Lisabet Sarai

Biography

I became addicted to words at an early age. I began reading when I was four. I wrote my first story at five years old and my first poem at seven. Since then, I have written plays, tutorials, scholarly articles, marketing brochures, software specifications, self-help books, press releases, a five-hundred page dissertation, and lots of erotica and erotic romance – more than fifty single author titles including eight full length novels, plus dozens of short stories in various collections. My credits include contributions to the Lambda winner Where the Girls Are and the IPPIE Best Erotic Book of 2011, Carnal Machines. My gay scifi erotic romance Quarantine won a Rainbow Awards 2012 Honorable Mention. I have also edited a number of acclaimed erotica anthologies. Currently I am responsible for the charity erotica imprint Coming Together Presents, which as of December 2014 has published six volumes by top erotic authors, supporting causes such as Amnesty International, Planned Parenthood, and the Multiple Sclerosis Association of America.

I have more degrees than anyone would ever need, from prestigious educational institutions who would no doubt be deeply embarrassed by my chosen genre. Aside from writing, travel is one of my most fervent passions. I’ve visited every continent except Australia, though I still have a long bucket list of places I haven’t been. Currently I live in Southeast Asia with my indulgent husband and two exceptional felines, where I pursues an alternative career that is completely unrelated to my creative writing.

For more information about me and my writing, visit my website (http://www.lisabetsarai.com) or my blog Beyond Romance (http://lisabetsarai.blogspot.com). Join my VIP email list here: https://btn.ymlp.com/xgjjhmhugmgh I also hang out at Goodreads, (http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/83387.Lisabet_Sarai) because I love the idea of a social network focusing on the love of reading. I’m not on Facebook, because I don’t trust it.

Where to find Lisabet Sarai online

Books

The H-Gene
Pre-release—available July 18, 2020. Price: $4.99 USD. Words: 68,250. Language: English. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Erotic, Fiction » Science fiction » Utopias & dystopias
After a gay plague killed millions and sparked brutal riots, the Guardians locked up all H-positive men in remote quarantine camps – including Dylan Moore. H-negative guard Rafe Cowell blames the lust he feels watching prisoner 3218 on loneliness and isolation. When he finally meets the young queer, he discovers that Dylan is brilliant, brave, sexy as hell — and claims to be in love with Rafe.
The Slut Strikes Back: MILF Erotica
Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 27,090. Language: English. Published: July 11, 2020. Categories: Fiction » Erotica » MILF, Fiction » Erotica » Menage/Multiple Partners
“Find someone else to satisfy your needs.” When her husband complains about her constant sexual demands, MILF Lauren Gordon is shocked, hurt, and determined to act on his instructions. She’s never strayed outside the bounds of her marriage, but now that she has permission, she unleashes her voracious libido on her gorgeous girlfriend next door, the pool boy, and anyone else who strikes her fancy.
D&S Duos Book 6
Price: $2.99 $1.50 USD. (50% off until July 31!) Words: 12,170. Language: English. Published: April 30, 2020. Categories: Fiction » Erotica » BDSM, Fiction » Romance » Adult
Two searing tales of erotic surrender. "Muse" Of course she’d dreamed of being a slave. The passion leaked out, even in the tamest of her kinky scenes. "Détente" I can’t help it. I’m dizzy with instantly kindled lust. He nips at my lips, probes me with his tongue. He drinks me in, consumes me. Between my thighs everything melts.
D&S Duos Book 5
Price: $2.99 $1.50 USD. (50% off until July 31!) Words: 10,270. Language: English. Published: April 3, 2020. Categories: Fiction » Erotica » BDSM, Fiction » Literature » Literary
Powerful women take control in this fifth volume of Lisabet Sarai’s D&S Duos series. In “Shades of Red”, a young woman vacationing in Amsterdam rents a room in the fabled red light district and discovers the thrill of dominating a willing male. In “Poker Night”, a God-fearing, working class guy visits his Mistress to satisfy his secret, shameful needs.
