Rife with sexual tension and mystery, this first tale in a trilogy will have readers eager for the translation of Mars’ next...

HOTELLES

Struggling to finish her journalism degree and help her cancer-stricken mother, a young escort finds herself swept up in an erotic education that threatens her impending fairy-tale wedding.

Elle hopes her job working for an exclusive escort agency won’t last long. Obligated only to accompany wealthy men in need of arm candy to their social functions, she sometimes takes advantage of the after-hours, off-the-books amorous perks. Yet the encounters leave her dissatisfied. After a silver notebook mysteriously appears in her bag one day, Elle begins receiving erotic notes from an anonymous admirer. One evening, she meets the brilliant, charismatic media mogul David Barlet. A whirlwind romance ensues, and within weeks they're engaged. Elle ought to be thrilled, but it all seems too fast; David hasn’t kissed her yet, and she’s still harboring a few secrets. Certain that David would drop her if he knew about her escort work, Elle is determined to quit but agrees to take one final job—which turns out to be with David’s charismatic brother, Louie. Her silver notebook starts filling with not only erotic notes, but also demands, presumably from Louie. He sets Elle a series of erotic challenges, each accompanied by a signature fetish and held in an aptly chosen room at the Hôtel des Charmes. Echoing The Story of O, most of the games arouse Elle’s desires to submit and to dominate. Yet others have an odd ring to them, such as her encounter with a man clad entirely in black latex wielding a whip, like a superhero deeply concerned about germ transmission. As the games continue, Elle starts to wonder about the death of David’s first wife, Louie’s motives and her own desires.

Rife with sexual tension and mystery, this first tale in a trilogy will have readers eager for the translation of Mars’ next installment.

Pub Date: April 8, 2014

ISBN: 978-0-06-227417-5

Page Count: 336

Publisher: Perennial/HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: Feb. 19, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 2014

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A clever, romantic, sexy love story.

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RED, WHITE & ROYAL BLUE

The much-loved royal romance genre gets a fun and refreshing update in McQuiston’s debut.

Alex Claremont-Diaz, son of the American President Ellen Claremont, knows one thing for sure: He hates Henry, the British prince to whom he is always compared. He lives for their verbal sparring matches, but when one of their fights at a royal wedding goes a bit too far, they end up falling into a wedding cake and making tabloid headlines. An international scandal could ruin Alex’s mother’s chances for re-election, so it’s time for damage control. The plan? Alex and Henry must pretend to be best friends, giving the tabloids pictures of their bromance and neutralizing the threat to Ellen's presidency. But after a few photo ops with Henry, Alex starts to realize that the passionate anger he feels toward him might be a cover for regular old passion. There are, naturally, a million roadblocks between their first kiss and their happily-ever-after—how can American political royalty and actual British royalty ever be together? How can they navigate being open about their sexualities (Alex is bisexual; Henry is gay) in their very public and very scrutinized roles? Alex and Henry must decide if they’ll risk their futures, their families, and their careers to take a chance on happiness. Although the story’s premise might be a fantasy—it takes place in a world in which a divorced-mom Texan Democrat won the 2016 election—the emotions are all real. The love affair between Alex and Henry is intense and romantic, made all the more so by the inclusion of their poetic emails that manage to be both funny and steamy. McQuiston’s strength is in dialogue; her characters speak in hilarious rapid-fire bursts with plenty of “likes,” “ums,” creative punctuation, and pop-culture references, sounding like smarter, funnier versions of real people. Although Alex and Henry’s relationship is the heart of the story, their friends and family members are all rich, well-drawn characters, and their respective worlds feel both realistic and larger-than-life.

A clever, romantic, sexy love story.

Pub Date: June 4, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-250-31677-6

Page Count: 432

Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin

Review Posted Online: March 4, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15, 2019

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ANIMAL FARM

A FAIRY STORY

A modern day fable, with modern implications in a deceiving simplicity, by the author of Dickens. Dali and Others (Reynal & Hitchcock, p. 138), whose critical brilliance is well adapted to this type of satire. This tells of the revolt on a farm, against humans, when the pigs take over the intellectual superiority, training the horses, cows, sheep, etc., into acknowledging their greatness. The first hints come with the reading out of a pig who instigated the building of a windmill, so that the electric power would be theirs, the idea taken over by Napoleon who becomes topman with no maybes about it. Napoleon trains the young puppies to be his guards, dickers with humans, gradually instigates a reign of terror, and breaks the final commandment against any animal walking on two legs. The old faithful followers find themselves no better off for food and work than they were when man ruled them, learn their final disgrace when they see Napoleon and Squealer carousing with their enemies... A basic statement of the evils of dictatorship in that it not only corrupts the leaders, but deadens the intelligence and awareness of those led so that tyranny is inevitable. Mr. Orwell's animals exist in their own right, with a narrative as individual as it is apt in political parody.

Pub Date: Aug. 26, 1946

ISBN: 0452277507

Page Count: 114

Publisher: Harcourt, Brace

Review Posted Online: Nov. 2, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1, 1946

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