Rated 4.38/5 based on 8 reviews
Nerina has lived all her life as a mermaid, fascinated by humans and land but also repulsed by sex and unable to understand love. Her curiosity gets her captured by a human male intent on awakening her lust and turning her human. But Nerina doesn’t believe the legend is real and fears Kyros will kill her when he learns she can’t transform.
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About Kitty Thomas

KITTY THOMAS writes dark sexy stories that play with power. She began publishing in early 2010 and is considered one of the original authors of the dark romance subgenre.

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Reviews of Awakening by Kitty Thomas

curmudgeon reviewed on Jan. 17, 2014

Good story.
(reviewed 16 days after purchase)
Melanie Simmons reviewed on April 19, 2013

This book is a short story that can be read in about an hour or two. It is much tamer than anything else she has written. It still has the main character being held against her will, but the sex involved is not nearly as graphic as some of the other books. The main character in this book starts off as a virgin mermaid. I am not a huge fan of mermaids, though my only experience comes from Disney. I know some other authors that write mermaid stories and I could never bring myself to read them. I love Kitty Thomas' work, so I thought I would try this one. The fact that it is a short story helped. I am not sure I could have made it through a full length story. Not at all bad. Can't wait to read more of her stuff. I have read everything to this point.
(reviewed 2 years after purchase)
Victoria Zigler reviewed on Aug. 29, 2012

I don't usually read this kind of book, but I'm a firm believer in not dismissing a book just because it's a little outside of the genre you usually read, and I know a couple of people who enjoy this author so thought I'd check this book out. Anyway, I was actually surprised at how much I enjoyed the book. I don't think Kitty Thomas will make it in to one of my favourite authors, but this book was a pleasurable read.
(reviewed 4 months after purchase)
AsianCocoa reviewed on March 10, 2012

Awakening was an interesting, dark love story between a human named Kyros and a mermaid named, Nerina. Intriguing, right? Legend says that if you catch a mermaid and can seduce her and awaken her lust she will be transformed into a human. Merfolk don’t have sex for pleasure or reproduction. The females lay their eggs and then the males fertilize them. They live together in large schools, like fish, and don’t show each other affection through kissing or touching. Nerina has seen humans and monkeys having sex and the thought of it does not appeal to her at all.

Nerina never believed the legend that a mermaid could be turned human. She always dismissed the story as a scare tactic to keep mermaids from swimming too close to the shore. But the adventurous sea nymph would soon find herself swept up into a fisherman’s net and kept against her will.
Rather than have her killed so that they could eat her mermaid fin, Kyros decides to keep her for himself. She fights the transformation in the beginning and tries to ignore the burgeoning feelings that Kyros incites in her. But slowly her lustful feelings take over and soon she can’t imagine life without Kyros’ touch and affection. The thought of going back to the sea starts to hold less and less appeal. Although she knows she will miss her family she begins to crave the touch of her Master.

This wonderful Kitty Thomas book wouldn’t have been complete without a dungeon scene which of course was one of my favorites. Nerina was deathly afraid of it and confused by all the contraptions and strips of leather on the walls. But Master Kyros once again patiently showed her how pleasurable pain can be.

“Nerina, there are many different types of pleasure. Some types look like pain to the untrained eye. I’ll show you.”
I managed to calm myself and the next time the flogger came down, my body was relaxed, loose. I gasped at the sensation skimming across my skin. Inexplicably I felt safe and warm and loved.
As we both came down from the peak, he let himself fall forward over my back, his sweat-slicked skin resting against mine, his fingers threading through mine.
“Tell me you love me, Nerina.”
“I love you, Master.”

~ Kyros and Nerina

Kitty Thomas created a really incredible love story. Nerina’s fear, disbelief and conflicted feelings were skillfully conveyed. Her journey from a naive mermaid to a lustful woman was full of love and passion. Kyros was affectionately patient and firm with Nerina as he truly believed that he could make her human. I love a merciful Dom and Kyros fit the bill perfectly. Nerina was an innocent mermaid that Kyros was able to awaken and mold into his perfect submissive woman. I thought the pacing was perfect as the novella never seemed hurried. And I didn’t feel it was lacking in content or detail. Awakening was a beautifully written erotic mermaid fairy tale and gets 4.5 dragons.
(reviewed 7 months after purchase)
Bex reviewed on Jan. 16, 2012

Warning: This book contains master/slave and sexual situations.