Lust in Dalat: Asian Adventures Book 6
Price: $1.99 $0.99 USD. (50% off until July 31!) Words: 4,420. Language: English. Published: January 13, 2020. Categories: Fiction » Erotica » Lesbian Erotica, Fiction » Gay & lesbian fiction » Lesbian
The woman in the window seat to my right had more flesh than I’d usually find attractive, and most of it was on display. But she wasn’t trying to tease. She was simply at home in her own skin. And me? Traveling outside of the U.S. for the first time in my life, I was nervous, inexperienced, awkward and excited. Especially excited. With Helen next to me, who wouldn’t be?
Santa, Baby!
Price: $2.99 $1.50 USD. (50% off until July 31!) Words: 12,320. Language: English. Published: December 22, 2019. Categories: Fiction » Erotica » MILF, Fiction » Holiday » Christmas
(5.00 from 1 review)
Matt Glaser may not have the Santa Claus beard or belly, but when it comes to earning extra holiday cash, he loves his red suit like a reindeer loves carrots. This potential client, though—classy, curvy Eleanor Danforth—seems more interested in checking out his butt than his references. And two grand for a private party? Oy vey, Prancer, something's not kosher about this particular Vixen.
Cherry Pie and Mistletoe: A Mature Holiday Romance
Price: $2.99 $1.50 USD. (50% off until July 31!) Words: 7,910. Language: English. Published: December 13, 2019. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Erotic, Fiction » Holiday » Christmas
At ten thirty on a stormy Christmas Eve, a half-frozen long haul trucker wandered in to my diner. He really needed some hot coffee, not to mention a slice of my luscious cherry pie. His chocolate-brown eyes and ready laugh spun me back to my scandalous, sensual younger days. I hadn’t wanted anyone in years, but I wanted him. Was I brave enough to act on my desire?
Babes in Bondage: Vegas Babes Book 5
Price: $2.99 $1.50 USD. (50% off until July 31!) Words: 45,940. Language: English. Published: November 1, 2019. Categories: Fiction » Erotica » BDSM, Fiction » Erotica » Lesbian Erotica
(5.00 from 1 review)
When an anti-porn terrorist group shuts down the Sin City Fetish Fair, Larry Archer offers The Fox’s Den as an alternative venue. Plans for the Den’s first Kink Night quickly take shape. Virginal Patricia Hastings leads the Anti-Porn Brigade in their fight against filth. She’s determined to destroy the anything-but-vanilla strip club – if only she can resist her own secret craving for surrender.
The Last Amanuensis: An erotic tale of a dark future
Price: $1.99 $0.99 USD. (50% off until July 31!) Words: 6,010. Language: English. Published: September 14, 2019. Categories: Fiction » Science fiction » Utopias & dystopias, Fiction » Erotica » Sci-Fi Erotica
A former teacher and frustrated writer, Adele is grateful for her job as secretary to the enigmatic Professor. During the day, she transcribes his learned treatises on a vast range of topics. Then he calls her to his room one night, to give her a more difficult and intimate assignment, one that risks both their lives.
Crowd Pleaser: Sexy Shorts
Price: Free! Words: 32,560. Language: English. Published: August 18, 2019. Categories: Fiction » Erotica » Erotica Anthologies, Fiction » Erotica » BDSM
(5.00 from 1 review)
Savor these luscious tales of lust and love from the outrageous imagination of Lisabet Sarai. A Nebraska tornado provides the opportunity for a long-married couple to indulge their kinky tendencies. A workaholic professor learns to pay attention to her carnal desires. Two virile young baristas turn a lawyer’s fantasies into vivid reality. Ten erotic gems–pleasure guaranteed!
Refuge
Price: $2.99 $1.50 USD. (50% off until July 31!) Words: 7,420. Language: English. Published: June 22, 2019. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Adult, Fiction » Cultural & ethnic themes » Cultural interest, general
I never wanted to be a soldier, especially a guard at the remote, dusty Mae La refugee camp, a thousand kilometers from my home. Until I met the lovely hill tribe girl Preean, though—until she asked for help I knew I shouldn’t give her—I never really understood what I was doing to my fellow human beings. Though I risked my own life and freedom, I couldn’t refuse the gifts of her body and heart.
