Tuesday, 10 May 2011

Review - Entangled Trio © Cat Grant

Entangled Trio

Author: Cat Grant

Publisher: Ellora’s Cave

Genre: Ménage, GLBT

Buy Link

Renowned mezzo-soprano Colette DuPlessis is carrying on a torrid affair with her costar, handsome young tenor David Lewis. David wants Colette as more than just a short-term fling, but she must return home to Paris-and her husband, conductor Aleksandr Petrovsky.

Though she and Aleks have an open marriage, Colette vows never to see David again. But when her new costar cancels right before opening night, she has no choice but to suggest David as a replacement.

It doesn't take long before Aleks notices the amazing chemistry sizzling between David and his wife-and realizes he's attracted to the gorgeous young singer himself. He and Colette quickly make it their mission to seduce him.

The three of them explore the far reaches of pain and pleasure. But Colette and David both soon learn they must guard their hearts closely, or risk losing themselves within this entangled trio.

 

My Thoughts

Every once in a while I delve into a book that I know right from the outset is going to annoy me – because I am finicky about something within the subplot itself.

I love ménage and probably read an unhealthy amount of it if my monthly credit card statement is anything to go by – that said there is one little area of ménage that I am uncomfortable with and that is the “the arrangement” within a marriage, or an understanding or just plain looking the other way when the other is getting up to their thing plotline within the boundaries of marriage.

That said two things made me pull up my big girl socks and took a chance on reading this book – firstly this was a Cat Grant book –this author works for me on all  kinda levels  even where I have major niggles I love her overall style and the misses have been few and very far between over the span everything that I have read from her so far.

The second reason was that I was convalescing for a few weeks and I tend to be a sucker for anything different in my reading material when I am in pain – I am weird like that.

Let me say right from the start that ENTANGLE TRIO can be read as a stand alone book, however to really capture the journey of how far the author takes one of the character I would suggest reading Sonata Appassionata before getting into this one.

This story is mezzo-soprano Colette DuPlessis story for the most part and it begins with her away from home doing what she loves – performing - whilst enjoying one of the perks of her job – it’s hot young Tenor, David Lewis. Colette is married but she and her husband has an understanding regarding hook ups outside of their marriage – however right from the beginning it was evident that Collette is deeply attracted to her latest conquest David even though she knows this is and can only be a short term thing.

Colette is cautious about being seen with David while also being overly concern that she projects the right image to her fellows and not bring shame to Aleks her husband or let her dalliance become the latest fodder for the gossip mill.  Probably because of these concerns or just the fact that David was unlike anyone else she has ever played with she pushes them both into new territory on their last night together with surprising results.

Collette goes home and tries to resumes her life with Aleks but they have both had a shift in their entire attitude toward their arrangement, she is rethinking what is important to her and how much she misses home and hearth more than usual when she is away on tour. For Aleks his little dalliances of late are not as fulfilling as they usual are for him anymore.

A chain of events brings David onto their turf and almost from the moment the trio meet – it feels like a storm was brewing. While David values the opportunity that he has been given to appear in a premier performance he cannot help his attraction to the couple, but he knows that there is a time and place for everything and he with so much to lose has to get his priorities right, Colette and Alex however has no such restrain and as they are both attracted to David and they make their move.

 

I liked

Music setting

With every book this author write with this backdrop I can see either her knowledge of the industry or just her plain love/research in every detail she offers up. Not only did I  get the fawning and the megalomania that sometimes come with reaching the top of any performer’s game, but I saw the background to getting there as well.

I saw people working hard, the regime they had to push themselves through, the sacrifices that had to be made to get there and I was even privy to some of the ugly side of the industry as well.

I thought  the little glimpses I got into the industry was well done and I enjoys the backend of this story alot.

Characters.

  • Aleksandr Petrovsky

Aleks was one of the bit character from Ms Grants previous work Sonata Appassionata, and I was eager to see how and or if he would be further  developed in this book. When I initial met him he came across as a dirty old man type of character who was a little too direct for my own taste, I will say kudos to the author for really peeling back his many layers and showing the rather decent bloke underneath all that life experience.

He’s seen it and done it all in the music industry and for the most part he is in a good place when I met him again in this book. Home, with some social commitments, his wife Colette and his work and that’s Aleks life and I fell in love (he had a presence about him that just worked for me)

I loved the fact that I got some history on him and I liked his rather objective approach to life, I can see some readers thinking him too stern, too rigid or even a little removed emotionally – but  I got him and I respected his “eye on the prize” attitude. The fact that he realized and accepted that love is a cycle and it needs nurturing and probably refreshing ever so often for it to grow and bloom was definite bonus or me.

Loved him…

Aleks being bi-sexual and the arrangement with his wife were areas that I really nit picked on and I was keen to see Aleks POV on the matter. I liked that some of the issues like trust, compartmentalization and that balance between career path and emotional need was delved into – it was good to see the growth of this particular character, compared to when I met him it was an eye opener to “see him”.

