Review – Taking the Lead (Secrets of a Rock Star #1) by Cecilia Tan

January 26, 2016 Review 0

Review – Taking the Lead (Secrets of a Rock Star #1) by Cecilia Tan

The first book in a steamy new rockstar series that will appeal to fans of New York Times bestselling authors Sylvia Day and J. Kenner.

Ricki Hamilton and her sister have just inherited a vast estate in the Hollywood hills. Unfortunately, with that legacy comes the most exclusive club in Hollywood history, a secret BDSM establishment where only the rich and the naughty come to play. Ricki wants nothing to do with this business, and is trying to find ways to get out of having to run it . . . until she meets Axel―a sexy enigmatic rock star who makes her want to submit to needs she didn't know she had.

Title: Taking the Lead
Author: Ceclia Tan
Series: Secrets of a Rock Star
Published by Forever
Source: Publisher
Published: January 26, 2016
Genres: BDSM, Romance
Pages: 336
See the title at Goodreads
Purchase your copy: Visit the Author's Website
Visit the Goodreads Series Page

Stars: three-stars
Flames: three-flames
I received this book for free from the Publisher or Author in exchange for an honest review, or I purchased it with my own funds. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
300 Review
Cecilia Tan

This is a hard one to review. I have mixed feelings about how I feel about, not only the storyline, but also the way it was written. As you can see, I’ve given it 3 stars, so there’s obviously “something” there. I’ll try to write this without too many spoilers.

I’ve read my share of BDSM books and this, in my opinion, doesn’t seem right. Yes, the female runs a secret club (thanks to Grandpa), but hasn’t even experienced the lifestyle. Although we know that she’s running the business out of necessity due to her inheritance, it seems as though everyone around her knows the lifestyle, except her. So when she meets the “bad boy” rock star that dominates her, her reaction throws me off and is honestly off-putting for the remainder of the story.

The rock star is forced to “portray” an image thanks to his label. And then he makes comments about dominating in the bedroom “for real” after he’s described as a dom. It’s confusing. Even he’s confused, which makes it a little more confusing. Once he embraces the “dom” roll, he almost takes it overboard, especially for someone who didn’t practice it regularly. And dom’s don’t have to “chase” after their subs. He was ALWAYS running after her.

While the above mentioned were my issues with the storyline, the flow of the read didn’t work for me. There was almost too much drawn out scenes/sections about body parts and how things were being perceived. Then it was as though other parts were just skipped over and quickly addressed to get to something else.

All and all, it was okay. I enjoyed reading some parts, but others I was just ready to call it quits. I think that if the storyline issues I had weren’t so important to the actual story, I could have overlooked the flow issue.

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forever romance And don’t miss WILD LICKS, book two in the Secrets of a Rock Star series, on sale August 2, 2016!
Gwen Hamilton’s family is Hollywood royalty—and they have a family secret. She and her sister are the heirs to a secret BDSM club. Gwen thought it would be difficult adjusting to her surprise inheritance, but soon she finds the environment more liberating and carnal than anything she’s ever experienced. She’s dying to try out the ropes but is struggling to accept the idea of a having a dominant…until she meets sexy guitarist Mal Kennealy. The brooding rock star is everything Gwen thought she didn’t want. But with each seductive command, Gwen starts to realize that being bound to Mal could mean fulfilling her heart’s deepest desires…
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Secrets of a RockstarAbout the author:
Cecilia Tan writes about her many passions, from erotic fantasy to baseball. Not only is she an author, but she has also edited over 50 erotic anthologies and founded her own publishing house, Circlet Press. In 2015, Tan was awarded the Romantic Times Career Achievement Award in erotic romance. She currently resides in Cambridge, MA.
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Wild Licks

