Sunday, July 12, 2015

Bane of My Existence by Thianna D.

Bane of My Existence (The Shift)Bane of My Existence by Thianna D.

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Bane of My Existence proved to be far more interesting and mildly more confusing than I anticipated. Let me explain my “confusing” statement first. When I began reading the book late last night, I vaguely recalled that in addition to being a BDSM romance it was also supposed to be a paranormal romance. As I enjoy both separately and combined, this was not a concern for me until I got farther and farther into the book and there were no paranormal elements. I should explain that once a book is on my review schedule – whether it’s a review copy, a book I’ve bought, or I book I’ve won (as is the case with this book) – I rarely reread the synopsis before I begin it. So the farther along I got into Bane of My Existence I convinced myself that I must have confused the book with another in regard to the paranormal aspect. This wasn’t a big deal because the author does such a good job with the focus on the BDSM romance that I was enjoying it for that alone – that is, until I got 93% into the book and the paranormal element was revealed. When this occurred my knee jerk reaction was why now? What purpose did that serve to the story because it seemed to be an unnecessary addition to the storyline? As this is the first book in a trilogy, I can only assume that the subsequent books in the The Shift series continue with Antonia and Master Bane’s story and that it will become more important to the series thread. I do worry that BDSM readers who miss that the book is included in the paranormal romance genre will wonder why the author veered off course and will abandon the series. In the same vein, readers looking for a paranormal romance will likely wonder why it took so long for it to be revealed as such, assuming they make it that far into the book. I for one plan to continue with the series and can only hope others do as well.

As for what made Bane of My Existence so interesting to me – the author does an excellent job of creating three intriguing primary characters in Antonia, Bane, and Kayle. While the focus of the story is on the relationships (<= that’s pluralized on purpose) between Antonia and Bane, Kayle’s status as Antonia’s surrogate brother adds an unexpected element to the relationship dynamics within the book. Because of the fact that Kayle is gay and is like a brother to Antonia, I found it quite funny that Master Bane felt his possessive hackles raise when she asked for an exception to being allowed to be alone with Kayle. Even better was that the situation provided Antonia an opportunity to assert herself in the relationship and learn that submissive did not equal doormat. While Kayle is the one responsible for introducing Antonia to the BDSM lifestyle and placing her in Master Bane’s care when it becomes obvious that’s what they both want, Kayle has no problem pulling the big brother card out on Bane when needed (which I loved).

Without spoiling too much, the primary relationship that develops between Bane and Antonia seemed closer to that of a Master/slave relationship than simply Dom/sub. Granted the number of and seemingly all-encompassing nature of the rules that Bane gives Antonia may be largely due to her being new to the lifestyle and in training, but it did not feel that way to me. Again this was not an issue for me nor will it be for most BDSM romance readers, but because of it I would not recommend the book to someone new to the genre. I found the secondary relationship between the two to be a fascinating concept considering Bane’s age, yet understood it completely once the big reveal occurred towards the end of the book and no I won’t spoil what it is either. As Thianna D. is an author I have read several times, I was not the least bit surprised by the scintillating nature of the sex scenes except to say that they’re possibly some of the hottest ones of hers I’ve read to date. Whew!!! While Bane of My Existence is the first book in the series and it left several questions unanswered, it did not end on a cliffhanger but rather laid the foundation for its sequel which I hope will be out soon as I am looking forward to reading it. I NEED to know what is to become of Antonia and Bane’s relationship once his family learns of it.

I reviewed my personal copy of this book, which I won in a giveaway/contest.
Reviewed by Angela at Crystal's Many Reviewers!

Check out the #Spank of the Day: Bane of My Existence blog post on Crystal's Many Reviewers.

View all my reviews

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