Pleasure's Edge

Eve Berlin
Pleasure's Edge
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Publisher
Berkley
Release Date
November 2010
ISBN
9780425236871
Genre
BDSM, Erotic Romance

SUMMARY
A sensual new novel of losing control-and finding the ultimate pleasure.

For beautiful erotica author Dylan Ivory, being in control is everything. Then she meets the man who is everything she is not...and everything she wants.

Alec Walker writes dark psychological thrillers-and he lives for thrills. His tastes extend into the bedroom as well, where he lets no rules bind his desires. The only thing he fears is true love...

While researching a book, Dylan interviews Alec-and longs to taste the temptation he offers. But he's a self-proclaimed dominant and she refuses to surrender control. Slowly, Alec shows her that by letting go and submitting to his every desire she can experience the ultimate pleasure. But to keep the woman who for the first time brings him to his knees, can Alec take the ultimate risk and surrender his heart?

Book Review by Michelle R
Nov 01, 2010   [ OFFICIAL REVIEW ]
219 people found the following review helpful
Amazing. Eve Berlin is now officially on my must read list.

If you read BDSM, pick this one up. If you are curious about the genre, this is a great place to start. If you take your contemporary romance with a lot of steam, you are going to love me for pointing you in the right direction. Pleasure's Edge is a fast-paced, sensual spicy ride with complex characters that are a joy to get to know.

It's tough to squeeze five stars out of me. To me, a five star book is one you will think about long after it is over, and you will want to re-read again and again. Pleasure's Edge was that kind of pleasure.

Erotic romance author Dylan Ivory is a woman in control. After growing up in a dysfunctional household, raising her younger brother and subsequently losing him, control is how she stays sane. While researching her new BDSM book, she is encouraged to interview experienced Dominant, Alec Walker. Alec, a writer of dark physiological thrillers, lives on the edge and he is more than willing to give Dylan a real life glimpse of the lifestyle. But when the two meet, control begins to crumble.

To be honest, Dylan's research with Alec into BDSM really just sits as a backdrop to their developing relationship. Yes, they visit a BDSM club and yes, spankings are pretty standard when the two get together, but the BDSM stays on the light side, making it very palatable for those who only dip a toe into the genre. The heat comes from the carefully woven scenes between the two. The tension and lust were melting my Kindle. These two are hot for each other like they've never been before, and it is amazing the sheets don't catch on fire.

Pleasure's Edge was a masterpiece of character development. Both Dylan and Alec keep lovers at a distance. They don't do relationships. Hot sex, yes. Frequently and without guilt. But there has never been any compulsion to attempt a relationship, until now. I loved how Ms Berlin used the character's self reflection throughout the story to help me climb into the skin of each of them. They are both genuinely confused as they experience new emotions in these uncharted waters. The way they hold part of themselves back, hold their secrets tight, is so realistic and left me wondering at the mystery of what shaped them to be as closed off emotionally as they were. It was a thrill discovering who these two were and what they would become together.

I give Pleasure's Edge two big thumbs up for anyone who enjoys character driven romances with scalding hot sex scenes and enough tension to drive nails into wood. It is an absolutely satisfying ride. Enjoy!
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BOOK INTERVIEW on December 2010
Q: I can't help but note that Dylan, the heroine, is an erotica author. How much of you did you infuse into her?

I think there's part of me in all of my heroines, but I definitely drew on some aspects of my own personality in creating Dylan. Yes, I'm a bit of a control freak-LOL! And a creative person. And her friends, Mischa, CJ and Jade, are based on some of my closest real life writer friends, although CJ and Jade didn't make as much of an appearance as originally planned. There are some little details that are purely me: a lot of her clothes are things I would wear—the simple lines and solid-color fabrics, that she likes to drink tea, her tattoo and its meaning relate to one of my tattoos, the black and white photography that decorates her walls (I'm a huge art geek, and I especially love photography). And Dylan's apartment is my dream home, her car my dream car!

Q: Dylan admits to having control issues. How has this shaped her life thus far?

Well, I think when you have control issues (not that I'd know anything about that…*G*), it translates into how you handle every aspect of your life. That need to be in charge is very difficult to overcome, and it's never more obvious than in your intimate relationships, because that's where we have to get vulnerable. And getting vulnerable requires letting go, which is something Dylan hasn't really ever been able to do. That's why the BDSM plays such a powerful part in Dylan's personal growth, as well as her relationship with Alec. Those more extreme sexual practices require an enormous amount of trust, the ability to truly give yourself over to another person.

Q: I felt Alec, the hero, very clearly. It was so easy to slip into his skin. How do you go about writing a Dominant male character when clearly you've never been in his shoes? What kind of research went into writing Alec's character?

Some of what goes into writing male point of view is always a combination of what I know from my own experiences with men, from talking to my brothers, male friends, and my boyfriend about how a man thinks. I also think that I was a psychology major has helped a lot. And I'm very open about the fact that I've had some personal experience in the BDSM lifestyle. No matter which end of the dynamic you experience, you begin to understand how the whole thing works, psychologically—and BDSM is, at its root, all about the psychology, the symbols, the rituals, and what it means to each person involved. I've also read a lot on the subject over a period of many years. You can never have too deep an understanding of whatever you're writing about, and about this very complex topic in particular if it's something you're interested in on a personal level.