The Heart of the Deal: Business, Bondage, Discipline and Desire
Price: $3.99 $2.00 USD. (50% off until July 31!) Words: 78,050. Language: English. Published: June 10, 2019. Categories: Fiction » Erotica » BDSM, Fiction » Gay & lesbian fiction » Lesbian
Ruby Maxwell Chen, lovely and ruthless CEO of a huge British business empire, has no qualms about playing dirty – very dirty. She’s happy to use sex to help her close a deal, especially when she’s the one on top. Ruby loves the game, and she expects to win. When she encounters the oddly charismatic American entrepreneur Rick Martell, though, she wonders if she hasn't met her match.
Valentine's Visit: Four Way Friend Swap (Vegas Babes Book 4)
Price: $2.99 $1.50 USD. (50% off until July 31!) Words: 14,440. Language: English. Published: February 14, 2019. Categories: Fiction » Erotica » Menage/Multiple Partners, Fiction » Gay & lesbian fiction » General
When Jake and Fran are invited to Las Vegas spend Valentine’s weekend with Jake’s old friend Ted and his curvaceous ginger-haired wife, they’re not sure what to expect. The last time they saw Ted and Annie, at the Vegas couple’s pre-wedding stag party, the four of them had ended up in bed together. But maybe that was just a fluke. There’s only one way to find out.
Sin City Sweethearts: Vegas Babes Book 3
Price: $2.99 $1.50 USD. (50% off until July 31!) Words: 54,100. Language: English. Published: January 23, 2019. Categories: Fiction » Erotica » Menage/Multiple Partners, Fiction » Gay & lesbian fiction » Lesbian
Annie and Ted are typical newlyweds—just a bit more open-minded about sex than most couples. When a pair of gorgeous, innocent undergraduates moves in to the apartment downstairs, Ted and Annie decide to educate the sisters about the carnal delights of Sin City. Marcie and Maddy prove to be apt pupils, eager to indulge their voracious appetites with an ever-widening circle of intimate partners.
Underground
Price: $1.99 $0.99 USD. (50% off until July 31!) Words: 7,340. Language: English. Published: October 17, 2018. Categories: Fiction » Erotica » Paranormal, Fiction » Romance » Paranormal
The long years before I found Underground and Z seem like some bad dream—an endless series of fetish groups and kink clubs, personal ads and bar hook-ups, as I searched everywhere for someone who could understand and satisfy my particular needs. S&M folk like to believe they're tolerant and accepting. They weren't ready to tolerate me, though.
More Brides in Vegas: Vegas Babes Book 2
Price: $2.99 $1.50 USD. (50% off until July 31!) Words: 36,170. Language: English. Published: June 29, 2018. Categories: Fiction » Erotica » Menage/Multiple Partners, Fiction » Erotica » Romance
Tying the knot — with no strings attached! Annie and Ted are getting married, and they’ve invited all their friends from The Fox’s Den Amateur Night to the party. Taking over a vintage eighties motel with a courtyard and pool for their private function, the bride and groom expect a certain amount of carnal excess. Still, nobody’s prepared for the sexual free-for-all that breaks loose.
Velvet
Price: Free! Words: 5,580. Language: English. Published: June 15, 2018. Categories: Fiction » Gay & lesbian fiction » Lesbian, Fiction » Romance » Erotic
(4.00 from 1 review)
I must really be horny, to be sitting here fantasizing about the keynote speaker. Marta Hausman, CEO of VideoPlayHaus.com, controls the stage. I can't take my eyes off her. Finally she concludes, and sits down. She scans the audience, looking bored. For a moment, I have this bizarre notion that she's staring at me. Dream on, girl. What interest would a hotshot like Dr. Hausman have in you?
