Groomzilla by Sam Kritzer
My rating: 2 of 5 stars
I feel the need to explain that a 2-star rating does not mean that this is a bad book. For me, 2 stars is indicative of a book that is just okay and that’s how I felt after finishing Groomzilla – it was just okay. There were several things about the book that kept me from enjoying it more, the biggest being Aaron. I had a really hard time reconciling the hard-nosed ADA Aaron was supposed to be with the child-like brat that often appeared when things didn’t go his way. At one point in the story, Aaron pouts because Peter gets called in to work a homicide – this was too childish, especially for an ADA who prosecutes homicide cases. This is not a matter of Aaron being submissive to Peter, but more that Aaron’s work personality and brat personality are so contradictory that it didn’t ring true for me. There’s a difference between submissive behavior and childish behavior and Aaron’s behavior was often too juvenile for the adult he was purported to be. Now had Groomzilla been marketed as age-play rather than (or in addition to) spanking, it would have perhaps been more believable. I wouldn’t have read it because I don’t enjoy age-play books and while I won’t say that it’s full-on age-play, it is close enough for me to keep me from enjoying it. Those who do enjoy age-play books may find this to be a very enjoyable read.
My other big issue was the memory of the first time Peter spanked Aaron. Except for Aaron yelling at the rookie cop – the offense which triggered the spanking – there was absolutely nothing about that scene that was believable to me. Even though they had been dating for a while and the reader is told that there is an understanding between the two men regarding the power dynamic in their relationship, there was nothing to indicate that spanking had been discussed, much less agreed upon. Furthermore, the spanking occurred in Aaron’s office – which is a public office where his subordinates could hear it. The whole scene violated professional workplace standards as well as consent between the parties and it really bothered me.
Other than that one scene, Peter was actually what I enjoyed most about the book. He was attentive to Aaron’s moods and followed through on punishment when earned, even when he didn’t want to. That said, I felt there was too much of an emphasis on punishment in the book. Yes, I get that this is a spanking book so spanking will be a large part of it. But for me there was not enough emphasis placed on the actual relationship between Peter and Aaron. It seemed that most of the scenes between the two revolved around Peter punishing Aaron for yet another infraction. I just didn’t feel the connection between Peter and Aaron that I should have from a long-term couple about to get married. I feel like Groomzilla has been marketed wrong, with too much emphasis being placed on the spanking and not enough on the brat/age-play aspect. Groomzilla is not a bad book, it’s just not a book for me.
I received a complimentary copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.
Reviewed by Angela at Crystal's Many Reviewers!
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