Title: Forbidden: A Standalone
Author: CD Reiss
Series: Songs of Perdition
Released: 30th November, 2015
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Everything about Fiona is forbidden.
She’s a party girl with dark desires.
She’s beautiful, irresponsible, irresistible.
She’s my patient.
I’m her therapist.
I’m past past wanting her. Past possessing her. Past bedding her or protecting her.
I’m willing to be self-destructive, negligent, brave, audacious, and stronger than I ever believed possible.
She’s blunt force trauma to the heart.
And she calls another man Master.
Reviewed by Sharon Thérése Nuttall
Forbidden is nothing less than a masterpiece. Sucked in from the first page, it was clear to see that I was not going to be in for a colourful, flowery or lovey dovey read. Far from it. As I read on, my coping mechanism teetered on the brink of despair running my emotions riot. And regardless of the many anguishing moments which never seemed to cease, never was there a moment when my curiosity waned. Here, we have a profoundly honest narration of three protagonists with no holds barred. Not only does this book have an incredibly descriptive and well-developed storyline, but it also has a series of events which left me exhausted. This is precisely what I look for in a good read and oh boy, the author delivered with a capital D! It took me a while to suss out the structure of the read simply because I had a blonde moment; but after consulting with my buddy readers, I soon understood why Ms Reiss did what she had done. Three books melt into one so if you’ve read Kick or Use and can’t remember certain details in these two books, no worries. Clicking on the arrows in Break take you back and refresh your memory. In my case, I hadn’t read them so I started at the very beginning. Now it must be said that this is one hellishly long read; however, I couldn’t turn the pages quick enough and putting it down wasn’t an option. Despite Kick leaving me with my mouth wide open and Use shattering me to pieces, Break was for me, the read where I would come undone.
Firstly, I had very mixed feelings towards Fiona. I got the impression that her sailing through life from one party to another causing one disaster after another with no cares in the world, scandalous. She was shameless, risqué, gave no explanations; least of all to her family. Warming up to this complex young woman wouldn’t be an easy task for me. Getting inside her head, finding out how she ticked, and why she chose a road of self-destruction was even more difficult. She scandalised those who knew her, belittled herself, and the way she behaved was clearly because of her addictions. Addictions which I might add, are crudely related. She convinced herself that this was what she wanted and no-one was going to stop her. She was also convinced Deacon, her Dom, is the only one who understands her needs, but by willingly relinquishing her body and soul to him, I felt he was doing more harm than good. Her total submission wouldn’t erase her need for sexual discovery either. It wasn’t until Break that the pieces of a complex jigsaw puzzle or even the likes of a game of chess, were going to slip into place. These pieces were to be moved exquisitely but by whom you may ask! And whether or not I liked the goings on, or questioned one of the protagonist’s morality, he would be responsible for a turnabout in her life. Was it possible that more angst and nail-biting scenes could be added to such a complex story, because it was clear that the author wasn’t going to give the reader a chance to come up for air.
I really wanted her to learn to love herself. When it happened, I saluted her. I was in awe, applauded and kissed the very earth she walked on. How she managed to reach the unreachable was her trust in a professional who made her see the light by convincing her that she could be a better person, value her self-worth and overcome her past behaviour.
I really did like Deacon. This man of few words has complex traits, is drop-dead gorgeous and quite a bit older than Fiona bought out a lot of conflicting emotions in me. But he wasn’t to be my man. Elliot won me over hands down. He’s reliable, loves his job, his girlfriend and has a life which is just plain nice. Helping people is what he does and well at that. Even though his work colleagues respect his work, when Fiona walks into his life, he won’t be the only one to question his feeling. Say no more! Love triangle? I’m not keen in using this noun as I didn’t think for one moment that it was. Flawed characters who have to find a happy medium is exactly what this story is about.
Harsh issues are dealt with in an exemplary manner by the author. Her storytelling technique sold me! This is the first book I have read by her hand and it certainly won’t be the last. Every minuscule detail whether narrating the secondary characters’ hangups or delving deeply into three souls striving for goodness, was simply outstanding. I really do have to mention the end of Break and its epilogue. You, Ms Reiss, have one very happy reader. Thank you so much and bravo!
CD Reiss is a USA Today and Amazon bestseller. She still has to chop wood and carry water, which was buried in the fine print. Her lawyer is working it out with God but in the meantime, if you call and she doesn’t pick up, she’s at the well, hauling buckets.
Born in New York City, she moved to Hollywood, California to get her master’s degree in screenwriting from USC. In case you want to know, that went nowhere, but it did embed TV story structure in her head well enough for her to take a big risk on a TV series structured erotic series called Songs of Submission. It’s about a kinky billionaire hung up on his ex-wife, an ingenue singer with a wisecracking mouth; art, music and sin in the city of Los Angeles.
Critics have dubbed the books “poetic,” “literary,” and “hauntingly atmospheric,” which is flattering enough for her to put it in a bio, but embarrassing enough for her not to tell her husband, or he might think she’s some sort of braggart who’s too good to give the toilets a once-over every couple of weeks or chop a cord of wood.
If you meet her in person, you should call her Christine.