The Principle of Desire
(Science of Temptation #3)
Author: Delphine Dryden
Publisher: Carina Press
Date of Publication: December 9, 2013
After several years as a submissive, psychology lecturer Beth is eager to experience being on the other end of the whip for a change. When she meets sweet but socially awkward Ed at a party, it’s obvious the aerospace engineer is interested—and obvious he’s way too vanilla.
When tracking down a friend lands him in a BDSM club, Ed’s eyes are opened to a whole other world—and a whole other side of Beth. Then Beth’s former Master shows up, and Ed agrees to play along as her sub in exchange for a real date. The biggest surprise of the evening? How much he enjoys letting her take control…
Beth’s ex makes it clear he wants her back, but she needs more from a relationship than he can offer—and not just the freedom to explore her switch side. At first Ed is just an enthusiastic student. But the more she gets to know him, in and out of the bedroom, the more Beth wonders if he’s everything she desires…
I like this series so much. I first read Ms. Dryden’s work in July of last year in The Theory of Attraction, and now eagerly pounce on every book in this series as soon as I can get my grubby paws on it. The first two books featured male Dom/female subs, but this one was different, in that neither character was a Dom, but rather both were switches (or one switch, one just interested in kinky sex once he tried it out).
I liked Beth a lot. She’s honest about who she is, and when her Master (former Master, technically) wouldn’t encourage/help her expand her horizons, she was willing to break it off and move on. He didn’t want to accept it, and that causes some problems (not in a nightmarish, creepy stalker way) for Beth just after she starts meeting up with Ed, who stumbles onto the BDSM club one evening in search of Ivan (hero from Theory) to get his phone back.
Ed – he got his eyes opened to a whole lot in this book. He’s a great guy. He comes across as a beta hero and that’s incredibly refreshing. Completely cleans the palate after a steady influx of alpha heroes in my reading lately.
It was a great book. I’ve never really read a book where a woman was so purely a switch (if purely is the right word for it). She liked topping. She liked bottoming. And she didn’t hide that fact. Her growth as she came to understand some of her emotional baggage (and despite the fact that she’s the psychology teacher, Ed schools her with some psychology of his own) was great to see.
It’s rare (at least in my somewhat limited experience) in such a short work to see genuine character growth, but it was accomplished really well by Ms. Dryden when it came to Beth. Ed grew in his own way, but it wasn’t as big a thing for him. Beth truly came to understand some things about herself as she tried to decide between her stubbornly persistent former Master and Ed as to which man (and ultimately which life) she wanted for herself.
I’m so glad I read this book. It made for a nice break from the world I usually inhabit of uber-Alphas and the kick-butt heroines.
Thank you, Ms. Dryden, and thank you Carina!
Book provided by NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.