Wednesday, 8 July 2009

Review – the Courtland Chronicles – Strictly Business – Cat Grant






Back Of The Book

Eric Courtland wants revenge against a father who never loved him, and who drove his mother to an early grave. He's willing to do anything to get it--even if it means selling himself body and soul. A prequel to the All Romance e-books' best-selling novel THE ARRANGEMENT.

The business world is a shark tank, and Eric Courtland quickly learns it's eat or be eaten. Desperate for revenge against a father who never loved him and drove his mother to an early grave, Eric forges a partnership with tall, dark and utterly ruthless titan of industry, Branford Crane.

Bran owns him body and soul, tutoring him in the cut-throat tactics of high finance by day-and by night, giving Eric the punishment and domination he craves. Will Eric have to become his father in order to beat him? At what cost? Can Nick Thompson's love pull him back from the edge?


The Plot

Eric mother has just died and he is in a vengeful mood. He however is not prepared for the business world of shady deals and less than ideal motivation.

One person comes to his aide, Branford Crane – but at a cost. Eric knows he can go the distance as he is riding on a wave of “getting back at the man”,  but when he’s comes face to face with who and what Bran is – can he make that decision that  will affect the rest of his life.

So what exactly did you have in mind?" Eric asked.
"A number of things. Buying up stock, working a few deals I've been keeping on the back burner. I've also gleaned some information on a few of his cronies that might prove useful. We may be able to turn at least a couple of them against him. In time, of course," he added. "I want to wait until he thinks you've accepted your downfall and you'll never be a threat to him again. I want him to think he's won. Knowing Edward the way we both do, I think it's safe to say that could take years. So I need to know that if you're in this with me, you're in it for the long haul."
Eric studied the depths of his drink for several moments before nodding. "I'm in, for as long as it takes."
"So what specific role did you have in mind for me to play here?"
"Well, first, I'd like you to come onboard as my new vice-president of research and development. With David leaving, the division's a mess, and I understand you're in the market for a job right now."
For a moment Eric was genuinely floored. "I-I'm flattered, but are you sure about this? There must be some better qualified candidates out there."
"You've already run an entire company that's twice the size of mine. I'd say you're qualified." Bran got up and strode to the bar, pouring himself another drink. "You needn't worry that this is suddenly going to turn into a temporary position. As far as I'm concerned, if you come aboard, you're in for the duration."
"There's a rousing recruiting speech if ever I heard one," Eric smirked, knocking back the last swallow of his Scotch as he stood up.
"I'm glad you find my proposal�inspirational." Bran set down his glass and leaned back against the heavy mahogany bar. His gaze took a leisurely stroll up and down Eric's body before settling on his lips, then he seized Eric's fine wool slacks by the belt-loops and dragged him in for a mouth-bruising kiss.

Strictly Business © Cat Grant


Surprise Element

Because of my prior experience with the blurb on BY CHANCE, I was keen to make note of everything  about the blurb on this book. There was a disclaimer to the bottom on the blurb and to be honest without this disclaimer – my thoughts would be more or less – the blurb lead me wrong.

Warning: This title contains hot male/male action, bondage, domination and sadomasochism

This book didn’t let up on the emotional pull – whether you love it or hate it, it was roller coaster and I simply was gripped.



When you read alot of erotic material – there's one of two things that could happen, you either get caught up in it and want more of the same or you get jaded to the fact that a relationship can be found without the excessive smut.

In STRICTLY BUSINESS Ms. Grant push me right up to the edge of my tolerance with the smut. It started out with Eric still in the “In charge Mode” in terms of his relationship with Nick, it evolved into something that can only be described as an experience.

It made my impression of Eric fall to a new low, but I could not get enough of it. Ms. Grant really out did herself with the description, the in your fact logic behind what was happening with Bran and more over the ground rules were laid out from the get go – so all I could do was go with it and say WOW.

“Just a minute,” Bran said, extending a hand to keep Eric right where he was. “Let’s lay a few ground rules first. We both know what this is—and one thing it’s not is a relationship. If that’s what you’re looking for, go back to your boyfriend.” At Eric’s shocked look, he added, “Yes, I know all about him. Do you honestly think I would’ve offered you a job without having you thoroughly investigated first?”

Strictly Business © Cat Grant



I love when authors push themselves, and I think Ms. Grant really pushed her self in this one. She has a commanding voice in this book and I liked it.

I am not going to sugar coat this book – it was short, it has BDSM issues and it was not nice. It niggled me but my hats off to the author because – guess what, I could not stop turning the pages, I thought she really had a handle on the BDSM, I wonder what she would do with a full on bondage domination book.

STRICTLY BUSINESS gives a more detail account of Eric’s personal life and while the usual suspects made an appearance, this was really a moment in time in the life of Eric.

Bran was the only support cast of note and while I thought he was a bastard – His character was a force to be reckoned with. With little ease he totally dominated this book. Eric was a shadow of his arrogant “please me” self.

I thought the length of this book was just perfect – the scenes were tight and very practical – with that type of scenario it’s best to give it to us and cut us loose. Well done.  

Because I am reading the books in the right order, rather than the order they were released. I am not getting that dramatic effect, however for readers who had the pleasure of being with Ms. Grant from the first book THE ARRANGMEENT – this book would close so much doors on why Eric is the way he is and also fill in a whole of the gaps about the relationship with his father.

Once again the pace goes really fast – and I again went with the flow of it, as I imagine in the world of cutthroat corporate management, things would move at a rather fast pace.



Eric is still a right ass and the more I read the second book – the more I know he so deserves a black eye – but all he got was a black ass.

His treatment of Nick has not gotten any better and for once Nick is showing some spine – but – yes again another – but.

No reference was made to their earlier break-up and Eric and Nick’s relationship is clearly running along the line of Nick give and Eric take.  


Firstly I have always like the cover model in the foreground – so that makes the cover a shoe in with me. However in terms of the book – STRICTLY BUSINESS was all Bran’s show and Eric was just a needy pathetic soul – so the cover works for me.



6 Speak To Me:

Cat Grant on 8 July 2009 at 16:56 said...

Thanks for another thoughtful review, EH! ;)

Erotic Horizon on 9 July 2009 at 12:43 said...

You're welcome Cat...I am really enjoying this series..


Leontine on 9 July 2009 at 13:05 said...

Oh E.H., now look what you did! You perked my interest with bk 1 but by reading this one - wow, wow and wow.

You so got me with this sentence:
Quote E.H, review:
I am not going to sugar coat this book – it was short, it has BDSM issues and it was not nice.

I do not always require nice in stories, bad can be good too :D Is this only accessible as an e-book??

Erotic Horizon on 9 July 2009 at 13:19 said...

I love this book - it tick all my boxes, you know I love the BDSM scene....

Anyhow from Cat Grant here's the info you need

"This book(By Chance), along with Strictly Business and Complications, will be available in print, probably within the next couple of months"

Thanks for coming by hon...


Leontine on 9 July 2009 at 14:09 said...

Ever since you gave us all a heads up I was very intrigued only I'm not an avid e-book reader, I wants my books in print ;D If it were no other way I would've purchased them in e-book but with the knowledge print is on the way I will keep a close eye on Cat Grant and this series.

Am I correct that the series revolves around the same M/M couple?

Erotic Horizon on 9 July 2009 at 18:21 said...

Hey Leontine...

Hope the wait won't be too long...

And yes the book does revolve around the same protags...