  • David Lewis

Davis is the young lothario that is  enamoured with Colette when I first met him but as the story progresses he becomes an integral part of the relationship between the couple. David is a little shrouded in hero worship mode when he is first introduced but as the book and the plotline twist and turns I saw more of him trying to find his place in not only the couple’s life but also finding his own feet in the business.

David has his own personal issues to deal with as well, he is at a crossroad in regards to where he wants to go with his career and he is right on the cusp of being something special – I actually thought the author had a nice mix of scenes showing David as an individual as well as a third in a budding relationship.

Of the three his background was the only one that I really connected with – there was something rather basic about it, very emotional at some point and I could see where he got his determination from and I understood his mind set about other things especially his quite mature attitude to certain events that were happening in the book.

He was a perfect cast and a fit for the more dominant Aleks and the sometimes flighty Colette.

  • Colette DuPlessis

As I mentioned before this is Colette’s story and I never really liked her – just for no more reason than I thought she was having her cake and eating it too with these two men (I know I should give a better explanation – but I just didn’t like her). While I appreciated the author giving me a look at her life and her expectations it just seems she came out smelling like roses no matter where the dice rolled.

Collette also didn’t appeal to me as I thought she was a little immature in some of her actions – but I could probably chalk that up to the music arena (diva/drama mindset) and the fact that for the longest time she was the darling of quite a few many eyes. Collette has a childlike charms that belies her rather stubborn stand on certain topics – this is probably one of the more positive area of her character that appealed to me.

Character development

I wont elaborate too much on this area – but I though for the length of the book the three protags were fleshed out pretty well in my opinion and while I was mostly keen to see how Aleks was developed - I thought all three had some measure of personal growth over the course of the book .

Tackling my concerns

I was pleased there were dedicated scenes earmarked dealing with most of my concerns – fidelity, trust, communication and individuality.

None of my concerns formed any major angsty issues within the story itself – but I was pleased from a readers POV that the author took the time to address these issues rather than assumed I would know what they were going through. 

Support cast

There was really a  steady stream of new people introduced during the course of the book and If I was pushed to nail down the highlight of ENTANGLED TRIO I would say it was how appropriate they all were.

They fit, they had issues, they laughed, they gossiped and for the most part I could see people who had lived…

David’s mom is probably my favourite of the lot.

Niggles

BDSM Scenes

There are a few BDSM scenes that are at the mild end of the scales in this book which didn’t work for me at all. Collette was in effect a switch but she was just too ladylike to carry off the whole Dom scenes to suit me – but probably that is just me, it may appeal to other readers who just like that dip into the BDSM world without all the gut wrenching feeling that sometimes comes with reading those scenes..

Aleks was definately the Dom in that trio but that aspect of the book was not developed enough for me either. Scenes were too short and it all felt forced rather than a natural flow or a comfortable part of Aleks’ and Colette’s relationship.

As for David – he is still new to his love of this kink and I really struggle to see either party being the ideal person to guide him through this delicate stage from the info that I got about this aspect of their relationship.

Cover

This might just be me – but I go through Cover moods and this cover as nice and as sexy as it is did not suite this book. When I see covers like this it implies rampant sex and just all kind of erotic scenarios, ENTANGLED TRIO was none of that or rather a much better story than the cover implied.

I must point out here that the story that links to this book is published by another publisher – so true continuity probably could not be maintained here in regards to the cover.

Bottom Line

…….. was a book I was not expecting to be written as the prequel was wonderful on it’s own and I liked where I had left everyone, (Appearing Nightly)

A while ago I said that about another of this author work and I have to  say it again here. Allegro Vivace & Sonata Appassionata were simply wonderful books all on their own. Whether Aleks was a minor buzz that just nagged and nagged or it was one of the other characters that made Ms Grant sit up and wrote this story I am very pleased she did.

Going in with a big hang-up about the subplot I was please I really took the time to read this book,  I had niggles, I fell in love and I just could not control my inter bitch and end up not liking a diva at the end – but despite that ENTANGLED TRIO is one of those book that you will not close the last page page and forget it.

It sits with you and is ripe for a discussion – I can see this book being one of those that readers will either really hate or really like. I  really liked this one. I found so much more positive than I thought I would and the niggles – just enough to be niggles.

 

4 Speak To Me:

Cat Grant on 11 May 2011 at 00:04 said...

Hi EH! Thanks for the review.

Just FYI, Aleks has appeared previously in Sonata Appassionata, not Allegro Vivace.

Glad you enjoyed the book. :)

Erotic Horizon on 11 May 2011 at 00:07 said...

Thanks for picking that up - Fixed...

:)

Chris on 11 May 2011 at 04:43 said...

The arrangement in a marriage doesn't work for me so well, either. :(

Mandi on 11 May 2011 at 12:27 said...

I had a hard time with this one - not so much the arrangement - I just didn't like the characters very much. I would like to try more from this author though.