I just finished the other launch title in the Avon Red erotica line this afternoon. Seriously, I really liked If This Bed Could Talk - but this one? Parlor Games? The historical anthology? I was about to slit my wrists until I read the Julia Templeton story. Incidentally, it's the last one!
Fallen Angel by Jess Michaels features a madam who insists she isn't a madam. Oh sure, she runs a club catering in sexual delights where the members must pay a fee - but that does not make her a madam and the girls who work for her aren't whores. Um, sure it doesn't sweetheart. Anyway someone is trying to kill her, so she hires the hero, a former Bow Street Runner who was betrayed by a woman (naturally). Heroine has secrets. Hero has secrets. Both are intent on not relinquishing control and dominating each other.
My eyes were crossed by the end of the first chapter.
Next up is Parlor Games by Leda Swann which features a heroine who accepts employment in a whorehouse but she isn't a whore! (Oh God, not again). Her job is to tease and play with the clients, and if she decides to bed them she has to give a cut of her profits to the madam. Hero is a journalist looking to get dirt on a politician who frequents the brothel, he meets heroine, is enchanted, buys her company for a month. Except the girl is a tease, insists she isn't his whore and won't have sex with him.
Shoot me. Shoot me now!
Last we have Border Lord by Julia Templeton which is a very good story trapped in a crappy anthology. Heroine travels back in time to 1294 Scotland, is mistaken for the daughter of hero's enemy and naughty shenanigans ensue. Hot, sexy and a great resolution to the time travel angle.
Which leaves us with what? Well grading the stories individually I'd say D+, F, B - so maybe a C- for the whole? My advice - wait and see if it turns up at the used bookstore, quickly read through the Templeton story and put it back on the shelf.