Burn, Baby: A Sapphic Six Pack
Price: $2.99 $1.50 USD. (50% off until July 31!) Words: 26,730. Language: English. Published: June 15, 2018. Categories: Fiction » Erotica » Lesbian Erotica, Fiction » Gay & lesbian fiction » Lesbian
Desire burns hot in these six sizzling tales by Lisabet Sarai. A high-powered executive and a Goth rocker collide on a rainy Manhattan night and succumb to the attraction of opposites. An unorthodox therapist rekindles the libido of a traumatized fire-fighter. A nun fights her lust for the voluptuous hooker resident at her women’s shelter. Includes a searing new tale, “Countertransference”.
The Witches of Gloucester
Price: $2.99 $1.50 USD. (50% off until July 31!) Words: 19,090. Language: English. Published: May 31, 2018. Categories: Fiction » Gay & lesbian fiction » Lesbian, Fiction » Romance » Erotic
The historic port of Gloucester, Massachusetts has a special charm, due in part to its resident witches. For decades, raven-maned Marguerite and red-headed Beryl have lived among its hard-working inhabitants, making magic and mischief. To reach their full potential, they need a third witch to complete their circle. Platinum-haired newcomer Emmeline might be the woman they’ve been waiting for.
Dragon Boat Blues: Asian Adventures Book 5
Price: $1.99 $0.99 USD. (50% off until July 31!) Words: 7,850. Language: English. Published: March 23, 2018. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Erotic, Fiction » Gay & lesbian fiction » Gay
I booked the dragon boat cruise on Ha Long Bay to use up a few free days at the end of my business trip, figuring my disability wouldn’t be a problem on the luxurious junk. I wasn’t looking for companionship, just a bit of peace. When Stan and Phil welcomed me into their circle of love, I discovered how much healing I still needed.
Butterfly: Asian Adventures Book 4
Price: $1.99 $0.99 USD. (50% off until July 31!) Words: 7,350. Language: English. Published: February 10, 2018. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Erotic, Fiction » Gay & lesbian fiction » General
When Lek stepped onto the stage at the Butterfly Bar and began to dance, I fell for her hard. The weekend we spent together in Bangkok was pure heaven. How could I know our love would drag me through hell?
Vows: Asian Adventures Book 3
Price: $1.99 $0.99 USD. (50% off until July 31!) Words: 7,430. Language: English. Published: January 2, 2018. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Erotic, Fiction » Gay & lesbian fiction » Gay
My wife Dani wants us to seduce the achingly beautiful Buddhist monk we’ve met in Luang Prabang. I try to reject her suggestions, to resist temptation. But I can’t banish the images of Souvannaphone— ripe lips curved in a half-smile, brown eyes sparkling with gentle challenge, smooth curves of golden flesh that cry out to be kissed. I yearn for his body—and his serenity.
Citadel of Women: Asian Adventures Book 2
Price: $1.99 $0.99 USD. (50% off until July 31!) Words: 8,740. Language: English. Published: December 1, 2017. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Erotic, Fiction » Romance » Contemporary
When her lover severs their relationship just before a long-planned trip to Angkor Wat, Doa stubbornly decides to travel alone. Che, the mercurial young tour guide, senses her loneliness and offers her comfort and passion.
Hot Brides in Vegas: Vegas Babes Book 1
Price: $2.99 $1.50 USD. (50% off until July 31!) Words: 32,000. Language: English. Published: November 15, 2017. Categories: Fiction » Erotica » Comedy/Humor, Fiction » Romance » Erotic
(5.00 from 1 review)
Francesca Torelli’s tycoon father is throwing a lavish Las Vegas wedding for his only child. Her fiancé Jake and his buddies set out to explore the fleshpots of Sin City. Meanwhile, Fran and her bridesmaids are stuck at the resort under the watchful eye of her stern Aunt Giulia. Frustrated, the young women hatch a plan to escape their chaperone and have some fun of their own at The Fox’s Den.
