Wednesday, November 06, 2013

Eighty Days Yellow (Eighty Days #1) by Vina Jackson

NOTE: This is a review of an adult erotica book, neither the review or the book are intended to be read by those under the age of majority.

SUMMARY (from Goodreads):  Caught in a frustrating relationship with a man who can't accept her for who she is, passionate, flame-haired violinist Summer finds release in her music. She spends her afternoons busking on the underground, lost in the works of Vivaldi or Mendelssohn. When her violin is damaged beyond repair, Summer receives a surprising proposition from Dominik, a university professor with powerful desires, who has been captivated by Summer ever since he heard her perform. Dominik will replace her priceless violin, but only if she agrees to play for him in a private concert.

Unable to deny the chemistry between them, Dominik and Summer embark on an intense affair full of daring twists and turns, as unpredictable as it is thrilling. For Summer it is a chance to finally embrace her long-denied dark side, but she'll soon learn that where there's pleasure must come pain. And can a relationship born of such all-consuming passion, ever really survive?


This books was actually a  birthday gift from a well-meaning friend, who got persuaded by a salesperson in a book store to pick this book over another one from the same genre.

Now, I do like a good erotica occasionally, as you may have noticed from this blog, but this book was a complete disappointment. I scarcely ever give one-star ratings, but for this one I feel like even one star is one too many.

The beginning is actually intriguing with Summer’s love for music and her total losing herself in music while playing her violin. But that’s about it, from then on, it goes just downwards. We hardly learn anything about Summer, her background, why she feels compelled to explore her sexuality in the ways she does, which are mostly self-destructive.

I realize this is erotica, but that to me does not mean it should be entirely empty of any meaning whatsoever in any form of relationships between people, not only lovers, but also between friends or family members. Everything in this book is just bland.

As for the sex and BDSM, it hasn’t done anything for me but left me disgusted. I had read much, much better porn and BDSM in fanfiction.

In addition, Summer as a person is obnoxious and so are her friends and Dominik. Summer, for example, judges people by the food they like or dislike, which is so ridiculously prejudicial that I couldn’t even believe it. When she loses her job, she simply waves it off. Her friends are not really her friends, again, they are just as prejudicial as she is. Instead of being there for her and supporting her as she displays obvious signs of (identity) crisis, they judge and abandon her. And Dominik has absolutely no appeal to me, though I guess a male protagonist in an erotica novel should have at least some.

All in all, the characterization in general is awfully superficial. Again, it is erotica, but that doesn’t mean it can’t have well-written characters, at least the main characters. However, even that little what we learn about Summer is contradictory; for example, in the beginning, Summer’s mother is supposed to be absent - I was under the impression she is dead, whereas later Summer suddenly talks about her parents in plural.

To top it all, Eighty Days Yellow is poorly written with quite a limited vocabulary and confusing narration. The POV alternates from the first person POV for Summer and third person limited POV for Dominik, but then somewhere in the middle of the book we also get third person POV for Summer and it’s all a big mess.

Finally, I have only finished this book because it was a gift and I felt badly about not finishing it, but I’m definitely not reading the rest of the trilogy.

1 star

RECOMMENDATION: If you are tempted to read this book, don’t. The summary/blurb is highly misleading and I believe there is plenty of better BDSM erotica to be found. This is, of course, as always only my personal opinion. But don’t say I didn’t warn you.  

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