** spoiler alert ** this book starts off all hot and interesting... taking the captives to another country to be sex slaves, and just when things are getting really good... everyone is rescued and she slaps a happy ending on to it. i think this is the worst thing about anne rice. she does this alot when she gets either bored or stuck... she'll just wrap it in a neat little package... brown paper of course, and then says "and they lived happily ever after". boo.Cza
I would still say this: this is one of the best smut I've read in my life, and I hope nothing could change that.I really loved this series but this last one is such a let-down.I was hoping they would stay in the Sultan's Kingdom. Laurent would pursue his dream to become a Master to Lexius, and Beauty being the sweet submissive that she is. the Sultan's world is really elegant, and even though they had experienced more pain here, they thoroughly enjoyed it. (I wouldn't call it "pain" if Laurent is having fun, at all.)the punishments here are more humiliating than from the Queen's Village (Laurent was repeatedly violated in the mouth and in the rear in the garden. probs at least 5 at his mouth and 5 at his ass. *goosebumps*) and the women in the harem have mutilated genitals, and the way Beauty was bounded without covering her breasts and her womanhood in that hall. TOO MUCH.I also hate that Beauty, who wanted to go home since the start of the story, didn't WANT to go back. I get it, she loved her life as a slave, but I was hoping that she didn't want to leave because of the Captain or Laurent. she didn't want to leave because she'll be wearing clothes again, after months of being naked. (I still wonder why the salves never got sick, tbh. I would if I was naked all the time.)but the best part is Laurent mastering both Lexius and Tristan. that was such a wonderful moment that I'd love to see Laurent master Prince, or maybe even the Queen! he'd definitely make a wonderful Master, I just know it.Oh, and I was hoping for more Laurent/Beauty scenes so I would understand their love story (it was more of Beauty having a girlish crush on Laurent, and Laurent having baser needs.). I'm glad that they married, anyway! Laurent pursuing his dreams as a Master, and Beauty being his private slave. :)Over-all, wonderful book, but I still like the 2nd book better! I hope there are other erotica!fairy tales around. if you know some, please let me know! ;)Roxanne
TWO AND A HALF STARSIn my personal opinion I think that 'Beauty's Release' (the third and final book in the Sleeping Beauty Trilogy) was the weakest in the series. I expected to read more about Beauty but instead I felt that she was hardly mentioned in the third book, it was mainly focused on Laurent and Tristan. The story got a bit boring for me and predictable and I felt the ending was a bit rushed (needed less filler throughout and more effort for the ending). What made me like this book was the development of the Characters, I would say Beauty's change surprised me the most. Overall, this book was OK, but a part of me is glad that this series is over.Shurrn
A fitting end to this High-Fantasy erotic series complete with HEA for all the characters we’ve come to love. "Yes," I thought, “Do it harder. Whip me soundly for what I have done. Let the blaze of pain grow brighter, hotter.” But it was not coherent, what I thought. It was like a song in my head, made up of rhythms – The strap, my cries, the creak of the wood… I actually enjoyed this much more than the other two books which preceded it. I was particularly pleased with the way that the Sultan’s castle was described, as well as all the luscious debauchery contained within.A Note on this Series:I’ll not go so far as to pretend that these books represent some sort of hallmark for the genre (or of the D/s Lifestyle in general), but they are a journey worth taking if you have the metaphorical balls for it. I’m not even going to try and pretend that I don’t wield these books as a weapon against those who are ignorant enough about the D/s Lifestyle to call Fifty Shades of Grey and its fuzzy handcuff contemporaries BDSM… Not that those books aren’t entertaining for what they are (Modern Romance with a slightly erotic, slightly kinky kick)… But let’s endeavor to call a spade a spade, people… Before someone gets their feelings hurt…These books are completely over-the-top graphically sexual & and descriptive to the point of making the reader squirm… However, I find the psychology of the submissive much more accurate in Anne Rice’s fantasy land than it is often portrayed in the soft-core BDSM-light Erotic Romances which come across my path more frequently. “…I felt as I always did at the core of punishment: The coming of a tranquility, a quiet place in the very center of frenzy, in which I could surrender all the parts of my being.”L.L.