Once again, Thomas succeeds. It doesn’t seem to matter whether she’s dealing with kidnappers in a contemporary setting, science-fiction or now mermaids; she continues to blow my mind with each new release and I can’t help but love every single story.

Awakening is about the mermaid Nerina who, after one day of letting her curiosity take over, swims too close to shore and ends up caught in a fishing net. Terrified to end up as dinner, she should be happy when the leader asks for her to be taken to his chambers, but that’s not the case. He knows about the legend saying one can turn a mermaid into a human when awakening enough pleasure within them and he is determined to succeed. Always having mocked humans and had a distaste for their constant touching, Nerina is suddenly not sure if this turn out was the best one…

First of all, I have to admit that this is the first book I’ve ever read featuring mermaids and I have to say that I have a new found love. I have no idea why I’ve never given any mermaid novels a try before, but that will have to change! In Awakening, mermaids aren’t those perfect-humans-but-in-water creatures, but they actually eat raw, living fish like a normal sea predator would. I definitely liked this, since I often feel like mythological creatures are made more human than they are, or perhaps should be. I also loved the legend circulating about turning a mermaid human when awakening enough pleasure within them. It was very fascinating, especially since none of the mermaids would have ever felt any touch before and grow up disliking it in humans.

Even if I did feel sorry for Nerina being taking captured and taken away from her home, I did want her Master to succeed. I’m not sure if it was clear to her at first, but she did want it and she did need it; it almost felt as if it was something missing for her, even if the situation terrified her at first.

It was definitely interesting seeing the novel from a non-humans perspective. Not only did we meet someone who had no clue about the human touch and emotions, but she also had everything to lose from her old self; also the only part she knew. In Thomas’s other books, it’s usually about the women having to give themselves up completely to someone they trust as well, but in Awakening, the whole situation had a very different meaning.

I think that everyone (well, those 18 and over), should give Kitty Thomas a try. I’ve actually gotten some YA readers to read one of her novels (Comfort Food) too and they’ve been very surprised over liking it as well. Awakening especially, is one of her less intense stories, yet it continues to remain as a great novel. Thomas is just such an amazing writer and there is so much more to her work than sexual content. Even if I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again: I absolutley love her work.
(reviewed 5 months after purchase)
Among The Muses reviewed on Oct. 5, 2011

Once again, Kitty Thomas provides a story that sucks you in from the beginning and is relentless in providing a griping tale that leaves you analyzing the characters and completely captivated by character dynamics and an unique plot line.

The mermaid species does not view intimate and sexual interactions like that of the human race. In fact, they don't even have sex. However, tales have been passed down throughout the generations of curious mermaids being seduced by humans which caused them to loose their fins and gain legs, leaving them without hope of ever being able to return home again. Nernia is determined not to become one of them. But when she ventures to close to shore, she's caught in a net and becomes the captive of Master Kyros. Immediately Nernia realizes how easily the tales can be true, for Kyros awakens something in her she's never felt before, nor realized she was capable of. The only problem is the extent to which Nernia is willing to submit and at what cost.

Just as the statement in the blurb states, this is one of Kitty's more "tamer" short story creations, perfect for someone who doesn't want a heavy Master/slave read, but still wants the concepts and "feeling" of one there. Awakening is also the most romantic of Kitty's stories; there's almost a lighter feel to the literary atmosphere. And it's simply fantastic!!

Nernia finds herself -- a self she was unaware she truly was -- under the masterful, semi-gentle, seduction of Kyros as he awakens Nernia's desires. Kyros is a great Master, attentive to Nernia's needs and fears, assisting her through the changes she feels emotionally, and coming to terms with her body's new found changes and desires. But, don't forget, this is still a kidnapping story, so both conflicts arise surrounding that fact and Kyros is still a Master.

With an unique plot line that includes the light paranormal and fantastical elements, Kitty proves that she's fantastic at creating a different kind of tale that will completely captivate readers. It's a quick and easy read, effortlessly flowing with a great writing style and distinctive characters and plot line.

One of the aspects that I love about Kitty's work is that she is able to deliver such solid characters and story line in a short amount of time -- and still make me feel as though I'm not missing anything when the story comes to a close. Do I still wish the story could continue on? Absolutely!! But I'm greedy like that! :) Her characters are dynamic and dimensional, and their feelings, motivations, and desires are always a primary focus, which I absolutely love!

