Friday, March 7, 2014

Review: Waking Kiss by Annabel Joseph

Hi all!

Something for BDSM lovers :D

Title: Waking Kiss
Series: BDSM Ballet #1
Release date: 15th of June 2013
Reading level: FICTION – ADULT: Contemporary, BDSM, Romance
Published by: Scarlet Rose Press
Pages: 224 pages in Kindle e-book format
Source: Bought from for Kindle


A stranger in the wings, a traitorous pair of toe shoes, and a traumatic turn dancing with The Great Rubio… For ballerina Ashleigh Keaton, it’s been one hell of a night.

But it’s not over yet. When Rubio drags her to a private party at his friend’s house in the ritzy part of London, she meets Liam Wilder, a lifestyle dominant and frighteningly seductive man. Liam pursues Ashleigh, attracted by her strength and talent, but she has secrets—an abusive past and a crippling fear of intimacy that prevents her from connecting to anyone, especially a playboy reputed to be legendary in bed.

Eventually he wins her trust and sets out to heal the troubled dancer, awakening her to a world of sensual abandon in a series of “sessions” at his home. But how pure are his motives? Is he helping her or endangering her fragile soul? Liam hides his own destructive secrets, and so does Fernando Rubio, their temperamental friend. Over time the three become embroiled in a tangle of artifice, fears, and lies that threaten to undo everything they’ve worked for.

Will Ashleigh and Liam find the strength to defeat their demons? Or are they cursed to sleepwalk through life, afraid to experience the passion and intimacy of love?


I haven’t read any BDSM books in a while so why not take up a story that has this and also something more gentler like ballet – intriguing combination. The book itself didn’t, however, surprise me to the level I was hoping, it was more or less what I have read and expect from books with such a theme. Nevertheless, there were still aspects that made it quite enjoyable and a decent read.

The beginning of the book was very promising: Ashleigh on the verge of a great opportunity was in a pinch, hunky guy helps her out with his magic hands (not in any sexual way though – get your head out of the gutter!) and they meet at a party that isn’t your typical alcohol, fights and make outs, which isn’t in no way what Ashleigh was expecting (Pacman – I’m still laughing). I really liked how the stage was set. The rest was ok, but didn’t rise to meet the expectations made in the first couple of chapters. 

As mentioned I was very keen to read about the role ballet would play and if it would be well integrated. It’s just much more fascinating to read about something specific in a characters life, a peculiar career path, hobby or lifestyle (except for the obvious BDSM) that isn’t your typical run-off-the-mill same old. I wasn’t disappointed; ballet was a huge part of the heroine’s life and complemented the plot perfectly. I liked reading about the practices, happenings behind the stage, ballet shoes and everything related to that.

Despite the pros, the story also had its fair share of issues, the main being that in essence the plot is mostly the same as in all the other BDSM books I've come across. Tortured hero and heroine find redemption, affection and understanding through BDSM and later each other. Nothing really outstanding here. I did, however, like the approach and role BDSM initially played between Liam and Ashleigh, I hadn’t encountered it being handled that way before, so that was definitely a plus. Oh, and threesomes are most certainly not my thing so, a small minus there.


Ashleigh wasn’t my favorite in this. I guess, overall, she was a fine heroine, but despite the ballet, I felt that she was too bland. I did, however, appreciate her initiative in trying to solve her issues, her hard work in ballet and her way of coping with her issues.

As with Ashleigh, Liam wasn’t really anything too memorable, but again I really appreciate him being so tender and serious about her issue and trying to solve it as best and as delicately as he could. With him I thought the tortured past didn’t go well with, it kind of came quite at the end and out of the blue, at least to me. Why does every person into BDSM have to have some traumas in the past? Can’t they just practice it because they simply like it? Obviously not.

I thought Rubio was awesome, yes a complete egomaniac douchebag, but he turned out to be very sweet, not to mention he was actually funny and I came to adore him and Ashleigh working together and becoming buddies. Their conversations and nagging/fighting were the highlights of the book to me.  


I’d say again one of the better BDSM romances out there, but remains in the average category to me. It had its good sides though, several details were quite different and thus interesting to read about, they complemented the plot. An every way ok book!

3 stars!



Post a Comment