Title: The Beginning of Knowledge
Author: Anne Brooke
Publisher: Wilde City
Length: 12k words
Genre: m/m Contemporary Erotica
Heat: 4 – Spicy & Smutty
Sex Frequency: 4 – Very Often
Keywords/Tags: Short Story, Charlie Harding Presents, Wilde City Press Erotica Week, Dark, Kink (Pain, Humiliation), Public Sex, Self Discovery
Rating: Really Liked It
When University administrator Alan Castleton meets temporary worker and talented pianist Luke Milton, he doesn’t expect to become obsessed with the handsome young blond. But soon he is heavily involved in a passionate and angry affair, and exploring the dark shadows of his own personality in a way he’s never encountered before.
The more Alan tries to break free from his obsession, the deeper it entangles him. The dangerous split between his reason and his sexual desires threatens his peace of mind and, when the crisis point comes, he must decide once and for all the kind of life he should lead.
Now this is the type of erotica that I like to read! I mean, don’t get me wrong, I enjoy a romp or what have you but Anne has written a darkly erotic story that is much more a story about self-discovery than a rough frame for porn without any reason. And Anne is so good at writing these types of stories. Here we have a man (Alan) who is at a point in his life of stagnancy. His relationships always fail and he’s grown to believe it’s solely because of him and his reaction is to abstain from any kind of relationship for a while and go about his life concentrating on his job. What he doesn’t expect is Luke, the new temp in his office that pushes all his buttons — the ones he learns that he’s not sure he ever wanted pushed. Luke makes him feel powerful, but only at the end of his degradation and abuse against him, and that feeling of power over Luke is at the same time addictive and dangerous.
What we have with this story is almost a character study of a man who feels powerless finding power over someone else. He learns throughout the story just how dangerous he is, but that is both because he is in denial of who he really is and that he hasn’t really dealt with his feelings and his past. I think that more than anything this is a smart story, because Anne forces you to confront your own feelings about Alan and Luke. Many will finish this story seeing the sex and pain as the focus, of one man being dragged into a world of Dominance that he doesn’t understand and finding that he revels in it. That it, and the story, is dark and sinfully sexy. I came away with something different from this story, and perhaps that’s what defines this story more than anything, your own perception of it. I found it as a story of a man, Alan, who doesn’t understand himself. He ends up in a darkly addictive spiral out of control because he never faced his issues head on. He always tries to run from them, and so they hold on to him all the stronger.
But it is worth finding out on your own. The writing here is superb. I felt as if I knew Alan intimately only a few pages into his first person narrative because for all that he’s blind to what is going on he’s starkly transparent. So I commend Anne for writing a story that is indeed knowledgable, that is informative but at the same time seductively sexy. I think you should read this one just to see what you take from it.
Posted by Cole in 5 Really Like It, Authors A-C, Contemporary, Erotica, Heat 4 - Spicy & Smutty, Sex Freq 4 - Very Often, up to 15k Tags: Anne Brooke, Charlie Harding Presents, Dark Theme, Humiliation, Kink, Pain Kink, Public Sex, Self-Discovery Focus, Short Story, Wilde City Press, Wilde City Press Erotica Week