- Paperback: 428 pages
- Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (April 6, 2016)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1530784166
- ISBN-13: 978-1530784165
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.1 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars See all reviews (389 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #781,815 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Dark Notes Paperback – April 6, 2016
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Top customer reviews
**See goodreads.com/NMmomof4 for my full review with spoilers**
Brief Summary of the Storyline: This is Ivory and Emeric's story. Ivory is 17 and starting her senior year at a prestigious school of the arts. She is severely poor, and sticks out among the rich kids. She has learned ways to support her drug using mom and brother, as well as herself while going to school. She has also dealt with the unfortunate side of being an attractive girl. Emeric's is her new mentor, and he is instantly drawn to her. They start to toe the line of impropriety right away, and of course eventually cross it. There is some drama with family, some issues with the school and other students, some OW drama, some sexy bdsm times, and they fall in love...and they get a HEA ending.
POV: This alternated between Ivory and Emeric's POV.
Overall Pace of Story: Good. I never skimmed, and I thought it flowed well.
Instalove: No. Instalust? Yes.
H rating: 4 stars. Emeric. He was a sexy, mysterious man. I sometimes didn't like how he failed to communicate with the h, and would just take control of the situation (but I guess that was supposed to be part of his dominant persona)
h rating: 3.5 stars. Ivory. I felt really bad for her circumstances. She had so much against her! I just wish that she sometimes made the H work a little harder for her, and wasn't under the golden peen trance ;)
Sadness level: Low/moderate. I never needed any tissues, but it does cover some heavy themes.
Heat level: Moderate/high. This had a lot of sexual tension, and once they actually become intimate there are a lot of scenes. They have hot chemistry and scenes.
Descriptive sex: Yes
Safe sex: Yes and no. They are tested and use birth control after results get back. The H never mentions past practices, but I think it's implied that it's similar to what he did with the h. The h says that the men that raped her didn't always use protection.
OW/OM drama: Yes
Sex scene with OW or OM: Yes
Closure: This actually had a decent jump ahead epilogue with a HEA ending!
How I got it: I paid the $3.99 for it on amazon.
Second, the book's tonality shifted from somewhat dark and gritty at the beginning to hearts and flowers at the end. It felt like the author realized that the people who would eventually rate this 2 or 1 stars because she was underaged and he was kind of predatory needed to be appeased. The climax was completely out of character with Emeric's actual behaviors (not fantasized behaviors) and it range false. The book lost it's way for me as it unfolded from despair to a life's dream fulfilled and strolled straight into fairy tale land.
Last, the "clever" literary devices on sonatas, notes, concertos etc. were overdone and at times, nonsensical. They also occurred more and more frequently as the book progressed and at times they took me straight out of the story.
If you are fan of this author, I still recommend reading this book. I think it was a decent attempt to mainstream/enable a taboo relationship into an acceptable love story. That was always going to be a challenge to readers beyond her fan base (think about how the author of Nine Minutes turned into an apologist in the sequel with the lame "Ginny was really 18, not 15" when Grizz took her.) While not her best, she is still a better writer than most of the other authors covering this genre and therefore worth the read.
Ivory broke my heart time and again, but I was hopeful for her. She’d had a rough life but she was doing her damnedest to carve herself out a spot on center stage behind a piano. With a faculty change her senior year, Ivory was confronted with Emeric and having to build a professional relationship with him in order to secure his recommendation to the music school of her dreams. She wasn’t counting on all the extra stuff to come from her interactions with Emeric.
Emeric was mercurial. He was hard to trust in the beginning, I thought for sure he was going to break Ivory's heart or further fracture her mind. there were parts of the book I hoped he’d stay far away from her because I knew he had the ability to hurt her more. In the end, my opinion of Emeric changed, I was glad he was looking out for Ivory. He showed such a depth of emotion with her, it was amazing, and it was by far the best gift he could have given the emotionally starved girl. And let’s not forget his abilities in the bedroom! He was a teacher I’d be glad to have any day, and he managed to be commanding, affectionate, and push Ivory when she needed it; he was well and truly attuned to her.