Q: Alec lives every aspect of his life to the extreme. What hasn't he tried?

You might have to ask him! He's raced motorcycles, gone shark-diving…I don't think I mentioned him jumping out of a plane, but it's probably next on his list. Oh—and he's never been on the receiving end of a paddle, but I really don't think that's happening for him any time soon.

Q: The pacing of the story was perfect. Dylan let go of her control at such a natural, believable pace. How were you able to do that? Did you outline the story to achieve that or just sit down and let the characters speak to you?

I'm so glad to hear the pacing worked well for you!

I don't outline any more than I have to in order to sell a book on proposal—I generally prefer to let the characters grow in an organic way. But within the power play dynamic, there are certain commonalities in the way people develop and progress through their experiences when they're entering the lifestyle. Having some understanding of how that works was helpful in writing Dylan's emotional arc.

Q: Why are Dylan and Alec perfect for each other?

At their core, they have the same issues—the need to be in control, the need to be perfect. They have each decided, for different reasons, that love and intimacy isn't something that's in the cards for them. They meet at a time in their lives when they have to decide that the past doesn't have to determine who they are, or nothing will ever change. And they challenge each other, which they both require in a partner. Neither of them could have reached that place where they're ready to open to another person if the other wasn't smart enough and strong enough for them.

Of course, they also have very open minds when it comes to sex, they're both writers so they understand the other's creative process, and they each have a healthy sense of independence.

Q: Have there been instances when your characters refused to do as they're told? How did you deal with them?

Oh, that's a constant struggle! Sometimes I can wrestle them into submission. Other times I end up having to change a character's conflict as I'm writing to make it all work. They're bossy little buggers! Or, in Alec's case, bossy and big…*G*

Q: What is your favorite line or exchange of words between the main characters in Pleasure's Edge?

I like this scene snippet because it's a good example of the power struggle that goes on between them whenever they're out of their roles as dominant and submissive—part of why Dylan is the perfect woman for Alec. She makes him question everything he thinks he knows about himself, just as he does for her.

He was quiet a moment. Then he said, "I can tell you I'm not happy about admitting I am vulnerable in any way. But you're right. About it all. Maybe that's what's been holding me back. As a dominant. In life in general. I don't like to look at this too closely. It makes me damn uncomfortable."

"Isn't part of the BDSM scene about challenging your boundaries? Taking you out of your comfort zone?"

"Oh, I'm way beyond my comfort zone at the moment."

"So am I."

"Yet you're here with me. You're doing these things, talking with me. Telling me things you don't want to."

She nodded. "Yes. And I'm not even really sure why. Maybe the BDSM play has...opened me up."

"It does that."

"But not for you."

He smiled, but it was just a cynical lifting at the corners of his mouth. "I'm known for my absolute control."

"So am I, Alec."


Q: Dante, Alec's friend, is next. How is he doing?

Ah, my beautiful Dante…Dante has come along quite nicely—his book, DESIRE'S EDGE, is done and awaiting edits. It'll be out next summer. Dante is dark and sexy and…mmmmm, sexy-LOL! He's a little different than Alec, but they're definitely best friends for a reason. He's just as dominant, but his tone is a little…silkier. He has a raw, vulnerable side that can show through, which I love about him. Especially when that vulnerability comes through while he's spanking Kara…*G* And yes, it's possible to be commanding and vulnerable at the same time. In fact, I think it's incredibly sexy and very much true to life.

Q: If there is a scene in the story that you wished you'd written or plotted differently, what is it? And what would the new scene be?

I actually love this book just as it is. My editor made a few suggestions about the ending, which were brilliant, and I think she really helped me to shape the final story arc, but at this point, I don't think I'd change a thing.

Q: Many fans know you as Eden Bradley. What prompted the new identity?

I wrote a number of erotic novels for Bantam/Delta as Eden Bradley until they stopped publishing erotica a few years ago. When I went in search of a new publisher, I contracted with Harlequin Spice first, so any full-length novel written as Eden Bradley goes to them (although I still write novellas as Eden Bradley for my e-publisher, Samhain). So, when I contracted with Berkley Heat I needed a new name and Eve Berlin was born. And my editor at Berkley liked the idea of sort of launching me fresh there, with a slightly more commercial tone and books that are very heavily focused on the romance.

Thanks so much for having me here today! I hope your readers will stop by my websites for updates and news about my books, as well as my online, radio and live appearances: http://www.EveBerlin.com or http://www.EdenBradley.com or my group blog, http://www.Smutketeers.com .

And I hope everyone enjoys my first Eve Berlin book, PLEASURE'S EDGE!


Eve Berlin is giving away a set of ebooks: WINTER SOLSTICE and SUMMER SOLSTICE!

Mechanics of the contest:


You can do either or both of the following to enter the drawing:

1. Post a comment or question to Eve in the comment box below (2 chances to win) from now to December 31, 2010; AND/OR
2. Check out our contest page for the book WINTER SOLSTICE from December 14 to 16, 2010 to enter your email address (1 chance each to win).

The winners will be announced in the comment box below on January 2.
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