Singapore Fling: Asian Adventures Book 1
Price: $1.99 $0.99 USD. (50% off until July 31!) Words: 7,310. Language: English. Published: October 8, 2017. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Erotic, Fiction » Cultural & ethnic themes » Asian American
Thai entrepreneur Ploy Kaewkornwattanasakul needs to convince Singaporean tech whiz Jason Chow to license his ground-breaking innovation to her company. When she meets Jason, she realizes she wants not just the invention, but the inventor, too. The attraction is mutual. However, Jason has a shameful secret. He risks exposure if he succumbs to his desire.
Divided We Fall
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 8,730. Language: English. Published: January 29, 2017. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Erotic, Fiction » Science fiction » Utopias & dystopias
(5.00 from 1 review)
Linh’s three year old brother has wandered out of Viet Village into Niggertown. Despite the danger, she has no choice but to go looking for him in hostile territory. As she and the black guard Steel comb the the desolate streets of Niggertown, seeking any trace of Duy, Linh discovers that the barrio’s inhabitants aren’t necessarily the violent, drug-addled brutes she’s been taught to hate.
Gray Christmas
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 7,970. Language: English. Published: December 22, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Holiday » Christmas, Fiction » Romance » Erotic
Widowed author Emma Granger has reconciled herself to spending Christmas Eve in snowy Boston, with a bottle of wine and her cat. A crash from the apartment above overturns her plans for a quiet evening at home. When she investigates, she meets Nick North, an energetic iconoclast with a gray ponytail, a silver earring and bright blue eyes that kindle feelings she’d thought were gone forever.
The Shadow over Des Moines
Price: Free! Words: 4,860. Language: English. Published: October 29, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Horror » Weird fiction, Fiction » Erotica » Paranormal
When my health forced me to retire from the stresses of my job as a newspaper reporter, I relocated to a quiet neighborhood in Des Moines. I’d hoped to find peace of mind and relief from the terrifying dreams that plagued me after my dear wife’s death. Instead, I found myself in a waking nightmare. Free for Halloween! Tentacle erotica in homage to the immortal H.P. Lovecraft!
Hearts & Handcuffs: Romantic Kink
Price: $2.99 $1.50 USD. (50% off until July 31!) Words: 20,760. Language: English. Published: May 8, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Erotic
Kink can be life-changing, cathartic, a spiritual experience. Sometimes, though, it’s just plain fun—particularly when your partner is someone special. Hearts & Handcuffs present the lighter side of BDSM—the naughty joy to be found in exploring your kinky fantasies with someone whose desires complement your own—in six sizzling short stories that showcase Lisabet Sarai’s famously sexy prose.
A Contract for Christmas
Price: $1.99 $0.99 USD. (50% off until July 31!) Words: 8,430. Language: English. Published: December 15, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Erotic, Fiction » Erotica » BDSM
(3.00 from 1 review)
Isabella plans to surprise her husband Greg with an intimate Christmas Eve dinner. She’s left with only her fantasies of Greg’s dominance, though, when a blizzard strands him a thousand miles away. Then Greg’s best friend James shows up at her door, tempting her to surrender to his quiet authority. This Christmas Eve will alter their three-way relationship forever.
Coming in Costume
Price: $2.99 $1.50 USD. (50% off until July 31!) Words: 13,600. Language: English. Published: October 28, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Erotic
(4.50 from 2 reviews)
When her dominant husband Greg proposes that they attend a company Halloween gala, Isabella is too excited to be suspicious. Unlike her introverted master, she adores parties and dressing up. Only after they arrive does Bella learn her Dom has planned a kinky, semi-public scene involving both pain and pleasure―a Halloween masque that includes a starring role for Greg’s best friend James.
The Antidote
Price: $1.99 $0.99 USD. (50% off until July 31!) Words: 5,640. Language: English. Published: August 16, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Erotica » Sci-Fi Erotica
Sixty years after the Plague, most people accept the Council’s mysterious libido-suppression technology as necessary to prevent a resurgence of the deadly virus. Lena’s different. Though she loves her husband Jeff, she yearns to experience the thrill of forbidden lust. Denied from birth, Lena is willing to risk everything—her marriage, her freedom, even her life—for one taste of unbridled desire.