Każda kolejna część serii jest lepsza od poprzedniej :) choć wszystkie trzy są bardzo dobre (no może po przeczytaniu całości poprzednie nie wydają się aż tak, ale w miarę czytania jak najbardziej się podobają).Takie śliczne zdanie: "Obrócił moją twarz ku sobie i pocałował mnie mocno w usta. W ten sam sposób pocałował Tristana, a ja popatrzyłem na te dwie złączone nie ogolone twarze, splątane blond włosy i półprzymknięte powieki. Mężczyźni podczas pocałunku. Jakiż to piękny widok."zgadzam się ;)I jeden interesujący fragment: "To wszystko skłoniło mnie do refleksji na temat miłości. Czy kiedykolwiek kochałem któregoś z moich panów? Może jestem zdolny kochać jedynie niewolników? (...) Kochałem go tym mocniej, im bardziej zawzięcie go biłem. Może tak będzie ze mną już zawsze? Czyżby stało się regułą, że w chwilach, gdy ulegam duszą, staję się panem"ciekawe...Dodane po przeczytaniu kilku komentarzy: to fakt, że książka to takie tekstowe porno, w którym jest wszystko: hetero, bi, gay, les, trójkąty, czworokąty, orgie i sado-maso i tylko nie ma za dużo treści poza tym :D ...ale co z tego, to właśnie o to chodzi :DCaitlin Montgomery
The female lead is a stupid twit, but the male characters are the ones that keep this book series going. I only wished that Laurent had been introduced sooner, for he truly is the most interesting out of this series that does lose steam quite quickly. Overall, I liked it for an easy read. I read it in about five hours while sick, methinks.Jenn
I am finally done with this series!!This was by far one of the most painful reading experiences I've ever had. As if getting taking from the castle and sold at a slave auction in the "village" wasn't enough, why not add kidnapping by a Sultan? Sure...sounds legit. Oh, and every two seconds someone was in love with someone else. It was just the most ridiculous thing I have ever read. There was no character growth, hell, there was hardly a plot. I felt nothing for any of these characters. I literally just didn't care for them. There were parts I just skimmed because there's only so many spankings and phallus impalements that I can take. Not to mention taking what was one person's journey and turning into a multiple character story. Guess she realized Beauty just wasn't interesting enough. Problem was, neither were Tristan and Laurent.And for the love of a higher power, don't switch from 1st person to 3rd person. It's unnecessary and takes the reader out of the story (not that there was much of one here).I get that a lot of people like this series, and more power to them. This just wasn't for me.Sharon Lucas
This is the third book in the trilogy, and I suggest saving it for last so that you know the history. If you've read the other two, then obviously you're not bothered by literature containing fantasy sexual violence, various BDSM and the like. Again, as with all three of the books, the spankings get monotonous, but there are less scenes of those in this book than in the prior two. This book has yet another change in locale as Beauty and a few others are kidnapped from the village and taken to an Arabian kingdom. By the end of the book, all of the primary characters have some sort of closure, and the loosest ends are nicely concluded.Michelle Kelly
** spoiler alert ** I am not writing a review for all three books..or maybe I will just copy and paste this post to all three. My title says is it all. These are Adult FairyTale FANTASY books. Please do not read these books and base them on real life. I need to make that clear. I LOVE these books and think about them often. They are mind blowingly wonderful but fully fantasy. I chuckle when people review "that could never happen" or something like that because, UHM YEAH! not real life. Be warned, there is major kink and lots of spanking. Pretty much everyone in this world is bi-sexual. The naked slaves never get cold. Seems to skip right over winter. No woman's periods, no STI's or STD's and constant intercourse without protection doesn't seem to result in pregnancy. This is not a manual of the BDSM lifestyle. There seems to be hundreds and hundreds of princes and princesses and of course, they are all beautiful. This is out and out a full on fantasy world and it is wonderfully erotic. I am sure that these books are not everyone's cup of tea but I was very much taken in with this fantasy world.Lisa
Stockholm syndrome. That's what all these "slaves" have. It's the only explanation for why they don't want to leave their captivity. Or else Anne Rice is just f'ed up. There is so much wrong with these books I really don't know why I read them all. I have the same problems as many other reviewers had, that everything is so clean, where are the body fluids? I'm not sure how much anal probing people can be put through without some damage going on. Also apparently they have built in birth control and STD control, or I guess it's a fairy tale and disease doesn't exist because I can't imagine this society isn't rife with gonorrhea and syphilis. It's also interesting (or not) that they kept getting warned that the village is terrible then the Sultanate was even worse when they kept getting treated at least slightly better.This installment also inexplicably tells us Laurent's story mostly and almost ignores Beauty. This could have been a whole new series. Also someone should tell Rice that ponies get treated better than her human "ponies" do. So I do get BDSM but I've always understood it to be consensual nothing in this series is consensual which is why it wasn't very erotic at all. Rape isn't erotic and in this book unlike the others they are all of a sudden "raped" especially in the Arabic land, which kind of bordered on racist. I hate to tell her that all of these sexual encounters were raped which brings us back to my original statement. Stockholm syndrome. Rubbish.Vegacula
