Thursday, February 27, 2020

Broken by Eva Dresden

I picked this book up because some of my friends told me that it was reminiscent of Tanith Lee's work, only more porny. As someone who is a fan of both Tanith Lee and porn, this seemed like a win. BROKEN is an "omegaverse" erotica, which I'm somewhat new to, but it seems like it has origins in M/M fanfic, and involves a sci-fi dystopia where humans are born into caste systems based on sexual dominance. Alphas, with their scary, knotted cocks are at the top of the hierarchy, and Omegas, who basically exist to be fucked and bred (hello, mpreg).

Obviously, the straights just had to get in on that sweet, sweet breeding action, and now it's a whole thing.

Quinn works as a dancer in a sex club. She's an Omega who takes hormones to mask her sex hormones, but they aren't quite strong enough to stop one Alpha from scenting her out. After he molests her via bathroom courtship ritual, he starts plying her with food and gifts-- a romantic prelude to the rape and kidnapping he has in store for her. And the sex is so good that she literally gets semi-amnesiac from it, reverting to animal instincts that involve nest-building and mewling subserviently.

When Quinn isn't clouded by sex hormones she tries to run away. The first time, it doesn't go so well. Her old hubby isn't quite as charming as she remembered, and Tobias finds her and brings her back for some groveling apology sex (i.e. more rape). Then she is kidnapped and raped by about 5+ different guys and folks, you know that I, as a bodice-ripper queen, am not usually one to be triggered by rape. But this rape lasted for several chapters and it was too much even for me. It was so degrading and graphic that I actually really did not enjoy reading the book by that point at all.

Which leads me to one of my other qualms. There's just way too much sex. I liked the beginning but then it got too bogged down with porn and plot went out the window. And while we're on the subject of the writing, Eva Dresden is in no way on par with Tanith Lee. Both of them have purple prose and overwrought narratives, but Tanith Lee's vocabulary and ability to spin out heavily detailed worlds filled with literary references and allegories is unmatched. Dresden tried to sound poetic, but mostly failed and she has some odd verbal tics like "subterranean" for some reason. As in subterranean growls-- I'm not even sure what that means. Subterranean means underground. Do their growls sound muffled, like they're taking a mafia-style spa day? Or do they growl like a cave creature?

I thought I might be interested in the next two books but after finishing this book, I'm thinking probably not. The book ends on a cliffhanger that is sequel-baiting like crazy, and I am somewhat curious what happens to Quinn, but I think I'll put this series on the backburner.

2 to 2.5 out of 5 stars

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