Slush: A Holiday Romance
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 5,480. Language: English. Published: December 6, 2014. Categories: Fiction » Romance » Erotic, Fiction » Holiday » Christmas
(4.50 from 2 reviews)
Hot shot Boston lawyer Ian Pierce has everything but peace of mind. Christmas Eve finds him alone, wading through the slush to his BMW so he can drive back to his lonely luxury apartment. Then everything goes black. He awakens to find he has been rescued by a homeless young woman who may well be a Christmas angel in disguise.

Lisabet Sarai's tag cloud

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Smashwords book reviews by Lisabet Sarai

  • Stripper or Nurse? on March 23, 2018

    Larry Archer’s erotic novel Stripper or Nurse begins with a heart attack. One of the patrons at The Fox’s Den, a high end gentleman’s club just off the Las Vegas strip, gets a bit too excited watching the lovely dancers and keels over. But never fear. All the strippers at the Den are trained in CPR. Dancers Peaches and Monique take turns working on the customer, keeping him alive until the ambulance arrives—though when he regains consciousness to find himself looking up at two gorgeous, naked girls, Tom wonders whether he has died and gone to heaven. Concerned about Tom’s welfare, the two girls visit him at the hospital, only to have a run-in with Tom’s rather conservative wife Suzanne. Both jealous and worried, she blames the strip club for her husband’s condition and verbally shreds the young women who actually saved his life. When Suzanne shows up at the strip club to confront the management, she discovers that that the place is not at all what she’d imagined. Instead of a sleazy establishment that takes advantage of women, objectifying them and forcing them into sex, the Fox’s Den turns out to be classy and relaxed, a haven for exhibitionist gals who love showing off. The sensual, sex-drenched atmosphere almost immediately starts to work its magic on the unsuspecting housewife. Before she knows it, she’s fondling the breasts of the scantily clad club valets, wearing scandalously revealing clothing, masturbating in public, and offering her body to men and women alike. Meanwhile, Tom receives very personal attention from a bevy of horny nurses, as well as Foxy Archer, wife of The Fox’s Den proprietor. Stripper or Nurse features almost non-stop sex, with a lot of girl-on-girl action and swapping of bodily fluids. At the same time, it’s plotted quite tightly. Larry Archer manages to keep the focus on Suzanne’s enthusiastic transformation from prude to slut. He does an excellent job portraying both her doubts and her irresistible attraction to her new identity as a perpetually-aroused, anything-goes hotwife. Overall, I really enjoyed Stripper or Nurse. I love the uninhibited sexuality in the story (indeed, in all Larry Archer’s stories), and the generous, affectionate mood. I’ve been turned off in the past by some “cuckold” tales that seem to belittle or denigrate the man involved. In this novel, Tom gets plenty of sex (despite being hospitalized through the entire book!), even as he watches (in high definition video) his wife get passed around to voracious females and well-hung males. I did find the ending a bit abrupt. Somehow I expected a bit more tidying of loose ends. In the first half of the book, Suzanne keeps talking about a Saturday Couples Night party at the Den, and meeting people who plan to join in the Saturday fun. I expected that to be the big-bang (so to speak) ending, so I was a bit disappointed when the tale ended after a more private sex scene—if you can call a video-recorded butt-fucking “private”! Anyway, I had a good time, as I almost always do when I enter Larry’s world of good-natured promiscuity. I’m certain I’ll be back.
