From USA Today best-selling Author Cerys du Lys When the beast-cursed man of legends comes for her, desiring her as his mate, can Danya tame his savage ways and show him love, or will she unwittingly become some plaything for a monster, existing solely for his pleasure? Hidden in the woods sits a mansion. Rumors say it's commanded by a beast-cursed man who crossed a witch nearly a century ago. Danya has no time for rumors and fantasies, though. Abandoned by her mother at an early age, now trapped by her father's constant debt, she struggles just to care for her family. She's shamed herself, sold her body, all to make some coin and ward the debtors away for a little while longer. One day someone will find her and love her and offer her a better life. Right? The one who comes for her is nothing like what she expects, though. The beast-cursed man of legends knows her scent and he hunts for her lust like a wolf pursuing a rabbit through the underbrush. He wants her, needs her, desires her body, and yet... There's a reason the witch cursed him in the first place, isn't there? The lord's son, Everett, trapped as a man in wolf's clothing, bound to the witch's whim. Can Danya hope to tame his wild ways, undo his curse, and find love in the process, or is she merely a pleasure toy to him, some sexual prey meant to be Hunted? Impassioned, steamy, and haunting. This evocative fairy tale of obsession, lust, and erotic thrill will enchant you, romance you, and leave you feeling bewitched.
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This story is more like a 2.5. I liked that the story was, essentially, about 2 sisters, Danya (the oldest) and Alana (age 18), who were 2 of 3 sisters. Felice was age 16. All of them lived with their father; their mother left years ago. And the story was also about a cursed beast-man, Everett. So the listener sees all of them change. The side characters, Beatrice, the immortal witch who cursed Everett, Everett’s brother, Dante, Horatio, the butler/the timekeeper. Matilda (Mattie), the arch witch. Unfortunately, however, Danya and Alana were only ok characters, because they, irritatingly, had no sense of personal responsibility. But, alas, this is a fairy tale.
In listening to this story, I had to constantly remind myself that it was a fairy tale. The reminder was done in order to leave behind some expectations that normally accompany listening to other fictional stories & in order to try to enjoy this tale. Even then, I struggled to get into it, since I generally like more depth, realism, & continuity in the books I enjoy. For instance, Danya was poor but had expensive undergarments. And the story is supposed to occur sometime in the past, but the language didn’t follow that. Still it’s nowhere near the worst book I have listened to, so there is that.
And I say this even though the narrator also left a bit to be desired. She was horrible as Everett, the beast. And all of the females sounded alike. The males didn’t sound much different from the females either. As Everett, the narrator sounded like a mild-mannered, timid, young guy, when he was supposed to be the great, cursed, male beast. The narrator also often came across as nonchalant when that attitude didn’t work with what was going on.
The fairy-tale type language was irritating at times but, possibly, in line with fairy-tales, I guess. This story is not for anyone who tires of sexual encounters; this book is chock full of them. And there are some different types, but they were relatively short and not so common as to really affect the story. For instance, the sisters, separately, had sex with magical, inanimate objects and a plant (i.e. a mannequin and a rolling pin and cloth) along with the sex they had with males, including a killing angel. All of the encounters were consensual and heterosexual, so to speak, in reference to sex with the inanimate objects. And all of the sexual encounters were, essentially intercourse, with a bit of fellatio and even less cunnilingus.
Fortunately, the book improved a bit as it went along and as the action picked up and moved away from a focus on the sexual encounters. Sex was still at the center of everything, in some way, but less explicitly as the story neared the end, about 2 hours until the close of the story. Then the focus became more on talk about sex and less doing of sex.
The pursuit to grow and change differs among the main characters. And all of them do it in a way that’s relatable. Everett pursues humanity in more than one way, love and acceptance and relationship maturity primarily. And Danya and Alana seek love and romance through sex. Danya also uses sex to keep her family afloat, which is also not farfetched. Though her father owned a shop, she was really the family of four’s breadwinner. So it’s the small degree of complexity surrounding the characters in this adult fairytale that make it bearable. I can’t actually call it good, but I can’t call it bad either.