Plain Dealing - Shelley Young
This is the second book by Shelley Young I���ve read this year. It started slowly enough and I initially felt it might be a struggle, but I soon found myself drawn in by this mistress of the written word.

I don���t say that lightly, but there���s something about Shelley���s writing that leads you to believe you���re holding a sparkler - a slow-burning firework most often held by children - only to discover you���ve actually got hold of an atom bomb!

Where do I start? There are erotic writers, plenty of them, but none to match Shelley Young. Some erotic writers are jumping on the E.L. James bandwagon ��� some even name their books ���Fifty Sheds of Grey��� or ���Fifty Shades of BDSM��� or I don���t know what else. They���re generally not very good, but they���re hoping their ���unique��� title will sell a few books. Some erotic writers are clearly just living out their own fantasies. You can always tell which ones these are because they have no profile picture on Amazon or Twitter or Goodreads, or instead they���ve got a picture of a lady with full, perky breasts peeking out of a snow-white bra. She���ll be wearing high leather boots and carrying a whip and ���. Well, I���m sure you get the picture. All very nice, but it���s not the author, so what is she/he hiding? And some erotic writers are bloody awful with a storyline of a pizza delivery boy with an incredible six-pack (always) and a penis that twangs harder than a piano string getting laid by the lady of the house in a scenario reminiscent of ���Confessions of a Window Cleaner,��� but with a dollop of smut thrown in for good measure.

Shelley Young is not even on the same page as these writers. Let me tell you, she is in a class of her own!

First of all, I don���t even know if she classes herself as an erotic writer, but she is. She writes about dominance and submission, bondage and discipline, sadism and masochism, latex and rubber fetishes, BDSM etiquette, top/dominant and bottom/submissive, crops, whips, floggers and even dungeon monitors in such a mature manner that she has either researched her subject extremely well or she leads a very engaging and delightful social life herself.

I generally consider myself to be a man of clean thoughts and na��ve tastes, and in my innocence believed that a bit of bondage involved tying one partner to the bedposts and fooling around a little. WOW! Shelley Young soon put me right on those misconceptions.

But this book is so much more than all of this. It has a main plot which involves people being killed in a small town and the honest but inexperienced Sherriff���s attempts to solve the case whilst he becomes increasingly overwhelmed with matters he has no understanding of. And the book also has a sub-plot and another sub-plot beneath that and further hidden levels of sub-plots and sub-sub-plots that you find yourself captivated by the rich characterisations and their relationships with each other.

More than this, though, we have a reluctant ���submissive��� trying to come to terms with the demands that she adopt a deferential and accommodating nature in a disciplined manner, and a ���dominant��� trying to come to terms with a relationship in which both partners are equal.

Put all that in the mix and see what comes out. I cannot recommend the writing of Shelley Young highly enough.

(And as a postscript, I wouldn���t like to leave this review with any misconceptions about my views on erotic writers. I���ve found them to be amongst the most helpful and the most supportive of all other authors, bloggers, spin-doctors, song-writers and scribblers. Huge love to all writers out there ��� you all work hard enough - but it never fails to amaze me when we discover people who some would regard as being at the lower end of the social scale are actually the most decent human beings? Strange how the perspective changes with the point of view, isn���t it? Quite often those who don���t possess a coarse streak very often possess a cruel one).