  • Different Senses on July 10, 2020
    (no rating)
    Javen Ythen loves his job as a cop, doing his part to foster justice and community safety. He also gets some satisfaction from thumbing his nose at his powerful father and high-society mother, who feel police work isn’t an appropriate occupation for the son of the state governor. When Javen is seriously wounded in the line of duty, his world falls apart – not due to his physical injuries, but because the trauma triggers his genetic predisposition for empathy. It’s bad enough having everyone’s emotions clamoring in his mind, but for Javen, being matos has far more dire consequences. First, his new talent is an unwelcome sign that he is not pure Kelon, but of mixed race, since only the despised banis people, indigenous to the planet, carry the empathy gene. Second, privacy laws mean he’s no longer welcome in the police force. Worst of all, his long-time lover Kirin breaks off their relationship. It seems the man can’t bear the notion of being emotionally transparent – or perhaps Javen’s newly revealed racial background has some influence. Depressed and bitter, Javen drifts into working as a private investigator. In his first case, he solves the mystery of a stolen jewel and clears the name of a young woman from the banis community. His new connections with the banis – or Nihan, as they call themselves - give him the opportunity to research his genealogy and find out more about his Nihani ancestors. He also begins to see, first hand, the many ways in which the original inhabitants of Uterden face discrimination and oppression from his own race. Over time, he adds Nihani interns and staff to his business, and as a result, becomes increasingly involved in their struggle for justice and equality. When a crooked court rules against Nihani interests and triggers violence and civil unrest, Javen finds himself in a life-and-death race to find the real terrorists, before the Kelon masters crush the Nihan and bury their aspirations for a better life. Meanwhile, throughout the book, Javen struggles with his desire for the clever but hostile Nihani lawyer Shardul Hema Rishabh. As the only member of his people to have a Kelon law degree, Shardul seems to be involved in many of Javen’s cases. There’s an undeniable attraction between the two men, but Shardul could never love a Kelon, even one with some Nihani blood. I downloaded Different Senses from Smashwords for free, during the Authors Give Back event, at the start of the Covid-19 epidemic. Though I’d never heard of the author, the book sounded appealing – science fiction is a long time favorite genre for me, and it had been too long since I’d read any MM romance. I’m so glad I followed my instincts. Different Senses is amazing, one of the best books I’ve read this year. I loved everything about the novel. Ms. Somerville builds a believable world and a complex society, complete with customs, religions and language – a world ultimately not that different from our own. Every character is richly imagined and skillfully drawn. This is true not only of Javen and Shardul, but also more minor players such as the voluble Doctor Nihar and the blind Nihan elder Roshni. Everyone changes and grows over time. In particular, Javen’s father gradually transforms from something of a villain to an unexpected hero. The oppression of the Nihan felt so familiar – especially given the events of the last month or so. The Nihan face the same sort of institutional racism endured by people of color in the United States. With few economic or educational opportunities, they’re viewed as backward and ignorant. Police and other representatives of state power are quick to suspect the Nihan of wrong doing and brutal in their reactions. At the same time, the Kelons admire banis artifacts, wear banis textiles, and create vast collections of works essentially stolen from the colonized culture. In a neat little twist, by the way, Ms. Somerville has given the Kelon master race dark skins. The Nihan are red-haired, fair-skinned and green-eyed. That doesn’t stop them from being viewed as barely human. The author doesn’t hit you over the head with this. There are no polemics in this book, although the underlying political themes provide one critical thread in the story. We learn about the Nihan situation through the eyes of Javen, as he gradually becomes closer to the people and their ways. The transition is subtle, sensitive, and extremely compelling. The copyright page of Different Senses makes it clear that the different “chapters” in the book were originally published separately. Despite this, the book feels unified and has an integrated narrative arc, with an overarching conflict and resolution. I’ve referred to the book as a novel because that’s what it feels like: the story of Javen’s cultural enlightenment and his search for love. Before concluding, I should mention the attitudes toward homosexuality on Uterden. The Kelons show themselves to be extremely prejudiced against the Nihan, but there’s no apparent negative feeling about same-sex relationships at all. Javen and Kirin are accepted as a normal family unit by everyone in the society. Javen and Shardul will have greater problems, due to their races, but not because they are both men. I loved this feeling of comfort. This is a fantastic book. I will definitely be checking out some of Ann Somerville’s other work.
