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24 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fun story, heavy on the adult scenes
A warning to those who have not read Bertrice Small before: the love scenes are very explicit, and there are lots of them. If this offends you at all, you probably shouldn't read this book. If you like a LOT of spice in your romance, you will enjoy this tale of a young Irish girl who is sold into slavery after an unhappy and brutal childhood. She is trained to be a...
Published on May 19, 2001 by mirope

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17 of 20 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Sex, sex... where is the Romance?
Regan: Born the second of the twins was a disappointment to her mother, who wanted a son. She wasn't favored nor love but neither treated badly by her mother. Just ignored. When her twin sister, Grouch, marries the laird's son to form a unity & peace to the clan's enemy, she was to be sent in the convent forever. Her mother & twin sister had a plan of revenge...
Published on December 29, 2000 by Abbys


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24 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fun story, heavy on the adult scenes, May 19, 2001
This review is from: The Love Slave (Mass Market Paperback)
A warning to those who have not read Bertrice Small before: the love scenes are very explicit, and there are lots of them. If this offends you at all, you probably shouldn't read this book. If you like a LOT of spice in your romance, you will enjoy this tale of a young Irish girl who is sold into slavery after an unhappy and brutal childhood. She is trained to be a "Love Slave" for a powerful Moorish caliph. She and her "Passion Master" spend an intense year studing the sensual arts and fall in love. Nevertheless, the master delivers her to the caliph and they both go on to lead adventurous lives, yearning to find a way to be together again. As always, Small's historical research is good and she skillfully weaves it into the story.
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17 of 20 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Sex, sex... where is the Romance?, December 29, 2000
By 
Abbys (Moreno Valley, CA United States) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Love Slave (Mass Market Paperback)
Regan: Born the second of the twins was a disappointment to her mother, who wanted a son. She wasn't favored nor love but neither treated badly by her mother. Just ignored. When her twin sister, Grouch, marries the laird's son to form a unity & peace to the clan's enemy, she was to be sent in the convent forever. Her mother & twin sister had a plan of revenge which requires Regan to sacrifice her virginity to Grouch husband. Grouch was carrying another's mans child already. When she arrived in the convent, however, she was abducted, shipped to the other side of the world, sold & trained to be a love slave for a king....
The first part of the book was very intriguing. The conflict between the clans, the planned revenge & Regan's destiny was something u want to read more on... I find the first part of the book exciting. Until...Regan begun her love slave training. The book then simply concentrated on the arts of sex, which was somehow interesting - different, I may add! ... but the initial story line was forgotten. What happend to Grouch? Was her planned revenge successful? I was hoping to see Regan return to her homeland even for just a visit. Regan,who became Zaynab, supposedly also enjoys being a love slave cuz she was pampered compared to living in her homeland where she was ignored. Wouldn't it be nice to read about her homecoming when she was finally free? Wouldn't it be nice to know if her sacrifice was a fruitful act? I think this book is just incomplete. Beatrice Small simply didn't have to mentioned all that revenge plot to begin with if she didn't have the plan to end it. But then I wouldn't be intrigue to read on now, would I ?
Aside from the steamy sex, there is absolutely no romance between Zaynab & Karim. I thought their sex was just the same as Zaynab's other partners so what makes them both special to one another? Ok, they always thought about each other. They haven't forgotten each other and supposedly they are both so much in love with each other. But how did this happend? She was Karim's student, He was Zaynab's sex teacher... Aside from that, there was no situations or occurances that you could see nor feel their love for one another. Totally unconvincing to me. The Caliph feelings for Zaynab was more detailed. He might be old for her but you can see how much he loves her. Not only did he pampered her with gifts, he was unselfish, sensitive & considerate.
I would have given this book a 1 star rating if not for the well researched and well used informations of the arts of sex. The title suit its content... Beatrice Small made this book very different from my usual historical romance books by Julie Garwood, Jude Deveraux, Jill Barnett & Judith McNaught. This book was interesting yet I prefer the historical ROMANCE stories...with lots of courtship and old fashion love making :-) This is my first book of Beatrice Small, I might even pick up some more of her books in the future to give it another try, as this one wasn't that bad. But I think I would barrow her books in the library first. And if I like the book, I'll buy it to add in my collection.
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13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars lush historical titillation marred by violent content, March 6, 2002
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This review is from: The Love Slave (Mass Market Paperback)
I'd read Bertrice Small's great Skye O'Malley series when I was in graduate school, and seeking an escape from the news and nonfiction, I decided to read something light -- and what better well in which to dip my ladle than Ms. Small's, who I remembered as being a good storyteller and a fine writer with an interest in historical accuracy.
