I like Dianne’s style of writing. She writes in the first person and always manages to place herself in some sexy and sometimes comic situations. She has declared in some of her articles and short stories that she is turned on by public nudity (hers) and that she has a submissive side that enjoys being told what to do, dominated, and used.
These are the general themes that run through Mis-Taken.
The concept behind this book is interesting – how far will a woman go as the original blackmail spirals out of control? Dianne creates the scenario for the initial blackmail very effectively and then escalates this convincingly.
I did feel that there were a couple of times when any average person would have said ‘OK, enough.’ Some of the tasks the main character is set follow the author’s favourite themes and are very sexy, even though the reader has to remember the blackmail context. Maybe the character has a secret fantasy that is driving her on and making her make irrational decisions but this is not touched on?
Then the book takes a darker turn as the blackmail becomes more psychological. There is always the nagging question in the reader’s mind as to what is holding her tormentors back and this is cleverly not revealed until the end.
I did find some of the descriptions a little lengthy. I felt that micro details of each location such as describing where the science and geography blocks are located in the school the central character teaches in, the streets that she walks through either scantily clad or nude and each piece of toast she eats detract from the main story.
In Writing – A Memoir of the Craft, Stephen King suggests cutting 10-20% from the original draft of a story. If that was done this book would be a tight, face paced and engrossing read.
Don’t let that put you off. Miss-taken is an engaging and intriguing story and well worth a read.
Miss-taken by Dianne Herbert is available on Smashwords
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If anyone’s interested in my star ratings. 1* 2* I don’t even bother to review. 3* Good but there were some bits I ‘just didn’t get’. 4* Really good, enjoyed it and/or informative. 5* Masterpiece. It’s going to sit on my bookshelf and I’m just going to look at it and hope I can write like that one day.