  • Different Senses on July 10, 2020

    Javen Ythen loves his job as a cop, doing his part to foster justice and community safety. He also gets some satisfaction from thumbing his nose at his powerful father and high-society mother, who feel police work isn’t an appropriate occupation for the son of the state governor. When Javen is seriously wounded in the line of duty, his world falls apart – not due to his physical injuries, but because the trauma triggers his genetic predisposition for empathy. It’s bad enough having everyone’s emotions clamoring in his mind, but for Javen, being matos has far more dire consequences. First, his new talent is an unwelcome sign that he is not pure Kelon, but of mixed race, since only the despised banis people, indigenous to the planet, carry the empathy gene. Second, privacy laws mean he’s no longer welcome in the police force. Worst of all, his long-time lover Kirin breaks off their relationship. It seems the man can’t bear the notion of being emotionally transparent – or perhaps Javen’s newly revealed racial background has some influence. Depressed and bitter, Javen drifts into working as a private investigator. In his first case, he solves the mystery of a stolen jewel and clears the name of a young woman from the banis community. His new connections with the banis – or Nihan, as they call themselves - give him the opportunity to research his genealogy and find out more about his Nihani ancestors. He also begins to see, first hand, the many ways in which the original inhabitants of Uterden face discrimination and oppression from his own race. Over time, he adds Nihani interns and staff to his business, and as a result, becomes increasingly involved in their struggle for justice and equality. When a crooked court rules against Nihani interests and triggers violence and civil unrest, Javen finds himself in a life-and-death race to find the real terrorists, before the Kelon masters crush the Nihan and bury their aspirations for a better life. Meanwhile, throughout the book, Javen struggles with his desire for the clever but hostile Nihani lawyer Shardul Hema Rishabh. As the only member of his people to have a Kelon law degree, Shardul seems to be involved in many of Javen’s cases. There’s an undeniable attraction between the two men, but Shardul could never love a Kelon, even one with some Nihani blood. I downloaded Different Senses from Smashwords for free, during the Authors Give Back event, at the start of the Covid-19 epidemic. Though I’d never heard of the author, the book sounded appealing – science fiction is a long time favorite genre for me, and it had been too long since I’d read any MM romance. I’m so glad I followed my instincts. Different Senses is amazing, one of the best books I’ve read this year. I loved everything about the novel. Ms. Somerville builds a believable world and a complex society, complete with customs, religions and language – a world ultimately not that different from our own. Every character is richly imagined and skillfully drawn. This is true not only of Javen and Shardul, but also more minor players such as the voluble Doctor Nihar and the blind Nihan elder Roshni. Everyone changes and grows over time. In particular, Javen’s father gradually transforms from something of a villain to an unexpected hero. The oppression of the Nihan felt so familiar – especially given the events of the last month or so. The Nihan face the same sort of institutional racism endured by people of color in the United States. With few economic or educational opportunities, they’re viewed as backward and ignorant. Police and other representatives of state power are quick to suspect the Nihan of wrong doing and brutal in their reactions. At the same time, the Kelons admire banis artifacts, wear banis textiles, and create vast collections of works essentially stolen from the colonized culture. In a neat little twist, by the way, Ms. Somerville has given the Kelon master race dark skins. The Nihan are red-haired, fair-skinned and green-eyed. That doesn’t stop them from being viewed as barely human. The author doesn’t hit you over the head with this. There are no polemics in this book, although the underlying political themes provide one critical thread in the story. We learn about the Nihan situation through the eyes of Javen, as he gradually becomes closer to the people and their ways. The transition is subtle, sensitive, and extremely compelling. The copyright page of Different Senses makes it clear that the different “chapters” in the book were originally published separately. Despite this, the book feels unified and has an integrated narrative arc, with an overarching conflict and resolution. I’ve referred to the book as a novel because that’s what it feels like: the story of Javen’s cultural enlightenment and his search for love. Before concluding, I should mention the attitudes toward homosexuality on Uterden. The Kelons show themselves to be extremely prejudiced against the Nihan, but there’s no apparent negative feeling about same-sex relationships at all. Javen and Kirin are accepted as a normal family unit by everyone in the society. Javen and Shardul will have greater problems, due to their races, but not because they are both men. I loved this feeling of comfort. This is a fantastic book. I will definitely be checking out some of Ann Somerville’s other work.