And, of course, what would a Kitty Thomas story be without the fabulous psychological aspects she includes. While not as complex as in her other stories, I'm sure you'll spend moments here-and-there wondering at different metaphoric analogies and diving into the psyche of the characters. This is primarily due to the strength of the development of Kitty's characters.

I always look forward to reading Kitty's work and am never disappointed by each new creation she gifts readers!! This is a fantastic book for readers who enjoy literary erotica and want a lighter Master/slave read infused with creative and fabulous paranormal/fantastical elements. Not to mention, just as with all of Kitty's stories, it's wonderfully creative and written very well.
(reviewed 20 days after purchase)
Pillow Talker reviewed on Sep. 18, 2011

How many of us watched Disney's "The Little Mermaid" and twisted it to our own tale? Or read the original stories and thought they could be done just a little bit differently? Kitty Thomas' Awakening is just that: a new twist on an old favorite.

Nerina is a headstrong and willful mermaid, two traits frowned upon in her society. She, like all merfolk, enjoys gazing upon pretty things, but she also enjoys exploring to find those pretty things. Her wayward wanderings get her caught in a fisherman's net and then the trouble begins. Mermaid fin is a delicacy on the dinner table, but Kyros has a plan more sinister than death: he wants to keep her and test a legend; he wants to seduce her and turn her fin into a pair of legs.

Ms. Thomas brings Nerina to life just as she does all her leading ladies; deep insight into her mind allows the reader to become her, feel her pain, confusion, disgust, and to understand her behavior in such a dire situation. Her transformation is more than physical and Ms. Thomas offers us a window seat to watch and experience the shift in Nerina's mentality as Kyros works his male magic on his captive.

Ms. Kitty has a talent for character depth and portraying the master/slave relationship in its many levels. Awakening is another accomplishment to this fact, even at just over 21k words. It was a quick read, but it was by no means a gloss-over tale. It does, however, falter from her normal dark tales; yes, it is a story of captivity, but it is more of a romantic adult fairy tale than it is of dark erotic fiction. I would recommend this to any fans and readers of the romance genre, and promote this as a Kitty Thomas Beginner-Book for those wanting a taste of Ms. Thomas' writing style without the heavy, more in-depth studies on the master/slave relationship.
(reviewed 6 days after purchase)
Danielle Binks reviewed on Aug. 30, 2011

Nerina, a beautiful mermaid, has been caught. Tangled in a net and exposed to the lascivious gazes of fishermen - she is at their mercy, and could end up as a delicacy on their banquet table, or subjected to their monstrous human rutting.

But then the captain arrives - a dark and beautiful man called Kyros. He has been fascinated by sea nymphs, sirens and mermaids for a long time ... and has often wondered what he would do if he ever caught one.

Now that Nerina is in his clutches, he intends to replace her fin with feet and introduce her to mankind's baser pleasures.

`Awakening' is the new novella from dark literary erotica author, Kitty Thomas.
I love Kitty Thomas. Everything she writes is a delightfully dark delicacy and `Awakening' is more of the same.

In the past, Thomas has written to the extremes of BDSM and fetishism. From captive/torturer plots to an island community dedicated to the master/slave dynamic. By comparison, `Awakening' is tame-Kitty. The 21,500-word novella is sort of Kitty-lite, and would be a great `beginners' novel for those who want to dip their toes in the pool of darker erotica.

`Awakening' definitely leans toward the more `literary' end of Thomas's usual literary-erotica genre. The novella is based around the idea of transformation and contradiction - mermaid to human, sea to land, innocence to guiltiness. Thomas explores these concepts through the ancient mythology of mermaids, who are in themselves a contradiction. On the one hand they are sexless - fins instead of genitalia. Yet, sea nymphs and sirens have been written as lurers of men to their watery graves.

With the character of Nerina, Thomas takes the traditional mermaid legend and twists it to romance and lust. The dastardly captain, Kyros, decides to force a human metamorphosis on the sea nymph Nerina and have his carnal way with her. `Awakening' is less about domination than Thomas's other works, as it has a far more romantic bent, as both Nerina and Kyros learn something about themselves with her transformation.

Kitty Thomas has done it again. She takes what would otherwise be an uncomfortable and squirm-inducing idea and crafts it into a beautiful tale of human dynamics and lust, exploring the many facets of want and craving. Divine.
(reviewed 4 days after purchase)
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