Special Guest Post by Lauren Smith – Blog Tour for The Gilded Chain – My Review & Giveaway

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Fall Tree Blog - sm - Synopsis

Explore a hidden world of erotic fantasies, where the greatest pleasures are stolen and the fiercest passions are untamed. . .
For years, Callie Taylor has been obsessed with two things: a man she can never have and escaping to Paris where she can follow her artistic passions. But everything changes when Callie meets Wes Thorne, a wealthy, mysterious art collector and famous dominant. Despite all the nights she’s spent dreaming of another man, it is Wes’s predatory gaze that suddenly consumes her every thought and sets her body on fire. One touch from him promises unforgettable passion, but Callie knows that passion often comes with a price…

From the moment he sets eyes on Callie, Wes is intrigued by her artistic talent and her delightful innocence of all things erotic. A stolen kiss leaves him aching and desperate to claim her in a way he’s never wanted any woman. But first he must convince her to surrender her control. And what better place to seduce an artistic soul like Callie’s than Paris?

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Lauren_Smith_2014 Lauren Smith

Guest Post from Lauren Smith

With the explosion of E.L. James Fifty Shades of Grey, there has been a lot of renewed interest in romance novels with BDSM elements. I had been reading some of the BDSM books before Fifty Shades was released and had really enjoyed the dynamics of what that sort of relationship could offer story-wise.

When I sent out to write the Surrender Series, there was a cataclysmic event that occurred 25 years before the series starts: a kidnapping of two twin 8 year old boys from their family mansion. Years later, only one twin still survives and the effects of this tragic event have rippling consequences over the lives of the twins and their two closest boyhood friends. I wanted to show a group of men burdened with secrets and personal tragedy and how that would play out upon the page with heroines who were brave enough to face the heroes and their pasts.

After I decided to make BDSM part of the story, I knew I had to research it right. E.L. James incorrectly portrayed the BDSM lifestyle with regard to her story and I knew I needed to not make that mistake. BDSM isn’t a lifestyle that comes from abuse, or neglect. It’s situation of power exchange. I liked writing about heroines who were brave but enjoyed submission in the bedroom. It’s not because they are weak characters. Surrendering your control is actually a powerful thing and the dominant partner you are with, they don’t enjoy “taking” the control, they want the submissive to “gift” it to them. It’s a true exchange of power. It’s a symbiotic partnership. Both parties need something the other can give them. I liked the idea of exploring this in a romantic setting.

The most important thing I wanted to do when writing about BDSM was show readers that submissive women in the bedroom are not timid mice, nor are they doormats. Instead these are powerful, smart, brave women who just like to let a man take control in bed and that there is nothing wrong with that. And I loved writing sexually explosive, dominating alpha males who by the end of the story, are complete teddy bears emotionally when it comes to the women. So there was the fascinating emotional exchange. The heroines gave up control in bed, and the men gave their hearts to the heroines in exchange. It was a lot of fun to write how all of this power plays came out.

In The Gilded Chain, I have the hero Wes, the most dominant and into BDSM out of all of the heroes so far featured in the series and he takes the heroine most innocent to that culture. Callie is a virgin, and she knows nothing of the world outside her ranch. I wanted to give both Wes and Callie a setting that would play into the mystery, excitement and sensuality of their upcoming adventures that would both romance and seduce the reader. Paris was the natural choice. Wes is an art lover, Callie is an artist, and the entire city is made for love. And that was the most crucial part for me. When I write BDSM into my books I don’t fill the pages with tons of sexually explicit, graphic sex scenes, instead, I gently ease the reader into the world, and tease them with elements of the lifestyle and all the while I put the focus on the romance, not just the sex. Because for me, it’s all about the love story in the end and if you have a few spankings along the way, well that just spices up the happy ending.

Fall Tree Blog - sm - My review

I think this is my favorite story in the Surrender Series to date. Callie is so sheltered and naïve and Wes is so worldly and I’m sorry to say it, blasé.

Callie has loved Fenn for years, but he never saw her as more than a friend, a little sister. Now he is engaged and her heart is broken. Her father has no idea how to make her feel better.

From the moment Wes saw her Callie wanted her. He knew she needed time, but he found her irresistible. His idea of a bet was a win/win for him. For Callie, it could mean so much more.

I loved the build up in this book, the internal struggles for both of them. The challenge of the bet, to art lessons at the Louvre. His patient, well kind of patient, introduction to his lifestyle, was incredibly hot. I loved that Callie’s knowledge of BDSM was from her romance novels, she must have read good ones. All that and an art theft to solve.

A beautiful romance that builds from sizzling seduction scenes to the passionate taking of her virginity. A journey into submission for her, and unconditional love for them both.

Don’t forget to enter the Giveaway below!

5 Contented Purrs for Lauren.

Fall Tree Blog - sm - giveaway

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Fall Tree Blog - sm - about the author

Amazon Best-Selling Author Lauren Smith is an attorney by day, author by night, who pens adventurous and edgy romance stories by the light of her smart phone flashlight app. She’s a native Oklahoman who lives with her three pets: a feisty chinchilla, sophisticated cat and dapper little schnauzer. She’s won multiple awards in several romance subgenres including being an Amazon.com Breakthrough Novel Award Quarter-Finalist and a Semi-Finalist for the Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley Award.

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