17 August 2014

Taming the Mistress by Sindra van Yssel

 A veteran dominatrix, Mistress Sue goes to Bondage Ranch fresh on the heels of a break-up with a male submissive, looking for another to pass the weekend with. She sees old flames and friends who have found partners. Subs offer their services, but she also catches the eye of Dane Kilmer, a different kind of Dom.

Dane isn’t into the latex and leather trappings of BDSM, and he’d rather make love under the stars than in a dungeon, but he’s undeniably an alpha male. For both of them, the other represents a different kind of lover than they’ve experienced. As Sue is drawn to Dane’s tent near the primal bonfire, Dane experiences a tug back. The battle for dominance threatens to drive them apart, and so does Sue’s pride as she decides whether she is ready to kneel to a man after many years on top.

We have the story of Sue and Dane, both Dominants in the BDSM life style.  I felt from the beginning Sue was struggling to find her rightful place in this life style. Just getting out of a relationship with her last sub was harder than she anticipated.  Trying to make the long distance relationship was a struggle but when the sub’s secrets started coming out Sue realized that not only did she lose a sub, she lost what could have been a long term relationship.  When they broke up right before they were to attend the Bondage Club she was forced to face being alone at the club with no submissive,  along with the meeting of Dane, one hot and sexy Dom who appears to be fascinated with Sue.
When she saw Dane staring at her from across the room watching as she dealt with two subs requesting her attention, she was intrigued but guarded.  When asked to meet him outside he was as sure as she was that her appearance at the fire would not happen but it did.  She went to him and there was some passion and aggressive heat happening.  It began as the battle of the Dom’s with who would take the top and who was willing to be the bottom.
As the story progresses we watch Dane tear down Sue’s walls and she finally comes to terms with her role in the life style.  I felt her decision was pretty predictable. For a strong woman who said she was confident, I doubted her as a reader.  I guess I wanted her to struggle more with her choice before she just surrendered to the facts.  Dane was sexy and smooth and the Dom we all dream about in BDSM books, I can see why she would question her past choices a great deal,  especially when those past choices keep coming back to interfere with what you are trying to build for the future.  You either are a Dom or you aren’t, there is no faking who you are.
The book could have been expanded to give us more development and scenes and that would have been great as far as I am concerned, but for the length it was I felt it was a great read.  We were able to know enough about the characters to invest in them and the passionate scenes were hot.  I fear some will slam Sue because of her switch and what she gives up for Dane, but I feel she wasn’t ever sure the dominate life was for her.  I think she was searching for the other half of her heart and the D/S would work itself out. 
I would recommend this to anyone who is looking for a day to escape into the world of BDSM and romance.  

I was a bit apprehensive to read Taming the Mistress, but not for the reason you might think. While it is true that I haven’t read the previous books in the series, this book is written as a stand-alone and posed no problem reading it as such. No, my issues is that prior to starting this, I read Cherise Sinclair’s latest book; honestly, how can another BDSM book compare with the Shadowlands? Well, you do it by being creating characters that are not your normal Dom and Domme and you let them loose on one another. This is exactly what Ms. van Yssel has done with Sue and Dane and boy howdy does it work.

We first meet Sue when she enters the dungeon of the Bondage Ranch. Within a few pages it is rather obvious that she no longer finds pleasure in her role but has no idea what change needs to be made so that she is no longer “going through the motions.” Unfortunately for Mistress Sue, the only unattached male that catches her eye is an obvious Dom and as she does not submit, she knows nothing is going to happen no matter how much he turns her on. When he approaches her and makes an offer for the evening, she turns it down as expected. Thankfully her hormones and curiosity get the better of her and she finds herself joining him at the bonfire. What follows is one of the most primal and sexually aggressive scenes I have read (outside of paranormal erotica) as the two fought for sexual dominance and it flipped my switch. But once dominance is established, the sexual energy varies between seductively soft and no-holding-back rough and demonstrates how well matched the two are sexually.

While Taming the Mistress obviously centers around BDSM and there are plenty of hot sex scenes, there is a lot of story going on at the same time. Sue is dealing with a major betrayal and questioning her sexual identity. Dane is dealing with the fact that he is attracted to a Domme but has no intention of being the one to submit and, at the same time, dealing with feelings of possession that go beyond just the weekend. Getting to witness the hurdles they must overcome to develop a relationship and decide whether they actually want one outside of the Bondage Ranch made Taming the Mistress an extremely enjoyable read for me. Dane’s character alone earns this book a spot on my re-read list and 5-stars. As I enjoyed the author’s writing style, Ms. van Yssel has been added to my watch list.


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