I thoroughly enjoyed the first part of the book. It met all expectations, and I pampered myself by taking bits of time to read Regan MacDuff's adventures. She is an intelligent and resourceful young woman, and I liked her and her friend Oma. The story was not a disappointment, making me laugh with its outrageousness even as I quickly turned the pages. Regan is the youngest of the twin daughters of newly widowed Sorcha MacDuff in AD 929 Scotland. Sorcha is driven by a thirst for revenge that will change her daughters' lives. Favored Gruoch will become the lady of their ancestral lands as well as the major lands adjoining, but her legacy comes at the price of Regan's virginity, as Regan takes her twin's place on her bridal night to prevent the groom from knowing Gruoch is not a maiden. Soon, with an heir coming, Regan is in the way and she is sent to a distant convent to prevent her from ever giving birth to a potential rival heir. Within hours of her arrival, however, she is raped and sent off to a slaver with other girls, including her future companion Oma, victimized by the sadistic Mother Eubh. The man who buys her finds her so exquisite that he is going to have her trained by a legendary Passion Master and then presented as the centerpiece of a parade of priceless gifts presented to a powerful and influential caliph. And that's just the first 50 pages (of 400)!
From there, things were not as strong. There were a lot of exciting scenes, but the romance of Zaynab and Karim was two dimensional. You could see why they admired each other, but other relationships were more complex and interesting than this one. But what I was most disturbed by was the violence, and to me it's amazing that even those who are critical of the author's efforts here have not even mentioned it, whereas I would go so far as to say it ruined this book for me. I can enjoy brutes and naughtiness right along with the next person when it comes to reading a romance, but there is some disturbing violence here in the form of a mass murder, a suicide, graphic torture and the death of children. I need escape from my escape literature! C'mon, Bertrice, lighten up!
I also would have liked to have some closure on the Gruoch storyline, though I probably will not buy a sequel to get that closure, and may not read a Bertrice Small book again. I am sick of violence.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Definitely erotica at its fullest....., February 15, 1999
By 
This review is from: The Love Slave (Mass Market Paperback)
Choosing a rating for this book is very difficult because I don't want to scare anyone away with only 3 stars, BUT BE WARNED, this story is NOT for everyone. Beatrice Small has always been extremely graphic in her stories, and if you don't like highly detailed erotic scenes, stay away from this story.
Thus saying, the attention to detail, sights, smells, feelings, and tastes, that Ms. Small is known for in her earlier stories, are all here in The Love Slave. Regan is a no-nonsense woman who takes what could be an extremely bleak future, and molds it into something, if not desireable for everyone, then atleast sucessful. I found it much more realistic to see how her character progresses, even having to take the lovers she must in order to be more than just someone's whore in the white gold trade. Some might see her as prostituting herself (and thus be turned off), but Ms. Small tries very hard to disuade us of thinking of Regan in that light. It is the more practical I-will-do-whatever-I-have-to-to-survive light that is striving to surface here.
Regan and Karim are both interesting characters to get to know, and to empathise with, as the story unfolds. By the end of the story, the plot seems to turn a little too pat with first the one, and then the other needing each other to pull them out of a depression, but we can work around that. In a time when you can't simply buck the system or win all the time, this story might pull at our democratic ideals of the freedom to chose to live our lives as we see fit, but it makes it all that more realistic in my eyes. I enjoyed this story, but as I warned above, stay clear if you don't like VERY graphic sex.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Lush, Sexual Pleasure, June 15, 2000
By 
J. Austin "jodylync" (Dublin, OH United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Love Slave (Paperback)
Bertrice Small is not afraid to show us that women can enjoy sex, too. This book is highly erotic and very sexual yet told in a such a well written manner that I was instantly sucked in. Young Regan is sold to a slaver and renamed Zaynab. She is trained to be a Love Slave, the most talented of the courtesans. The lush writing and exquisite detail of Mrs. Small swept me into Zaynab's world. I felt like I was actually there! Though the courtesan is usually a woman that average society looks down upon, Mrs. Small showed us a world of sex and survival through the eyes of such a woman. If you are someone who does not approve of sexually detailed writing, you will not enjoy this book. However, if you are a woman who wants to see through the eyes of a Love Slave, you will truly enjoy this book.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great, Engrossing Story, October 14, 2002
By 
J. Wilson "sonwil" (Santa Rosa, California USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Love Slave (Mass Market Paperback)
I almost didn't try this one because I get tired of the overdone woman imprisoned in a harem storyline. But Bertrice Small makes it work with her great writing style and attention to detail. She does a fabulous job of describing the life and customs of the muslim culture that I felt like I was right there. She does a good job of balancing the history and way of life back then with the romance. The Love Slave is definitely intended as a sort of erotic romance, but Small skillfully weaves a story with these scenes. I hate when authors get so wrapped up in writing sex scenes that they forget that they actually need to write some kind of story also.