The best in the series by far, simply because of the wonderful pov changes throughout. I started to lose interest in the first installment due to Beauty's insufferable tears that fell on every page. Thank you, Anne Rice, for letting the other characters narrate for awhile. In my opinion, this series turned out to be rather good for porn on paper. I hate to admit it, but oddly enough, my own tears hit the pages when Beauty was released. Predictable ending, but fairy tales are supposed to be predictable. I loved it, leather phalluses & all.Marleen
Copy received from Plume through NetGalleyWarning: this is a review of a work of erotica that should not be read by anyone under the age of 18 or easily offended. It also contains possible spoilers.This, the third and final part of Anne Rice’s Sleeping Beauty trilogy kicks off exactly where the second book, Beauty’s Punishment, ended. Beauty, Laurant, Tristan and three other slaves find themselves captive on a ship, bound for foreign lands and the court of an Eastern Sultan. While some things are exactly the same as they were when they were slaves at the Queens court – they have to obey orders and are subject to punishment both when they break the rules and when they don’t – other things are very different. The royal slaves are now in a position where they are being treated as little better than animals. Speaking, or even making loud sounds is strictly forbidden, which brings a new level of submission to their experience.Initially the new surroundings and rules scare and upset the captives, but it isn’t long until they realise that losing even the last little bit of their own will makes it easier for them to surrender to the experience of submission. And new surroundings allow Laurant and Beauty to discover new levels of erotic satisfaction. While Laurant indulges in a dangerous came with his master, Beauty spends time in the royal harem where her eyes are opened to shocking facts as well new forms of pleasure. When they are unexpectedly rescued from the foreign court Beauty, Laurant and Tristan find themselves strangely reluctant to return to the Queen’s lands. A return that will separate Beauty from everything she’s come to treasure while Tristan and Laurant will experience yet new ways of submissiveness. This is a fairy-tale yet we’ll have to wait until the very last lines on the very last page before we come to the familiar and expected ending:“And we shall live happily every after,” I said through my kisses, “as the fairy-tales say.”“Yes, happily every after”, she answered, “and a good deal happier, I think, than everyone else could ever guess.”In many ways this third book in the Sleeping Beauty series is more of the same; more captivity, more punishment, more sex and more unexpected and surprising revelations for Beauty, Laurant and other characters. Having said that, these books are more than a collection of erotic scenes; the characters grow, learn things about themselves and change as a result of what they experience. The learning experiences the royal slaves go through mean different things for the various characters. For some it means coming to the realisation that without submission they can’t be happy while others discover that they derive as much, if not more, pleasure from being in a dominant position then they do from submitting to others. Love is lost and rediscovered and role-reversal opens new and unexpected worlds; few characters end this trilogy in the same way they started it, but none resent their discoveries or the road that brought them there. Anne Rice is a wonderful author. She manages to make a trilogy that could easily have been boring due to repetitiveness into an intriguing study of (a form of) human sexuality. Her writing is fluent and while most of the narrative concerns itself with a variety of sexual exploits, she takes the time to explore the internal thoughts and feelings of her characters. I feel that in the hands of a lesser author this story could easily have turned into a sordid work of pornography (as I’m sure some people will view it anyway). For me though, Mrs. Rice managed to stay just about on the right side of decency thanks to the fact that the reader is never allowed to forget that (s)he is reading a fairy-tale and the detailed exploration of the character’s inner lives.I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: this is a work of erotica in its purest form. Nothing is cushioned or padded here, all descriptions are raw, descriptive and to the point. This is not a book for those who will allow a sex-scene in their stories provided it fits the story-line. In this trilogy sex is the story as it causes the development of characters. In short this is not a work of fiction with (some) erotic scenes. No, these are three books of pure and at times hard-core erotica. Or, as the author herself said on Facebook:“I believe in erotica, and the freedom of men and women to enjoy their S&M sexual fantasies. I realize the Beauty Trilogy shocks some people. That’s because it is extreme, excessive and true erotica, and I understand. Not for everyone. But for those who share the fantasy.”Helen
