Review: The Deep End by Kristen Ashley

Enter a decadent sensual world where gorgeous alpha males are pleasure slaves committed to fulfilling a woman’s every desire. At the elite Honey club, no boundary will be left untested, and one’s darkest desires will become a sensual reality.
Olivier isn’t sure what he’s gotten himself into when he joins the Honey Club, only that a dark part of him craves the lifestyle offered by this secret, exclusive club.
When Amèlie invites Olivier to surrender, she pushes him to explore his deepest desires as a submissive. As they grow closer and find themselves falling harder than either of them anticipated, the truth about Olivier’s past could threaten the budding relationship they both long for.
Gripping and seductive, The Deep End is the first book in a sensational new series from bestselling author Kristen Ashley.

Karia’s thoughts and feels…

There have only been two KA books that I have struggled to read…Creed (a huge 5 star read) and The Deep End (struggling to rate 3 stars). Creed was such an a-hole that didn’t deserve Sylvie (like at all, IMHO) and I loved, loved, loved Sylvie. This book…I struggled to connect with both Amelie and Olly.

Amelie is so stiff…imagine that school marm or unmarried high school secretary that would tell on you when you skipping class. That was Amelie. She talked formally all the time and to everyone. She never turned off her rigid, formal, Domme-self (her words were that she lived it all the time, not merely played in it). I didn’t like who she was and for me that put me off.

Olly was literally two different people. Thankfully, he came to terms with both halves of himself and his “sides” seems to mesh much better as the book went on. Olly wanted something, but he didn’t know what it was, although he knew what it wasn’t. He wanted a connection with someone who could push through the clutter that was always forefront in his brain, shut it down and make him (like FORCE him) to release. For him, being Alpha was natural and a given; being a sub was a struggle. 

Well…the struggle is real! I struggled to read through the play (which was copious, initially not intimate at all, and anally-graphic). Straight up, if you don’t like women impaling men with dildos or detailed descriptions of anal sex, this is not the book for you. Also, the “toys” and “play” were described very differently than I have read in the past (compare to say, The Reluctant Dom). I really don’t like the lack of power described by the Doms and Dommes given to the toys…the sub should hold all the power, since the play starts and ends on their say, not the dominants.

Side characters were much better and I found myself wanting to get into Stellan’s head and even Tahlia’s. The why and what’s of their thoughts were a draw for sure. But, I don’t believe this genre is for me…I must be “old fashion” in that I want my dominants to be men and their subs to be women, I prefer it monogamous and I love when they start with a connection other then the play/sex being their only draw towards each other. Enjoy!

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