He's On Top - erotic book by Cleis Press Inc. - review by Airen Wolf

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He Certainly Is!

For those of us tired of the same old stereotype of male abuser, female sufferer that abounds in D/s literature this is a breath of fresh air.
For anyone else looking for a good collection of stories about dominant males and their loving subs this is a sure fit!
Well written short stories, great selection of authors
Rating by reviewer:
extremely useful review
I give mad props to Rachel Kramer Bussel for sticking to her guns and adding only stories that celebrate dominant male behavior in a favorable light to her anthology, He's On Top. I grow weary of men who are dominant being characterized as grunting, cruel, rapists. In truth true dominance demands more of a person that ordering around a helpless, hapless weakling. This is another pet peeve of mine, the portrayal of submissive persons as weak and needing a stronger person to make them mind....

When I read the Introduction to this book I was hooked. I have read numerous anthologies by Ms. Bussel and I have never failed to be impressed by her ability to choose great stories and fit them to a theme, so much so, that when offered a chance to choose one of her anthologies to read I will gravitate to them almost immediately. Her decision to show that a Dom can be tender, gentle, thorough, and the most cruelly intense Master set my heart abuzz and my nether regions aflame!

Take for instance, Not Until Dawn by N.T. Morley. In this brief story our heroine is told that she may not orgasm until the sun comes up. All night she is teased and played with until she is begging in public to be allowed to cum. She is denied and feels like she is going to combust by the time he gets her home. Through it all her man is tender and attentive but firm, she may NOT orgasm until the sun comes up. When it does she realizes the point of the game; to make that orgasm something to write stories about!

Then there's Incurable Romantic by Lisabet Sarai in which a Dom learns that a perfectly trained and obedient slave still has needs and deserves a Dominant who is willing to reach and grow to meet those needs. Just being bossy and going through the motions isn't enough.

In Confession by Gwen Masters a devout wife learns that she needs something more than a gentle lovemaking session to keep the home fires burning. I could relate to this story easily and I applauded her wounded mate for his creativity while I was shaking my head and wondering what kind of magic they might have been making all along if they had replaced religious expectation with honesty.

In Control by M. Christian left me shocked and amazed by the rudeness some bottoms show to their Tops. In this story an internet fling results in a meeting, carefully orchestrated and masterfully done. When all is done the bottom wobbles away only to completely disappear! No word of thanks, no condemnation, no constructive or even destructive criticism...just nothing. My final thought about the sub in this tale was: "How rude!"

How many times when faced with a bitch have you wanted to call her bluff just once? In Boardroom Etiquette by Lee Ash a man gets to do just that! He knows his woman craves humiliation and the element of surprise to fully let go. He gives her what she needs one afternoon at the weekly board meeting.

The Sun Is An Ordinary Star by Shanna Germain is by far my favorite story in this anthology. It had me spellbound and teary eyed through most of the end of the story! The hero of this tale has a partner who loves his dominant side and he reveled in this arrangement until the horrible specter of cancer and chemotherapy arrived in their lives. He endures with her the struggle and she endures with him his struggle when she is finally healthy again. Though she is not horribly scarred by the disease, he is. She helps him find his balance when she tells him that he should "get out the crocs tonight".

There are 11 other authors in this anthology: Debra Hyde, Donna George Storey, Mackenzie Cross, Andrea Dale, Matt Conklin, Jason Rubis, Amanda Earl, Mike Kimera, Teresa Noelle Roberts, Thomas S. Roche and Rachel Kramer Bussel. Some of them felt like old friends and some newly met but all were worth reading.
Follow-up commentary
This book rarely if ever spends time with my other books! It has taken up residence on my bedside table. Seriously, this book has re-read value in the extreme.
This product was provided free of charge to the reviewer. This review is in compliance with the FTC guidelines.
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My He's On Top tags
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  • Maiden
    Great review! This sounds like a good read! Wish listed!
  • leatherlover
    Sounds interesting. Thanks for the great review.
  • wetone123
    Thank you for the thorough review! Makes me want to take up reading again. This sounds like an interesting read
  • Waterfall
    Very nice review! I have this one and "She's on Top" on my wish list
  • ZenaidaMacroura
    Ooh, this sounds like a good read! Thanks for reviewing it.
  • liilii080
    I'm in the middle of this one now and am loving it! Glad you are too
  • Kitt Katt
    I have this book and the sister to it, She's On Top and love them both. I agree that Bussel chooses great stories for her anthologies. Great review!!
  • Eva Schwaltz
    Sounds really interesting. Great review.
  • Shanna Germain
    Thanks so much for the nice words about my story in this collection! It was one of my favorite stories to write, too.

    Best, s.
  • geliebt
    Thank you muchly for your review! I'm excited about this book for sure.
  • JKS
    Awesome review. This is going in my wish list!
  • ijako9
    Good review
  • tortilla
    I like the tone of this book. I 'll have to get it. Thanks for the review.
  • Harpina is gone
    Thanks for the review!
  • Petite Valentine
    Nice review. It's interesting to hear your take on individual stories since I had an opposite reaction to the book.
  • darkkitty
    Great rveiew!
  • Geogeo
    Thanks for the great review; I'll definitely have to give it a try!
  • Jenny Smith
    nice review
  • Boobs and Lubes
    maybe we'll try it
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