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Monday, August 2, 2010

Review: Alison's Wonderland

Title: Alison's Wonderland
Editor: Alison Tyler
Page Count: 352 pages
Publisher: Spice
Genre: Erotica, paranormal romance
Copy for review provided by netgalley.com in anticipation of an honest review

50 words or less: Take the fertile ground of folklore and popular fairy tales and nursery rhymes and add an erotic twist and you have this boundary-testing anthology.

Before I say anything else, I want to make one thing very clear. This is an erotica book first and a paranormal romance book second. It is not a book for folks who like minimal sexual content or for whom sexual escapades that are off the beaten path, so to speak, might be offensive in anyway. Take a look at the cover (a good look at the cover) and I think you'll see that this is probably not a book you want to leave on the kitchen table at your mom's house or in the break room at work. Ye be warned.

With that said, this was a venture outside of my comfort zone as well, as I'd never read an erotica anthology before. When I saw this one available on netgalley, I decided to give it a shot, and I can say that it was definitely an experience.

As with all anthologies, there were some stories that I liked way more than others. "Wolff's Tavern" was a fun reworking of Little Red Riding Hood, and "Fool's Gold" takes the Rumplestiltskin story and gives that cranky little man a serious kick in the butt and creates a fun happily ever after in the process. "Rings on My Fingers" is one of the more traditional stories but is still a lot of fun. There were many others (27 stories total) and some were not my cup of tea, but this is one anthology where there just might be, literally, something for everyone.

I want to reiterate one more time that this is an adult book with adult themes lurking on every page; beyond the sexual content, though, the writing was interesting and unusual, and the introduction provides a neat guide to which story provides the inspiration for each offering in the book. I confess that there were several that I'd never heard of before, and I found myself googling the original stories to see where the comparisons could be found.

This is definitely not a book for everyone, but if you're looking to try something from this genre or read something that is well off the beaten path, then this is a neat anthology that takes a well-traveled theme and really runs with it in an unusual way.

Overall Grade: B

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