The only problem I had with The Love Slave is some of the descriptive words used when writing some of the love scenes. Words like "love pillar," "mound of venus," and "love juices" are unnecessary and ruin the erotic moment they are supposed to be.
Other than that, this was a great book. It's my first story by Bertrice Small, and I intend to read more by her.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Lusty love story!, January 19, 2000
This review is from: Love Slave (Paperback)
Regan is a fascinating heroine. She is treated abominably by her mother and her sister,yet she triumphs in the end to become a strong and successful woman. Karim al Malina is one of Ms. Small's best heroes yet. He is strong,full of honour and totally in love with Regan, whom he renames Zaynab. I enjoyed the Moorish history in this book and found that the characters were all very interesting. I would love for Ms. Small to write a sequel so that we could find out about Regans sister, Gruoch. A word of warning, this book fairly sizzles in some parts and could be quite shocking to some. And overall excellent story!
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars BEST BEATRICE SMALL BOOK EVER, February 17, 2004
By A Customer
This review is from: The Love Slave (Mass Market Paperback)
LOVE SLAVE IS MY NUMBER ONE FAVORITE BEATRICE SMALL BOOK!
FROM THE BEGINNING, THE ACTION IS FAST AND ONE FINDS IMMEDIATE EMPATHY WITH THE MAIN CHARACTER.
I HAVE GIVEN THIS BOOK TO SEVERAL FRIENDS AND THEY ALL SAID THEY COULD NOT PUT IT DOWN.
I ATTRIBUTE THIS TO THE UNIQUE SITUATIONS FACED BY THE MAIN CHARACTER AND TO WHAT SMALL DOES BEST- PUT A WOMEN IN A SITUATION WHERE SHE IS HELPLESS AND HELP HER STRUGGLE HER WAY OUT AND FIND LOVE. THIS BOOK DOES NOT DISAPPOINT.
MY FAVORITE SCENE IS IN WHICH THE MAIN CHARACTER IS KIDNAPPED FOR THE SECOND TIME AND MUST TALK HER WAY OUT OF BEING RAPED BY THE INFIDELS.
GREAT ACTION!
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars frustrating!, October 19, 2004
By 
LuvGirl (New York ,NY USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Love Slave (Mass Market Paperback)
Dear readers, this book was so frustrating to read! Every time I would overcome my initial shock at some turn of event or distressing scene, something else would catch me off guard with it's horrifying outcome. * SPOILERS- When I finally excepted the fact that Karim gave Zaynab to the Caliph, and was actually hoping that she would find happiness with the man until she reunited with Karim, He gave her away to another man to be used like she was chop liver! By the time she got back together with Karim she was used, debauched and jaded. I didn't understand why he even wanted her back. Another scene that was very distressful and unnecessary was when her baby with the Caliph, died. How does one have a happy ending with something that dreadful happening. Having said that, the beginning of the book was very enjoyable. The relationship with her and Karim was very sexy. I dont't mind Bertrice Small's unconventional sex scenes. I actually think they are much better than your average romance novels, and I find them very sexy. I really don't care for the various amount of lovers that the heroines seems to have in her books. I also don't like it when the heroine falls in love with anyone else but the hero. So, will I read anymore of this authors books? I really don't know. Maybe I should just reread all of my Susan Johnson's books If I want steamy sex scenes that are more daring and pushes the limit.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Bertrice Small, September 23, 2001
This review is from: The Love Slave (Mass Market Paperback)
This was my first Bertrice Small book. I had run out of reading material and my friend loaned me her much read and mended book. I loved it, it had everything you read a romance for. Regan was a character that I could like. She was not silly, but at the same time she was not too hard. This book made me cry several times and that is always a sign of a good book. Set during a time period that I have never read before, and a harem... I must admit that I was not to sure, but don't let that put you off. It is a real page turner. The Love Slave is worth reading.
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The Love Slave
The Love Slave by Bertrice Small (Mass Market Paperback - August 30, 1997)
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