Where are we going? I wanted to ask, but I made the mistake of looking into those intense eyes of his. For a moment he looked as if he might say something.
Instead, we kissed. One moment we were staring into each
other’s eyes; the next moment our lips were sealed together.
And I’d thought I was breathless before. Axel Hawke could
kiss. His mouth was sure and firm, never still. He coaxed mine open, and the more we kissed, the more I wanted to kiss. He varied the pressure, never letting me take the lead but not overwhelming me, either. His tongue teased and I felt the kiss all the way down under my gown.
This was everything I wanted, but nothing that I expected. This wasn’t anything I could have imagined actually happening, and with every cell in my body focused on him, on where we touched, on the way he moved, there wasn’t any brainpower left to think about anything else.
As the kiss went on, the tingle between my legs grew to a warm center of pleasure and then to an outright ache of need. When was the last time I’d actually wanted like this? When was the last time I had let myself want anything like this?
Then I was gasping for breath and trying to understand the words that were pouring hotly into my ear.
“Should I stop?”
No, no, don’t you dare stop, I thought, but I couldn’t let myself say that. “You . . . You should . . . but . . .” I said weakly, regretfully.
“I’ll stop when you say the word ‘no,’ then,” he murmured. He sounded a little drunk. Intoxicated by lust? Probably his performance high. Dad used to call it the strongest drug known to man. Which was pretty funny coming from an alcoholic, but that was my father for you.
“Where are we going?” I asked, thinking I’d distract Axel.
“Sakura’s,” he answered, and began kissing me again.
And I was kissing him back. It was simply too good to stop. He flattened me under him, a hand on either side of my head, while his tongue did its wicked work, inflaming me. Lying like that, the hardness of him was excruciatingly close to that place where I ached. I wriggled under him, telling myself I was trying to wriggle away, but I was actually trying to move the hottest part of me against him in just the right way . . .
Then came a moment when my writhing almost dislodged him and he shifted his weight to pin me completely. To see what would happen, I tried to actually wriggle free and found his arms and legs moved to keep me in place. Being pinned like that sent my desire surging! It was like a tide that had been coming in gradually suddenly hit a wall and waves of need leaped up, splashing, swamping me.
I freed my mouth to take a deeper breath and his mouth moved down to my neck. How he found the spot on my neck that was like a direct line to my sex, I don’t know, but once he did, he didn’t let up. The zone was just below the array of diamonds of my choker and his tongue worked it softly but relentlessly. I moaned. Why was I trying to push him away? My hands were pushing at him but he was not letting me deter him from his goal, which seemed to be mouthing my neck like his life depended on it. He had a bit of stubble on his chin but instead of giving me rug burn it made my skin tingle deliciously.
I was trying to push him away because it was too much, too ticklish, too stimulating, and yet it wasn’t, because when I didn’t succeed in dislodging him I didn’t shatter in a million pieces: I melted even more.
And so the game went. He didn’t let up pleasuring that spot on my neck with his mouth, and every time it got too intense for me, I’d try to wrestle him off and he wouldn’t let me. I could say “no,” isn’t that what he said? But I wanted to try to push him off, to see if I could, or to see what he’d do, where his limit was.
But I wasn’t close to Axel Hawke’s limit. He was single-minded in his goal to make me writhe. One of his hands strayed to the diamond-hard nipple that was pushing at the fabric of my gown and his thumb brushed it, teasingly light in contrast to the never-ending motion of his tongue and mouth. I felt my clit twitch with that touch.
It almost felt like he could make me come like that, without ever getting into my panties. Amazing. I had never felt a touch like that.
I tried one more time to get free. He was simply too good, too balanced, too determined… I was along for the ride, I realized. This was completely on Axel. It was like my body finally caught up to what my brain had been trying to tell it and I stopped fighting him entirely. I surrendered to the incredible gift of the sensation building in my nerve endings. I’d never felt anything like it before. Instead of trying to push him away now, I was grinding against him, pulling him closer, harder, needing…something.
“I… I…” I gasped. “I’m going to come.”
“Yes you are,” he murmured.

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