** spoiler alert ** Review of the first book.Review of the second book.WARNING: Disturbing stuff ahead.And here is where we hit the rock bottom.As in, mass nonconsensual permanent genital mutilation.I know there are some people out there that like it, but I daresay it's one kink that doesn't need pandering to. Otherwise we might just as well have Gilles de Rais erotica.Or was it not supposed to be a kink?It's at this point where I started to wonder if Beauty series were supposed to be erotica in modern narrow sense of the word - titillating - or just an exploration of extreme? It doesn't work well in either capacity. I daresay pacing problems and digressions would pose a problem even to people who enjoy the subject matter. Maybe even overload - there is always something sex-related going on. If it's meant to be an exploration of controversial matters - it fails to include any liquids or soft solids. (Not a fan of those, either, but as long as they are among consenting adults, I'm cool.)It could be that this is meant to present their current captors - Turks - as evil. Unlike their kind noble masters from book one. I daresay that when put like that, it seems like horrors of book second might have been staged to show princes and princesses were better off as slaves to the nobility than roaming around. It makes even more sense given the ending.Consequently, this is probably the least sexy of books, since the author now has to wrap up the plot somehow.So, how does it end? We had one prominent "prince" in book one - he was ignored in book two. We had another in book two - and he is ignored here. Both of them, particularly the first one, were the only characters in their respective books that showed discontent with the whole concept. But neither of them is the one. Beauty, instead, gets raped (and I don't even mean technically as part of the games or orders - he comes to her on his own volition, no spectators, and the way the scene was written, she doesn't seem willing at all) by a newcomer. (He is not content with his situation either, but that's because he prefers to be the aggressor.) Then Beauty gets released back to her kingdom. But she is dissatisfied with her suitors because none can give her what she wants. She even starts torturing some as the test, but finds them wanting. Then, aforementioned rapist gets released early - unwillingly - because his father is dead and he is the only heir. He is grumpy because he cannot harrass any more newbie princes. But then he hears his old acquaintance is available. So he comes in to sweep her off her feet, put some genital clamps on her and ride off into sunset. They lived abusively ever after, and author gave up on any pretense of moral dilemma and kissed it goodbye, then swatted it with a carved jewel-encrusted paddle a few times for a good measure.Emily
A lot more of this story is told from the perspective of another slave, Prince Laurent, than Beauty's. Beauty's adventures are rather tame in comparison to Laurent's while they (Beauty, Tristan, Laurent, and a couple others) are kidnapped and held captive in the palace of an Arab sultan. Laurent manages to master one of the sultan's closest advisers, and in so doing become the most dynamic character and the hero of the piece. Fans of the trilogy will rejoice in the ending which promises Beauty's forever-after happiness, but those more squeamish about male on male sexual action will not be pleased with this volume. Personally, I thought it was an above average piece of erotica and mourn Rice's recent conversion to religion which almost guarantees she will not return to writing in this genre.Stacy
This was probably my least favorite of the 3 books, though probably the hottest. I found my mind wandering at the "sameness": punishment, confusion, fear, acceptance. I didn't feel liked I gained anything new here, but still enjoyed this final book. Again we see differing pov and not really as much of Beauty as we did in the past. The slaves go on a whole new adventure here, and discover many interesting aspects of their characters they never knew before.At first I was frustrated with the indecision, the seemingly strong affection for one person that is immediately replaced by another. But emotions here are not quite as clear to define in a slave/Master relationship. There are many rules and certain protocols that cannot be ignored. It isn't until the end that Beauty finds the loving Master she so longs for.Again there is a mixture of fascination and sadness when I think of submission. One I intend to continue to explore to get a better understanding. This series gave me a lot to think about.