lady Chatterley.


Purchase Miss Chatterley


 
Jamie Brenner, also writing as Logan Belle, grew up in Main Line Philadelphia on a steady diet of Judith Krantz, Jackie Collins, and Aaron Spelling.

Her romantic historical The Gin Lovers was praised by Fresh Fiction as one of the Top Thirteen Books to read in 2013. Writing under the pen name Logan Belle, Jamie is the author of Miss Chatterley (Pocket Star/Simon & Schuster), a modern day re-telling of D.H. Lawrence’s erotic classic Lady Chatterley’s Lover. Also writing as Logan Belle, she published the erotic romance Bettie Page Presents: The Librarian (Pocket Star) which has been translated into a dozen languages, and the erotic burlesque trilogy Blue Angel (Kensington).

Jamie is a contributor to HeroesandHeartbreakers.com and has worked in book publishing as a scout, publicist, and agent. She lives in New York City. 


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4 comments:

  1. They sound wonderful. I always enjoy a re-telling that brings something fresh to the table. And those covers, side by side - they look amazing.

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    1. Classics usually intimidate me but this one knocked it out of the ball park. Her take is so engaging!

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  2. The multilayered conflict between the secondary characters sounds great.

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    1. Yes, keeps the story interesting on so many levels!

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